Employment at Camp Chewonki
Lead, Learn, and Have Fun in the Outdoors
What is Camp Chewonki?
Camp Chewonki began in 1915 as an all-boys saltwater adventure camp. Since then we have become an educational non-profit offering summer programs for all-male, all-female, and co-ed groups and year round school programs for local children, schools, and students from around the country. Every program focuses on personal growth, connection to the natural world, and developing community in small and large groups. Our summer camp programs range from 10 days to 7 weeks in length and serve children from just down the road and around the world.
Who works at Camp Chewonki?
Camp Chewonki staff members come from a variety of backgrounds.
- Former participants of a Chewonki program: Camp Chewonki, Maine Coast Semester, or the Outdoor Classroom.
- College students from a variety of majors including environmental studies, outdoor recreation, and education.
- International staff employed through the J-1 visa program or whom are eligible to work in the U.S. with proper work authorization.
- Passionate educators, explorers, and artisans looking to share their craft with the next generation.
Cabin and activity staff must have graduated from high school or be at least eighteen years old. Program coordinators and wilderness trip leaders must be at least twenty-one years old. Chewonki hires staff of all genders to lead activities, wilderness trips, work in the office, health center, kitchen, and down at the waterfront. Cabin staff are the same gender as their participants.
What are the dates of the camp program?
The employment period for Camp Chewonki is for nine weeks in the summer.
2020 Camp Season Dates:
- Staff Training: Saturday, June 13 – Saturday, June 27
- Session I: Sunday, June 28 – Monday, July 20
- Session II: Friday, July 24 – Saturday, August 15
- Staff may leave by noon on Monday, August 17 once all end-of-season tasks are completed
- Senior Staff Leadership Debrief: Monday, August 17
- Senior Staff may leave after Debrief or by noon on Tuesday, August 18
Staff are expected to arrive and move-in the evening prior to their first day of work.
What certifications do I need?
All of our in-camp staff are required to be certified in Wilderness First Aid (this includes basic first aid and CPR) at the minimum. Courses are available at Chewonki before staff training begins, but we strongly encourage counselors to take these courses locally before the start of the summer. Lifeguard training and wilderness first responder (WFR) are other useful and sought-after certifications.
Wilderness trip leaders are required to be trained as Wilderness First Responders, as well as possess current CPR training. Many of the Chewonki trip leaders are also Registered Maine Guides.
Chewonki is offering the following certification courses prior to staff training in 2020:
- Wilderness First Responder (minimum requirement for all trip leaders)
- June 1 – June 5
- Lifeguard Training (minimum requirement for waterfront staff)
- June 7 – June 10
- Lifeguard Recertification
- June 10
- Wilderness First Aid (minimum requirement for all staff)
- June 11 – June 12
What is the daily schedule?
Click here to learn about a typical day at Camp Chewonki.
Where will I be living?
Cabin leaders live in cabins or yurts with a group of 6-8 campers and a co-leader. These cabins have no electricity or running water. Bathroom and shower facilities are located nearby.
Activity staff and coordinators live in yurts, small cabins, or dorm-style housing in our year-round buildings. Non-cabin staff are usually grouped by age and gender, with four to six staff members sharing a living space and occupying single or double accommodation rooms. We also have limited family housing available.
Wilderness trip leaders live in yurts with 4-6 other trip leaders before, after, and between sessions. Yurt accommodations are not equipped with electricity or running water; there are communal social spaces and restrooms located centrally on campus.
Will I have time off?
Yes! We all need time off in the summer to stay well-rested and healthy amidst a very busy schedule. Each week in-camp staff have a night off, which starts at dinner, and a 24-hour day off. There are a variety of fun and interesting things to do in Mid-Coast Maine in the summer: play a round of mini-golf in Boothbay, pack a lunch and take a hike in the nearby Camden Hills, or have a taste of fresh Maine lobster at Wiscasset’s world-famous Red’s Eats. If you use your time off well, you will return to camp feeling refreshed and recharged.
Wilderness trip leaders will have time off between sessions.
We expect all staff to behave in a responsible and professional manner while on time off; though you may not be on campus, you are still a representative of Chewonki and are expected to follow all state and federal laws.
What is the salary?
Compensation is based upon experience and qualifications. Benefits include room and board and laundry facilities.
Are tobacco/marijuana products allowed on campus?
Chewonki has a non-smoking/tobacco-free campus; this includes vaping products and marijuana. These are expectations for both staff and participants while on campus or on scheduled trips.
How do I apply?
Visit the Employment Opportunities page to complete our online Camp staff application.
How do I keep in touch at the end of the summer?
Each staff member will have a check-out meeting at the end of the summer with the appropriate program director to debrief and discuss plans for the next summer. A great way to keep in touch during the year is to attend a Camp Gathering and Reunion in your area or participate in a staff gathering in the winter. (Keep your eyes peeled for invitations for bowling, pizza, and other fun events in your area!)
- If you are interested in returning to work at camp next summer, contact Camp Chewonki for Boys Director, Charlie Fear at email@example.com.
- If you are interested in working for Camp Chewonki for Girls, contact Camp Chewonki for Girls Director, Emily Bell-Hoerth at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- If you are interested in working for Wilderness Trips for Teens, contact Wilderness Trip Manager, Jen Adams at email@example.com.
- If you are a Chewonki alum, drop us a line and let us know what you are up to at firstname.lastname@example.org.