Ontario Foundations Level Program

This program is for folks looking to learn more about the outdoor industry as a career path and begin to build their skill set. Comprised of three Centre-based Learning Modules and an optional 5-day Outdoor Journey, this program will introduce participants to the skills and foundational knowledge needed to begin their journey to become an outdoor leader, instructor, or facilitator.

Access vs. Intensive Format

We know that you have a busy life with many different responsibilities. So, in order to make this program more accessible, we are offering two different formats: Access or Intensive.

The Access format takes place in an urban setting over the span of three separate weekends. Workshops are offered during the day and participants can return home each evening. Lunch will be provided.

The Intensive takes place at an outdoor centre where all meals and accommodation will be provided for the 6 days. Participants will live in shared cabin-style dorms with 3-6 other participants.

Centre-based Learning Workshops

Some additional workshops that you can look forward to include:

Group facilitation & experiential learning
risk management & decision making
trip planning
group development
interpretive skills
Environmental ethics

Don Valley Brick Works, Toronto


[Closed for Registration]

  • Module 1: March 23-24, 2024
  • Module 2: April 6-7, 2024
  • Module 3: April 20-21, 2024

*Applications will be accepted on a rolling basis.

  • Module 1: October 19-20, 2024
  • Module 2: November 2-3, 2024
  • Module 3: November 16-17, 2024

*Applications will be accepted on a rolling basis.


Kinark Outdoor Centre, Minden


September 17-22, 2024 (includes Journey)
*Applications will be accepted on a rolling basis.

Optional outdoor journey STARTING location

Kinark Outdoor Centre, Minden

Optional outdoor journey dates
  • Option 1: February 11-15, 2024 [Closed for Registration]
    Activity: Introduction to Winter Camping
  • Option 2: September 24-28, 2024
    Activity: Flatwater Canoeing
  • Option 3: October 7-11, 2024
    Activity: Flatwater Canoeing

*Applications will be accepted on a rolling basis.

  • Introduction to Winter Camping
  • Flatwater Canoeing
Apply Now

Optional Outdoor Journey

The Training Academy’s optional Outdoor Journeys will provide participants with direct, hands-on experience in wilderness travel and are intended for those interested in pursuing a career in Trip Leadership or Guiding.

You will spend one night preparing with your group and instructors at our base before heading out on a four day wilderness trip, including at least two nights at the same campsite. Our focus is on building comfort on the land and water, and group cohesion while learning the introductory knowledge and technical skills needed to travel safely in an flatwater environment.

Outdoor Journeys will start at the Kinark Outdoor Centre, but take place at the Haliburton Highland Water Trails (excluding the Winter Journey).

Introduction to Winter Camping

The focus of this program is building comfort in wintertime travel and group cohesion while learning introductory knowledge and technical skills.  You will spend the first 1-2 nights in cabins preparing with your group and instructors with a focus on learning about winter clothing systems and gear, winter-specific skills such as snowshoeing, firewood processing, and tracking, on day hikes. You will then head out on a 2-3 night overnight excursion on snowshoes, pulling all of your gear on pulks (sleds) to a basecamp location where you will be staying with your group in a winter canvas tent with a stove. You will also have the option to make and sleep in snow shelters. 


Entry-level Outdoor Leadership certifications will be a part of the Foundations level program. These will include: the Outdoor Council of Canada: Field Leader (Hiking) and/or Interpretive Guides Association Apprentice Interpreter certificate.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Have a burning question? We probably have the answer for you! Check out our Frequently Asked Questions page to learn more.


Virtual Information Sessions

Join us for our next virtual informational session to learn all about our programs, certifications and ask any questions that you might have!

Coming Soon