Camp Stewart wants outstanding role models and mentors. Being on the Stewart staff is an opportunity and a privilege. About one-third of the staff are teachers, coaches, graduate students and two-thirds are college undergraduates. In the average summer, 65% of the staff and 75% of the campers have been at Stewart previously.
Camp Stewart staff members must be physically able to observe, participate with and safely supervise any camp activities, including rough terrain rescue. Male staff members must be emotionally and mentally capable to live in camp cabins with boys 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, they mirror their outlook on life – whether it is religion, sex, drugs or alcohol. They want to dress like you – in short, you are the mirror they want to reflect. We want good examples for them: we want clean-cut men and women who are not ashamed to take stands for what is right; who are proud of their heritage and country.
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’…boys learn tolerance by being around those who are ‘different’. Some staff is from other countries; we try to offer diverse outlooks in addition to those of the Southwest. Everyone doesn’t have to ‘comb their hair alike’ (but they do comb their hair!) Everyone does have short hair (well of the collar), no facial hair growth, no earrings or other body piercings. Neatness is expected and made painless by the camp providing cotton staff shirts and shorts. Special talents or outstanding skills are not required to work at Stewart…with the exception of ‘people skills’.
Genuinely liking others and being able to get along with others is an absolute necessity, as is having a sense of humor. Staff members must be ‘team players’. Counselors need to be able to share joys and aspirations of campers; their successes and losses; their concerns and doubts; their frustrations over making the ‘right’ decisions. Counselors must be able to put campers needs ahead of their own, and not begrudge extra time needed by a ‘less than perfect’ camper.’ Campers often say counselors become their very best friend: ‘they are like a dad you do lots of things with’.
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. (We laugh about working 28 hour days and 9 day weeks). Staff members rotate afternoons (2-4 pm) off and nights (7 pm-12 am) off. Staff members alternate Friday and Saturday evenings off during the term. 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, and all attend non -denominational chapel services each Sunday morning where there are outstanding guest speakers Mass is held for Catholic campers and staff members. Counselors are encouraged to have vespers services in their cabins prior to bedtime each evening.
Camp Stewart is conservative…not only in appearance, but morally as well. Counselors are to be the type of role model parents want their children to emulate. Stewart has a no tobacco and no alcohol policy on camp. We caution against 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. If you use ‘drugs’ other than the aforementioned ones (i.e. if you use illegal drugs of any nature), do not apply. We are not tolerant in this area.
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, we think. 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; the dining hall is comfortable and has 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, 6 baseball diamonds; 3 golf greens, etc.
The crafts lodge is open-air with a steady river breeze; the riflery and archery ranges are well situated for safety; the stables are designed for easy use (including a small covered area for inclement weather use) and there are over 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 a two-story rock infirmary and keeps one or two nurses in residence. RN’s 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 makes routine weekly preventative medical calls to the camp. Very often, a camper parent MD is also in residence. Kerrville has outstanding medical facilities.
Office: Smiles along with the ability to type, file, answer the phone, remain cool and calm, remember names, talk with both parents and campers, meet prospective campers and parents, work with other staff members…all are essential for working in the camp office. Having a familiarity with computers is an asset, as is being neat and organized. (Stewart operates on the premise that each piece of paper represents a camper AND each camper is the most precious possession of the parent entrusting them to our care: we try to use names all the time.)
A Counselor’s ‘Grab-bag of Tools’ must Include Patience, Sense of Humor, Tolerance, Genuine Interest in Others, Integrity
CAMP CANTEEN (STORE)
Operated for the benefit of campers and staff and is stocked with sundries, stamps, etc. Records for linen rental, laundry charges, clothing orders (pre-camp as well as during camp) are kept here. The inventory runs in excess of $100,000…simple but accurate record keeping is necessary…as are ‘liking people’ and striving for ways to help a camper who needs something. (Snacks are not sold to campers but are given out each day after rest period: this is handled by the Leadership Trainees.)
Staff Applications Available for Heart O’ the Hills Camp Upon request.
One of the favorite parts of Stewart as we eat well. Camp chef prepares fresh vegetables and fruits and bakes twice daily. Personnel to help with food prep, salad making, bread making and dish washing are hired.
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 three terms. (The season usually starts late May and ends mid-August). Pay is based on age (one year college minimum requirement), schooling and skills. In addition to salary, housing, modest health/accident insurance policy and staff clothing are provided. Full orientation prior to camp is required. Participation in pre-orientation certification clinics is strongly encouraged.
Now that you know much more about being a counselor, return the completed application and ask persons completing references to send them directly to Stewart. We must have at least 3 references on hand before we can make you a job offer.
Questions? Do not hesitate to call! (830) 238-4670
Our e-mail: Office
“We’re Providing Today’s Fun & Gains for Tomorrow’s Leaders”
ACA Selected One of America’s Top Camps CCI