Ask This When Applying for Summer Camp Jobs

Summer camp jobs are perfect for people who want temporary work that's off the beaten path. Each year, scores of children and teenagers flock to summer camps all over the country, and accommodating these campers requires thousands of employees in all kinds of roles. Some people apply for summer camp jobs to be counselors, while others apply to be cooks, lifeguards, maintenance workers and various other positions. Working at a summer camp doesn't often pay as well as other types of temporary work, but the tradeoff is spending three or four months in the great outdoors at the best time of year. Ask yourself the following questions if you're considering applying for summer camp jobs to find the position that's right for you.

Does this summer camp job provide free lodging?
People who work at summer camps need to be on site during most of the summer. It's possible for workers to commute in and out at some camps depending on where they live, but many summer camps offer lodging and cabins for people who work throughout the season. This is especially true for camp counselors, who may be needed for activities or conflict resolution at various hours of the day and night.
What is the ratio of counselors to campers?
Asking about ratios of counselors to campers is a good way to determine which summer camps have adequate staffing levels. Be wary of summer camp jobs at camps that have high numbers of campers for each counselors. The smaller the ratio, the more help you're likely to have at your summer camp job.
What age groups would summer camp counselors work with?
Many summer camps have programs for children of various age groups. If you're applying for summer camp jobs in hopes of being a camp counselor, be sure to ask about which age groups you'd be in charge of supervising, especially if you have more or less experience working with certain types of kids.
How does this summer camp handle disciplinary issues?
If you're working in a summer camp job, then there's a good possibility that you'll have to occasionally levy discipline against unruly children. Ask about how the camp deals with disciplinary issues to understand whether you're comfortable with that approach. You should feel confident in your abilities to resolve conflicts and prevent problems from getting worse.
Can my children get discounts if I'm on the summer camp staff?
Do you have children who would enjoy or benefit from summer camp? If so, ask about discount programs available for seasonal workers at different camps. Summer camp can be expensive, so being able to enroll your child for less money could be a nice benefit. Not all summer camps offer this benefit to workers, so be sure to ask about this during the interview process.
Is this a religious summer camp?
Religion plays a significant role in the structure of some summer camps. Ask about religious affiliations when applying for summer camp jobs to make sure the positions you're applying for are good fits for you and your potential employers. Some summer camps specify in their job ads whether people of certain religious faiths are preferred.
Is any first aid training required to work at this summer camp?
Depending on which types of summer camp jobs you're applying for, you may need to be certified in either basic first aid, CPR or both. You can get certified easily through classes offered by the American Red Cross.

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