Mastery System

Deschutes Wilderness recognizes that each student has a path and the road to getting there cannot be reached by a cookie cutter approach. NVW’s Mastery System helps individuals become a master of whatever they choose, and our therapeutic job is to assist in getting the blocks out of the way whether they are emotional or historical. We foster independence through empowerment, knowledge, and personal growth.

One of the most unique features of NVW’s treatment program is our Mastery System. The Mastery System fosters the relational model with our wilderness instructors and our students as they form an alliance during the process, which provides students with an opportunity to positively connect with peers and staff members This system does not rely upon students earning levels, points, or other authoritarian structured perspective. The Mastery System encourages individualized treatment and attention for students.

When the student stabilizes, we discuss a Mastery Track that focuses on their strengths. We harness each individual’s gifts and interest. Some examples are:   

-Master of survival skills
-Master of artistic ability
-Master of creative writing or art
-Master of somatic skills
Some Mastery is more common and some more unique. The possibilities are boundless…
-Master of sign language
-Master of hot sauce
-Master of a musical instrument
-Master of Ornithology

A Mastery Plan is prepared, and our team aligns with the student to help them achieve incredible levels of skill. The student and the entire group witness the individual’s growth as a unique process. This model creates an incredible sense of strength and leads to a deepened, respectful relationship with an adult caregiver.

Mastery Project – Young Adult Client – Songwriting