Interpreter Wk 27, May

As it’s the European parliament elections this week, I thought we would concentrate on jobs involving languages, of which interpreter is just one. Languages are so useful in our increasingly global society – and employees who are fluent in another language are highly sought after.

Interpreters convert the spoken word from one language into another, either face-to-face or remotely.

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How to become an interpreter

You can get into this job through:

  • a university course
  • volunteering
  • applying directly
  • specialist courses run by a professional body

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University

You can do a degree or postgraduate qualification in:

  • interpreting studies
  • languages and interpreting
  • translation and interpreting

Entry requirements

You’ll usually need:

  • 2 to 3 A levels for a degree
  • a degree in a relevant subject for postgraduate study

More information

 

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Volunteering and experience

You can find voluntary or paid work through councils or other organisations offering community interpreting services.

A community interpreting qualification will help you get work in the community. Local colleges and some universities have more information on this.

Direct application

You may be able to get into this job if you have a non-language degree, providing you’re fluent in English and a second language.

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Other routes

You can take a Chartered Institute of Linguists course like the Certificate in Bilingual Skills or the Diploma in Public Service Interpreting to help you to get a job in public service interpreting.

More information

Career tips

To be fluent, you should:

  • be able to communicate quickly, smoothly and accurately
  • know and understand informal speech, slang and regional differences
  • understand the culture of the country or countries where the language is spoken

Professional and industry bodies

You can join the National Register of Public Service Interpreters to build up your contacts and find work.

Further information

You can find out more about training and working as an interpreter from the Institute of Translation and Interpreting.

 

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What it takes

Skills and knowledge

You’ll need:

  • foreign language skills
  • knowledge of English language
  • to be thorough and pay attention to detail
  • customer service skills
  • patience and the ability to remain calm in stressful situations
  • the ability to accept criticism and work well under pressure
  • the ability to work on your own
  • to be flexible and open to change
  • to be able to carry out basic tasks on a computer or hand-held device

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What you’ll do

Day-to-day tasks

In conference interpreting, you’ll be:

  • working at national and international conferences, lectures and meetings
  • sitting in a soundproof booth listening to the speaker through headphones
  • interpreting speeches at the same time as the speaker and passing on the interpreted version through headsets

In consecutive interpreting, you’ll be:

  • working at smaller business meetings with 2 or more people
  • interpreting after each sentence or passage of speech

In public service interpreting, you’ll be:

  • interpreting for people using legal, health and local government services
  • checking their understanding after each sentence
  • available at short notice for emergency medical or police interviews

Working environment

You could work at a client’s business, at a conference centre, in an office, at a police station, in a court, in a prison or in an NHS or private hospital.

Your working environment: You will probably travel often and it may be emotionally demanding.

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Career path and progression

You could become a member of a professional association like CIOLInstitute of Translation and Interpreting, or the International Association of Conference Interpreters.

If you’re working in the public sector, you could join the NRPSI.

You could combine interpreting with translating or teaching. You could also move into management.

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Veterinary nurse Wk. 26, May

Following a very successful Eco-focus week, next week starts off with a visit from the PDSA, to demonstrate animal first aid.  Veterinary nurse seems like the ideal choice for this week’s Career of the Week.

Veterinary nurses support vets by caring for sick and injured animals.

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How to become a veterinary nurse

You can get into this job through:

  • a university course
  • a college course
  • an apprenticeship

University

You could do a foundation degree or degree in veterinary nursing accredited by the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons.

Entry requirements

You’ll usually need:

  • at least 1 A level for a foundation degree
  • 2 to 3 A levels for a degree

More information

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College

You can study full time for a Level 3 Diploma in Veterinary Nursing at college.

The Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons has a list of approved training organisations.

Entry requirements

You’ll need:

  • 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C) including English, maths and science

More information

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Apprenticeship

You can do a veterinary nursing advanced apprenticeship.

Entry requirements

You’ll usually need:

  • 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C), including English and maths and science

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More information

Volunteering and experience

You’ll need some work experience before you start training. You could volunteer with a vet, a local kennel or animal welfare centre, or with animal charities like the PDSA or RSPCA.

More information

Registration

Professional and industry bodies

You could join the British Veterinary Nursing Association for training opportunities and to make industry contacts.

Further information

You can find out more about becoming a veterinary nurse from the British Veterinary Nursing Association.

