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Work for us

“Possibly the best job in the world”

Employment Opportunities

Exceptional Field Instructors are central to the success of our Pure Exploration programs, as we rely on our field staff to provide a safe and transformative experience for our students.

Being a Program & Outdoor Instructor for Pure Exploration is a tremendous opportunity in terms of career development and personal growth. Working at a high level, with adults from diverse backgrounds and cultures, is demanding, exciting and rewarding.

We invest in our instructors through comprehensive training, and ongoing professional development tracks over an instructor’s tenure with us. With up to 60-84 field-days each program, instructors gain deep experience in facilitating expeditions and journeys. They are empowered to bring their own flavour and approach to the role, allowing them to develop a personal teaching philosophy and voice.

As one of the oldest organizations in the field, yet still a small intimate team, instructors' level of exposure and insight is unparalleled. From training and support with issues such as mental health to a robust and dynamic curriculum you’ll learn to teach, you could move from this role to student affairs/higher education, wilderness therapy, guiding, tourism management, or an administrative role in international or Outdoor Education with ease. 

It is no easy job, though – a Pure Exploration instructor is a leader, mentor, instructor and facilitator. They are responsible for their group throughout their programs, working alongside students 24/7 for the duration of the program.

We look for qualified, passionate instructors and educators, who are well travelled, comfortable with the varied components of the role, and empathetic and approachable to students and partner organisations alike.

As a Program & Field Instructor, your main focus is to ensure that programs run safely and smoothly while supporting students to have a transformational experience.


Manaakitangi - A Key Principle

Manaakitangi is a very important part of our programs, and reflects the undertaking, or motivation of our Field Instructors. often it’s translated as ‘hospitality’, to be a empathetic and dedicated host. Broken down to the next level, we get mana and Aki. Mana speaks of power, force and authority of a person, place or object, which in Māori culture is believed to have been passed down from the atua or ancestors. Aki means to encourage or urge on.

Together as manaaki, the words mean your hospitality is encouraging, growing the mana of others and urging the same from them.

This introduces the idea of reciprocity. When we invite people into our homes (your program), we give them hospitality and uplift their mana, and in return, they respect our customs and homes and enhance our mana in return.

Manaakitanga is about the balance between those in the relationship whether two individuals, Instructor and their Students, or Pure Exploration.

Manaakitangi expresses a key characteristic of the philosophy and components of our programs, and the approach and commitment we expect fro Field Staff to their students.


The Role

The role encompasses:

  • Student safety and welfare.
  • Mentoring and role-modelling.
  • Coordinating program logistics.
  • Budgeting and payments.
  • Building relationships with in-country partners; and
  • Facilitating experiential education elements – program curriculum and group reflection.

Before you apply, the  key prerequisites are:

Program Instructor - Adventure Guide Program

  • Minimum Qualification: NZOIA Level 1 Rock & Bush Instructor Qualification (UK: Mountain Leader & Instructor; US: AMGA Trekking Guide & Single Pitch Guide)
  • Minimum Experience: 2-3 Years instructing at the minimum qualification level, including delivering leadership or educational syllabus
  • Minimum Age: 25
  • Other Qualification(s): WFR or PHEC (40 hour); Passenger Endorsement (New Zealand)
  • Personal Experience: A comprehensive logbook of personal experience beyond the level instructing. E.g. Climbing Aus/NZ grade 20+, multi pitch, and extended duration off track unsupported trekking, in a variety of climbing or trekking terrain.
  • Regional Experience: For programs outside of New Zealand, it is desirable that applicants have 30+ days independent travel experience in the relevant region.

Program Assistant - Adventure Guide Program

Program Assistant roles are only avaliable to Pure Exploration Alumni. If you are Alumni, and have maintained or continued your professional or personal development, please enquire about any vacancies below.

  • Program Assistant - New Zealand


Current Openings

  • Program Instructor - New Zealand, Adventure Guide Program
  • Program Instructor - Patagonia, Adventure Guide Program
  • Program Instructor - Nepal, Adventure Guide Program

We generally plan and recruit for Technical Instructors up to 12 months in advance, so please contact us now if you are interested. We welcome applicants for all regions on a rolling basis. 

If you believe you have the qualifications, passion, and experience to be a Program & Field Instructor, please carefully read the detailed position description and required skills to consider applying. 

Preference is given to applicants willing to commit to instructing for 2-3 years. 


Application Process

If you would like to be considered for a future position as Pure Exploration Program Instructor, please:

  1. Read the Position Description and Required Skills thoroughly.
  2. Fill in the Application Form.
  3. Email [email protected] with your application, resume, logbook and 1-2 photos showing you in your 'element' - doing the things you love.

We will be in touch to schedule an interview with you.