I was working on the Webster-Jackson trail with the 4-Week Leadership and Conservation Teen Crew in the late summer of 2013 when one of the participants, David, asked me if the AMC had ever considered running a semester-long program.  David was entering his senior year of high school in Michigan and he expected to graduate early, that December.  Though he knew he wanted to work for the AMC Teen Trail Crew Program, that was not going to be possible in the winter of 2014 so he needed something to do, and bumming around the house or getting a minimum wage job at home were not his top choices.  Ideally, he wanted to enroll in a gap-year program, but alas, AMC had none at the time, so we discussed other options he might take in the winter before applying for a summer 2014 job.  David was not the only participant to ever inquire about such a program, but creating something like that would not be easy and would require a lot of help.

While working at a camp fair in early 2014, Colby Meehan of AMC’s Teen Wild Program mentioned that she had a number of former participants who had asked about a gap-year program and she was considering creating one, and would Teen Trails be interested in joining up with Teen Wild.  Indeed, we were, and now, based on growing interest from our participants, the AMC Teen Trails and Teen Wild Programs are happy to announce the first ever AMC Semester Leadership Development Program!

If you are 17 and over, and you want to develop your leadership and backcountry skills, learn or improve upon trail work experience, and grow as an outdoor leader, then this program is perfect for you.  There will also be a Wilderness First Aid and Leave No Trace Master Educator course as a part of the curriculum.  You will go through an advance trail work training and complete trail projects, as well as engage in intensive community building through rugged wilderness travel adventures.  This program will take you all over the north east, from northern Maine, to the Delaware Water Gap in New Jersey, and many places in between. 

The Basic’s of the AMC Semester Program:

Fall 2015 Semester:  September 12 - November 20
Spring 2016 Semester:  February 21 - April 30

The program will start and end at Pinkham Notch Visitor Center in the White Mountains of New Hampshire.  Locations throughout the program will include Camp Dodge Volunteer Center in the White Mountains, Noble View Outdoor Center in Russell, MA, and the Mohican Outdoor Center in the Delaware Water Gap of New Jersey, among others.  At all locations, we will be spiking out in backcountry locations nearby. 

*Due to weather conditions, the schedule of locations will be different between the Fall and Spring semesters.

$8,500.00 for AMC Members
$9,350.00 for non-Members

 Additional Information:
To find out more about the program and to register, visit our AMC Activity Listings

Learn more about AMC’s Teen Wilderness Adventure and Teen Trail Crews.

Or visit AMC's Lodges to learn more about the different facilities that will host this program