Camp Stewart staff members must be physically able to observe, participate with and safely supervise any camp activities, including outdoor and rough terrain. Male staff members must be emotionally and mentally capable to live in camp cabins with boys ages 6-16. All staff members must be able to verbally communicate well for instruction and safety and capable of communicating in writing on camper reports. "What does being a counselor involve?" is a vital question and not one we can answer in 20 words or less - BUT here is a partial ‘capsule’ of what being a counselor at Camp Stewart for Boys involves.
ACTIONS SPEAK LOUDEST
Being a staff member at Stewart means setting a good example at all times. Believing the age-old adage 'Actions Speak Louder than Words,' we expect behavior which you would be proud to see mimicked. Counselors are the most important element in the camp’s overall operation; they set the tone for the campers. Staff members are looked up to by campers both in and out of the cabin. Campers copy staff behavior and actions, they mimic counselor’s language and they mirror their outlook on life. They want to dress and be like the counselor- in short, the counselors are the mirrors they want to reflect. We want good examples for them. We want quality men and women who are role models that parents expect from Camp Stewart.
STEWART’S #1 GOAL: INSTILL GREATER SELF CONFIDENCE AND INCREASED SELF ESTEEM IN OUR CAMPERS
Staff members are not expected to be ‘alike.’ There is a place at Stewart for ‘characters’ as boys learn tolerance by being around those who are not the same as they are. Some staff members are from other countries and we try to offer diverse outlooks in addition to those of the Southwest. Neatness is expected and made painless by the camp providing cotton staff shirts and shorts for uniforms while counselors are here. Special talents or outstanding skills are not required to work at Stewart, with the exception of ‘people skills.' Being able to get along with others is an absolute necessity, and having a sense of humor will certainly help! Staff members need to be ‘team players.’ Counselors also need to be able to share joys and aspirations of campers, their successes and losses, their concerns and doubts and their frustrations over making the ‘right’ decisions. Counselors must be able to put campers needs ahead of their own and not begrudge extra time spent with campers if needed. Campers often say counselors become their mentor and friend. Good counselors make them feel that way.
Stewart offer pre-camp certification in several areas prior to camp orientation. These are another advantage of working at Stewart, as certification can be earned at no-cost to Stewart counselors.
All staff members live on camp, and most live in the cabins with the campers. (Female staff members live in a dormitory situation). The average cabin has 12-15 boys and 2-4 staff members. Cabins have built-in twin-sized bunk beds and ceiling fans. Almost all have indoor bath facilities, and cabins in Uncle Bill’s camp (Junior Side) have both hot and cold water.
Two staff members are always on duty in the cabin. Staff members rotate afternoons (2-4 pm) off and nights. Time off is important as one needs time away to refuel and get recharged, whether it is the ‘Hill Country Counselors Great Social Gathering’ at the local laundromat, getting together at Mamacita’s or going to the movies. Stewart is a Christian-oriented camp, and we want staff members who can uphold Christian standards. Campers and staff of all faiths and denominations attend Stewart, and all attend non-denominational chapel services each Sunday morning where there are outstanding guest speakers. Mass is usually held for Catholic campers and staff members. Counselors are encouraged to have vespers services in their cabins prior to bedtime each evening. Camp Stewart Counselors are to be the type of role models parents want their children to emulate. Stewart has a no tobacco and no alcohol policy on camp. We do not allow of age drinking even on off-time as the local law enforcement officers are particularly strict on DWI (DUI), plus the curvy roads are complicated by the largest deer population of any Texas county.
The interaction of the Stewart staff is special. One makes close life-long ‘new’ friends during the summer, and there are many social interactions with neighboring girls’ camps. (There are about a dozen prestigious private camps in the area and over two dozen church and agency camps.) Stewart and Heart O' the Hills for Girls (also owned by the Ragsdales) have much of their orientation together as well as activities throughout the term. Camp Stewart reserves the right to place employees at Heart O’ the Hills Camp for Girls, should it be necessary or in the best interests of the campers.
Camp Stewart's facilities are unusually outstanding for camps. Located near the headwaters of the Guadalupe River, which is a spring-fed, crystal-clear river, the camp is situated on both sides of the river in a valley between hills and limestone bluffs. Natural cedar, giant cypress and various oaks are abundant, as is native wildlife. The playing fields have an underground sprinkler system to stay cooler as well as green during the summer. The 23 cabins are of native rock and cedar and built in ‘Texas style’. The large screened gym has a hardwood floor and the dining hall is comfortable with tables and benches designed by noted designer Roger Rasbach. There are 7 tennis courts (3 of which are lighted for night play), 3 soccer fields, 440-yard track, football field, six baseball diamonds; three golf greens, etc. The crafts lodge is open-air with a steady river breeze, the riflery and archery ranges are well situated for safety, and the stables are designed for easy use (including a small covered area for inclement weather) with almost 100 horses. Stewart was designed for providing the best in camping, and the ownership, along with the year-round staff, constantly strives to provide the best program and facilities for the campers. In addition to the counselors positions, Stewart also employs persons in other areas such as medical, office, camp store, food service and maintenance.
Stewart has an infirmary and keeps one or two nurses in residence. RNs are preferred, but often student nurses in their junior or senior year are hired (or medical students) IF they have had actual in-hospital experience or extensive Red Cross training. A doctor is on call and sometimes makes preventative medical calls to the camp. Very often, a camper parent MD is also in residence. Kerrville has outstanding medical facilities.
ACTIVITY COUNSELORS AND CABIN LEADERS
Activity Counselors are counselors who live in a cabin with campers but who teach an activity each day. Cabin Leaders live in a cabin as well, but they go with their cabins from activity to activity assisting the Activity Counselor. Unless hired to work in the kitchen, office, etc. counselors will either be a Cabin Leader or an Activity Counselor.
One of the camper and counselor's favorite parts of Stewart is the food! Camp chefs prepare fresh vegetables and fruits and camp bakers usually make fresh bread and rolls for each meal. Personnel to help with food prep, salad making, bread making and dish washing are hired each summer. Young men interested in culinary experience will be able to learn from trained chefs, making Stewart a great resume builder.
Stewart hires between 60-80 persons each summer. Most staff are hired for all summer, although there are a few spaces available for combinations of the terms. The season usually starts late May and ends in early August. Pay is based on age, experience, schooling and skills. In addition to salary and housing, staff clothing is provided. Full orientation prior to camp is required. Participation in pre-orientation certification clinics is strongly encouraged. Interested candidates should apply online at www.campstewart.com. We must have at least 3 references on hand before we can make you a job offer.
Camp Stewart wants outstanding role models and mentors here at Stewart. Being on the Stewart staff is an awesome opportunity and a privilege. Coming back and working at Stewart after being a camper here is often a goal, but it is always fun to have counselors who experience Stewart for the first time, too!
Questions? Do not hesitate to call! (830) 238-4670
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