Like I said in a recent post, the summer camp recruitment fairs are a fantastic chance for you to meet the camp directors face to face, and hopefully get hired on the spot! Every year, thousands of people are getting hired for summer camp this way – it’s a way to speed up the process and proactively suss out which camp you want to go to, instead of waiting for them to come to you!
You know when the recruitment fairs are (and where they are), but what do you need to know next? How should you prepare?
Before the recruitment fair
- Finish your online application with your agency. This isn’t an absolute must, as you can fill in all the forms when you arrive at the recruitment fair, but it will be better for you if you’re all done and dusted. This will show the camp directors that you are really serious about the job and are committed to doing the work.
- Do your research. The camp agencies will announce beforehand which summer camps are going to be at their recruitment fairs, so you should have a look at them all and see which ones take your fancy. Doing this will put you a step ahead of everyone else, as you will know exactly which camps to head straight to when you arrive at the fair. Have a few questions ready that you want to ask – remember it’s as much about the camp being right for you, as it is you being right for them.
- Look smart. Plan what you are going to wear. Remember that this is a job interview (or a few job interviews) – you wouldn’t turn up to a normal interview dressed in sweatpants and a hoodie, so don’t for the recruitment fairs either. You don’t need to go all ‘suit and tie’ smart, but make sure you look presentable and like you actually care about this job.
- Don’t be late! In fact, don’t just get there on time, arrive early. like, super early. Getting in before everyone else is going to be a massive advantage, as you will be able to get to the front of the queue for your chosen camp an get to show off your skills to the camp directors first!
- Talk to everyone. As well as the camp directors, a lot of camps will bring along a few staff members to man their stall – these are great people to chat to, as they are the ones who have the experience in the exact job you’re applying for. Ask them questions, get their viewpoint on the whole thing – they might even give you some tips for how to impress their camp director too!
- Smile and show off who you are. You are trying to prove that you are the right person for the job – show off your personality and present your skills, and most importantly, don’t stop smiling. Show those camp directors who you really are. And if you don’t fit the bill at a particular camp, don’t worry, just keep trying. If you are just honest and true to who you are, you will soon find the perfect camp for you.
What do you need to take?
- A printed copy of your application.
- A pen and paper so you can make notes about the camps that you talk to.
- Any certificates/qualifications that you might have (Lifeguard/high ropes etc) – these will enhance your application.
- Some references. Get your referees to write something great about you and have these printed out to show camp directors just in case they ask.
- Photos or videos of you working with kids – show off your experience. If you have one, put these on a tablet so you can easily show the camp directors!
- Food and drink if you think you might get hungry… it’s going to be a long day!
What if you get hired?
Awesome! Congratulations! All your hard work paid off. Now don’t forget to head over to your agency and get all your paperwork sorted before you leave the recruitment fair… this is pretty important! You wouldn’t want to get hired and then, in all the excitement, forget to actually get it all signed and sorted!
What if you don’t get hired?
Don’t worry. And don’t give up. Maybe the perfect camp for you just couldn’t make it to the recruitment fair. They are still out there somewhere. Maybe have a chat to your agency before you leave and find out what you might be able to do to up your chances. But most importantly, just keep waiting and keep your fingers crossed – someone will hire you soon!