AIARE Scholarships

Investing in avalanche education and professional training can be costly–from travel and time off work to course tuition, the expenses can add up quickly. With support from our funders, AIARE is committed to easing the financial burden of avalanche training and education through robust scholarship opportunities. Below you will find scholarship opportunities for AIARE Instructor Training courses, AIARE PRO courses, as well as AIARE 1, 2, and Rescue courses.

Scholarships Supported and Managed by AIARE

The application window for AIARE-managed scholarships has CLOSED for the season. Applications will re-open in the summer. Scholarships not managed by AIARE have individual deadlines.

AIARE Scholarships Application and Award Timeline (PRO, ITC, and CLT Courses)**

August 1 applications open @ 9:00am MT
Rolling AIARE will notify applicants if additional materials are needed
August 23 applications close @ midnight MT*
*ALL applications submitted within the application period will be considered at the end of the window. Applications submitted earlier do not receive preference.
September 13 award notifications sent
September 20 signed award letters due*

Please check the PRO, ITC, and CLT web pages for further detail on those registration, application, and payment timelines.

**Avalanche Alliance Motorized recreational course scholarships utilize a different application and award timeline. Find more information below.

AIARE CCAASE Grant

CLOSED

With support provided by the Town of Telluride, AIARE is offering funding to assist San Miguel county residents with tuition for AIARE PRO 1 or PRO 2, Instructor Training and Course Leader Training courses.

Prerequisites:

Town of Telluride Commision for Community Assistance, Arts, and Special Events
  • Applicant lives and/or works in San Miguel county*
  • Applicant has (or plans to) apply for an AIARE PRO 1, PRO 2, ITC or CLT within the application window

*As part of the scholarship application, applicants will be asked to provide proof of residency in the form of official documents (e.g. driver’s license, utility bill, pay stub, bank statement, voter registration, letter from employer, etc).

Application Period: August 1 - August 23
Award Notification: September 13
Award Letters Due: September 20

Avalanche Alliance Motorized Scholarship (formerly Live Large University)

The Avalanche Alliance motorized scholarship supports motorized backcountry riders with funding for AIARE PRO, ITC, CLT, AIARE 1, AIARE 2, or AIARE Avalanche Rescue tuition. Support for the Avalanche Alliance Motorized Scholarship comes from your participation in the annual Avalanche Alliance Sweepstakes.

PRO, Instructor Training (ITC), and Course Leader Training (CLT):

Prerequisites:

  • Applicant’s primary mode of backcountry travel is motorized
  • Applicant has (or plans to) register/apply for an AIARE motorized PRO 1, PRO 2, ITC, or CLT course in the 2024-2025 season

PRO and IT Course Application Period: August 1 - August 23 
PRO and IT Course Award Notification: September 13
PRO and IT Course Award Letters Due: September 20

CLOSED

AIARE 1, AIARE 2, and AIARE Avalanche Rescue:

Only one award per applicant is available each season. Awards must be used in the season they are awarded. Applicants may not apply for support for multiple courses.

Prerequisites:

  • Applicant’s primary mode of backcountry travel is motorized
  • Applicant has (or plans to) register for an AIARE motorized AIARE 1, AIARE 2, or AIARE Avalanche Rescue course in the 2024-2025 season

CLOSED

Application + Award Timeline for Recreational Avalanche Alliance Scholarships

September 1 applications open @ 9:00am MT
Rolling AIARE will notify applicants if additional materials are needed
October 1 applications close @ midnight MT*
*ALL applications submitted within the application period will be considered at the end of the window. Applications submitted earlier do not receive preference.
October 18 award notifications sent
November 1 signed award letters due
December 15 - January 15 if not all funds are awarded in the first round, a second round of applications will open

AIARE Scarpa and Arcteryx PRO Scholarship

CLOSED

AIARE recognizes the importance of diversifying the avalanche profession and elevating underrepresented genders, which is why we are thrilled to be working with Scarpa and Arc’teryx to offer this scholarship. These funds help to break down barriers for women, non-binary, and genderqueer individuals taking an AIARE PRO 1 or PRO 2.

All applicants must submit a complete PRO 1 or PRO 2 application portfolio to be considered. AIARE will gladly assist applicants in preparation of PRO course application portfolios if needed.

Prerequisites:

  • Applicant holds an underrepresented gender identity such as trans, non-binary, woman, and/or genderqueer
  • Applicant has (or plans to) register for an AIARE PRO 1 or PRO 2 course in the 2024-2025 season.

