Scot Taylor from West Coast Adventure College

World Class Outdoor Education Program: West Coast Adventure College

Scot Taylor of West Coast Adventure College gives the inside scoop on how he came to start his Sooke outdoor school and what it entails.

Sooke’s World Class Outdoor Education Program:  West Coast Adventure College

If location is gold then West Coast Adventure College has struck the main vein.  Tucked in the breathtaking corner of Cooper’s Cove, Sooke’s very own accredited outdoor college has everything it needs right at its doorstep to adventure.  Co-owner and instructor, Scot Taylor also owns Rush Adventures and the Stickleback restaurant, literally has a 3-step commute to work.  He has been on the local scene for over a decade, partnered up with Phil Foster, building up a momentum and cohesiveness to their adventure college which has ripened into what it is today: a Mecca for outdoor enthusiasts looking to explore a career in nature tourism.

The highly sought-after spots at the college are capped at  a slim twenty-one students, which is split in half or thirds for a more intimate instructor-to-student ratio.  An emphasis on lower student limit is Scott’s insistence of quality over quantity.  Since it’s eleven-year inception, with nine accredited years, the college’s highly professional instructors and program provide a wide ecology of opportunities. From kayak guiding, to dog-sledding, whale watching and zip-lining, the college has had a vast array of successful students that have been hired around the globe.

Over an eight month period, six main courses and over 750 hours of learning, students are immersed in the wild and in a beautiful classroom setting.

Perilous situations that would make the hair stand on the back of anyone’s neck are a part of the training.  Without going into any of the details (they are kept a secret) emergency preparedness is a part of the training because the reality of any outdoor adventure college jives with the scout’s motto:  “Be prepared”: in mind, body and spirit.  “Safety is paramount”, says Taylor.

The vast array of territory covered is enough to make any outdoor enthusiast salivate:  sea kayaking, wilderness first aid, environmental stewardship, camping skills, survival skiing, marine emergency, sailing, radio operators and more.  Certificates recognized by industry standards assure that students come out of the college ready to enter the workforce in whatever direction their compass points toward.

The outdoor tourism industry pulls in over 14 billion dollars and is expected to double over the next ten years. Students at the college spent over $250 000 off-season, creating a lucrative micro-economy in the surrounding area.  Skills are transferable and many students are hired locally through B.C. Ferries, zip-line companies, and some of British Columbia’s biggest resorts.

The college works locally in School Board 61 with a program for grades 11 and 12.  He is hoping this will become a Sooke program as well.  As a high school student, Taylor’s absenteeism was noted by his school’s vice principal.  But he also noted his passion and it was this joy that he felt for the outdoors that kept him afloat and led to his first job as a kayak guide.  Working hard and devoutly at his first guide job led Taylor to realize a fundamental truth.  “There are no short term thoughts…only long-term vision.  I do not believe in ‘luck’ but in the creation of opportunities.  You just have to be ready for it and seize it when your hard work and devotion have opened up a juncture.” Taylor’s wish, which he hopes to leave to his children and the town of Sooke, is to be an example of a man of vision creating his own opportunities with hard work and dedication, giving back to the place he is proud to call home.

 

 

 

To find out more about West Coast Adventure College, check out his website at:  http://www.westcoastadventurecollege.com

 

Just Posted

‘Actors can play any roles’: Debate over ‘colour-blind’ casting after Victoria lawsuit

Tenyjah Indra McKenna filed a complaint over racially-motivated casting

Community works to feed hungry kids at Journey Middle School

School staff and Sooke Lions Club form unique partnership

Saanich mayor urges premier to tweak road speeds in an ‘epidemic of road crash fatalities’

Haynes cites ICBC and provincial documents in letter to John Horgan

Second cyclist struck during morning commute in Greater Victoria

Saanich crash involving a cyclist at the Braefoot Road, Epsom Drive and Cedar Hill Cross Road intersection

Sunny skies ahead for Thursday

Plus a look ahead at the weekend’s forecast

VIDEO: UBC exchange students offered $1,000 to help with leaving Hong Kong

The university said 31 of its students were attending four universities in Hong Kong

12 Sooke events to get you into the holiday spirit

From a Santa parade to classicial music, Sooke has it all

Victim of downtown Courtenay assault dies from injuries

Person of interest identified by RCMP

Infants more vulnerable to measles than previously thought: Canadian study

Babies typically don’t receive the measles vaccine until they are 12 months old

Shatner, Obomsawin among 39 inductees to Order of Canada today

Shatner is being given one of Canada’s highest civilian honours for his 60-year career

John Mann, singer and songwriter of group Spirit of the West dead at 57

Mann died peacefully in Vancouver on Wednesday from early onset Alzheimer’s

Teacher tells B.C. Supreme Court that student was ‘happy’ to watch smudging ceremony in classroom

Case being heard in Nanaimo over indigenous cultural practice in Port Alberni classroom

VIDEO: B.C. high school’s turf closed indefinitely as plastic blades pollute waterway

Greater Victoria resident stumbles on plastic contamination from Oak Bay High

Four arrested after report of shots fired in Nanaimo

RCMP arrest four suspects in high-risk takedown in Cedar

Most Read