What LF said.
I would add a couple comments. Since it sounds like you've been taking lessons through your skiing career, you should be up on current gear and current skiing techniques. Many times folks that have been skiing so long, ski the same way they did when they were wee little ones and have a tough time transitioning. They aren't prepared to accept there might be some things they need to relearn either. You might be a fantastic skier, but if you do things like lift the inside leg to turn, they'll want you to stop that. It won't prevent them from hiring you. Again, it doesn't sound like this is the case with you and if you've been skiing that long and continuing with lessons, they will probably be quite happy to hire you.
Getting hired is pretty easy. I started skiing (again) at 47 after a 30 year hiatus. Even then it was only a handful of times in HS so doesn't really count. I was hired the season I turned 50 and got PSIA L1 the same season. You have to show you're interested and enthused, willing to get in front and teach, and know how to teach, but as far as skill set, passing the skiing part of L1 is easy peasy. I'm sure PSIA has there reasons, but it should be harder. I don't think I should have passed. I could ski, and even race but most times when folks were watching me from the lift they DIDN'T say "Wow! Look at him rip!" it was more like "Wow! How did he not fall?" You wont have any problem there.
Knowledge wise you'll need to know how to teach beginners. This is probably the most challenging part of being an instructor for folks that have been skiing for as long as you. You do things without even thinking about it and might not even know you do it. I was fortunate that I was still learning so it was easy for me to bring out. My other saving grace was though I couldn't ski worth a crap, I knew what was supposed to be happening and could talk about it.
Being willing to teach kids is almost a "must" as this is the ski schools biggest demographic (I think it is something like 60 or 70%). It can also be the most exhausting. Especially when you get the under 6 crowd. It might be 20* out but you'll come in sweating and exhausted dealing with one 3 y/o. Where I work there is the equivalent to a skiing day care (we call it Radical Kids); give us your kids for 3 hours and we'll spend at least two hours on the snow and will do our best to make sure they have fun. We use a lot of teenage instructors for this as they have the endurance and back for it. We have instructors that aren't the best of skiers but they are absolutely wonderful with the kids. Kids love them and parents love them. Nothing says repeat business like returning a kid to their parents with a smile on their face and they're sound asleep before they get out of the parking lot.
I'll be honest. At first I couldn't stand teaching kids. I have a bad back and at the time, a bad shoulder. It hurt a bit and I was struggling with teaching them as I lacked some basic understanding when dealing with kids and ski instruction in general. At the start of this past season I took the PSIA Child Specialist 1 course (requires a boat load of self study) ONLY because it is a prerequisite for getting PSIA L2 (remember; I didn't like teaching kids so why get better at it). Anyway, I learned a ton, returned to the mountain and now almost exclusively teach kids. I help out with the Radical Kids program here and there (still not my preference but I don't mind) and coach a seasonal kids program. I taught very few adults last season; probably less than a dozen and I had my best season ever. My teaching and movement analysis improved quite a bit and my own skiing really improved. CS1 was one of the best things I could have done. Whoddathunk?!
All that to say "embrace teaching kids".
New instructors and instructor candidates get lots of training prior to getting their first class and have to be shadowed too. There are personal skiing development clinics for the school staff pretty much continuously and there will also be instructor development classes whether it be for teaching or demoing.
It will be a blast and I love it.
Edited by L&AirC - 6/30/13 at 12:25pm