Where is the ELEVATE program located?
The Elevate program takes place at YMCA of the Rockies, Estes Park
Center (EPC), which sits at an elevation
of 8,000 feet, is located on over 860 acres and surrounded by the natural splendor of Rocky
National Park. With over 217 family cabins and 9 lodge buildings, the Estes Park Center is a
family getaway and conference center. We are located in a deep valley surrounded by soaring
including Long’s Peak. Downtown Estes Park is about 10 minutes away via car, and Boulder is an hour
If you prefer a slightly shorter, milder winter and want to be on the border of Rocky Mountain
Park—home of endless wilderness, outstanding fly fishing, and some of the best hiking/rock-climbing
the world—but closer to a bigger town, this is the place for you.
How does the ELEVATE Gap Year program work?
The Elevate program provides a variety of experiences designed to
build confidence and develop life skills.
The components of the program are:
- Seasonal employment experiences in the hospitality industry (rotating through Food Service
- Meaningful community service opportunities
- Recreational opportunities (both scheduled and informal) to explore our beautiful natural
and nearby Rocky Mountain National Park
- A week-long service trip to allow for deeper personal reflection and relationship building
- Regularly-scheduled small-group workshops and training sessions on topics of interest
- Opportunities to continue working at YMCA of the Rockies for up to 4 additional months as
or pursue a full-time opening with us
Elevate is group-focused and will develop a close-knit community among participants and leaders.
Participants will meet regularly
and will develop bonds of friendship and fellowship.
What are the program dates & fees?
ELEVATE is offered in two independent four-month semesters, in the
fall and spring.
- Fall Semester: mid-August through mid-December
- Spring Semester: mid-January through mid-May
A participant may not repeat the program, however upon successful completion of the
program, there are opportunities
to extend an additional 4 months in an alternative seasonal position or pursue a permanent opening
The program fee is $600.00. Fifty dollars of this fee is payable at the time of application.
fee helps to defray the costs of training sessions, activity fees, and other expenses.
What else is included as part of this program?
Enrollment in ELEVATE provides housing (in staff dormitory, with two
people per room) and three meals a day
in our staff dining hall. Additional employee perks include access to our facilities, including a
and gymnasium (without weight equip.), as well as access to amazing hiking/snowshoeing/mountain
What can I expect to gain?
As a graduate of the Elevate program, you will emerge with greater
self-confidence, self-awareness and a
sense of purpose. You will learn time management skills and the responsibility that comes from
a job. Through meaningful service, you’ll give back to others. Through an employment experience in
a mission-based, not-for-profit
you will gain an understanding as to how your work positively impacts our guests. Through both
and free-time opportunities to enjoy the multitude of recreational activities available in our
location, a greater appreciation of the outdoors and the Rocky Mountains will be gained.
Our goal is to better prepare you to face upcoming challenges such as starting/finishing
for/engaging in employment opportunities and living independently. There are also a variety of
and certification opportunities (which may include CPR, WFA, etc.). You’ll live and learn as
of an intentional community within our YMCA center.
How do I apply for ELEVATE?
Click “Apply Now” below, or search our current opportunities for
“Elevate” and complete the online application.
Please include the contact information for 3 references (2 professional and 1 family reference).
receipt of your application, we will request your $50 application fee. If you need assistance with
application, please contact Spider Fish at 970-586-3341 x1071, or email
Do I get paid as a participant of ELEVATE?
Yes! As an Elevate participant, you receive our seasonal compensation
package. You will be working in a seasonal,
hourly position, paying $230/week (based on 40 hours/week), with employee perks including:
- Room (housing in a dormitory style building includes internet access, heat, water, electric
and no bills!)
- Board (3 buffet style meals, 7 days per week)
- Access to the YMCA of the Rockies facilities, which include: an indoor pool, basketball
fitness classes, hiking/biking/skiing trails, climbing wall, library, and Craft and Design
- Free passes for skiing, rock climbing, mountain biking, and golf, as well as free gear
on season and resort – limited number available, first come first served basis)
- Employee programming, including free or discounted staff trips, provided by the Residence
- Discounted nights at YMCA of the Rockies lodges (with some date restrictions based on
What else do I need to know?
Drug & Alcohol Policy—In accordance with our healthy spirit/mind/body mission, we
have a zero tolerance
policy for alcohol or drugs on property. If you want to use marijuana, don’t apply
the Elevate program.
Pet Policy—Though we would love to welcome your pets, unfortunately we cannot allow animals of
with the exception of certified service animals.
Who do I contact if I have more questions?
Please contact Spider Fish at 970-586-3341 x1071, or email