camp counselor job description

Camp counselor Job Description

Camp counselors are individuals who are in charge of supervising camp activities and develop and execute recreational activities in camp. Also known as cabin leaders in many parts of the world, camp counselors are consigned to groups of campers who participate in different recreational and sporting activities such as campfires, hiking, art and craft projects.

Do you like spending some quality time with children? And indulge in small joys of life like crackling a campfire and making a butterfly out of colorful papers? If yes, then a career as a camp counselor might just be right for you. Camp counselors are mostly hired as activity specialists (expertise in crafts, swimming, horse riding and etc) or recreational leaders who are in charge of conduction general camp operations. Keeping a positive and cheerful attitude irrelevant of circumstances and great enthusiasm to work with children is fundamental in order to be a camp counselor.

Basic roles, duties & responsibilities of Camp Counselors

So, what does a camp counselor do? Here we have summed up basic roles, duties or responsibilities carried out by camp counselors:

  • Take good care of health, safety and happiness of all campers
  • Learn and keep records of different preferences of campers
  • Distinguish and quickly respond to any problems and tribulations
  • Encourage good handling and safety of personal camp equipments and property
  • Maintain proper operations of cleanliness, punctuality and sportsmanship in designated areas
  • Supervise and guide campers in successful participation of different camp activities
  • Monitor, control and actively participate in different camp activities
  • Observe and assess camp behavior and measure its appropriateness
  • Implement suitable safety rules and regulations, and necessary emergency procedures
  • Make preparations for camp activities and training programs
  • Communicate and report regularly with director regarding new challenges, updates and concerns

Duties and responsibilities of camp counselors vary very differently depending on various factors. Some of those factors are:

  • Age group of children
  • Theme of camps
  • Location of camp
  • Season
  • Size of camp

Different types of camps:

  • Summer camps
  • Dance camps
  • Sports camps
  • Drama camps
  • Leadership camps
  • Robotics camps
  • Science camps

Employers of camp counselors

  • Schools
  • Learning schools
  • Theme parks
  • Recreational parks
  • Camp conducting agencies

Garnering experience as a summer camp counselor can serve as a base for entering the park, day care and recreational park. Part time and seasonal work is widely available which is especially suitable as summer vacation jobs for college students. Full time job as camp counselor is also available but is quite rare and the competition is strong.

 Qualifications and training

This field is open to individuals from any academic backgrounds. In fact, no formal education is required in order to be a camp counselor. However, you do need to have good literacy and numeracy skills.  Most employers also prefer a high school degree. Candidates with on-job experience, expertise in different fields like sports, outdoor activities and art and crafts have a big advantage. So, in order to be a camp counselor, you need to have at least one of these skills. You can train and develop your skills; however most of these skills are acquired through hobby, or at your school or university. To be a camp counselor, its experience and training that counts rather than educational qualifications.

Undertaking a CPR and first aid training certification will give you an added advantage and an edge over other candidates. Most employers provide Counselor in Training (CIT) training to candidates to familiarize them with the duties and responsibilities to be performed.

Required skills or job specifications

As a camp counselor, you have to perform wide range of activities throughout the day. In addition to that, you have to supervise and monitor those activities, campers and ensure successful operation of camps. Some skills one must develop to work as a camp counselor are:

  • Good communication and interpersonal skills
  • Good physical health and stamina
  • Problem solving ability
  • Ability to work under pressure
  • Great enthusiasm
  • Resilient nature
  • Creativity
  • Interest to learn new things
  • Strong work ethics
  • Leadership skills
  • Ability to work in a team


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