Wilderness Leadership Academy

Is leadership in your DNA?  Do you feel a strong alignment to HATS values and the HATS mission?  Are you willing to lead courageously?  Are you passionate about making a difference with HATS sons, daughters, and Dads?  Can you make a disciplined, intentional commitment to step up as a leader in the HATS program?  A commitment that won’t waver in the face of challenges such as weather, unruly participants, or unexpected circumstances?  If so, then you are good leadership material.

As a HATS leader, you have a large impact on accomplishing a great HATS campout.   The Camp Director/Senior Mentor/Mentor have the challenge of and the responsibility of shaping a Dad/Daughter and Dad/Son team.  You are responsible for:

  • Effectively executing the HATS campout template
  • Seamlessly delivering the adventure program for the campout
  • Protecting the HATS non-negotiable
  • Communicating effectively with participant and other mentor teams
  • Safety of the participants and other mentors
  • Handling any problems that arise
  • Delivering the HATS mission on each and every campout

Completing Wilderness Leadership Academy

There are 6 steps for certification as a Wilderness Leadership Academy graduate.  At completion of Step 4, the Dad and Daughter or Son are awarded Wilderness Leadership Academy pins, to wear on their mentor hats.  At completion of Step 6, each Daughter or Son will receive a certificate signifying their graduation from the program.  (Note:  if step 6 is completed before the Daughter or Son has entered the 9th grade, the certificate will be awarded once they have entered high school, so that this accomplishment may be included on college applications).

WLA Steps, to be performed in order:

  1. Attend a Fall or Spring WLA campout, to learn and practice Traits of a Leader or Principles of Leadership.
  2. Mentor at a HATS campout to gain practical experience as a leader.
  3. Attend the missing Fall or Spring WLA campout, to complete the training.
  4. Mentor another HATS campout to practice the additional leadership skills.  WLA pins are awarded at this campout.
  5. Attend and complete the Safety and Wilderness First Aid campout, and receive your Wilderness First Aid pin.  (Another certified first aid course may be substituted.)
  6. Demonstrate proficiency as a leader within the HATS program.  In some cases, additional practice may be suggested.  At completion of all 6 steps, the Wilderness Leadership Academy certificate will be awarded.