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The CMA Experience…

The full semester academy (Feb-June) offers students a unique experience to obtain a diversity of professional-level skills and certifications. This training provides immediate employment opportunities while establishing a strong foundation for future academic endeavors.

Students become skilled and certified in variety of healthy outdoor activities including kayaking, canoeing, rock climbing, stand-up paddle boarding, mountain climbing, Sailing etc.

The program is designed to create profoundly rich and often trans-formative educational and life experiences. Students also explore their own passions in the context of serving the community.

CMA is delivered through a series of modules including Group Development, Group Living Skills, Leadership Studies, Wilderness Technology Skills, Environmental Studies, Safety & Risk Management, Navigation, and Trip Planning & Preparation.

CMA celebrates its close connections to the community recognizing that learning is given meaning through experience. Students benefit by seeing themselves as agents of community change.

The CMA experience culminates with the students planning and implementing all aspects of an overnight Eco-Adventure camp program for all grade 7s in the district. This is an opportunity for CMA students to apply all of the skills and theory they have learned in the previous months. It is also another way for them to give back to the community that supports them.

Students who excel in the regular CMA semester are offered the opportunity to apprentice as assistants with the LEAP program. They receive work experience credit for while it scaffolds them into full time employment at the Outdoor Learning Center, Tribune Bay Outdoor Center, Strathcona Park Lodge etc

Coast Mountain Academy taught me as much in five months as I learned in my entire life so far. I have been tested both mentally and physically. I emerge from CMA a more resilient, thoughtful and prepared person.” – Clancy Sindlinger CMA 2016

Taking a moment to enjoy the sunset during Wilderness First Aid

Taking a moment to enjoy the sunset during Wilderness First Aid


Exploring the Salish Sea aboard a 53’ Schooner

Exploring the Salish Sea aboard a 53’ Schooner

The Coast Mountain Academy has opened me
to different opportunities and challenges
I would never have participated in before.
It has showed me how to think
outside of the box and to have fun
with everything.
— Kelly, CMA Alumni

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Potential Credits

Physical Education 11 or 12 credits 4

Work Experience 11 or 12 credits 4

Adventure Tourism 11 & 12 credits 8

Leadership Studies 11 or 12 credits 4

English (optional)11 or 12 credits 4

Graduation Transitions 12 credits 4

Total possible credits 28


Certifications Exploritories Withing the Program

Core Components (offered every year):

  • Outdoor Council of Canada – Field Leader*

1.    Hiking Certificate (2 days)

2.    Paddling Certificate (2 days)

3.    Snow Certificate (1 day)

4.    Overnight Certificate (2 Days)

  • Radio Operators License (Industry Canada)

  • Stand Up Paddle (Paddle Canada)*

1.    Basic SUP Skills Certificate (1 day)

2.    Advanced SUP Skills Certificate (1 day)

3.    Touring Skills 1 SUP Certificate (3 day trip)

  • Canoe (Paddle Canada)*

1.    Basic Skills Certificate (1 day)

2.    Lake Canoe Skills Introduction Certificate (1 day)

3.    Introduction to Canoe Tripping Skills (4 day trip)

  • Kayak Skills (Paddle Canada)

1.    Basic Kayak Skills (1 day)

2.    Level 1 Kayak Skills (2 days)

  • Wilderness First Aid – 50 hr (Wilderness Medical Associates)  

Based on Student Interest and Competency:

  • Stream-keepers (Pacific Stream-keepers Federation)*

  • Leader in Training – Practicum (Outdoor & Ecological Learning Dept)*

  • Avalanche Safety Training Level 1 (CAA)

  • Snow School

  • Rock Climbing and Bouldering

  • Basic Mountaineering


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The Coast Mountain Academy (CMA) has been, for me, a transformative program, and a high point of my life so far. I have grown in knowledge, understanding, and ability. My horizons have been expanded, my potential as a human and as a leader has increased, my character has developed, and my skills have multiplied. I can now look back, five months later, as a stronger, wiser, more skilled and more confident person.
— Graham, CMA Alumni