Archive for January, 2016

Interning at Camp Starlight

Thursday, January 21st, 2016

54ef49ff-9ab5-41b4-978a-b437ed3421e3Searching for internships can be stressful. Not only are you competing with every college student in the country, but also you’re competing against yourself. College age kids, more affectionately referred to as “millennials” are looking for internships that not only make their resume better than their classmates, but also lets them make a difference as opposed to making copies. For some, making copies at a high end accounting firm, or fetching coffee at multi-million dollar tech company is fine, as long as they can put it on their resume and fake it in their next interview about what they truly did all summer. But for others, the ability to take ownership of a project, to look back on a summer and say, “I can’t believe I did that!”, is more important than working for a fortune 500 company.


For me, I knew going in I didn’t want to wear a suit to work everyday. I didn’t want a 9-5 job where I knew I would be watching the clock all day. I wanted to make a difference, and I wanted to have fun doing it. After countless Google searches, one job stood out to me, Camp Counselor. Being from the Midwest I didn’t go to camp. No one did. So I applied, what did I have to lose?


f44a8494-83cf-4f5d-9387-e92327a7e2cdBelieve me, I was skeptical. but the beauty of interning at camp is that I got to make my own experience. When I was interviewing I let them know that I was looking for college credit and some sort of administration experience, being a business major. I was offered a role as part-time counselor, part-time programming assistant. The title itself did not express what I was doing all summer by any means. My time in the office allowed me to see the business side of camping and the industry as a whole. It opened my eyes to what it truly takes to run a top-tier summer camp. If there was a job to be done at camp I did it. Data entries, inventory, making sure program areas had supplies and were able to run efficiently. Heck I even fixed a few doors and put tables together.


Then the kids arrived…


2c45cf5e-75df-4b6c-ab34-85001e7eda15500 kids, all at once, and at that moment, camp became real to me. Apart from my responsibilities in the office I now had 10 kids that I had to take care of for 7 weeks. This is the part of my internship where I could really make a difference. Essentially, I was a parent for the summer, and that really intimidated me. I was still in school; I just got used to taking care of myself and now I need to care for a group of 9-year-old boys. But I quickly learned that although they were young, they were smart, self-sufficient, and ended up teaching me more than I could ever teach them.


My summer internship was unlike anyone I graduated with. I worked alongside the President and CEO’s of the company. I was a co-worker with 200 people from over 10 countries. I created excel documents by day and sang “Let It Go” as loud as I could by night. It wasn’t easy but I had the time of my life. I made a difference, and left my footprint. Most importantly, I walked away from the summer saying, “I can’t believe I did that”, and you can’t get that feeling making copies.

How Camptastic Are You?

Sunday, January 10th, 2016

All of our Camp Starlight campers love their summers at camp! Want to know how camptastic you are? Take the quiz below!

Sailing the high seas… or the camp lake!

Tuesday, January 5th, 2016


11412068_10152924523001960_5082905044883132426_oCamp is filled with activities that allow you to learn new skills and test your limits.

Perhaps one of the most unique activities here at Camp Starlight when it come to having a blast and building character is sailing.

Sailing teaches many skills; how to tie nautical knots, understand the weather, and control a boat with nothing but the wind to guide you. But like any camp activity, the most important lessons being learned are team building, communication, and the power of believing in yourself!

Team Building

Sailing is a team activity, so learning to work with your “crew” is critical! Whatever style of boat you happen to be sailing, campers are constantly practicing team building skills with other campers on the lake.

  • Campers listen closely to what the rest of their crew is telling them, responding clearly and quickly to commands and questions. If you’re sailing solo, you will still have to communicate with other sailors on the water — so it’s lucky that all the sailing terminology is totally fun!
  • Sailing teaches you to trust in the skills of your crewmates (even if the worst that can happen is getting wet!) You won’t have time to check that every knot is tied correctly, so you’ll soon learn to trust that your friends will stay on top of their duties while you’re on the water, so long as you’re holding up your end of the bargain.
  • When you’re sailing, there’s a job for everyone on the boat. You and your fellow campers will quickly learn to identify situations where you can jump in and help each other.

Self confidence

It’s normal to feel a little hesitant your first time out on the lake. However, with practice you’ll develop your skills and, along with them, self-confidence.

11411756_10152924528446960_8550865432487014513_oCreating small, measurable goals such as learning new knots can slowly increase your confidence. Small setbacks (like having trouble steering!) followed by successes (catching the wind at just the right angle) teach the importance of bouncing back in the face of discouragement.

Organization and Planning

Managing any boat, even a single-person craft, requires organization and planning. You have to assess multiple factors such as the weather, obstacles in the water, and the lay of the shoreline to navigate your boat to your destination. You also have to keep your sails and lines organized for quick course changes — easily the hardest part of the sailing activity!

Sailing also taps into leadership skills, requiring campers to create a plan and divide responsibilities between the crew. Campers quickly learn to recognize crewmembers’ talents and divide the sailing tasks between everyone aboard accordingly.

Ready for anything

While you’ll learn plenty of physical skills while sailing the camp lake, you will also be practicing important life-skills that can help you at camp, in school, and everywhere else that teamwork and communication are important to success.

The secret to sailing is striking the balance between having a detailed plan and being adaptable when conditions change. Come to think of it, that’s a pretty good strategy for most everything at camp — and life in general!

So have a blast on the lake this summer. May the winds always be at your back!