OAO Assistant

Outdoor Adventure Orientation Assistant Position Description

Dates of Commitment:

May 18th – 27th WFR Willsboro, New York
June 21st – June 22nd Prep for Session 1 Quest Office
June 23rd – June 28th Session 1 Program Site 
June 29th – June 30th Wrap up Session 1Quest Office
July 7th – 8th Prep for Session 2Quest Office
July 9th – 12th Session 2Program Site
July 13th – 14th Wrap up Session 2Quest Office
July 17th – 18th Prep for Session 3Quest Office
July 19th – July 25th Session 3Program Site 
July 26th – July 27th Wrap up Session 3Quest Office
July 31st – August 1st Prep for Session 4Quest Office
August 2nd- August 8th  Session 4Program Site 
August 9th – 10th Wrap up Session 4Quest Office

Position Description: 

This leadership position is an essential component of the New Student Orientation (NSO) program at Bloomsburg. OAO Assistants play an active role supporting new students in their transition to BU, assisting with the implementation of the NSO program and providing a perspective on college life at BU centered on the BU core values. OAO Assistants get to spend four – seven days leading off-campus excursions in the greater Central Pennsylvania area, with 10-14 new students, with the goal of fostering the development of meaningful relationships between new and returning students. 

The Outdoor Adventure Orientation Assistants (OAOA) position is open to all Bloomsburg University students in good social and academic standing. The ideal candidate will possess an enthusiastic interest in the new student transition and the orientation experience, be well acquainted with academic and cocurricular life, communicate effectively with their peers and aspire to become a strong leader. Trip Assistants are student leaders for BU. They must abide by and uphold all BU’s policies, protocols and procedures. OAO Assistants may be involved in difficult situations throughout the course of this position. They are expected to provide support where appropriate, ask for guidance when needed, and connect to resources.

Outdoor Adventure Orientation Assistants (OAOA) work in teams with an Outdoor Adventure Orientation Leader and a volunteer leader when possible.  The team provides an engaging group experience, introducing incoming Bloomsburg University classmates to the wilderness areas of Central Pennsylvania.

As an OAOA, your primary responsibility will be to teach wilderness living skills to incoming BU students and to provide and maintain safe, healthy and supportive group function.  It is our expectation that your skill, guidance and experience will provide the participants with a meaningful learning opportunity as the newest members of our community. OAOA will be trained and supervised by the Assistant Director of Quest.  

Specific Leadership Activities Include:

  • Working with your co-leader to build relationships with and serve as a resource for students in your group
  • Provide physically and emotionally safe group environment
  • Role modeling good expedition behavior while making sound judgements and decisions.  
  • Facilitate group discussion regarding the value of wilderness based experience and travel.
  • Using “teachable moments” to relate wilderness living skills to participants
  • Participation in pre and post trip logistics 


We look for people with solid wilderness and group leadership skills, solid first aid skills, excellent judgement and good teaching ability.  We have identified the following criteria:

  • Applicants should have completed all of the Instructor Requirements
  • Applicants must have led a minimum of one multi-day trip.
  • Applicants must have personal experience on multi-day trips.  
  • Demonstrated teaching ability
  • Excellent communication skills
  • Excellent judgement and decision-making ability
  • OAOA must be competent to perform some skills in the following areas:
    • LNT 
    • Tent/Tarp Set-up
    • Knots
    • Bear Bag
    • Stove Use & Repair
    • Map and Compass Navigation
    • Care & Use of Equipment
    • Wilderness First Aid
    • Evacuation Procedure
    • Debriefing
    • Hygiene 
    • Group Dynamics 
    • Risk Management
    • Evaluation of technical and interpersonal skills 
  • OAOA Applicants are required to have Wilderness First Aid & CPR
  • OAOA must be comfortable giving both positive and constructive feedback to participants and evaluating participants’ performance in both technical and interpersonal skills.