Application Period: August 1 - August 23
Award Notification: September 1
Award Letters Due: September 20

AIARE Kizaki-Wolf Scholarship for Instructor Training & PRO Courses

CLOSED

The Kizaki-Wolf AIARE Scholarship supports outstanding outdoor professionals in furthering their avalanche education and teaching skills. This scholarship provides full or partial tuition for an Instructor Training Course, Course Leader Training Course, PRO 1 or PRO 2 course. You can take a look at previous Kizaki-Wolf AIARE Scholarship recipients here.

Prerequisites:

  • Applicant is an outdoor professional (e.g. guide, patroller, outdoor educator, etc.)
  • Applicant is a member of an under-represented population within outdoor professions
  • Applicant is appreciative of and committed to an inclusive and diverse community of outdoor recreationalists and professionals
  • Applicant has (or plans to) register/apply for an AIARE PRO 1, PRO 2, ITC, or CLT in the 2024-2025 season

 
Application:

  • A resume/CV, including outdoor professional positions, education, courses, certifications, and number of days worked annually as an outdoor professional. Maximum of two pages long.
  • A personal statement addressing the following questions: 
    • What has been your personal journey as an outdoor or avalanche professional? What are your career goals and aspirations?
    • Why are you a great candidate for this scholarship and how will this scholarship help you pay it forward in the avalanche field? 
    • Are you part of an underrepresented population in the outdoor/avalanche community? How have those experiences influenced you or your career objectives? 
    • How have you demonstrated an appreciation of, and commitment to, an inclusive and diverse community of outdoor recreationalists and professionals?
  • Three professional references in an outdoor professional-setting. Letters of recommendation are not required. The selection committee only contacts the references of finalists.

 
Post-Course Video:
As part of their award agreement, Kizaki-Wolf recipients provide a short, post-course video debrief discussing their experience and any advice or words of wisdom for future scholarship recipients. Examples of post-course videos from prior scholarship recipients are available here.

Application Period: August 1-August 23
Awards Notifications Sent: September 13
Award Letters Due: September 20

Scholarships Supported and Managed by Others

AIARE works with several individuals, foundations, and organizations to support their scholarships. The following scholarships are not managed by AIARE but support AIARE programs.

AIARE Providers

 
Many AIARE Providers provide in-house scholarships for the AIARE programming they offer as well as other educational opportunities. Your local AIARE Provider can be a great resource for getting connected with funding, especially for AIARE 1, AIARE Rescue, and AIARE 2 courses. Find a list of current AIARE Providers and sort by location, course offerings, and more here.

Reeno Foundation Scholarship Program

The Reeno Foundation was created to honor the memory of Nick Ruschmeyer, an avid outdoorsman, guide, and mentor. Nick dedicated his life to leading people on experiences that allowed them to push themselves to grow and learn. Whether beginner or expert, Nick’s
patience, kindness, knowledge, and love for what he did made everyone want to follow him.
The Reeno Foundation focuses to increase access to powerful transformative outdoor experiences for children and adults. Through our scholarship program, Reeno enables people to participate in experiential education or professional outdoor opportunities and encourages a life-long connection to the natural world. Through in-kind donations and fundraising events, we are able to offer these scholarships.
Please visit ReenoFoundation.org for more information and the application requirements. Or email us at Reenofoundation@gmail.com

Guides Fund Yearly Scholarship

 
This scholarship is intended to both support AIARE’s mission of ‘saving lives through avalanche education,’ and encourage historically underrepresented populations in American backcountry pursuits to move into leadership roles, by partially or fully subsidizing tuition for an AIARE ITC or CLT.

Application should include a list qualifications pertaining to ITC/CLT prerequisites, and a short description of current work, education and future in the field of avalanche research and education.

There are no reporting requirements for this scholarship. Please direct applications to darkstarmtguide@gmail.com, between September 1 and November 1.

George Dirth Memorial Scholarship

The George Dirth Memorial Scholarship Fund supports Colorado and Utah based backcountry skiers/snowboarders. The Scholarship Fund is a non-profit created to build a lifesaving resource that is available to anyone who spends time skiing or snowboarding in the backcountry who needs financial help and is willing to do something to give back to the backcountry community. Our goal is to keep ALL backcountry users alive.

Each scholarship funds about half the cost of a Level 1 course, people are more committed to the training if they are also financially invested in it. The scholarship money is awarded only to those who have applied, qualify, and actually taken the course, as verified by their certificate. A key part of each application is their description and pledge of support to the backcountry community. The application requirements appear on the Scholarship Fund website. Please visit George Dirth Memorial Scholarship Fund for more information on this scholarship opportunity.

We strongly believe that this education reduces the number of fatalities in the backcountry. If you need help to afford this education you can apply anytime before December 31st, (the anniversary of George’s death).