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Employment at Education Camps

Currently accepting applications for the following positions:
-Camp Cook
-Camp Counselors that are waterfront lifeguards
-Camp Counselors that have a water safety instructor certification (WSI)

Department of Environmental Conservation is seeking male and female staff for four residential Environmental Education Camps. All four programs cater to campers who are 11 to 13 years old: Camp Colby near Saranac Lake and Pack Forest near Warrensburg both located in the Adirondacks, Camp DeBruce in the Catskill Mountains and Camp Rushford in Allegany County in western New York. In addition, Camp Pack Forest and Camp Rushford also offer a program for older students, ages 14 to 17. Campers arrive on Sunday afternoon and leave on Saturday morning.

The four geographically diverse environmental education camps teach youth the importance of conservation. Well trained and hard working staff are located at each camp. Their primary goal is to ensure the safety of all campers while teaching valuable lessons about the environment, and providing an opportunity for each camper to develop outdoor skills and knowledge.

Room and board are provided to all staff members. Employment at camp begins in mid June 2015 and ends mid August 2015.

Each Camp will have the following minimum counselor positions (some candidates may qualify for more than one area):

  • Counselor - EMT
  • Counselor - Water Safety Instructor
  • Counselor - Lifeguard (waterfront)
  • Counselor - Lifeguard (waterfront)
  • Counselor - Lifeguard (waterfront)
  • Counselor - Trip leader
  • Counselor - Trip leader
  • Counselor - Program leader
Position Qualifications Salary
Camp Director ** Bachelors Degree or 25 years old, residential camp supervisory experience, must meet minimum qualifications of Camp Counselor (1 per camp) *
Assistant Camp Director ** Bachelors Degree or 25 years old, residential camp supervisory experience, must meet minimum qualifications of Camp Counselor (1 per camp) *
Health Director ** EMT, Paramedic, LPN, RN, PA or MD certified (1 per camp) *
Camp Counselor ** Two years of college or work experience in natural resources, biological sciences, environmental science, environmental education, geology, environmental studies, outdoor recreation, elementary, middle, secondary, special education or camp management (8 per camp) *
Camp Cook Three years cook experience, one year of supervisory experience (1 per camp) *
Food Service Worker 2 18 years old, one year experience equal to that of Food Service Worker 1 (1 per camp) *
Food Service Worker 1 18 years old (1 per camp) *

*Salary to be discussed during interview

** The positions conduct and supervise campers on a 24-hour basis and are required to have certification in American Red Cross Responding to Emergencies and CPR/AED for Professional Rescuers and Health Care Providers or approved equivalent.

Please read the job descriptions for the available positions. We receive many applications for these positions; it is best to apply early. Interviews of qualified candidates will begin in the fall and continue until all positions are filled. Applicants possessing a valid drivers license, waterfront life guarding, WSI, EMT, and similar certifications are preferred. If you are interested in one of these positions, please submit a resume, college transcript and cover letter along with the DEC Employment Application (PDF) (137 Kb) to:

DEC Camps Employment
625 Broadway; 3rd Floor
Albany, NY 12233-5256

or e-mail campemploy@dec.ny.gov

New York State is an equal opportunity employer.

If you do not meet the qualifications for your desired position you may be eligible for an unpaid internship with the camps program. For more information on the internships please request information from campemploy@dec.ny.gov

Camp Director

Camp Director has overall on-site responsibility for camp operations. In addition, the Camp Director is frequently called upon when camp is not in operation for facilities, staff and programmatic advice. They are assigned a wide variety of tasks and duties that must be performed to insure the efficient operation of the camp program.

Specific duties include:

  • develops and supervises a comprehensive training program for staff and volunteers;
  • supervises all camp staff that includes Assistant Director, Health Director, counselors, cook, food service workers and volunteers;
  • reviews and evaluates lesson plans and teaching techniques; suggests changes, additions and methods of educational effectiveness;
  • completes all required reports, inventories and forms;
  • promotes and maintains positive public relations with DEC Operations; health department, sponsors, campers, parents and local community; and
  • counsels problem campers and contacts parents/guardians if needed.

Assistant Director

The Assistant Director is the second in command and is responsible for the planning and implementing the education and recreation programs, and will serve as director in the absence of the Camp Director. The Assistant Director is also responsible for the development of daily camp schedules, staff schedules and staff assignments.

