I guess it really depends alot on what you hope to accomplish, and what conditions you are typically hiking in.
If you are in a consisently damp area, or would find yourself on a boat, waterproof would be almost a necessity. If you are an avid birder, high quality optics and magnification are more important. If you are looking across the countryside, or also using them at sporting events, then a wide field of view would be important. If you're hiking in rough terrain, where damage is a distinct possibility, you may not want an expensive pair, or would want a rubberized or armored pair.
Personally, I keep a pair of economical, compact binocs in the hip-belt pocket of my day-pack on nearly every hike, just in case I see something interesting. They're lightweight and unobtrusive, and perfectly adequate for those needs.
one or more gifts or other benefits from the co-op.