Training & Important Dates
We have high expectations for our staff. Working at camp is not just a demanding job; it’s also an important one because of the impact you have on children’s lives. While hiring great people who love working with children is a necessary component of having a great staff, it’s simply not enough. It’s our job to make sure that you are fully trained and prepared to meet the needs of your campers every day. While working at camp is not easy, when we can combine a great attitude with learnable skills, staff members (and their campers) will be well on their way toward the summer of their lives.
We know that prepared staff are more effective staff, and therefore we go to great lengths to give you tools and strategies to deal with certain situations that may arise during the summer. We provide this training during our orientation before campers arrive, as well as through formal ongoing staff training throughout the summer.
All specialists arrive at camp two weeks before our campers do (June 14 for Summer 2020), to get trained in their area of expertise, create lesson plans and bond with their co-specialists. In addition, we utilize this time to make sure all specialists have appropriate certifications and provide the following training:
- All Athletics Specialists are given CPR/First Aid training
- All members of our Hiking and Camping, Biking, and Ropes staff are certified in Wilderness First Aid as well as Ropes Course training and certification from High 5 Adventures
- All swimming and boating staff members are Lifeguard certified
- All Waterski/Wakeboard specialists receive, in addition to lifeguard certification, professional safety training from Waterski Works.
One week before our campers arrive (June 20 for Summer 2020), all of our cabin counselors arrive and we begin our full staff orientation. All of our staff goes through this extensive one-week orientation in order to become acquainted with everyone on staff, learn the layout of Walt Whitman and how we do things, get a better understanding of our philosophy and what we hope to accomplish each summer for our campers, and learn the skills that can help you be most effective.
Our staff tell us that not only does orientation help them feel better prepared for their jobs, but they have a lot of fun during the process.