Northwood Staff are a tight-knit group of skilled professionals who work closely with one another and the families we serve. Northwood is driven by dedicated volunteers at every level, and all staff give of their time and energy as well as receiving financial compensation.

We work to run our organization as we run our programs – through collaboration and empowerment. We use democratic governance methods and honor each person’s clear role within Northwood without hierarchical value judgements. This gives everyone a high level of ownership and empowerment, and it requires a high level of communication skill and personal maturity.

Our work also requires specific training. We are not just a wilderness program, and not just a democratic school. Our staff must have training and experience with both modalities in order to fully embody Northwood’s mission. There are many paths to these levels of skill.

More importantly, we are working to create a culture of diversity, support, love, and respect for all of our participants and our staff. Because of this, staff are deeply and constantly invested in the work of learning and growth. Our staff represent diverse life paths including involvement in continuing education, meditation practices, many forms of therapy, martial arts, spiritual and religious practices, and more. Our lifestyles and growing edges affect our programs, so we work to hold strong for each other while encouraging continued personal growth and reflection.

Successfully working with Northwood requires skill and training in multiple teaching modalities. We are a looking for staff with experience in one or both, and are open to integrating new skills into our programs if they support our mission.

The first is intensive training in similar schools and programs, such as Anake, Wild Earth Instructor Training, Wild Leaders Immersion, UVM’s Masters in Leadership and Sustainability, and Unity College’s Adventure Leadership program. Northwood’s own Wildwood Path is a great 9-month womens and/or trans* immersion in these skills. There are many more amazing programs that offer such trainings around the country and the world!

The next is prolonged field experience in similar programs, either in wilderness education, (preferably 8 Shields) or in Democratic Education. If you’ve worked in similar programs, you likely have a deeper skill set and comprehension already.

Finally, you can train on the job by volunteering with Northwood! This is by far the most common path, and we have lots of opportunities for engagement and training within our programs. Volunteering for two semesters as an Intern offers access to all of our staff trainings, retreats, and many adult programs.


Current Openings


Northwood is currently hiring for several field positions, generally one day per week with opportunity for growth from October – June. If you’re interested, please read through the following job descriptions and submit an application for the one appropriate to your skill and experience. The skills are oriented around the 8 Shields Directional model, which we use as a conceptual framework on our programs. Thanks so much, and we look forward to hearing from you!

Please copy the application into a word processing software, and once completed, e-mail us the file.
Please submit a letter of interest with your application in order to help us get to know you better. Creativity and originality are welcome!