Where is Eagle Hill located and what’s close by?
We are located 90 miles north of New York City off the Taconic State Parkway. Eagle Hill is situated in the foothills of the Berkshire Mountains, not far from the New York / Massachusetts border, one hour southeast of Albany, New York and three and a half hours west of Boston. The area has many attractions, mountains and trails, shopping, and an opportunity for many fun day trips.
What makes Eagle Hill special?
Eagle Hill is a special place for many reasons. Each summer we strive to achieve a family atmosphere where everyone leaves with great memories and lifelong friendships. Our camp population is not too large. We have around 225 campers with 85 staff members, allowing us to know everyone and to make sure that each child and every staff member feels welcomed and cared for as a part of our camp community. We have high quality facilities and a varied range of programs that are updated annually and enable us to offer something for everyone in a safe and well maintained environment.
How does Eagle Hill make newcomers feel welcome?
Our staff orientation is built around introducing people to one another and placing staff in positions with groups where they will be comfortable. We provide many opportunities for staff members to get together both in camp as well as out of camp, during time off, making it very possible for any new staff member coming to Eagle Hill for the first time to feel well connected to our camp.
How is the camp staff organized?
Eagle Hill is operated by a Camp Director who is assisted by an Operations Manager and a Program Director and Assistant Program Director. Group Leaders supervise the counselors and campers in different age groups of camp. Counselors, both general and specialty, live and work with groups of approximately seven or eight campers. In addition there are Activity Heads that run specific program areas of camp. A full support staff takes care of areas of camp relating to food service as well as camp maintenance.
What different types of counselors are there at camp?
We have two types of counselors at Eagle Hill. The first is a Specialty Counselor who teaches at our activity areas. These counselors have some expertise in their activity, teaching activities such as basketball, soccer, softball/baseball, hockey, tennis, swimming, boating, archery, dance, gymnastics, ceramics, photography, and guitar, just to name a few. Some of these counselors are education majors looking for some teaching experience, while others may be college athletes, musicians or performers who want to share their knowledge and talents. We also employ some teachers who work at specialty areas of camp.
Our other type of counselor is a General Counselor. This counselor spends the majority of their day moving around the camp with their group and participating in the activities with the campers. We provide the opportunity for our general counselors to teach a few activities during the week as a part of our Options program. In the past, our general counselors have taught lacrosse, golf, magic, drumming, ultimate Frisbee, and other fun activities.
Where do most Counselors come from?
Eagle Hill counselors come from all over. While some of our Counselors are former campers and come from the tri-state area surrounding New York City, others come from all over the world and from across the United States.
Where do most campers come from?
The majority of our campers come from New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, and other New England states. Some campers come to us from other parts of the United States like Florida or California. Over the past few years we have had campers from Spain, France, Korea, Mexico, Japan, Italy, and Israel.
How do I get to camp?
Getting to camp is fairly easy. Many staff members drive their own cars or carpool with someone living nearby. Some staff members fly into airports near in the New York City area. We provide van service from a central location in New York City itself at the outset of the summer. Other Counselors take a train to the camp area. However you decide to get to camp, we will help with your travel plans to make it easy for you. At the end of the summer, we can help you to get home or to your next destination.
What’s a typical schedule like?
- Wakeup at 7:30 AM
- Breakfast at 8:00 AM
- Cleanup at 8:45 AM
- two morning activities start at 9:30 AM
- Lunch at 11:45 AM
- Rest Hour starts at 12:45 PM
- three afternoon activities start at 2:00 PM
- Shower Hour at 4:30 PM
- Dinner at 5:30 PM
- “Free Play” at 6:30 PM
- Evening Activities start at 7:15 PM
- Refreshments For Different Age Groups very night
What is a typical day like for a staff member living with kids?
We view our staff members as an integral part of each camp group. Our staff eats their meals with their groups and helps clean the cabins with our campers after breakfast. During a six period activity day, the General Counselors move to the activities with the campers while the Specialty Counselors teach at their specialty areas. Rest hour after lunch offers time for relaxation and getting to know our campers while just hanging out in the bunk areas. There’s time before dinner for showers. Each night, we enjoy evening activities, where both types of Counselors are with their group, helping their own group to complete a great camp day together. Refreshments at our Canteen often times round out the day prior to campers being escorted back by Counselors in preparation for bed. Each night, there is a rotation of Counselors asked to be on “O.D.” (on duty). These Counselors keep an eye on the campers in camp while other staff members enjoy an evening off from such responsibilities. Our curfew for all Counselors is at 12:30 AM.
How is a staff member assigned an age group to live and work with?
Prior to the start of camp, counselors will typically give us an idea as to what age group they would like to live and work with. While we can’t guarantee that a specific group be given to a given counselor, we do try our hardest to meet all requests. During Staff Orientation, we organize our staff into divisions based upon our impression on how successful the individual staff member will be at working with a particular age group. Counselors are then arranged into pairs to work with specific groups. Counselors may be asked to work with an age group that is not their first choice. Despite this fact, all counselors can be assured that we will help them to work with any group of campers that a counselor should be assigned to.
Where do Counselors live and what are the cabins like?
Most of our Counselors, both General and Specialty Counselors, live in cabins with our campers. In some instances, certain staff members running divisions or activity areas at camp live in private rooms. Staff living in cabins with campers, usually live with one or maybe two other staff members and seven to eight campers. Our cabins are modern and spacious and consist of wooden single beds and ample storage space for clothing and belongings. The cabins are equipped with full indoor bathrooms consisting of three private toilet areas, four sinks, and three private showers. Each cabin has a porch, its own hot water heater, attic fan, carbon monoxide and smoke detector.
