Outdoor Instructor and Camp America

Charlee has always loved the outdoors and wanted to pursue a career in anything adventurous and challenging! She decided to study at QRC to kickstart her Adventure Tourism journey, working as an outdoor instructor in Levin, Invercargill and in the USA – she’s loving everything about working outdoors and her adventurous life! Read on to learn more about her story.

Why did you choose to study Adventure Tourism Management?

  • In my final years of high-school I was still unsure of what I wanted to do once I was done, I went through so many ideas but none of them seemed right to me. I have been a very adventurous person throughout my school life. I became a competitive sport climber and found a love for adventuring. I soon came to realise that I could make a career out of adventuring and I have decided to do this for the foreseeable future.

Why did you choose to study with QRC?

  • QRC was one of the first tourism schools that I came across. Within my first glance at the school I knew could take my plan of adventure into action, especially as it is the adventure capital of the world. It was going to be a big change for me moving to the other side of the county, without knowing anyone else and just after the Covid-19 lock down in 2020 where people were questioning why I would want to study tourism at that time to pursue my career but something told me to just go for it.

Where did you go for internship and what was your position there?

  • For my internship I worked at Makahika Outdoor Pursuit Centre in Levin New Zealand, I worked as an Outdoor Instructor on a high ropes course, zipline, bush craft and hiking. I was tasked with helping out schools that came to the camp on these activities, one thing that I learnt most out of my internship experience is how to deal with situations that can arise from an adventure job, as you are in an intense activity there are things that can go wrong and during internship I was taught how to mitigate and deal with the situations properly and efficiently.

Tell us what you’ve been up to since studying with QRC?

  • Post QRC I found a job in Invercargill New Zealand, I am now an outdoor instructor for Adventure Southland LTD in this position I take groups of people on the high ropes course on site, caving in Clifden caves, hiking in hunter mountains, rock climbing, abseiling and kayaking in Borland and Omaui. I took 3 months off and have just completed work at a summer camp in America called Wildwood in New Hampshire, I was in a program coordinator position for the ropes course of this camp which meant that I was in charge of the set up and take down of the ropes course everyday and of all the staff that came and were supporting staff for the day too, teaching them how to Belay properly and making sure they are doing their job properly.
  • I will be returning to Adventure Southland LTD in October 2023 and am super excited to get back into it and back with the team! A main highlight for me from this job is a little basic but I get to see so many people overcome their fears, since I spend a lot of my time guiding people through intense activities that quite a few people find hard to overcome, when I am able to help them through it and get them to push themselves outside of their comfort zone and overcome these fears it make me feel like I am helping and giving these people memories that they will remember forever and be proud of themselves.

What is some advice you would give to future students who want to study with QRC?

  • Some advice that I would give to future students is to enjoy every moment of your time studying in Queenstown there are so many amazing opportunities around Queenstown that will make you realise how lucky you are to study there. Get to know everyone in your class I only stuck to a couple few in the first year and then realised in the second year that I got along with so many others in my class that I could have had from the start.

Advice for current QRC students?

  • For current students, when it comes to assignments it is best to stay on top of them and not leave them until the last minute it makes your life so much less stressful. Make the most of your internship and try and learn as much as you can but have fun at the same time, tourism is in my opinion the best job you get to meet so many different people and get so many cool and new experiences.

Any plans for the future?

  • I am planning on traveling in the next couple of years just going from place to place to see what I can find, I find it so amazing that tourism is a job that you can travel with anywhere that people usually travel to with have a type of adventure activity that could be an option for work.

I have enjoyed so much of my QRC during and post experience, have meet some of the most amazing people and had some of the best memories that I will remember forever!

Study: Adventure Tourism Management

Study: Hospitality Management 

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