Keystone Science School

Staff
Campus
Day Camp
Hiking
Science
Summit
Camp
Climbing
Day Camp

Science. Adventure. Fun!

At KSS, we believe that the power of inspiring curiosity and critical thinking, through the lens of science, changes lives and strengthens communities. We create future leaders who can problem solve and work together in an ever-evolving world and workplace environment. We offer a range of programs that provide a balance of hands-on science activities, field-based exploration, and adventure.

Our campus is located at 9,200 feet on the site of Old Keystone Village in Keystone, Colorado. Our historic 23-acre campus serves as the ultimate outdoor laboratory and is the home base for our diverse suite of programs. Our facilities include modern log-style dormitories, a central dining hall, an outdoor amphitheater, a state-of-the-art observatory, a geothermal field, and employee housing.

Jobs in the Spotlight

About Keystone Science School

Located in the Colorado Rocky Mountains, Keystone Science School’s historic campus serves as the base camp for our diverse suite of inquiry-based learning programs. We combine hands-on science education with outdoor adventure to create engaging experiences for our students and campers.

At KSS, we offer competitive compensation and generous benefits, and we are committed to serving students from diverse backgrounds. We’re proud to be Summit County’s #1 Best Non-Profit and #2 Best Place to Work (2019)! Looking for more to love about KSS? Check out these 11 Things You'll Love About Working at KSS.

The Employee Experience

Camp Staff

It’s the goal that each KSS Summer Camp staff looks back on the past summer as their Best Summer Ever! Working as a camp counselor or support staff can be an amazing experience, full of new friendships, tons of laughter, and amazing adventures. Summer camp is a magical place, and in full transparency, it’s a lot of work! At KSS, we strive for a One-Team mentality so all staff help out across all programs and departments. This creates an incredible community and culture, but expect to work very long days (15+ hours, 6 days a week).

Programs Staff

The program staff positions are some of the most exciting and versatile positions within Keystone science school, and the people are some of the most fun as well! With a lot of options to offer, we find it’s hard to choose just one. Regardless of what position you choose, it will definitely be dynamic.

Operations Staff

The KSS operations team is comprised of our foodservice and property management team. The size of the overall operations team fluctuates with each season but no matter the season, they are considered the heart of KSS. The operations team operates largely behind the scenes but is responsible for providing each camper and staff member with their basic needs with food and comfortable accommodations. These responsibilities are so important with the overall success of KSS programs and the achievement of the KSS mission.

Ideal Candidate

We change lives, we bring fun and laughter to everything we do, and we care about each other and those we serve. We're looking for staff who:

  • Have an interest in, respect for, and ability to work with children
  • Have an interest in, respect for, and ability to work with people with diverse backgrounds
  • Ability to create an inclusive learning environment for students from a wide range of backgrounds
  • Experience with risk management practices of the outdoor and environmental education industry
  • Ability to be creative, adaptable, and flexible while managing children in a variety of situations
  • Strong work ethic and will work until the job is complete
  • Motivation to contribute positively to the KSS at-large community
  • Superior customer service skills, with the ability to be creative and think 'outside the box'

Instructors working summer programs should have the following qualifications:

  • Current Wilderness First Aid and CPR certifications, from an approved vendor, or the ability to obtain before the first day of employment
  • Age 20+ with a minimum of 5 years driving experience, excellent driving record, and a valid driver's license

Room and Board

Part of the daily routine of being an instructor is, of course, where you sleep and when and what you eat. Depending on your summer position, you may be housed in one of several different options, some of which can change depending on your role during a given session. Accommodations include rustic historic cabins that have electricity but no running water, a new modern shared living space, and two historical homes with running water, showers, and toilets. Counselors working Discovery overnight will sleep in the dormitories or Snake River Village, depending on the program they are working. There are always buildings close by the cabins and the canvas tents that have running water (i.e. toilets, showers, etc). Residents also have access to all buildings around campus, including the staff kitchen.

We are lucky to have breakfast and dinner cooked and served for staff on all days that camp is in session. Lunch during camp days can be made before breakfast begins or while preparing camper lunches, depending on the program you are working. On weekends when staff are not working Fusion, there is access to leftovers and ingredients in the Rives dining hall kitchen, as well as access to the two fridges in the Granite Grill in our main office space. (Most cabins and dorms are furnished with at least one mini-fridge as well.)

All food allergies and dietary restrictions are considered by our chef, who will have alternatives available each meal and in the kitchen.

Employee Perks

Keystone Science School strives to take care of employees through a variety of perks, benefits, and providing a safe place to work and play. We pride ourselves on being able to offer a little something for everyone. Our hope is through taking care of our employees, we also provide a great place to work!

