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  1. #1
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    May 2016
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    Is PSIA still relevant?

    Last spring I encouraged my teenage son to become PSIA Level 1 ski instructor certified. He has been teaching for a few years and I thought it would look good for college etc.
    Almost none of his friends did it because of the the (unpaid) time and expense of the course and the PSIA membership. The very small raise you got for being level 1 would never cover the course and membership dues.
    So my question is for those of you working ski schools around the USA: Does that level 1 help him get a job at a random ski area? Does anyone even care you have level 1? My son said the class was a joke, but he's a teen boy so everything is a joke.

    I received the membership renewal card today and not sure if it's worth even renewing.

    When he took the level 1 there were plenty of people taking the classes and most around here (northeast) were full.

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  2. #2
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    It depends upon goals and aspirations. Pay rate increases with Level 1, and goes up from there. Real pay rates (and tips) increase with Level 2. An instructor wannabe can get a job teaching kids (5-12) without Level 1.During her teen years, my daughter did this at Snowbird and Deer Valley. However, if you want to instruct adults ski blues/blacks or off-piste, wherever on the mountain that you want to ski, a Level 1 or 2 is usually required.
    If a person wants to instruct for more than a couple of years, and the job is long-term, or even a career, then PSIA is important. Just my $.02
    “How does it feel to be the greatest guitarist in the world? I don’t know, go ask Rory Gallagher”. — Jimi Hendrix

  3. #3
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    ^^^ This.
    I have been in this State for 30 years and I am willing to admit that I am part of the problem.

    "Happiest years of my life were earning < $8.00 and hour, collecting unemployment every spring and fall, no car, no debt and no responsibilities. 1984-1990 Park City UT"

  4. #4
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    whatever happened to epicski? This could be a 12 page thread there

  5. #5
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    May 2016
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    Thanks. Kind of depends where the kid ends up going to college. Level 1 seemed easy. Level 2 you need several certifications.

    Quote Originally Posted by schindlerpiste View Post
    It depends upon goals and aspirations. Pay rate increases with Level 1, and goes up from there. Real pay rates (and tips) increase with Level 2. An instructor wannabe can get a job teaching kids (5-12) without Level 1.During her teen years, my daughter did this at Snowbird and Deer Valley. However, if you want to instruct adults ski blues/blacks or off-piste, wherever on the mountain that you want to ski, a Level 1 or 2 is usually required.
    If a person wants to instruct for more than a couple of years, and the job is long-term, or even a career, then PSIA is important. Just my $.02
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  6. #6
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    Oct 2005
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    Quote Originally Posted by schindlerpiste View Post
    It depends upon goals and aspirations. Pay rate increases with Level 1, and goes up from there. Real pay rates (and tips) increase with Level 2. An instructor wannabe can get a job teaching kids (5-12) without Level 1.During her teen years, my daughter did this at Snowbird and Deer Valley. However, if you want to instruct adults ski blues/blacks or off-piste, wherever on the mountain that you want to ski, a Level 1 or 2 is usually required.
    If a person wants to instruct for more than a couple of years, and the job is long-term, or even a career, then PSIA is important. Just my $.02
    +2. Truth. tj

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
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    Short answer is no unless someone is really interested in becoming a long term ski instructor. Nobody really considers hiring anyone under cert 3 outside a cattle call for instructors and if you have any real experience and a decent recommendation from a respected ski school cert 1/2 is somewhat irrelevant.

  8. #8
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    Dec 2004
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    Quote Originally Posted by Woodsy View Post
    whatever happened to epicski? This could be a 12 page thread there
    Fear not:
    https://www.skitalk.com/forums/ski-school.6/
    (Or maybe some of those threads are grounds for fear?)

    As for the OP's q, I got $500 off my last car purchase via PSIA.
    (Otherwise, I'm not quite sure why I still belong...)
    Mo' skimo here: NE Rando Race Series

  9. #9
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    May 2004
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    give'er eh!
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    Ski instructing is dick waving culture for sub skilled on-piste narcissist’s

    Don’t ruin your kids life…

  10. #10
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    Mar 2006
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    da hood
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    Why would a psia cert look good for college? Is this some Lori Loughlin shit we don’t know about?

  11. #11
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    If your kid has any aspirations to travel & ski outside the US, then PSIA cert could certainly help in getting a job in Japan for example.

    You won't get an instructor job without certs.

  12. #12
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    One of my roommates in college pursued the PSIA route while in school, think he got to level 3. Got paid well at Steaux.

