staff in front of farmhouse in blue Wanakee Tshirts
Wanakee staff

The 2017 staff

Every staff member, regardless of role, is primarily concerned for camper care, safety and spiritual life. Considering this, all staff can expect to be asked to perform duties not under their specific job responsibilities. Teamwork and flexibility are essential.

Camp sessions last 3 to 6 days for campers ages 4-18. Our unique program is small-group based; relationships grow deep and life changes occur often. The primary goal is building a welcoming Christian community.

Schedule: Staff training begins mid-June. The camp season consists of seven one-week sessions. Camp ends in late August with family programming and “close camp days.”

Weekly assignments depend upon individual camp session needs. Counselors may rotate into support positions. Staff receive at least 24 hours off each week.

Benefits: training, lodging, meals, staff shirt, laundry, first aid and CPR instruction. Some receive lifeguard or ropes training. Ask us how camp builds your résumé better than almost any other summer job.

Salaries for summer staff are highly competitive in the industry and based on position / training. Returning staff receive a bonus. Staff receive a room and board package valued at $3,000. Since basic needs are provided, most staff save more of what they earn compared with friends in other jobs.

Job Descriptions

Assistant Director

The Assistant Director is integral to Wanakee’s year round operations, providing support in all aspects of camp management, with particular focus on retreats, office administration, summer program development, and volunteer management.

Full Assistant Director job description

Program Director

To further the mission of Wanakee through the planning, scheduling, and safe implementation of weekly resident camp programming, including staff supervision and volunteer support/management. Assist in the management of the overall camp operation at the direction of the Executive Director.

Full Program Director job description

Program Manager

To further the mission of Wanakee through the planning and delivery of trip/travel activities that are safe, fun, and appropriate to the campers’ age and abilities, including but not limited to canoeing, rock climbing/ropes course, and swimming. Assist in the management to the physical operation of trip/travel programs and related equipment. Assist in the planning and management of general residential programming at the direction of the Executive Director and Program Director.

Full Program Manager job description

Program Specialist

To further the mission of the camp by offering high quality and safe programming in three principal areas: faith formation, ropes/adventure, waterfront.

Full Program Specialist job description

Operations Manager and Program Assistant

To further the mission of the camp by offering high quality support in 4 main areas: Wanakee Wilderness 5K (WW5K) Event Support, Office/Store Management, Counselor Support, and Program Administration.

Full Operations Manager and Program Assistant job description


Assist the Executive Director in furthering the mission of Wanakee by maintaining quality customer service and hospitality for campers, parents, retreat groups, and volunteers, while keeping accurate records of camper and retreat registrations, finances, and communications.

Full Registrar job description

Waterfront Director

To further the mission of Wanakee through the planning and delivery of activities at the camp’s waterfront that are safe, fun, and appropriate to the camper’s age and abilities. Provide management of the physical operation of the waterfront’s facilities and equipment.

Full Waterfront Director job description

Counselors (Interns)

Counselors are the primary caregivers for campers. The Counselor is responsible for planning, teaching, coordinating, and carrying out activities and guiding campers in their personal, social, and spiritual growth and daily living skills.

Full Counselors (Interns) job description

Day Camp Counselors

Counselors are the primary caregivers for each camper. The Counselor is responsible for planning, teaching, coordinating, and carrying out activities and guiding campers in their personal growth and daily living skills.

Full Day Camp Counselors job description

Media Specialist

Wanakee seeks a photographer to capture the daily life of our campers, volunteers, staff, and site, and a skilled storyteller to share the great things happening at Wanakee using digital tools. Experience taking photos outdoors, indoors and in variable lighting is a must, as we have a wide variety of photographic needs, including group photos, campfires, talent shows, and landscapes.

Full Media Specialist job description

Head Cook

The Head Cook directs the overall food-service operation of the camp including purchasing, preparation, nutrition, service, sanitation, security, personnel management, customer service, and record keeping. In keeping with Wanakee’s Christian mission, they work to cultivate a staff culture of service and generosity.

Full Head Cook job description

Kitchen Assistant

To assist the Head Cook in preparing and serving nutritious meals and in maintaining the cleanliness and sanitation of the kitchen and dishwashing area.

Full Kitchen Assistant job description

Maintenance Supervisor

To further the mission and ministry of Wanakee by maintaining and improving Wanakee facilities, grounds, and equipment for the purpose of providing hospitality to campers, retreat groups, and volunteers. In addition, to provide maintenance support for Wanakee programs and staff, including volunteer management and staff supervision.

Full Maintenance Supervisor job description

Maintenance Assistant

Under the direction of the Executive Director, assist in the cleaning, maintenance, and repair of the camp’s buildings, grounds, equipment and other facilities consistent with the mission and established policies and procedures of the camp.

Full Maintenance Assistant job description

Employment philosophy

Family Camp cross

Wanakee Staff

Family camp cross

Wanakee United Methodist Center proclaims in word and deed the Gospel of God's Love revealed in Jesus Christ. This love is exemplified and discovered as campers, led by staff and volunteers, live, worship, work, and play together in a Jesus-centered group in the out-of-doors.

Wanakee United Methodist Center seeks to hire staff who have decided to follow Jesus, who seek to become a full participant in the Christian camp community, who participate regularly in worship at a local church and who accept this philosophy.

As an expression of their faith in Jesus Christ, all staff during their time of employment (including time-off) will set an example that honors God, other staff members, volunteers and campers through:

  • Wholesome caring relationships
  • Care for God's creations
  • A lifestyle free from abuse, waste and excess
  • A willingness to give freely of themselves
  • The practice of self-care

Equal Employment Opportunity

Wanakee provides equal employment opportunities (EEO) to all employees and applicants for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, disability or genetics. In addition to federal law requirements, Wanakee complies with applicable state and local laws governing nondiscrimination in employment in every location in which the camp has facilities. This policy applies to all terms and conditions of employment, including recruiting, hiring, placement, promotion, termination, layoff, recall, transfer, leaves of absence, compensation and training.

Wanakee expressly prohibits any form of workplace harassment based on race, color, religion, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, national origin, age, genetic information, disability, or veteran status. Improper interference with the ability of Wanakee’s employees to perform their job duties may result in discipline up to and including discharge.

How to apply

  1. Read the Wanakee Staff Application Letter
  2. Complete the online application.
  3. Participate in an interview.
  4. Participate in staff training.
  5. Begin the best job of your life.

Applications are accepted fall through spring until positions are filled. Applying early ensures your choice of positions is still available.