Pros: progressive company, feedback culture to improve and build off strengths, rewarding work, 6 days off to enjoy hawai'i, close friendships with co-workers, free therapy because of all the therapeutic groups and conversations you're a part of daily, gardening and learning about small scale farming, organic eating and exercise daily, teaching creatively everyday, experiential ed at its finest
Cons: shift work and balancing off shift/on shift lifestyles, balance in general, getting used to the food and lack of your personal food in the field, lack of sleep, constant feedback culture (can weigh on you), high turnover rate=losing friends, being on same shift as your friends and if you switch you never see them again
One of the top wilderness therapy companies to work for with competitive wages, beautiful location, highly respectable in the industry, amazing staff, and ability to move up within the company.
Young – more... company that started in 2002 and has recently opened up a young adult residential facility in Hilo, HI where they are doing very well. Young and innovative owners who have a progressive look on their business and ideas.
Co workers: Tight-knit group of people who will become your closest community and friends. Amazing people from all over the world, mostly Mainland. Teachers, famers, experiential ed teachers, outdoor ed, yoga instructors, psych majors, councilors in training, social workers, and more. Innovative, creative, happy, outdoorsy and active, fun, sensitive to non-traditional values, worldly, humble yet confident, empathetic and compassionate, want to help others, KIND, non-materialistic, emotionally and physically healthy people.
Most Enjoyable part of the job: Working with the students for a week straight and returning the next week to see how much progress they've made and how YOU'VE helped make a difference in their world. Feeling the reward and accomplishment at the end of the work week, knowing how much blood, sweat and tears you've put into the kids and the camp, and seeing that you've helped them along their way in a positive manner. Knowing that none of your work was futile and that you're helping shape the future generation of empowered and powerful young people. Another enjoyable part of the job is working intimately with your staff team of 3 people over the course of the week and developing those bonds that last your whole stay on the island. Getting to know your team and going through the ups and downs with them throughout the shift creates a very powerful bond and comradery that no one can break. It is so awesome to see other people's way of teaching and feel like you're part of a indestructable squad that has so many tools to help these young kids. Another enjoyable part of the job is leaning how to garden and farm and being able to eat the harvests with the students. BEING OUTSIDE IS THE BEST TOO! Your office is the jungle with fresh air, palm trees and gardens producing veggies and greens all around you. It's paradise.
Work Hard, Play Hard. Where else can you work for a week, and take a week off to explore one of the most beautiful islands in the world. I was enticed by the lifestyle and it's amazing if you're able to balance your off/on shift. I enjoyed the free time to decompress and experience the island with my friends, and then go back to work and be "in it" for a whole week, doing really important work with the students and constantly feeling rewarded by the work I was doing.
I started working at Pacific Quest in 2010 as a field staff who had never worked in the industry before. I was welcomed with open arms and given more hands on training and learn by doing/observing staff rather than by booklets or classroom tutorials. There really is no other way to learn the industry other than by being in the field and watching how its done, also by jumping in and trying it yourself with the support of your seasoned teammates.
With hard work and dedication, I was promoted within a few weeks to the Wellness position, and then on to the Lead Positions a few weeks after that. I was enamored by the work, the level of dedication to each student, the environment, the dynamic daily routine that consists of SO MUCH! (Exercise, cooking, landwork, gardening, curriculum, therapeutic groups, individual check ins, meditation, group games and group meals, and much more. I was active from the moment I woke up to the moment I laid my head down on the pillow and I was loving the healing process that was going on with students. I really began to understand the company's positive intentions with all the rules and why we had to hold certain boundaries.
The longer I worked, the more I saw it as a benefit and reward for the students to be exposed to this type of life, these types of staff, this level of care, the things we taught them about life, and all aspects of the program, because it's making them better people for their future and their family dynamic. I worked in a variety of camps with different students each week (many times the same students who had progressed) and with different staff each week so I got to learn new teaching styles. I worked with young adults and adolescents and gained the respect of my field supervisors and managers by my style and tenure in the field for 1 1/2 years. With that, I was able to become a staf trainer/facilitator when I had been in the field for over a year and then moved on to Field Supervisor at the new Young Adult Clinic in Hilo.
I whole heartedly believe in the quality and level of care PQ provides to these students. The level of investment from all the staff is unprecedented and incomparable. People are there because they want to help others and work for a company that provides a foundation of community and positive change for youth. From mind/body/emotion to teaching them how to grow food for themselves, PQ offers a well rounded wholistic approach to emotional and physical wellness. I have seen hundeds of students benefit from their time at PQ and go on to live happier, healthier lives. I have seen many staff go, saying that this was the best, most meaningful job they've had in their lives. I've listened to students tell me they don't want to leave and how much I've changed their lives. I've watched my co-workers blossom into
I took a leap of faith and moved out to the island for the job, and I was pleasantly rewarded both professionally and personally. If you're looking to empower yourself and students around you, work on dynamic teams each week, make a difference in the future generation of people, learn about yourself when put in difficult and emotionally charged situations, teach outdoors, grow your own food and learn about the future of communication and personal growth, PQ is where you should come. It is SOOOOOOO worth it. I've learned so much about people, education, youth and what they're going through now, families, gardening, hawaiian culture and gardening, and HUMANITY. – less