Perks of Living in Summit County

  • Live in the heart of the Rocky Mountains of Colorado. Living in Summit County means living in close proximity to several rock climbing crags, mountain biking trails, 5 ski resorts, plenty of hiking and backpacking locations, and whitewater rafting opportunities
  • Take weekend trips to National Parks in Utah, Colorado, and Wyoming
  • Go kayaking on Eleven Mile Reservoir and the Arkansas River
  • Attend free and ticketed concerts at the Dillon Amphitheater
  • Take a pottery or painting class, or learn how to fly-fish

Getting Here and Getting Around

Directions to Campus

  • Take I-70 Exit 205 for Dillon/Silverthorne.
    • If traveling from the East (Denver), take a left onto Highway 6.
    • If traveling from the West, take a right onto Highway 6.
  • Travel on Highway 6 until you go through Silverthorne, Dillon, and around Lake Dillon.
  • Go straight through the stoplight at Swan Mountain Road.
  • At the next stoplight, take a right onto West Keystone Road, then an immediate left.
  • Take your first right onto Soda Ridge Road. Follow this until the stop sign.
  • Proceed straight past the stables and onto KSS Camps. Parking and the main administrative building, Tieken Place, is on left.

Transportation

While parking for staff working and living on campus is available, it is generally not required for staff to have a personal vehicle. The closest major airport is Denver International Airport (DIA), and several shuttle companies offer transportation directly to campus for around $45-60: Epic Mountain Express, Fresh Tracks, and Peak One Express. The Summit Stage offers free public transportation throughout Summit County, however the closest bus stop, Keystone Lodge, is about 1.8 miles from campus. Please note that during the COVID-19 pandemic, transportation opportunities may be impacted. Please contact us to work through any issues that may arise.

Community Information

  • Grocery Stores: Keystone has a few small (expensive) convenience stores. Dillon has a City Market. Silverthorne has a Target. Frisco has a Natural Grocers, Wal-Mart, Safeway, and Whole Foods. Breckenridge has a City Market.
  • Restaurants, Bars, and Coffee Shops: There are a variety of food options in Summit County. Fast food options (mainly in Silverthorne) include Subway, Wendy’s, McDonald’s, Smash Burger, Qdoba, and Chipotle, and many more. There are too many restaurants, bars, coffee shops to list, but we’ll be happy to make recommendations if you ask
  • Shopping & Thrift Stores: Silverthorne is home to outlet stores such as Columbia, Under Armour, Levi’s, etc. Outdoor gear stores are available throughout Summit County, including REI and Wilderness Sports in Dillon. Target is in Silverthorne and Walmart is in Frisco. Used gear can be purchased at Recycled Sports in Frisco. The FIRC (Family and Intercultural Resource Center) Thrift Store and Gold Mine Thrift are in Dillon, and there are many other thrift stores throughout Summit County
  • Banks: Alpine Bank, Wells Fargo, US Bank, Credit Union, Bank of the West, and 1st Bank
  • Health Care: St. Anthony’s Summit Medical Hospital, High Country Health Care, Summit Community Care Clinic
  • Outdoor Recreation: Many National Forest trails are in and around Summit County. Popular mountain ranges include the Gore Range, Ten Mile Range, Front Range, and Sawatch Range. Popular peaks to summit include Buffalo Mountain, Peak One, Quandary, Gray’s and Torrey’s, and Baldy. Directly next to KSS is the Keystone Nordic Track, which KSS staff are welcome to use free of charge. The 10th Mountain Division Huts and Summit County Hut System have many backcountry huts that you can hike or ski to for about $30/night, but you do need to make reservations in advance.
  • Ski Resorts: Keystone, A-Basin, Loveland, Breckenridge, and Copper ski resorts are all located in or near Summit County. Other resorts (40-120 minutes away) include Vail, Beaver Creek, Steamboat, Aspen, and Winter Park. Most staff purchase an A-Basin or Vail Resorts pass. A-Basin offers a discounted pass to KSS employees (usually around $210) – please ask Human Resources for more information.
  • Recreation Centers: There are two nice Recreation Centers in the county: Silverthorne Rec Center and Breckenridge Rec Center. Both have pools, workout rooms, and fitness classes. The Breckenridge Rec Center also has an indoor rock-climbing gym.
  • Movies: A large movie theater is located in Dillon, and a smaller theater, the Speakeasy, is in Breckenridge. Red Box movie rentals are available at City Market.
  • Volunteering: There are over 100 non-profit organizations in Summit County, and thus a wide variety of volunteer opportunities. This can be a great way to meet new people and immerse yourself into the community!

For Fun

Advice from Past Staff

  • Wear sunscreen, sunglasses, and a hat!
  • Things will never go according to plan – that’s life!
  • Don’t get a van stuck.
  • Be flexible with the schedule.
  • Lend a helping hand to your team.
  • Learn from other Instructors, everyone has a different background.
  • Be prepared for drastic changes in weather, and always have layers!
  • Road bike around Lake Dillon and up to Vail Pass.
  • Eat the hashbrowns at Sunshine Café.
  • Go on a Hut Trip!
  • Volunteer in the community – SOS Outreach, FIRC, Swan Outreach Center, or FDRD.
  • Take courses at Colorado Mountain College.
  • Try the many craft breweries in Summit County.
  • See live music at Ten Mile Music Hall or Warren Station.

How to Apply

Ready to find yourself at the heart of Science, Adventure, and FUN! Apply online via the apply button below or email HR@KeystoneScienceSchool.org for more info!


Contact Keystone Science School