Questions? Call NCOAE Support (910) 399-8090
International programming with the National Center for Outdoor & Adventure Education (NCOAE) provides unparalleled adventure. Our 31-day Patagonia expedition is developed to give you the skills you need to work professionally as an outdoor educator with international experience. And, it’s absolutely spectacular.
- 31 days
The snow-capped volcanoes of Patagonia and powerful heights of the Andes serve as our classroom. Within this landscape, you’ll develop solid outdoor skills within the framework of the NCOAE wilderness curriculum.
Patagonia is a land of extremes. Working with our local contacts, we’ll explore some of the most beautiful mountains and rivers in the world. The NCOAE Outdoor Educator – Patagonia course is exceptional with its unique combination of adventure and skill development, including: trekking, mountaineering and whitewater raft guiding training. You’ll develop technical skills with kayaking, raft guiding, backpacking, backcountry cooking, wilderness camping, and international travel. And, you’ll develop the additional skills and understanding of environmental and civic responsibility, leadership and communications styles, as well as decision-making and teamwork.
And at the end of this course you’ll be able use these newly developed skills to guide groups in the backcountry or pursue a summer job in the whitewater industry.
- Duration: 31 days
- Minimum Age: 18
- Tuition: $6,600.00
- Credit Hours: 6
- Wilderness First Responder training
- Leave No Trace (LNT) Trainer certification
- Expedition planning
- Wilderness Risk Management
- Remote wilderness camp craft
- Backcountry navigation
- Teaching-level knowledge of the NCOAE core curriculum
- Navigating international logistics and Spanish-language variables
- Trek and mountaineer through the High Andes to Volcan San José, one of the big classics in a massive volcanic complex consisting of four summits.
- Develop river expertise in Chilean rivers known for their clear turquoise waters, while learning to guide a raft through Class III and IV rapids & Learn to kayak in a hot springs pool where you can stay warm, relax and have fun learning the Eskimo roll and fundamental strokes.
- Complete your wilderness medicine training in a Geodesic Dome built for outdoor educators.
- Enjoy Chile’s world –famous empanadas baked in a thick mud oven.
- Visit Cascada de las Ánimas, Chile’s oldest ecotourism area, and learn about how the Astorga clan are proactively fighting with a giant hydropower company threatening to dam and remove the Río Maipo water.
- Soak in Baños Colina with soaring condors, and 360-degree vistas of the remote land where the people are as rugged as the mountains.
Why Take This Course
- Advance your knowledge of outdoor education curriculum to a new level — while living and learning in Chile’s wild, beautiful places.
- Discover which areas of outdoor and wilderness education are best suited to your strengths.
- Acquire the career skills you need to teach and travel in pristine destinations around the world!
Where You’ll Be
- Chile and Argentina
- Cascada de las Ánimas
- Baños Colina
- Volcan San José
- Río Toltén and Río San Pedro
The Patagonia Outdoor Educator Course is a 31-day co-ed outdoor education training program takes you to the southern hemisphere where you’ll learn the skills you need to plan, prepare, and lead outdoor adventure-based experiential education courses. You will develop a wide-range of wilderness and leadership skills, including kayaking, raft guiding, backpacking, backcountry cooking, wilderness camping, international travel planning, environmental and civic responsibility, leadership and communication styles, decision-making, and teamwork. No other program offers a combination of hands-on experiential educator training in an international setting.
At the end of this training, you’ll be qualified to participate in leading groups in the backcountry using your newly developed skills. If your career game plan includes working full time as an outdoor educator with international experience, this course is for you.
Your group will board a plane bound for Santiago, Chile, where you will be introduced to our local contacts. Soon after your arrival, you will explore some of the most beautiful mountains and rivers in the world, from the snow-capped volcanoes of Patagonia and powerful heights of the Andes. Chile is a land of extremes, and you’ll see it all — from the driest desert on the planet to the extensive southern glacial fields and everything in between.