    I instructed for a season at some little podunk hill in PA so I didn’t need to pay for a season pass (no cert). The only reason I’d ever consider pursuing PSIA level 1 is if I had future plans to get my 2/3. It would be easy to find an instructing job with those certs, and that could be kind of awesome to take a winter sabbatical a couple years after graduating when you’re sick of working full time for ‘the man’

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by east or bust View Post
    One of my roommates in college pursued the PSIA route while in school, think he got to level 3. Got paid well at Steaux.

    I instructed for a season at some little podunk hill in PA so I didn’t need to pay for a season pass (no cert). The only reason I’d ever consider pursuing PSIA level 1 is if I had future plans to get my 2/3. It would be easy to find an instructing job with those certs, and that could be kind of awesome to take a winter sabbatical a couple years after graduating when you’re sick of working full time for ‘the man’
    Pretty sure that if you're teaching at a major ski area in the US you're working for "the man".

  14. #14
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    Oct 2005
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    arguably,
    If you are working (for) Epic,
    one could claim you are working for Kirsten 😬🙊

    skiJ

  15. #15
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    Dec 2004
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    Where the sheets have no stains
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    Since when has the PSIA been relevant?

    Surprised this has not been used
    I have been in this State for 30 years and I am willing to admit that I am part of the problem.

    "Happiest years of my life were earning < $8.00 and hour, collecting unemployment every spring and fall, no car, no debt and no responsibilities. 1984-1990 Park City UT"

  16. #16
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    May 2016
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    THanks helpful that it's recognized outside of the USA.

    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Pow View Post
    If your kid has any aspirations to travel & ski outside the US, then PSIA cert could certainly help in getting a job in Japan for example.

    You won't get an instructor job without certs.
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  17. #17
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    May 2016
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    Well he would have been a trustafarian if I had made more money so now it's plan B (not talking about the pill)

    Not all instructors are dick wavers. Just the ones you hang out with.

    Quote Originally Posted by teamdirt View Post
    Ski instructing is dick waving culture for sub skilled on-piste narcissist’s

    Don’t ruin your kids life…
    I <heart> hot tele-moms

  18. #18
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
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    2,458
    "still"
    what's orange and looks good on hippies?
    fire

    rails are for trains
    If I had a dollar for every time capitalism was blamed for problems caused by the government I'd be a rich fat film maker in a baseball hat.

    www.theguideshut.ca

  19. #19
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    Apr 2007
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    FWIW, I'd tend to agree that PSIA level 1 mostly makes sense if you plan to go beyond that. Level 2 is generally attainable by most people who want it (some with more work than others) and seems to be considered a more legit cert for pro-deal status, FWIW.

  20. #20
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    Feb 2005
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    I have 2 friends on the national team. And a handful who have maxed out their certs and make bank with privates. All fed by the dues from the level 1 and 2 folks. It's a career track. That is the question you should be asking. You can easily make way more money bar tending at those levels.
    Is it radix panax notoginseng? - splat

  21. #21
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    Oct 2004
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    in the shadow of the white rocks
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    I’m in the process of re-activating my coach’s license after a 23 year hiatus. I’m like 37 hours in to online modules & we’ve yet to cover any skiing!

    Good to know that sext’n & human trafficking are not part of the approved coaching activities & certainly frowned upon if anyone involved has a head injury.

    I have to believe with the staffing shortages, the PSIA will wither on the vine. Can’t imagine anyone youngsters caring or devoting that much time to the effort.

  22. #22
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    Sep 2005
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    Click image for larger version. 

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    “How does it feel to be the greatest guitarist in the world? I don’t know, go ask Rory Gallagher”. — Jimi Hendrix

  23. #23
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    Jan 2006
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    As mentioned above, if the kid even wants a solid winter break, spring break gig through college, I'd maybe even ramp up to the level 2.
    www.dpsskis.com
    www.point6.com
    formerly an ambassador for a few others, but the ski industry is... interesting.
    Fukt: a very small amount of snow.

  24. #24
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    Oct 2007
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    The greatest N. New Mexico resort in Colorado
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    As far as I can tell, PSIA certs are only relevant if you already have your realtor's license. Otherwise you're going to be teaching never-evers on the bunny hill and kid's programs, so your ability to sell overpriced condos and 8,000 sq ft "cabins" will be extremely limited.

  25. #25
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    Feb 2006
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    Basel
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    I have had my certs for a long time. the level 1 will get you a job near at any smaller mountain. I did that in grad school, since I could not afford a lift tix.
    The pro forms alone can be worth it. 40% off from Burton, great deals from Patagucci,
    The clinics offered are great. I learned to tele through PSIA-e clinics.
    Met some cool people, and you can always get a weekend warrior job.
    Level 3 is recognized internationally.

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