In May, I shared some thoughts about the National Trainer Development Program's (NTDP) Instructor Institute. Held in Fort Payne, Alabama, it served as a capstone to this intensive training course.
In June, another cohort of the NTDP met in the Merchant's Exchange Building in Philadelphia's historic district. Fifteen prospective instructors converged on the city to put into practice what they had learned during the previous four months of e-courses, webinars, discussions, and assignments. For those interested in instructor training, the e-courses that the NPS uses for this program are available to the general public for a nominal fee. Check out the Eppley course catalog for the Instructor Training Certificate Program.
Most of those participants who met in Philadelphia focused on teaching the National Park Service's Facility Management Software System. Unlike in the Alabama course, there were also some folks who wanted to instruct in Interpretation.
In order to successfully qualify as instructors, students must pass a content endorsement examination, participate fully in class discussion, and successfully present a lesson plan to instructors and their peers. Completing the Instructor Institute is not easy. It takes hard work and dedication. This rigor is important because it prepares these new instructors for the training environment.
A nice bonus of having the Instructor Institute in Philadelphia was the easy access to all of the historic sites near the training rooms downtown. After I helped set up the training room, I was able to go on the Independence Hall tour. It was exciting to see the place where both the Declaration of Independence and Constitution were debated, written, and approved.