Santa Cruz Day Camp

Leaders In Training

The Leaders In Training (LIT) program is designed for rising 10-11th graders to develop 21st Century Skills – leadership, communication, initiative, and creativity. These skills are essential to youth development and will set them up to thrive as young adults. As they prepare for college and the workplace it is a good reminder that companies like Google who routinely say it is skills like communication and collaboration (not STEM) that predict employee success. We hope your teen will join us, LEARN-BY-DOING, and see real GROWTH over time. Learn more about 21st Century Skills from American Camp Association, Stanford, or the Washington Post.

LITs cultivate compassion and empathy through creating connections with campers; develop leadership skills through opportunities to lead games; facilitate campers’ social skill development; receive coaching and feedback from camp professionals; support counselors in fostering a positive camp experience for all campers.

LITs live at home and commute to Day Camp each day (we offer a similar program at our Overnight Camp where CITs live onsite and help at Day Camp during the day). While most LITs are former campers, newcomers are welcome. Enrollment is limited to 10 campers per program per session. Registration is completed online as usual. To be formally accepted into the program, LITs complete an additional application which is then reviewed by the Camp Director for admission. Completion of either the Day or Overnight training programs allows campers to be eligible to apply for a paid position as a Counselor Intern as a rising 12th grader at Day Camp.

Leaders In Training Program - entering 10-11th grade    
LIT Session 2 June 17 - 21 $685
LIT Session 7 August 5 - 9 $685

LIT-1s are rising 10th graders ready to explore their leadership potential and apply it to their life. Their time is split between being a camper with other LITs and going through training or shadowing a counselor of a younger group. Mornings are spent observing and assisting a younger camper group for two periods and one period of leadership training Monday-Thursday. During lunch, the two afternoon periods, and Friday Free Choice mornings, they participate in activities together like other campers. They gain real skills, discover who they are, and what they need to work on. Our experienced LIT Coordinator supports LITs along the way.

LIT-2s are rising 11th graders ready to take an active role in helping group counselors manage campers with a focus on building relationships. LIT-2s spend 20% of their time in training and 80% of their time in a support role to our group counselors. We think of them as counselor apprentices. Before the session starts, LIT-2s participate in a ½ day training on the Kennolyn philosophy, positive approaches to discipline, being a positive role model and how to belay on the climbing wall. Once at camp they receive one period of leadership training Monday-Thursday. The remaining time they assist Counselors with opportunities to lead activities under their supervision. Upon completion of the program they receive a letter of recommendation for their future use in applying to other jobs, college, or as a part of their application as a paid Counselor Intern. While LIT-2s are eligible to apply as Counselor Interns after completing the program, not all will be hired.

Counselor Interns
Paid position for 2-5 weeks for rising 12th graders who have completed the LIT program. Counselor Interns (Cis) are selected using the same interview and application process as our staff. Hiring is competitive as many who apply are not hired. CIs work under the supervision of an area coordinator – Aquatics, Equestrian, or High Ropes – and participate in paid staff training for 3-6 days along with the rest of the summer staff. Aquatics training includes a Red Cross Lifeguarding certificate valid for two years.