 

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What it takes

Skills and knowledge

You’ll need:

  • the ability to work well with others
  • to be thorough and pay attention to detail
  • customer service skills
  • patience and the ability to remain calm in stressful situations
  • excellent verbal communication skills
  • active listening skills
  • the ability to work well with your hands
  • the ability to use your initiative
  • to be able to carry out basic tasks on a computer or hand-held device

Restrictions and requirements

You’ll need to:

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What you’ll do

Day-to-day tasks

In this role you could be:

  • speaking to animal owners to find out the problem
  • taking blood and urine samples from animals
  • taking x-rays
  • preparing animals for treatment and assisting vets during treatment
  • giving injections, medication and removing stitches
  • talking to pet owners about how to care for their animals
  • taking care of in-patient animals
  • supervising and helping to train other assistants
  • updating records

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Working environment

You could work at a veterinary practice.

Your working environment may be physically and emotionally demanding.

You may need to wear a uniform and protective clothing.

Career path and progression

With experience, you could take on more responsibility, like practice management, supervising and training new staff, or working in veterinary supplies.

You could also train to specialise in working for a zoological/wildlife park, charity, pharmaceutical company or breeding/boarding kennels.

With further study you could work towards becoming a lecturer or researcher.

 

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Environmental consultant Wk 25, May

This week’s Career of the Week  is a very topical one. Climate change protesters recently brought London to a standstill and some countries experienced horrific weather conditions causing loss of life and homes.

Closer to home, a group of Year 8s have recently been involved in a competition run by the Engineering Development Trust, tasked with looking at the waste produced by a local business (NIS Ltd) and suggesting ways to cut waste and be more environmentally friendly at the same time!

Environmental consultants advise on sustainability, including waste management, recycling, flood risk and the effects of climate change.

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How to become an environmental consultant

You can get into this job through:

  • a university course

University

You’ll usually need a degree in environmental science, environmental studies or a related subject like:

  • biology
  • chemistry
  • geoscience
  • ecology
  • agricultural science

It’s becoming more common for employers to ask for a postgraduate qualification, as well as some experience of working in an environmental setting.

 

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Entry requirements

You’ll usually need:

  • 2 to 3 A levels for a degree
  • a degree in a relevant subject for postgraduate study

More information

Volunteering and experience

Volunteering is a great way of getting experience and a taste of environmental work. It will also give you the opportunity to develop your skills and make contacts. You can get experience by:

  • volunteering for an environmental charity
  • applying for internships
  • studying towards a qualification that includes industry experience

Organisations who offer volunteering opportunities include:

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More information

Career tips

As a graduate you could look for postgraduate training opportunities offered through a Knowledge Transfer Partnership (KTP).

In a KTP you would get the opportunity to run a research project together with an industrial organisation and a university or research body. You may also work towards postgraduate qualifications.

Professional and industry bodies

You can join the Society for the Environment for professional development and networking opportunities.

Further information

You can discover more about environmental work and training through the Institute of Environmental Management and Assessment.

 

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What it takes

Skills and knowledge

You’ll need:

  • maths knowledge
  • analytical thinking skills
  • the ability to read English
  • thinking and reasoning skills
  • excellent verbal communication skills
  • to be thorough and pay attention to detail
  • ambition and a desire to succeed
  • the ability to use your initiative
  • to be able to carry out basic tasks on a computer or hand-held device

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What you’ll do

Day-to-day tasks

Your day-to-day tasks may include:

  • exploring the suitability of sites for developments like power stations or wind farms
  • working out environment risks from industries like energy or chemical production
  • going out to sites to collect contamination data and then analysing it
  • writing scientific reports and presenting findings
  • reporting organisations that don’t meet environmental laws and regulations
  • responding to environmental accidents and managing clean-up operations
  • providing advice to industry or government

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Working environment

You could work in an office or at a client’s business.

Your working environment may be you’ll travel often and outdoors some of the time.

Career path and progression

With experience you could move into an associate role, or senior or principal consultant position.

Other options include lecturing or running your own consultancy business.

 

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Chef (Wk 24 – May)

There is renewed interest in becoming a chef – or being in the food industry in any form – due to the popularity of TV shows such as ‘Great British Menu’ and Great British Bake Off’, so I thought we would take a look at what is involved in being a chef!