Specific duties include:

  • develops and submits weekly reports on camp operations, facility conditions, special events, safety inspections and the overall program;
  • develops fire, search and rescue plans and implements drills and reviews;
  • arranges for the ordering and delivery of food and other supplies and services; maintains records on expenditures for such; and
  • makes daily inspections of camp facilities and, through the DEC regional field operations supervisor, arranges for any necessary repairs.

Health Director

The Health Director must be a NYS certified EMT, Paramedic, LPN, RN, PA or MD. The Health Director is held accountable for the health and well being of both staff and campers on a 24-hour basis. The Health Director assures that New York State Health Department requirements are reviewed and complied with; camp infirmary meets requirements; facilities are prepared; lessons, work plans and special programs are developed; and staff training is carried out. During the camp season, the Health Director oversees the camp program that includes 50-60 new campers each week for a total of more than 400 campers for the summer.

Specific duties include:

  • distributes and monitors campers medications;
  • maintains camp infirmary, monitors environmental and individual's health (staff and campers) and prepares accident and illness reports; and
  • on call 24/7 while camp is in session to accompany sick or injured campers to the hospital or urgent care.

Conservation Education Camp Counselor

Each Camp Counselor is a residential instructor and on call 24 hours. They are responsible for the general welfare of the campers. Counselors will supervise eight to ten campers and instruct them in environmental subjects, outdoor skills, NYS sportsman education program and recreation. They are responsible for the condition of the camp grounds and the supplies and materials used in the camp programs. Counselors also assist the Camp Supervisors in the development of daily, weekly and seasonal schedules. Specific duties include:

  • supervises the campers on a 24-hour basis; are responsible for the well being and health of the campers;
  • instructs the campers in the core environmental science curricula; and
  • responsible for the planning and conducting of recreational activities, including maintaining camp inventories.

Conservation Education Camp Cook

The camp cook is responsible for the planning, cooking and serving (70-80 people) for all camp meals. In addition, the cook maintains all kitchen and dining hall supplies, materials and equipment. They must be neat, reliable, punctual, flexible and responsible. The cook must be able to prepare menus and order food within a strict budget. They also must have knowledge of nutritional dietary needs of campers and be familiar with New York State Department of Health (DOH) Regulations pertaining to storage, preparation and serving food. This person works a maximum of 40 hours per week.

Specific duties include:

  • prepares menus and meals in consultation with camp supervisor;
  • is responsible for the proper storage and record keeping of all food items; and
  • prepares weekly orders in conjunction with central office staff.

Food Service Worker 2

The Food Service Worker II serves as the assistant cook and aids the cook in the planning, cooking and serving of all the camp meals. The assistant cook is responsible for maintaining all kitchen and dining hall supplies, materials and equipment under the direction of the cook. The assistant cook aids the cook in supervising the Food Service Worker I and volunteers. The Food Service Worker 2 is responsible for all of the planning, cooking and serving in the event that the cook is not present. This person works a maximum of 40 hours per week.

Specific duties include:

  • assists in preparation of menus and meals;
  • be familiar with and comply with regulations for the storage, preparation and serving of food and with sanitary regulations concerning kitchen and dining hall;
  • assists in ordering, delivery and storage of food including inspection of deliveries; and
  • assists the cook in the proper storage and record keeping of all food items.

Food Service Worker 1

This position is responsible for the cleanup of the dishes, pots, pans and dining hall after each meal. A part of this job is the supervision of volunteers during clean up. They might be called upon to help shuttle supplies and materials for trips, run errands and take part in other tasks necessary for the operation of camp. After cleanup duties are completed, this staff person participates in all other areas of camp including recreation, instruction time, free-time supervision, hikes, field trips, evening activities and bunk/cabin supervision. This person works a maximum of 40 hours per week.

Specific duties include:

  • cleanup of dishes, pots, pans, kitchen and dining hall after each meal;
  • supervise volunteers in the cleanup of dishes, pots, pans, kitchen and dining hall;
  • assist in education and recreation activities including outdoor skills courses, hunter safety and swimming; and
  • participate in evening activities including overnight camp outs, night walks, campfires and special programs as time allows.

  • Contact for this Page
  • NYSDEC Camps
    625 Broadway
    Albany, NY 12233-5256
    Send us an email
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