Become an Instructor for NOLS Wilderness Medicine

William Woodward

NOLS Wilderness Medicine's mission is to provide the highest quality education and information for the recognition, treatment, and prevention of wilderness emergencies. Instructors teach courses including: 2-day Wilderness First Aid courses, 10-day Wilderness First Responder courses, Wilderness Upgrade for Medical Professionals courses, 30-day Wilderness EMT courses, and more.

Instructors are expected to provide outstanding, thorough lectures on medical topics and supervise hands-on skills practice for groups of 15-30 students. In addition, responsibilities include: keeping accurate paperwork, collaborating with course hosts (called sponsors), and overseeing course equipment.

Instructors’ teaching schedules may be arranged to fit with other employment. Highest consideration will be given to applicants who are available during NOLS Wilderness Medicine’s busiest teaching months, January through June.  

Courses are located in all 50 states and 40 countries around the world. Instructors are generally regionally centered near their homes, but they may be expected to teach throughout the United States and internationally.

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Instructor Training Courses

To become an instructor, interested individuals need to apply for the NOLS Wilderness Medicine Instructor Training Course (ITC), a 7- or 10-day intensive training in Lander, Wyoming. ITCs prepare new instructors to deliver the NOLS Wilderness Medicine curriculum.


Wilderness First Aid ITC

Course Date: November 10-16, 2019

Application Close Date: July 29, 2019

This course is designed to train instructors with WFR certifications to instruct NOLS’ 2-day Wilderness First Aid programs.

Additional Requirements:

  • Current WFR certification or recertification within the past two years (includes WFR certifications issued through a Wilderness Upgrade for Medical Professionals (WUMP) course). Does not need to be WFR certification with NOLS
  • Professional Level CPR Certification

*Depending on enrollment, there may be a second Wilderness First Aid ITC in Cullowhee, NC, Feb. 17-23.


Wilderness First Responder ITC

Course Date: November 10-19, 2019

Application Close Date: May 1, 2019

This course is designed to train instructors with Wilderness EMTs and other advanced medical training (RN, PA, MD, etc.) to instruct  NOLS Wilderness First Responder and Wilderness EMT programs, as well as other types of courses.

Additional Requirements:

  • Current Wilderness EMT (or RN, PA, MD or similar advanced medical training, with current WFR)
  • Professional Level CPR Certification


Thank you for your interest in the NOLS Wilderness Medicine Instructor Training Course (ITC). We are grateful to have received so many applications for the 2019 ITCs that we are no longer able to accept new applications, nor respond to new information requests. In October we will update information on this site for the 2020 ITCs.


What happens after I click "Submit"?  The NOLS Wilderness Medicine staffing team will contact you within 48 hours to learn more about your interest and experience.

Will you help me figure out which ITC I’m a better match for? Yes. First, you need to contact us to start the conversation. If your skills, location, and availability are a better match for one of the two ITCs, we'll contact you and discuss which ITC is the best fit for you.

How many candidates will you accept for each ITC? We will invite the number of qualified candidates to whom we can offer consistent work. Beyond excellent teaching skills and relevant experience, a large component of this decision is the candidate’s home location and our anticipated course needs in that location.

Does taking the ITC certify me to teach wilderness medicine courses on my own? No. The goal of the ITC is to increase the number of instructors employed by NOLS Wilderness Medicine.