There is no doubt that working at a summer camp will do wonders for your CV! I have recently been applying to a number of graduate graduate programmes, as are many final year students. In every interview I attended, they were VERY interested in my experience working at a summer camp. Here are just a few of the reasons why…
Being able to work on a team is a number one priority for employers these days. Working as a camp counsellor gives you fantastic team work experience. From being paired with a co-counsellor, to working in a unit with a few other counsellors, camp gives you access to working on a variety of teams.
Being a strong leader, and being able to take initiative, is a top quality skill for employers. Working at camp will encourage you to take on leadership roles in a variety of situations. Leading activities at camp, and helping other staff members along, will really stand to you in the big bad world! Returning to camp also provides opportunities to move up the ranks and lead a unit of your own at camp. Managing staff members, as well as campers, is top notch work experience (much better than a summer internship in an office..!)
3- Being globally engaged!
These days, it is critical to know what is happening internationally. Working at camp gives you the opportunity to work abroad and work with colleagues from across the globe. My camp had staff from the states, the UK, eastern europe, south africa, australia, south america to name a few. The things you will learn about differences across work cultures will stand to you in the future.
4- Getting out of your comfort zone!
Moving abroad for a couple of months, to work in a new environment, shows excellent personality characteristics that employers look for. It shows that you’re up for new challenges, you’re not afraid of the unknown, and that you’re able to plan and budget for a big trip etc. Think of all the stand out answers you could have for common competency based interview questions!
5- You’re not afraid of hard work!
Working at camp is one of the toughest, mentally and physically draining jobs you’ll ever have! Of course you’ll be out having fun in the sun all day, surrounded by children and dozens of new friends, but there’s no doubt that working as a camp counsellor shows that you’re not afraid of hard work. The 7 am starts, constantly thinking of fresh ideas to entertain kids, being out in the heat, dealing with the odd burst of tears and tantrums, and singing songs at the top of your voice all day, will leave you falling into bed every night.
Of course, you’re not going to be thinking about the benefits of camp for your career when you’re there. You’ll be thinking about the friends for life that you’ve made, the rewarding feelings of working with kids, your post-camp travel plans, and how much you’re DREADING going home… but a few months later, you will realise the skills you have gained from your experience of a lifetime at camp.