Solitude, McIntyre Celebrate the Junior Instructor Program
Ski and ride areas from coast to coast are celebrating the dedication and achievement of their Junior Instructor programs this spring, rewarding the young teachers with pins, certificates, and the knowledge of new people management and public speaking skills they can take into any career.
Solitude Mountain Resort Director of Mountain Sports and Activities Dan Healy said he held an official instructor ceremony for the eight alpine and eight snowboard instructors he had in his program, adding that, “Some of them were even be hired on as Solitude JR Instructors this season!”
“The PSIA-AASI Junior Instructor Program at Solitude was a new pilot program this year as part of the greater Share Winter and Alterra Mountain Company partnership,” Dan said.
Created by PSIA-AASI, the program provides teenagers the opportunity to learn what it’s like to work as an instructor, even if they have no experience other than knowing how to ski or snowboard. Earning national recognition as a Junior Instructor also helps develop important career skills such as public speaking, professionalism, communication, and managing group dynamics, while also staying fit all winter long.
“I think resorts across the country should dive into this,” said Ross Boisvert, President and General Manager of McIntyre Ski Area in Manchester in New Hampshire. “It’s a great feeder program for kids to see if they want to teach skiing.”
Ross said McIntyre has had an apprentice instructor program for years, but implemented the Junior Instructor Program two seasons ago.
“Out of the 12 junior instructors we had last year, six came back this year to work as instructors,” said Tom Lott, McIntyre Snowsports Director. “This year we had 20 graduates. We taught them the Learning Connection Model, teaching progressions, slopestyle safety, and introduced them to the ski patrol and shop employees so they could see how everyone works together.”
“This is something that is still in the early stages for us,” Tom said. “But so far we’re thrilled, and we look forward to seeing how it develops.”
Find out more about how your snowsports school can implement is own Junior Instructor Program.