Rosie joined the Adventure Guide Program back in 2018 and has since joined the Pure Exploration team as a marketing intern. We asked her about her time on the Program and life after.
Three years on, and I’m sitting inside the Pure Exploration office in gorgeous Queenstown. Little did I know, leaving my tropical home of Singapore back in 2018, that following my arrival in Queenstown's comparatively cold spring, I was about to embark on one of the most transformational experiences of my life!
A second family and legendary instructors
The three months of the Adventure Guide Program were, without a doubt, the most exciting and pivotal months of my life. Within the first week of the Program, I had a second family and friendships to last a lifetime. Our instructors were all fantastic! Zach, Ivor, Kerri and Paul were all teaching us the (literal) ropes, ensuring that everything was done with the highest level of safety.
Throughout the three months, we travelled all around the South Island of New Zealand, learning to climb, navigate, multi-pitch and hike. All of this in the best locations New Zealand has to offer! From Mt Cook to Milford Sound, we learned and adventured in tandem. Throughout the Program, we completed our NZOIA Rock and Bush Leader Certifications, as well as the Pre-hospital Emergency Care and Swift Water Rescue Course.
Back to the real word
Well recognised, the Pre-hospital Emergency Care and Swift Water qualifications proved useful in securing jobs in childcare and gymnastics coaching here in Queenstown. Although I have not used the NZOIA Qualifications professionally, I have been able to engage in rock climbing as a hobby far more safely and with greater confidence.
Further, during the Program, the Pure Exploration admin provided constant assistance with opening bank accounts and finding work placements here in Queenstown, something which allowed us to seamlessly transition into life in New Zealand following the Program.
Why choose Pure Exploration?
What distinguishes Pure Exploration’s Adventure Guide Program from those like it, is the diversity of outcomes that can be taken away. Although I was fresh out of high school, having done some backpacking in the months prior, our groups age ranged from 18 to 29, and enabled a cohesion and unique dynamic through which we were all able to learn and grow. Indeed, we formed a pseudo-family unit, composed of group mums (Austin and Katherin), a dad (Ken), older sisters (Joyce and Gab), etc. When talking to a Pure Ex alum, the almost unanimously greatest takeaway is the friendships made.
One program, many possibilities
Embarking on the Adventure Guide Program puts you in the unique position to be surrounded by people from all walks of life. Whether you are looking for a career break, a gap year experience or to become an adventure guide/instructor, the Program provides a space in which this can occur. Three years later, I am completing my last year of university online, while Ken and Gabby have gone on to work as outdoor instructors. Our group has dispersed throughout the world, our lives all influenced by our time here in New Zealand.