Chefs prepare, cook and present food in hotels, bars and restaurants.

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How to become a chef

You can get into this job through:

  • a university course
  • a college course
  • an apprenticeship
  • working towards this role

University

You could study for a foundation degree, higher national diploma or degree in:

  • culinary arts
  • professional cookery

Entry requirements

You’ll usually need:

  • 1 or 2 A levels for a foundation degree or higher national diploma
  • 2 to 3 A levels for a degree

More information

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College

One way into the job is to take a college course, like a Level 3 Diploma in Professional Cookery or Level 4 Diploma in Professional Culinary Arts.

Entry requirements

You’ll usually need:

  • 4 or 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C) for a level 3 course
  • 1 or 2 A levels, a level 3 diploma or relevant experience for a level 4 or level 5 course

More information

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Apprenticeship

You can learn while you work by doing an intermediate or advanced apprenticeship as a chef.

Entry requirements

You’ll usually need:

  • some GCSEs, usually including English and maths, for an intermediate apprenticeship
  • 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C), including English and maths, for an advanced apprenticeship

More information

Work

You could start work as a kitchen assistant or trainee ‘commis’ chef and work your way up while learning on the job. You could apply for work with restaurants or catering companies.

Volunteering and experience

If you have no experience, you could volunteer in a community kitchen before applying for a job.

More information

Further information

You can find out more about how to become a chef from the Hospitality Guild and CareerScope.

 

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What it takes

Skills and knowledge

You’ll need:

  • to be thorough and pay attention to detail
  • knowledge of food production methods
  • the ability to accept criticism and work well under pressure
  • leadership skills
  • the ability to work well with others
  • knowledge of manufacturing production and processes
  • maths knowledge
  • the ability to work well with your hands
  • to be able to use a computer and the main software packages competently

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What you’ll do

Day-to-day tasks

Your day-to-day tasks will depend on your role, but may include:

  • preparing attractive menus to nutritional standards
  • controlling and ordering stock and inspecting it on delivery
  • gutting and preparing animals and fish for cooking
  • scraping and washing large quantities of vegetables and salads
  • cooking and presenting food creatively
  • monitoring production to maintain quality and consistent portion sizes
  • working under pressure to make sure food is served on time
  • keeping to hygiene, health and safety and licensing rules

Working environment

You could work at a restaurant, in an NHS or private hospital, at a school, at a college or on a cruise ship.

Your working environment may be hot, physically demanding and humid.

You may need to wear a uniform.

 

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Career path and progression

With experience, you could progress to section chef (station chef) and look after a particular area like desserts. The next step is sous chef, running an entire kitchen when the head chef is busy.

As head chef (also known as chef de cuisine), you’ll run a kitchen, create menus and manage the budget.

You could move into the business side by taking a foundation degree or degree in hospitality management.

Very large establishments have executive chefs, usually in charge of multiple outlets. This is a management role and you would do very little cooking.

Another option is to train as a teacher or assessor working for a college or training provider.

 

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Pharmacist (Wk. 23 April)

Pharmacists are playing an ever more important role in healthcare, with people being advised to seek advice from a pharmacist for minor ailments, rather than going to A&E or their GP. You can become a dispensing chemist, community pharmacist or hospital pharmacist. Pharmacists provide expert advice on the use and supply of medicines and medical appliances.

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Check out the various opportunities available within the NHS at the next NHS Careers Event on 7th May 2019 from 3pm – 6pm at Royal Preston Hospital.

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How to become a pharmacist

You can get into this job through:

  • a university course

University

You’ll need to complete:

If you do not have the qualifications to get onto a MPharm degree, you could do a 2-year pharmacy foundation degree. You would then take a job as a pharmacy assistant or technician and apply for the MPharm degree in your second year.

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Entry requirements

You’ll usually need:

  • at least 1 A level for a foundation degree
  • 3 A levels at grade B or above in chemistry, and either biology, physics or maths to get onto a pharmacy degree

More information

More information

Further information

You’ll find more on pharmacy careers and training from Health Careers and the Royal Pharmaceutical Society.

