We take great care in selecting our staff. Married couples, veteran teachers and college-aged men and women work together to carry on the tradition of “Safety, Health, and Happiness.”
Staff members take part in a week long staff training prior to the arrival of the campers. Counselors are trained in first-aid and CPR and many have advanced certifications in water safety, sailing, climbing, tripping, horseback riding or canoeing. In recent years, our staff has averaged 7 years experience at Mishawaka (but new applicants are welcome!). Camp Mishawaka maintains a 4:1 camper to staff ratio.
Working at Camp Mishawaka is an extremely rewarding experience.
You get to help children grow and learn about the joys of the outdoors, and you get to make a positive impact in their lives that will last a lifetime.Employment Opportunities
Summer camp provides so many opportunities to make a difference in the life of a child, and Camp Mishawaka takes this responsibility seriously. As such, we seek to hire staff members who share this commitment.
A few years ago I got into a debate with a college career counselor who advised her students that employers of today are looking for candidates with “real work experience — and not just a history of being a camp counselor.”
If you have ever worked with children, you know that there is no more “real job” than this. Working at camp allows you to explore your own strengths and provides true leadership opportunities. All the skills Counselors learn (and hone) have real world applications, and whether you are considering a career in education or another field, working effectively with people from different backgrounds and areas, as Mishawaka Counselors do, provides an experience that you will be able to draw on for years to come.
Of course staff members need to enjoy working with children in a camp setting, but what specific skills are helpful? While expertise in a certain activity area can be very valuable, more important is the example you set for campers. In other words, who you are is more important than what you are. A highly skilled tennis player that can’t help others develop skills in an enjoyable way will not make a good activity leader. Here are some characteristics that make up a good counselor:
While it is not always a requirement, certain certifications are helpful to have. A Red Cross certified lifeguard earns a salary bonus, for instance. Any certifications that pertain to activities offered at Mishawaka will be considered bonus pay. While we train all staff members in first aid and CPR, outside training in these areas is also helpful.
Arrangements for time off are to be made with the Camp Director and Program Director via a sign-out sheet. Staff members are allowed six 24-hour time periods off and two evenings starting at 3pm over the course of the camp season. Unless special arrangements have been made in advance, these days are not to be taken consecutively. It is intended that these time off periods be taken one per week.
In the event that two or more consecutive days need to be taken off (for wedding or other unique family event), arrangements must be made at the time of hiring. In some cases, this time can be taken as a pro-rata deduction from salary, as opposed to using all your time off.
You are welcome to drive to camp and keep your vehicle here. It is expected that the car be used on your time off, or trips to town that are at the direction of the camp. It is also suggested that you do not loan your car to other staff members during your stay. If you do not have a car at Camp, we allow you to use a camp vehicle on your days off as long as you coordinate with other staff on a day off and with the Directors.
Staff are given a travel stipend based on where they live. It is intended to cover the cost of transportation to Camp Mishawaka. Allowance for major cities include: Minneapolis area, $100, Chicago area, $250, Great Plains, Mountain or Mid-Atlantic area, $350, West or East Coast, $450.