Working at an American Summer Camp

Wildpacksare the experts at helping you find the most exciting and fun-filled summer job at camps across America

No registration fees and higher salaries (allowing applicants have some decent spending money for after camp, rather than an age based pocket money scheme you'll find elsewhere) make Wild Packs stand out from the crowd! Most importantly Wild Packs allow you to have choice and input into what type of camp you'd feel most comfortable working at.

newspaper Summer Camp Childcare Teaching Adventure
location North America
start date Up to 10 weeks
salary On application
accommodation includedAccommodation included
food and mealsAll food provided
training providedTraining provided

I would love to work a summer camp this year, what is the applications process like and how fast is the turnaround?

The application form is completely free to complete and there are no costs involved with speaking a member of our recruitment team. Our biggest piece of advice is to really think about the content of your application; we're looking for you to impress us! Tell us about your hobbies, skills and your experience with kids. A member of our team will then be in touch with you to discuss your application, and hopefully get you accepted onto the program!

If you're accepted we'll set the first fee (proof of intent) onto your application, which you can choose to pay if you decide that you'd like to start talking to camp directors. This initial payment goes towards your total program fees.

Once we think you have presented the best impression of who you are and what you have to offer a camp we will start circulating your application with our camp directors. We will also set the remaining program fees on your application. These fees can be paid in installments and cover the cost of your J1 sponsorship, your medical insurance cover and 24hr support during the summer.

We will match you with a camp that we think is perfect for you and your skills/experience. Then you'll speak with the owners (normally over Skype) and should both parties be happy you will be offered a contract!

Once we have all your supporting paperwork you will then need to visit the US Embassy to attend your appointment. This is the time to get very excited as summer is just around the corner! All that's left after that point it to pack your bags, book your flights and get excited about the summer of a lifetime!

As a first time counsellor, what is the training program like and how much time before camp starts will I be on site?

Training is extensive and in-depth. You'll be given training on so many aspects of the job before the arrival of the campers, from group games and ice-breakers, to specific activity training (for example the lifeguarding certification if you're working in watersports) and general safe-guarding of children. Typically training runs for 1-2 weeks. You'll have additional times over the summer to speak with your direct supervisor and review how your summer is going. The training program at camp (typically known as orientation) is quite long but is a great way for you get to know other staff and feel comfortable and confident in yourself before the campers arrive!

summer camp counselor
summer camp jobs
summer workers

What is a typical day like in the life of a camp counsellor and will I have the chance to do different things?

You'll be up bright and early with the campers, normally around 7.30-8 and off for breakfast. During the morning you'll either be teaching a hobby or skill of yours (so a sport, art, watersport, adventure, equine and animal care etc) or accompanying your campers to their activities, and getting involved with their lessons. Then onto lunch and some downtime after lunch to re-charge the batteries. The afternoon will consist of more lessons, followed by dinner and an activity in the evening, like a group game, movie night, talent show etc. You'll have time off during the day, which you can use however you'd like- call home, have a nap, or get involved with some of the amazing activities on site. Camp is all about trying new things and challenging yourself!

With camps all over North-America, will I have much free time to unwind and explore the local area during camp?

Yes! You'll have at least a day off a week and evenings off too to explore your local area. From visiting local towns and cities, national parks and beaches to going for ice-cream or the cinema there is lots of time whilst you're working to see nearby sites. Once camp is over you are allowed to stay in the USA for up to 30 days to explore further afield, and if you'd like to see even more of the States then make use of the 30 days before you start work to get in even more sight-seeing!

What are the biggest qualities I would gain from a summer with Wild Packs and how will this help me with future careers?

Teaching experience, increased confidence, fantastic for your CVā€¦ these are just some of your rewards for spending a summer at camp. On the days you're working, you will develop your teaching, interpersonal and management skills while making a real difference to the lives of the young people in your care. The experience will let you see if you like working with kids while giving you the opportunity to experience life in another country ā€“ not to mention making loads of new friends with people like you. Many staff who have gone to camp with Wild Packs have gone on to have fantastic careers, including teaching, sports coaching, au-pair, private school house parent, careers in tourism etc.

With so much to see and do and a lot of fun to be had, what are your top 3 experiences I must try before coming home?

When people think of the USA they tend to think of New York City. With so much to see and do we would definitely recommend having a few days in this iconic city- take in all the famous places, Central Park, the Statue of Liberty, the Empire State Building, see a show on Broadway ā€“ there is so much to see and do, affordable accommodation can be found all over the city too!

We'd really recommend visiting a National Park if you can. From the small but mighty Arcadia National Park in Maine to the expansive Yellowstone National Park in Wyoming, Montana and Idaho ā€“ there are 62 parks to choose from! Getting back to nature, spotting local wildlife and relaxing is all part of the fun.

We all know that American are into their sports, and you can't not go to the States without seeing a game of some sort! Baseball games that go on for hours, tailgate party before a football game or Rodeo in Texas! The atmosphere is like nothing else and you'll make memories that last for a lifetime.