First Time Leaders - First Class Counsellors #3

Supervising someone for the first time at camp? This one’s for you!

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Welcome to episode 3 of First Class Counsellors! If you’re new to First Class Counsellors, and wondering why it’s in your CampHacker feed, welcome! We’re trying this mini-series out this Spring and mixing it in with your usual CampHacker goodness. You can find our first episode and more about why we’re on the CampHacker feed here.

On our third episode, we are joined by Grace Tierney from YMCA Camp Mason to give your new senior staff some practical tips for how to lead effectively and gracefully this summer. Oliver, Matt and Grace share their stories of stepping up into leadership roles for the first time and some of the practical tips that they picked up along the way.

In this episode, we cover:

  • What a first foray into supervising can look like

  • How staff can work to achieve a supervising role that they are interested in

  • What first time supervisors should start thinking about as soon as they are hired

  • Some practical advice for someone who is going to be supervising for the first time

  • How camp is going to change for you as you move forward in leadership positions.

As usual, we hope that what we offer to your staff is incredibly useful. If you do send this along, we would be happy to hear that. Please let us know by emailing Matt at


Get Ready - Counsellors, do this NOW to level up your counselling skills

  • Oliver: Read story books and books about how to tell stories to help capture both kids and staff’s attention.

  • Matt: Start writing your transition report, meet the last person who did your job and get some initial brainstorming on the go NOW!

  • Grace: Keep listening and reading and being inspired by camp related material. If you’re reading and listening to this, you’re on the right track!

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What is First Class Counsellors?

Camp Directors, this Podcast won’t be for you. It’s time to delegate! First Class Counsellors will be for your counselling staff, or, the staff who are on the ground, playing with kids and changing lives.

Each week, we will hear from young camp directors and leaders to draw out practical and accessible tips that will level up their counsellor skills.

Our two hosts, Oliver Gregan, Summer and Families Camp Director at YMCA Camp Jewell and Matt Honsberger, Camp Director at Pearce Williams Summer Camp are excited to be able to provide this resource to camp counsellors and up and coming staff, who they believe, have the most important job at camp.

This is free professional development for your counsellors! We would love your feedback. Please leave your comments below, or, send Matt an email! Thank you!