The Residential Apprenticeship Program is a rigorous curriculum of outdoor education designed specifically to instruct present and future professional outdoor instructors, guides, counselors, teachers, and those who want to live these skills every day. Although there are routinely scheduled days off for rest and recovery, this is a FULL TIME residential experience.

2019 Residential Apprenticeship Program semesters:

Spring Semester – Core Curriculum

  • Date: April 24 – June 29
  • Tuition: $4,200

Fall Semester – Specialty Skill Development

  • Date: July 21 – October 20
  • Tuition: $4,200

Full Immersion (BothSemesters) Pricing: $7,890
Full Immersion Early Bird Pricing:TBA




PDF Resources:

Schedule Overview

( Click for Full Detailed Schedule)

Semester 1

Inventory Trip 4 days
Opening Campfire

Systems and Routines Workshop 3 days
Survival Basics Weekend Course 2 days
Earth Living Intensive Course 5 days
Native Awareness Intensive Course 5 days
Spring Foraging Intensive Course 5 days
Knife Making 2 days

Long Term Shelter Building Course 5 days
Canoe Trip Leader Skills Trip Prep 4 days
Mentoring Skills Weekend 2 days
Canoe Trip 5 days
Closing Campfire: Semester One

Semester Two
Break between Semesters
Inventory Trip 4 days
Systems Review and Move In 2 days

Fiber Arts and Basket Weaving weekend 2 days
Earth Living Intensive 5 days
Wild Rice School 4 days
Late Summer Foraging 5 days

Bow Making 9 days
Common Ground Fair and Prep 6 days
Fall Foraging Intensive 5 days

Wildlife Tracking and Field Mapping 4 days
Spirit of the Hunt 2 days
Survival Trip 3 days
Tying the Bundle 4 days
Closing Campfire: Semester Two


Accommodations and Living Systems:
Apprentices are expected to stay in tarps, tents, and primitive shelters in the Apprentice Camping area for most of the first semester. Long-term primitive shelters will be available for the second semester. The Apprentice Outdoor Kitchen has cook stoves, pantry space, counters, fire pit, sink, and water catchment system. There is an outdoor shower and potable water. The campus is located less than 5 miles from Augusta, which has a local laundromat, grocery store, shopping plaza, etc.

Curriculum and Training Detail Overview:
(For more info: 2019 MPSS Apprenticeship Catalog )

The Skills covered in the Apprenticeship are developed through hands on experiences and directed toward specific learning outcomes related to producing a well rounded, skilled practitioner capable of demonstrating and sharing skills in natural settings.

  • Full Immersion in nature for 6 months, demanding daily hands-on application of skills learned.
  • 40 plus hours applying essential outdoor skills each week.
  • In total, over five hundred hours of direct instruction are provided with resources for further self study.
  • Performance Indicators (benchmarks), Peer Reviews, and Student Portfolios are utilized as evidence of competency in specified areas of focus. (More info here
  • Ten Performance Indicators Areas of Study: (Example Rubric: Fire)
    • Awareness
    • Shelter
    • Water
    • Fire
    • Food
    • Self-Reliance
    • Wildlife Tracking
    • Ethnobotany/Herbalism
    • Mentoring
    • Maine Guide Practices

This experience, upon successful completion, is designed to provide a solid foundation of basic to advanced skills in the out of doors. The focus of the apprenticeship program is to develop a professional outdoor educator with a high standard of field craft and a practiced set of reliable tools as an educator.



Maine Primitive Skills School apprentices make snow shoes.

Maine Primitive Skills School apprentices work with Elder Grandfather Ray.

For more information about the apprenticeship send an email to [email protected]