The Discovery School for Virginia




Help teenagers turn their lives around while developing valuable professional experience!

Group Leading at The Discovery School of Virginia for Boys or The Discovery School of Virginia for Girls  challenges you to apply your own life experience as part of a team committed to changing the lives of troubled youth.  Few other entry-level positions will offer you such a unique opportunity for professional development and personal fulfillment.

As a Group Leader, you will work cooperatively with other adults to plan growth and adventure experiences for youth in your care.  You lead work and play activities as well as structured meetings where students resolve differences. Most importantly, you foster a healthy, secure environment in which young men and women can turn their lives around.

We provide on-the-job training in:

  • Group Dynamics

  • Individual and Group Treatment

  • Outdoor Living Skills

  • Conflict Resolution

  • Wilderness First Aid Basics

  • CPR/First Aid/AED

  • Handle With Care

The Program

The Discovery School of Virginia serves youth who are experiencing emotional, behavioral, and learning problems.  Often our students have experienced failure or frustration in the traditional school setting. They typically have unresolved emotional and family issues.  Rather than following a medical treatment model, we provide students with warm but firm guidance in forming supportive relationships with peer and authority figures.  We believe that the outdoor environment acts as a constant teacher to students and staff alike, because it offers challenges and opportunities to experience tangible success.

Two group leaders and a supervisor are assigned to each group of ten students at the school.  Groups live in rustic campsite villages comprised of 8-10 cabin sized tents which they design, construct, maintain, and replace as needed.  As part of a typical day, students work to meet the basic needs of the group. They also attend formal academic classes and participate in group recreation activities.  During the summer, groups have the option of planning extended off-campus backpacking and canoeing trips. Each day ends with a meeting where students can evaluate their own day, resolve feelings, and plan for tomorrow.  


  • College Degree –Prefer Bachelor’s Degree in human services; ie- Social Work, Psychology, etc. or Associates Degree with 3 months experience working with youth.

  • Concern for Others

  • Ability to live on campus during work week

  • Sense of Adventure

  • Willingness to learn

  • Career Level-Entry Level

  • Job Status – Full Time-live in position – 5 days on/2 days off                  

  • Phone- 434-983-5616

  • Drug Free workplace

Benefits Package

  • Medical and Dental plan– (portion of medical and dental paid by Employer)  long term disability, life insurance paid by employer

  • Additional insurance benefits available for purchase by employee

  • Paid Holidays

  • Up to $500.00 in moving expenses for qualified applicants

  • Simple IRA

  • Three weeks paid vacation per year

  • Meals and room and board furnished while on campus

  • Room for Advancement

  • $30,160.00 annual salary