Sure, we tell you all of the time that being a camp counselor is the greatest job in the world! But it goes so much deeper than having the opportunity to teach your passion, be a professional role model, or help a kid overcome homesickness; it develops skills that even the most prestige universities cannot teach. When it is time for the big interview, time to start your career, many employers favor the camp counselor over the intern. The intern may have learned some basic skills for the job they desire, but a camp counselor will learn and excel in life-long skills that any employer would want on their staff! The career-based skills are teachable, while the life-skills are not!
Life-Long Skills the Camp Counselor Has
1. The first skill is being a good communicator. From the children to the parents, coworkers and the directors, camp counselors have to be able to communicate with a wide range of people. This is different from any other job because parents leave the most valuable thing in their lives with us, their child. Parents have a short time on opening day along with a counselor bio on the website to leave camp feeling confident that their child is in good hands. As a counselor, opening day is not just a meet and greet, it is an interview! Parents will cling to every word a counselor says!
2. Camp Counselors are life-long learners. Sleeping for ten weeks in a cabin, on a mountain, in the middle of the woods, technology and media free seems to be an experience that teaches so much about oneself. It can be a difficult transition, but so many people fall in love with the camp scene and long to be back summer after summer. Many counselors are faced with new situations that they cannot always train for. So, through experience, watching others, interacting with campers, other counselors, parents, and directors, counselors come in ready to teach a specific activity, but walk away really learning how to learn, grow, and experience.
3. Camp counselors can handle anything for they are resilient! There is no award for the counselor who survived a tent-leak during a down-pour on their overnight, helped their camper overcome homesickness, while appropriately managing the bat that just happened to come into the cabin at 1:00am one night! There is no running away, but instead, fighting the battle with a smile on their face! They are not 100% trained for this kind of combat, but instead learn to put their campers first and manage it!
4. Solving one problem after another! Where did that dark cloud come from? Within 5 minutes the sun disappeared and a roar of thunder shakes the camp. It is not a problem for your camp counselor though! They are quick on their toes! With their creative thinking skills, there is no activity that is ever ruined! One little storm may put a halt on lacrosse, but it does not stop the fun. Counselors have many games and songs up their sleeve ready for any situation!
5. Camp counselors are some of the best leaders and some of the greatest followers. The impact a counselor leaves on a camper is unreal. Any camper can tell you which counselor they want to grow up to be like. Even the older guys watch their counselor’s every move. Camp counselors learn from each other, watching and learning how each situation is handled and being prepared for the any situation.
6. A solid work ethic. What internship involves 3 months of 24 hour work days? To wake-up each morning with a smile on their face, even when the rain is pouring down outside, it is hard to deny how hard a counselor really works. But even through the hard work and sweat, they love and care for their boys through it all and that is what makes camp counselors so awesome!
Employers who themselves have been camp counselors understand the qualities required to successfully do this job and, consequently, often seek these individuals out when filling positions. But now the secret is getting out and having “Summer Camp Counselor” on a resume can make a potential employee much more desirable!