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SUMMER CAMP USA

Summer Camp
Summer Camp

2006 took JESSICA PASCO on one of the very best experiences of her life. It was then that her love for travel became her life’s passion.

 

My Application

At the end of 2005 I applied to be a Summer Camp Counsellor through the International Exchange Program (IEP) in Australia.

The application process requests that you compile a bunch of photographs that show you actively demonstrating your expertise. So I included pictures of me in my job as a swimming instructor as well as playing ball games with some of my younger cousins.

Once you submit your application to IEP, everything is out of your hands. IEP submit your application and from there it is up to the American Camp Recruiters/ Owners/ Managers to select you depending on the needs of their camp.

A call came through to say I had been accepted as a Swimming Instructor and Lifeguard on a camp in Torrington, Connecticut.

*Applications close 31 December 2014.

 

Why International Exchange Program (IEP)

I would highly recommend IEP to anyone looking to become a camp counsellor. They organise a lot of the tedious tasks involved with trying to work overseas such as the Working Visa. They also tend to pay higher than the other companies out there.

iep.com.au/summercampusa

 

Camp Life

This really does depend on the camp you are placed in. On arrival, my first week at camp was a ‘get to know you session’ as the first week was only Counsellors and no Campers, however all of the waterfront staff were required to complete and pass the ‘American Lifeguard Association Course’.

My camp had an age range of six year-olds to 17 year-olds and was both male and female. Camp ran for a period of eight weeks with parent day falling mid-way through.

As a Specialised Camp Counsellor, my role was to teach the kids at camp how to swim and to complete specific milestones allowing them to pass their swimming stage.

As a Waterfront Counsellor, we were probably the busiest of all counsellors on camp. During breaks from activities at camp, waterfront staff we routinely rostered on so that the pool and lake could remain open for the campers.

Camp days ran to schedule, allowing the campers to stick to a routine. The flag was raised every morning and National Anthem sung followed by breakfast and then activities began for the day.

Camp Counsellors were allowed to go into town to the nearby bar once the campers were getting ready for bed. Some Counsellors were put on bunk duty, which meant they would have to stay outside the bunks to make sure the kids went to sleep. Others were put on activity duty which meant they would have to stay on camp grounds and help out with camp run activities for the older children. ‘Van nights’ were held three times a week in which the Counsellors could take a van from camp into the local bar, Memories, to party and dance etc. All Counsellors were required to ‘sign in’ by curfew, 1am.

 

Down time

During the eight week camp experience, I received five days off camp and one overnight stay away from camp. Many of the American Counsellors were quite willing to provide their cars to us foreigners for our days off, which was extremely kind of them and very helpful. Whatever you choose to do, just adds to the experience that is camp.

 

The Experience

If you are looking to work hard, have fun, make lifelong friends and enjoy making memories of an experience you would otherwise never have, then the USA Summer Camp experience is for you. I’m still in contact with friends from Camp, they are the only ones who will truly understand the experience. I cannot recommend camp enough, if you are considering it, do it, do it now. You won’t regret it!

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