Curriculum

“The servant-leader is servant first. It begins with the natural feeling that one wants to serve.
Then conscious choice brings one to aspire to lead. The best test is: do those served grow
as persons. Do they, while being served, become healthier, wiser, freer, more autonomous,
more likely themselves to become servants? And, what is the effect on the least privileged in
society; will they benefit, or, at least, not be further deprived?”
 - The Servant as Leader, Robert K. Greenleaf 1970

Single Pitch Rock Instructor

The Single Pitch Rock Instructor course targets the skills required to run institutional-quality top-rope sites. Participants will gain knowledge in instruction and guiding techniques in the following areas:

Summit Single Pitch
  • Site selection and preparation
  • Group management
  • Belay instruction
  • Climbing instruction
  • Facilitating trust and teamwork
  • Equipment
  • Natural and artificial anchors
  • Equalization and extension of anchors
  • Self and partner rescue
  • Rappelling

This course is taught in the Gunnison Valley at local crags such as Hartman Rocks and Taylor Canyon.  Participants will spend nights in front country camp sites therefore luxuries such as camp chairs and camp fires can be expected.

Download a Single-Pitch Gear List

Alpine Mountaineering Instructor

This course will take you high into the Rocky Mountains where you will be challenged in becoming a competent instructor able to identify hazards and make good decisions in an alpine environment.  Participants will gain knowledge in instruction and guiding techniques in the following areas:

Summit Mountaineering
  • General mountaineering (navigation, route finding, time management, etc.)
  • Snow camping/camp craft
  • Use of alpine equipment and tools
  • Efficiency in anchors and belays
  • Proper rope and client management
  • Class 3 & 4 snow & alpine rock climbing
  • Rope team/glacier travel
  • Fixed line use
  • Multi-pitch technique with multiple clients

This course is taught in a purely backcountry setting and participants should be prepared for early summer high alpine weather and temperatures.

Download an Alpine Mountaineering Gear List

Multi-Pitch Rock Instructor

This course will take you deep into the Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park where you will gain knowledge in instruction and guiding techniques in the following areas:

Black Canyon Climbing
  • Route selection
  • Belay anchors
  • Running protection
  • Group management
  • Lead climbing
  • Speed and efficiency
  • Belays
  • Rappelling
  • Equipment
  • Safety and rescue

Participants in the Multi-Pitch Rock Instructor course will need to lead traditionally protected climbs at a 5.9 level on a variety of rock types and at a wide range of crags. This course has both front country and backcountry components.  Participants should be prepared for early summer mountain weather and conditions.

Download a Multi-Pitch Gear List

Course Selection

Participates should choose a course based upon on a skill area where they have some experience.  This program is designed to help participants develop their skills as an instructor or guide and is not meant as an introductory course.  Applicants should have a solid base of skills in their discipline of choice.  All courses are 7 days in length.

Evaluation

The Summit provides the opportunity for participants to be evaluated as instructors and guides in one of three areas; 3rd and 4th class alpine mountaineering (glacier skills not included), 5th class multi-pitch rock (5.11, Grade IV), or top rope rock at either a student or professional level. The professional level evaluation is equivalent to the objectives and standards of well-known professional mountain guide associations. The student level is specifically designed for instructors of university-based outings programs who will work under the close supervision of a professional director. The Summit is not a certification course and there is no “pass/fail” assessment, however, this program is highly evaluative and participants will leave with concrete feedback on their performance. This program is designed to train leaders at a very high standard, thus making people ready to lead others in technical environments while still embracing the transformative aspects of outdoor pursuits and group interactions.

Servant Leadership

In 1970, retired AT&T executive Robert K Greenleaf (1904-1990) coined the term servant-leadership with the above definition and launched a quiet revolution in the way that we view and practice leadership. Four decades later the concept of servant-leadership is increasingly viewed as an ideal leadership form which untold numbers of people and organizations aspire to achieve. Servant-leadership seeks to involve others in decision making, and is strongly based in ethical and caring behavior. The words servant and leader are usually thought of as opposites. In deliberately bringing those words together in a meaningful way, Robert Greenleaf gave birth to the paradoxical term “servant leadership".  Servant Leadership is the central theme of the Summit.   The Summit begins with a servant leadership workshop on the Western State College campus and ends with a closing banquet and keynote address on servant leadership.  More on Servant Leadership:

Greenleaf Center for Servant Leadership