Friday, September 17, 2010
Although this is a slower time of the year for MySummers, there are still a few applications coming in every day. Many of these applicants are looking for year round camp jobs. This is a good time to look, as camps are evaluating the past summer and deciding whether to hire a new full time employee or replace someone in that current position. On the other hand, the economy hasn't been the best over the past two years, so camps may hesitate to fill a position that isn't necessary. So, what should an applicant do? I would suggest that applicants contact camps directly, express an interest in working at camp in a full time position and emphasize that they're willing to do whatever it takes to help the camp. Even if an applicant is interested in the recruiting/marketing side, he/she should be open to helping with year round maintenance of the camp and living at the camp if the camp needs an assistant caretaker. Many camps shut down their facilities for the summer, but having staff living on site helps to keep the camp secure from locals who know that many summer camps are empty in the off season. At Maine Arts Camp, we don't own a facility, basically leasing Unity College's facility for the summer, so our camp is not a good fit for my suggestions, but most camps are. Also, by bringing on staff to live at camp, camps can start to explore ways to better make use of their facilities in the off season. Applicants can certainly find camp jobs on line at various sites, including MySummers, but applicants should also take the initiative to research camps on their own, and find ones that have an unused facility during the winter. Besides learning the ropes on recruiting campers and staff, learning about camp maintenance and off season rentals gives full time camp jobs employees a look at the whole operation. This experience is invaluable.
Along with expressing an interest in helping camps in whatever ways possible, applicants looking for summer camp jobs should also be open to a lower salary that would include housing at camp. It may be a little lonely living at camp during the winter, but that's what it may take to get experience at camp jobs, whether for residential camps or day camps. Sites that are good resources for camp jobs and seasonal jobs in general include MySummers, American Camp Association, Quint Careers, and Coolworks.
Good luck in your search for the best summer camp jobs!
Camp Director, Maine Arts Camp
Owner, Camp Finders (since 1994) & MySummers (since 1999), the best resource for camp jobs