Launched in December 2018, the COBS Fellowship for People of Color is aimed to engage people of color by increasing access to employment at Colorado Outward Bound School (COBS) and in the outdoor industry. We recognize that our students, staff, and community need the perspectives, leadership, and voices that represent the racial diversity of our larger society, and we acknowledge that we have struggled to attract and support racial diversity in our community. People of color have often experienced barriers in access and feeling welcome to the public lands in which COBS operates, to the character development and leadership that the outdoors can provide, and to inclusive experiences in the outdoors and the outdoor industry.
As a result, we are committed to changing our practices and structures to remove barriers to accessing these important opportunities and resources. The COBS Fellowship Program builds upon our successful, decade old intern program and Access Stipend to give real field experiences to Fellows to develop the needed connection, support, skills, and experiences to be successful outdoor educators and leaders. Applications open December each year.
The Fellowship Offers:
A cohort of 4-5 peer Fellows at the Leadville Mountain Center who are committed to the COBS mission of educating and instructing students toward our outcomes of Leadership Ability, Desire to Serve, and developing Strength of Character.
Paid Training: While all new COBS trainees receive their training for free, the Fellows are paid assistant instructor wages to attend trainings ($75 per day)
Opportunity to complete Wilderness First Responder Certification (WFR): Recognizing that the industry standard for First Aid requirements has a high upfront cost, COBS will cover the cost of the Fellows’ WFR ($700 per person), or the bridge course (Wilderness First Aid to WFR),
Opportunity to develop competency in a professional, hands-on and supportive environment. COBS will provide mentoring to Fellows to increase their competencies on the job as well as build upon the competencies they bring from past professional and personal experiences. Fellows will attend level 1 training and assessment, with other new instructors. Fellows will be staffed either as assistant instructors or in the intern role depending on skill and competencies and paid for the season at the assistant instructor rate ($75 p/d) plus room and board benefits.
One-on-One leadership support: Fellows will work with a dedicated program leader who will support their career aspirations, assist with skill development, support transition, scheduling, community and professional needs.
Gear Support. Fellows will receive financial support to assist with the required purchasing of gear used by instructors in our course areas and sponsor donated product where available.
Travel support. Recognizing that we want to attract people both from Colorado and from a wider community, we will provide a stipend to offset the travel cost for Fellows to get to our remote basecamps.