What if I am a staff person beyond college years, looking to play a larger role at camp? Where will I live and what will my responsibilities be like?
Our staff includes those who supervise a large number of campers and small groups of counselors as well as people with particular talents and skills that run the vast activity areas at camp. In addition, we hire a small group of staff members to oversee the administrative areas such as the Office, the Dining Room and the Canteen. Medical professionals staff our Infirmary. People who are in graduate programs, teachers or parents with a summer free, typically fill these positions. We have available a large number of private rooms where these staff members live for the summer.
Staff living in private rooms participate in all meals, play varied roles throughout the course of a typical camp day, and take part in any full camp special event or evening activity. Staff members that directly supervise both Counselors and campers, as well as those private room staff members involved in running a specific activity area of camp, play a role in supervising campers at night. This is done on a rotating basis, allowing many staff members to enjoy free time after 9:30 pm during many camp nights.
How much time off will I have?
Each Counselor is given four days off for a six week camp program (including staff orientation). There are typically no days off during the first and last weeks of the camp season. Days off run from 7:30 AM to 11:30 PM. Staff members also get several nights off per week. These nights begin at 8:30 PM. Staff curfew is 11:30 PM. In addition, each Counselor has some time off during the day, which may be used for pure relaxation, or if you’d like, more involvement with our campers. If special time off is needed for some reason, we do try to accommodate such requests where possible.
What type of medical care and insurance is available to staff?
Our centrally located Infirmary building is available to staff at any time or day or night (if needed) . Our medical staff will be glad to help you with any medical concerns or needs at any point during the summer. Where circumstances suggest that the help of an outside medical practice is needed, our medical staff would be happy to refer a staff member to one of many local practices in the area surrounding camp. Medical insurance is not provided as a part of our staff compensation package and must therefore be purchased privately prior to a staff member’s arrival at camp.
What should I bring to camp?
We provide a detailed packing list to all staff members prior to the start of camp. Staff should bring things to camp that are needed and inexpensive in nature. Keep in mind that items at camp do occasionally get dirty or may become misplaced. Staff may bring sports equipment to camp or any small items from home to make the cabins a little more “homey.” We also encourage our Counselors to bring items such as acoustic guitars or other musical instruments if they wish to perform in talent shows or share their skills with campers. Please don’t overpack for camp as all staff living with children will be subject to a limited amount of space for belongings.
Is there any religious aspect to Eagle Hill?
One’s religion plays no part in our camper recruitment promotions or staff hiring practices. Our camp program offers a few very small religious ceremonies offered on a strictly optional basis.
Can Eagle Hill accommodate any special diets?
Please be aware that Eagle Hill, like most camps, serves a general range of foods that appeal to the tastes and preferences of children. Where possible, we can accommodate a few special diets. There is, however, always a vegetarian option at every meal along with an extensive salad bar for lunch and dinner. In addition, we now have a Gluten Free Kitchen which can accommodate campers or staff members in need of this type of food service.
What other things are available to help give staff a good camp experience?
In the middle of camp we have a staff lounge with Internet service, a flat screen TV and couches. This is a great place for hanging out or catching up with some friends. On every day off or night off, we have camp provided transportation that takes staff out of camp to a variety of places in the general vicinity of our camp facility. For those joining us from other parts of the country, it’s a great way to see the local area and even get down to New York City for a day or two. In addition, each week you may have, at your option, your laundry done on the grounds of camp.
How would you sum up the experience for a staff member at Eagle Hill?
A summer at Camp Eagle Hill will be a very rewarding experience. Along the way, camp life will be both physically and emotionally demanding. Taking responsibility for children’s lives can’t help but be very demanding. An Eagle Hill staff member will work hard, put in long hours, expend lots of energy, and devote endless dedication to the ideal of giving each camper an unforgettable summer. In return, we hope that at the end of a summer with us, all staff, despite a need for some much-deserved rest, can say that they had a truly great experience with us, one that they will remember for a lifetime. Ultimately, we expect and hope that friendships made with our campers and other staff members, as well as values and lessons learned during a staff member’s summer with us, will be very meaningful and valuable.
What’s important to Eagle Hill when hiring staff?
Camp is people. It is all about what the individual staff member contributes to our camp and how the staff as a whole works together to make a great summer for each child at camp. With this in mind, we hope to hire people who will care about children, who care about the impact they have on children and who are prepared to care about the job they have been asked to do and the role they have been asked to play. We are looking for people who are warm, friendly, upbeat, have a positive attitude, and are committed to the concept of “camp life”.
While we are all about having a great time at camp, we do want to make sure our campers and counselors are happy, safe, and secure in our camp environment. We look for people to work at camp who are first and foremost, concerned about the welfare of children and are willing to work hard in order to make each child’s summer an enjoyable experience. Campers come first at Eagle Hill and to this end, we expect our staff to abide by our guidelines for the good of our campers, camp itself, and for everyone’s well being. We expect that staff will comply with ideals concerning the use of tobacco, alcohol, and drugs of any kind. We are serious about what we do as a camp and we are looking for staff that will take their responsibility for working with our campers equally as seriously. We are interested in our counselors having a great summer with our campers and with each other, but never at the expense of our campers, any camp member’s safety, or the camp’s reputation. Remember, we all come to camp for different reasons, but we all have the same goal, to provide campers with an unforgettable summer. Along the way, we hope and expect that staff will have an unforgettable summer as well.