Your course may include mountaineering on 19,213′ Volcan San José on the Chile-Argentina border, skiing Nevados de Chillán, paddling Río Maipo and Cascada de las Ánimas, the Río San Pedro in Valdivia Province of southern Chile, Río Toltén in La Araucanía Region, and visits to the hot springs of Baños Colina, Santiago, and Pucón.
No. Previous experience is not required. NCOAE will teach you all the basics you need to know to thrive in the wilderness, and then let you apply them among your group of peers. We will train you in the skills necessary to become a competent wilderness leader, whitewater raft guide, outdoor educator, and leader.
You will engage in a wide range of experiential wilderness learning activities, including map and compass wilderness navigation, international expedition planning, skiing or paddling, backpacking, campcraft, backcountry cooking, kayaking, and wilderness risk management, with specific time included for communing with nature, journaling, engaging in rich cultural exchange, and reflecting in solitude.
While there are no predetermined distances, you may travel several miles one day and none the next. You will learn to embrace and appreciate the unknown and unexpected.
Yes. NCOAE provides all necessary group gear and food, but you will want, or be required, to bring certain items for yourself. We encourage you to contact NCOAE with all of your gear questions as early as possible. Start planning now by viewing the NCOAE 31 Day Patagonia Pack List.
Physical preparation depends on your fitness level. You don’t need to be a triathlete to participate, but you will be responsible for carrying your own equipment and some of the group gear while maintaining a positive attitude. The backpacking section will require you to carry 40 pounds or more over rough and rugged terrain, through various environments. The paddling sections will require sitting and paddling for long periods of time and walking on rugged, slippery shorelines or through the water while carrying or pulling your boat.
Each group has one to three instructors and four to eight students, so you can expect to be in a group of no larger than fifteen. We maintain an instructor-to-student ratio of no less than one instructor for every four students.
The average age is about 21 years, with a range between 18 and 60. The minimum age to enroll in the course is 18.
Part of every NCOAE course is the solo experience. You will have the opportunity to spend a set number of days alone in the backcountry to meet your personal needs and desired outcomes.
At this time, we do not offer financial aid. However, if you are a college student you may be able to use your existing federal financial aid to help pay for your course, and you may receive college credits through a consortium agreement with NCOAE. If you are attending a college or university as part of a degree granting program, your advisor can determine whether your school will accept and transfer academic credits for participating in NCOAE courses from the University of North Carolina – Wilmington. If it does, consult your financial aid office to determine if, how, and which funds may be used toward your NCOAE course costs. For more information on the consortium agreement process, contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Your work during our Outdoor Educator Instructor training course is eligible for up to six college-level credits through The University of North Carolina – Wilmington:
- EVS 485: Issues in Sustainability: 6 credits
- EVS 592: Issues in Sustainability: 6 credits
This course is for you if you want to explore Chile, if you want to gain technical outdoor skills, and/or if your career game plan includes working full-time as an outdoor educator with international experience.
Where do you want to go (physically, mentally, socially, academic, etc.)?
NCOAE’s international programming objectives revolve around the concepts of self, community, action and impact; focus on authentic international learning and hands-on education; and involve locals and communities to create meaningful academic and personal connections.
A fundamental part of this course includes map and compass reading, wilderness navigation, water safety techniques, the fine art of setting up a campsite, “reading” rapids, paddle strokes and maneuvers, wave dynamics, marine ecology, river surfing and more.
How will NCOAE help you get there?
You’ll be immersed in 31-powerful days of the National Center for Outdoor & Adventure Education’s (NCOAE) Core Curriculum — an approach to facilitating, guiding and leading that is unrivaled in the industry.
On top of all that, we can pretty much guarantee you’ll have an advantage over others when you apply for entry-level job openings in the fields of outdoor education, adventure-based education, backcountry guiding, college and university outdoor recreation programs, and others throughout the country.
We can pretty much guarantee you’ll have an advantage over others when you apply for entry-level job openings in the fields of outdoor education, adventure-based education, backcountry guiding, college and university outdoor recreation programs, and others throughout the country.