 

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What it takes

Skills and knowledge

You’ll need:

  • to be thorough and pay attention to detail
  • the ability to accept criticism and work well under pressure
  • sensitivity and understanding
  • customer service skills
  • patience and the ability to remain calm in stressful situations
  • maths knowledge
  • excellent verbal communication skills
  • the ability to read English
  • to be able to carry out basic tasks on a computer or hand-held device

Restrictions and requirements

You’ll need to:

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What you’ll do

Day-to-day tasks

Your tasks will depend on which area of pharmacy you work in, and could include:

  • dispensing medicines in a community pharmacy, hospital or a GP practice clinic
  • giving healthcare advice about prescription and over-the-counter medicines
  • advising on drug dosages and risks, to the public, patients, GPs and nurses
  • running screening programmes for diabetes, cholesterol or blood pressure
  • visiting care homes or hospital wards to advise on the use and storage of medications
  • ordering and controlling stock
  • running a business, including supervising and training staff
  • producing medicines when ready-made ones aren’t available, for example, cancer treatments
  • buying, quality testing and distributing medicines throughout a hospital
  • supervising trainees and junior pharmacists

In education or industry, you could be:

  • doing research into new medicines
  • running clinical trials

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Working environment

You could work at a store, in an NHS or private hospital or at an adult care home.

Career path and progression

There’s a formal career structure in the NHS, so with experience you could progress to team manager or pharmacy consultant. You could also work in GPs’ surgeries or health centres.

Promotion opportunities can be good if you’re working for one of the larger pharmacy chains where you can apply for regional or national management positions.With experience, you could set up your own community pharmacy business.

After further training, you could go on to teach pharmacy students at university.

Another option is to move into related areas like scientific journalism or publishing.

To do research, you’ll need a further postgraduate qualification in a subject like toxicology or pharmacology.

The Royal Pharmaceutical Society offers professional support services.

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Engineering maintenance technician Wk 22 April

Currently ranked in the Top 5 In-Demand jobs in the North West, Engineering Maintenance Technicians service and repair equipment in industries like manufacturing, production and transport.

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How to become an engineering maintenance technician

You can get into this job through:

  • a university course
  • a college course
  • an apprenticeship
  • working towards this role

University

You could do a foundation degree or higher national diploma in engineering before applying for a job as a trainee technician.

Entry requirements

You’ll usually need:

  • GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C) in English, maths and a science subject or equivalent qualifications
  • 1 or 2 A levels for a foundation degree or higher national diploma

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More information

College

You can take a college course, which would teach you some of the skills needed in the job. Relevant courses include:

  • Level 2 Certificate in Mechanical Engineering
  • Level 2 Certificate in Electrical and Electronic Engineering Technology
  • Level 3 Diploma in Equipment Maintenance Engineering
  • Level 3 Diploma in Engineering

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Entry requirements

You may need:

  • 2 or more GCSEs at grades 9 to 3 (A* to D) for a level 2 course
  • 4 or 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C) for a level 3 course

More information

Apprenticeship

You could do an engineering technician advanced apprenticeship, which could be used to work in different industries.

You could also do an intermediate or advanced engineering apprenticeship for your particular industry, for example aviation, manufacturing or rail.

 

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Entry requirements

You’ll usually need:

  • some GCSEs, usually including English and maths, for an intermediate apprenticeship
  • 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C), including English and maths, for an advanced apprenticeship

More information

Work

You could start as an engineering craftworker and become a technician through on-the-job training.

More information

Further information

You can get more advice about engineering careers through Tomorrow’s Engineers and The Institution of Engineering and Technology.

 

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What it takes

Skills and knowledge

You’ll need:

  • the ability to use, repair and maintain machines and tools
  • the ability to work well with your hands
  • to be thorough and pay attention to detail
  • problem-solving skills
  • the ability to work well with others
  • physical skills like movement, coordination, dexterity and grace
  • patience and the ability to remain calm in stressful situations
  • the ability to work on your own
  • to be able to use a computer and the main software packages competently

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What you’ll do

Day-to-day tasks

In preventative maintenance, your day-to-day duties may include:

  • organising routine servicing schedules
  • allocating work to a team of fitters
  • checking and calibrating instruments to make sure they’re accurate
  • fitting new parts as required, or as part of a regular replacement rota
  • carrying out quality inspections on jobs
  • responding immediately to equipment breakdowns
  • fixing faults on site or arranging for replacement equipment to be installed
  • keeping production managers informed of progress
  • organising teams or individuals to make sure that 24-hour cover is available

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Working environment

You could work in a factory, on a construction site or at a manufacturing plant.

