The importance of having camp on your resume
Common themes often come up when people discuss their motivations for returning to camp as staff. People say they come back to camp to reconnect with friends, learn new skills, and spend time on Maple Lake. What often gets overlooked is the value that being a staff member at Camp George will provide in the professional world. Understanding how to articulate camp stories on your resume, cover letter, and in job interviews, is an important skill that I do not think enough camp staff take the time to consider. Having recently been hired as an incoming summer law student at Goodmans LLP, I credit Camp George with so much of what I have learned to help land this position. The #1 question I was asked at every single interview related to my time at Camp George, and what I had learned from being in a leadership position. When I was offered the position at Goodmans, the first question that the interviewer asked me was “tell me about Camp George”. We went on to discuss my experience at camp, and he told me that he places a high value on the experience that people get as leaders at camp. In spending the last 14 summers at camp – first as a Nitzotzot camper and ultimately as the Barak Unit Head and then CIT Director, I have learned the importance of being an effective team player, as well as how to step up and take the lead.
As a unit head, you are entrusted with leading a team of counselors and specialists, often over 40 people, as well as several cabins of campers. You will find few positions in your early 20s where you are entrusted with managing so many people. In leading so many people, you learn how to juggle multiple tasks at the same time, and how to lean on those around you for support. In many professional roles, you will be working as a member of a team, and employers look for candidates who have experience working on a team that has achieved success. When employers see that you have spent years at camp and have risen through the ranks, from staff member to a position of leadership, it proves that you possess two important qualities: loyalty and trustworthiness. These qualities are highly valued, regardless of the industry you hope to work in.
Camp George also looks to connect staff members with meaningful Spring internships, that would allow staff to broaden their resume while also returning to camp. Thanks to Camp George, I worked as a government relations intern at CIJA in 2021, travelled to Tel Aviv to work at a tech start-up in 2022, and spent the Spring of 2023 working as a summer law student at a luxury travel company. Each of these experiences was made possible because of my desire to return to camp, and camp’s commitment to helping staff find spring internships.
Choosing to spend your summer in a leadership role at Camp George will not only be a fun and rewarding experience, but it can also open doors and test soft skills in a way that few other summer experiences will. For those individuals that are on the fence about returning to camp, the advice I would give to you is to at least apply and have a conversation. The summers you have to experience camp are limited, and it is unlikely you will ever again be able to find a position that combines being on a lake and having fun, with meaningful professional development. I am glad that I returned to camp last summer and had a great time as CIT Director and know that I would not be the person I am today without my 14 summers at Camp George.
Written by: Jack Borins