Fall 2021 Important Dates:
Counselor application deadline:
September 9, 2021
Counselor Training I:
Tuesday, September 14,
6:00 – 9:00 p.m.,
112 Forest Resources Building
Counselor Training II:
Wednesday, September 22,
6:00 – 9:30 p.m.,
Camp Blue Diamond
Outdoor School dates:
(All dates are Monday–Friday unless noted)
September 29 – October 1 (Wednesday – Friday)
October 4 – 8
October 11 – 15
October 18 – 22
October 25 – 29
November 1 – 5
Penn State students can earn 2 credits by participating in Outdoor School (ODS) as cabin counselors. Returning counselors may advance to become Learning Group Leaders and can earn additional credits. Penn State students may also earn volunteer hours to satisfy community service requirements.
To participate in Outdoor School, Penn State students must first submit an application*. Students who are accepted will be registered for SciEd 140 or RPTM 140, Outdoor School Field Experience for academic credit concurrent with ODS. Counselors attend two required training sessions prior to the start of Outdoor School. Course information and registration materials will be available at these trainings.
During their week of ODS, Penn State students must commit to being on-site 24-hours a day, typically from 1:30 p.m. on Monday through 3:00 p.m. on Friday, with free time on Wednesday or Thursday afternoon. Counselors sleep in cabins and eat family-style meals with the school students. There is indoor hot-water plumbing.
Outdoor School has both a fall and a spring season. The spring season lasts typically six to seven weeks, beginning in early April and ending in mid-May. The fall season is typically six weeks, beginning in late September and running through October. ODS is held at Camp Blue Diamond, in Petersburg, Pennsylvania (about 20 miles south of State College)**.
If you wish to apply for a future season, or if you have questions regarding Outdoor School or the application, please review our list of Frequently Asked Questions or contact Ellen Will, Outdoor School Director, at 865-3953 or email@example.com.