Your working environment may be noisy and outdoors some of the time.

You may need to wear safety clothing.

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Career path and progression

You could eventually qualify as an engineer in your particular field, like mechanical or electrical engineering.

You could also move into technical sales, maintenance team management and contract management.

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Outdoor activities instructor Wk 21 Mar

Following an assembly to Year 11 pupils by NCS (National Citizen Service), part of which involves an adrenaline filled week of kayaking, abseiling, rock climbing and raft building, I thought this week we would look at jobs for people who hate being indoors and love to be active.

Outdoor activities instructors lead trips and teach skills in activities like hill walking, climbing, canoeing, skiing and snowboarding.

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How to become an outdoor activities instructor

You can get into this job through:

  • a college course
  • an apprenticeship
  • applying directly
  • doing specialist courses approved by national sporting bodies

College

There’s no set entry route to become an outdoor activity instructor but it may be useful to study a relevant qualification like a Level 2 or 3 Diploma in Skills and Activities for Sport and Active Leisure (Outdoor Education).

This would teach you some of the skills needed for the job. Then you could try to find a trainee job with an activity centre.

You’ll also need to get coaching or instructor qualifications approved by the relevant national governing body for each of your sports or activities.

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Entry requirements

You’ll usually need:

  • 2 or more GCSEs at grades 9 to 3 (A* to D) for a level 2 course
  • 4 or 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C) for a level 3 course

More information

Apprenticeship

You could get into this job through an advanced apprenticeship as an outdoor activity instructor.

Employers usually set their own entry requirements but will often recruit people aged 18 or over.

Entry requirements

There are no set entry requirements but it may help you to get in if you have:

  • 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C), including English and maths, for an advanced apprenticeship

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More information

Volunteering and experience

The key to finding work is to get as much work experience as possible. It will help you get a better understanding of the role, and make contacts who may help you to find paid work. You could try getting involved in activities, like:

  • Duke of Edinburgh awards
  • membership of activity clubs
  • volunteering at outdoor activities centres

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Direct application

You can apply directly to employers if you’ve got some of the relevant skills and knowledge needed for this role.

Some instructors have previous experience in youth work, teaching, sports coaching or training, or as physical training instructors in the armed forces.

You’ll usually need:

  • a skill in at least one outdoor activity
  • coaching or instructor qualifications approved by the relevant national governing body for each of your sports or activities.

Other routes

You could complete relevant qualifications through sports or activity clubs, or at an accredited outdoor education centre.

Examples of instructor qualifications include:

  • Mountain Leader Training England Award in Mountain Leadership
  • British Canoe Union Certificate in Coaching Paddlesport
  • United Kingdom Snowsports Coach Awards Scheme

You’ll usually need at least 12 months’ experience in the activity before you take the award. Check with the the relevant national governing body for your sport for details of courses and qualifications.

 

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More information

Professional and industry bodies

You could join the Institute of Outdoor Learning, for professional development, training opportunities and to make industry contacts.

Further information

The Institute for Outdoor Learning has more information on becoming an outdoor activities instructor.

 

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What it takes

Skills and knowledge

You’ll need:

  • patience and the ability to remain calm in stressful situations
  • the ability to work well with others
  • sensitivity and understanding
  • leadership skills
  • to be thorough and pay attention to detail
  • the ability to work on your own
  • knowledge of English language
  • knowledge of teaching and the ability to design courses
  • being able to use a computer terminal or hand-held device may be beneficial for this job.

Restrictions and requirements

You’ll need to:

  • have a life-saving certificate if you instruct water-based activities
  • have a first aid certificate
  • be 18 or over
  • be at least 21 years old to drive a minibus
  • pass enhanced background checks

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What you’ll do

Day-to-day tasks

Your day-to-day duties might include:

  • planning and preparing activities
  • explaining, advising on and demonstrating activities
  • instructing in specialist areas, like sailing or climbing
  • making sure all equipment and facilities are safe
  • explaining safety procedures

Working environment

You could work at an activity centre or in the countryside.

Your working environment may be you’ll travel often, physically demanding and outdoors in all weathers.

 

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Career path and progression

You could work on contract, or do freelance work.

With experience, you could progress to centre management, or set up your own activity centre.