So You Want to Work at a Summer Camp?
If working at a summer camp sounds perfect for you, you should begin searching for job opening in early spring – usually around March. Summer camp jobs require interviews just like any other type of job, so here are some great tips for landing that perfect summer camp position:
Be professional during your interview. Just because you get to wear jeans and a T-shirt to work doesn’t mean you should treat the job with any less respect than an office job. Dress nicely for the interview – a business suit is not necessary, but wear appropriate clothing. Call the person holding the interview Mr. or Ms. and be as polite and courteous as you would if you were interviewing to be a secretary, lawyer, or teacher.
Make sure your resume is up-to-date and highlights the most appropriate jobs you’ve done in the past and skills you have. If you’re an experienced scuba diver, that might be great if you’re seeking summer camp lifeguard jobs or scuba instructor jobs, but isn’t really relevant if you’re looking for summer camp cooking jobs. Also remember to spell check your resume. It’s a good idea to have a friend look over it to catch any mistakes you may miss.
SIDENOTE – Seasonal cooks are in high demand. If you’re looking for seasonal kitchen staff jobs or summer chef jobs, then it won’t be hard to gain employment! (provided you’re qualified)
Work your way up the ranks. If you have no experience working at a summer camp, apply for an entry-level position before attempting to become head counselor. Most camps will readily hire inexperienced workers if you interview well, but not for every position. Spend a summer working as a cook or custodian and then talk to the director about a promotion as positions open.
Only apply for summer camp jobs for which you are qualified. If you interview for a position as arts and crafts counselor and don’t have a creative bone in your body, chances are you won’t get the position. You may also need special certifications or clearances in order to work at a camp. If you are unsure what is necessary, call human resources at the number provided in the advertisement to ask about specifics.
Do a little research about the camp before an interview. If you’ve applied at a summer camp for special-needs children and don’t realize that until the interview, you may come off as being unprofessional, unprepared, and unqualified. Grab some promotional information about the camp and talk to past campers if possible so you have an idea about what your responsibilities will be if hired.
Ask questions during the interview. There are certain things that you should avoid – like asking if vacation time will be available or if meals will be free – but asking questions about your specific position is encouraged and may make the difference between you getting the job and getting the call that you won’t be needed. Simply put, when you ask questions, you let the interviewer know you are serious about the job.