May 16, 2023
The Ultimate Secret Of Summer Camp Experience

If you love dealing with kids, have a positive attitude and love of the outside, crafts and games; being truly a summer day camp counselor could be the perfect job for you personally. Flexibility is a big plus in this sort of job, as you never know what the day will throw at you, and you will need an upbeat, can-do attitude. Whether you’re supervising lakeside activities, wearing a wacky outfit and doing the chicken dance or mediating a squabble between campers, you’ll need to bring on your very best game. Here are a few tips for getting the summer job of your dreams.

What Do Camp Counselors Do?

Typically, counselors are hired to act as recreational leaders supervising overall camp operations or teaching various special activities. Swimming, archery, horseback riding, crafts and nature education are just some of the myriad fun-filled outdoor activities you’ll enjoy right combined with the kids at day camp. You’ll need a lot of patience, creativity, leadership skills and above all, a feeling of humor.

Apply Early!

This is vitally important as camps often begin looking for staff in the wintertime months. If you’re a bit late, don’t worry; many programs still have openings in May and June. Have good references on hand and remember that some sites will ask you to create a YouTube video to accompany your application.

Looking Locally

If you’re searching for a job near where you live, contact local day camps, YMCAs, town recreation departments and other youth organizations to see if they are looking for summer camp staff. You may know others who work there and be able to use these connections.

Look On-Line

There are a number of websites listing summer camp jobs including Camp Channel, Camp Depot and Camp Page. Cool Works, a summer job site, also has some interesting opportunities.

Are There Educational Requirements?

While you can find not specific educational requirements for summer camp counselors, it helps to have CPR and MEDICAL certification and it may even give you an edge over other applicants.

Be Creative with Previous Experience

OK, maybe you haven’t been a camp counselor, but maybe you have been a camper. On your application, emphasize your summer camp experiences and how you would like to carry the fun forward by becoming a counselor yourself. If you’ve spent a summer or two at a camp as a counselor-in-training, you have actual on-the-job experience coping with campers from a counselor role.

Use summer group leader were once campers at the very same camp to which they’re applying. Naturally, this might provide you with a leg up in the hiring process as you know the camp culture, traditions and songs, and on top of that; you have a real and infectious love of the camp itself.

Get Experience Working With Kids

Although you may not have specifically worked at a summer camp, it is possible to accumulate other experience dealing with youngsters. Tutoring younger kids, volunteering at afterschool programs, assistant coaching on kids’ teams and babysitting are invaluable experience with children. Ask guidance counselors, coaches or teachers for suggestions.

Emphasize Your Positives

Even if you’ve never set foot in a summer camp, your personal characteristics may position you nicely for a job. Approachability, empathy, leadership ability, creativity and enthusiasm are traits that directors are searching for in their staff… and a little goofiness doesn’t hurt! If you’re responsible, caring and also have the ability to put others before yourself, you will be a good candidate.

Do You Have a Special Talent?

If you have a specific talent or specialization that ties in with the camp’s programs, be sure to highlight this on your own resume. Camps that emphasize the arts, for instance, may be thrilled with your expertise on the violin or experience with musical theater production, while wilderness camps may zone right in on the truth that you spend years in Boy Scouts or spent summers camping with your family. Any certifications in camp-related areas may also be important.

So, get working on that resume! Be sure you emphasize the positive, list all related experience volunteer or paid and put your enthusiasm and love of kids’ front and center.

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