Becoming a Camp Counselor

Kids love to go to camp and experience new adventures, enjoy a break from everyday life and make new friends. But, as our kids get older, we want them to experience a summer job and the benefits that go along with earning an income. Why not consider the perfect blend of both: a camp counselor job?

Teens can begin working as camp counselors during their high school years and continue during college as summer jobs if they choose. Some camps even offer the opportunity for younger teens to begin as counselors-in-training during their junior high years.

A camp counselor job has a lot to offer your teen other than just an income. Here are a few life skills your teen can learn as a camp counselor or counselor-in-training:



A camp counselor is assigned a group of children and asked to look after their needs and help manage their schedule. Responsibilities include ensuring they are at activities on time, helping with needs such as minor first aid or sunscreen application, playing with kids at activities and being a friend on a bad day or a homesick moment. Teens gain maturity as they help young campers with issues that arise.


Camp schedules are packed with activities to allow kids the opportunity to experience as much fun as possible in a short amount of time. And camp counselors must keep up, even on days when they feel tired or unmotivated.


The teen years typically include spells of sour attitudes and selfish behaviors. A camp counselor role forces a teen to remove his self-indulgent attitude and replace it with empathy and understanding for others. It shows teens how to put others’ needs before their own – a valuable life skill.

Relationship skills

Camp counselors are thrown together with other counselors they don’t know, some whom they might not like. They are forced to learn how to get along with others while working toward a common goal. Meaningful relationships are built as counselors work alongside one another day after day.

Stretching boundaries

Camp is all about new adventures, for campers and counselors both. Counselors can gain self-respect as they overcome any fears they might have and push themselves outside their comfort zones.


Camp counselors learn how to work under someone else’s leadership and follow directions. Counselors must do what is asked of them when taking care of children while following a pre-determined schedule.


What a great feeling to know you’re investing in others! That’s the feeling a camp counselor experiences daily at camp. Whether it’s one week or ten weeks, camp counselors go home knowing they’ve made a difference in young children’s lives and that’s something to be proud of.

If your teen needs a job that builds life skills, consider a camp counselor position. Camps of all varieties fill their staff with teenagers who can offer fun and camaraderie to young campers. Match the interests of your teen, whether it be sports, music, education, etc., with an appropriate camp and watch him or her blossom. As camp counselors, teens can gain valuable experience that rewards them with lifelong lessons and memories in the process.

Indy's Child
Indy's Child
For 40 years, Indy's Child has been the trusted source for Indianapolis families seeking fun, educational, and enriching experiences. Our award-winning magazine and website are dedicated to providing expert advice, insider tips, and up-to-date information on everything from the best local attractions and events to parenting resources and support. As local experts deeply rooted in the central Indiana community, our passionate team at Indy's Child is dedicated to uncovering the best family-friendly experiences and resources our city has to offer. Whether you're new to parenting or looking for new ideas, Indy's Child is here to help you enjoy the adventure of raising a family in central Indiana.

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