A camp counselor shows a camper how to tie their harness in for rock climbing.

Employment: Camp Staff A Day in the Life 


As a counselor at the Keystone Science School, you will work long and hard hours, but every second will be worth it. Not only do you get paid to go on adventures in the Colorado Rocky Mountains, but while you are engaging on these adventures, you will also get to have impactful conversations with campers about the natural world and watch them do things they never thought they would be able to do. Campers will walk away remembering the impact that you had on them, and you will walk away remembering the impact that they had on you.

There are several different counselor positions available at KSS:

Dedicated Counselor: Dedicated counselors are committed to working one program the entire summer: day camp or discovery camp. Day camp counselors will still help support discovery camp counselors and dedicated discovery counselors will still receive one night off a week.

Lead Counselor: Lead counselors work at either one day camp location (Silverthorne Elementary or KSS) or one overnight camp location (Bighorn, Henry, or SRV) for the entire summer. They act as a member of support staff and are the point person for their designated location.

Crossover Counselor: Most of the summer staff at KSS are crossover counselors, meaning that they will alternate working day camp and discovery camp. Based on enrollment numbers and staffing needs, they will work more day camp than discovery camp. However, when they are on day camp, they will be responsible for doing coverage for discovery counselors to have a night off. The crossover counselor position is incredibly important to helping build the “one camp” mentality that makes the KSS staff culture so positive.

When counselors work Day Camp….Counselors will wake up in their assigned living space, one of the rustic cabins located on the KSS campus. They will receive breakfast before they head to their location for the day (SVE or KSS). Campers will be dropped off between 8:30 and 9:30am and picked up between 4:30 and 5:00pm. During the day, they will lead campers in a variety of activities. However, their work day does not always end at 5:00pm. On Tuesday, staff will be responsible for working part of the Day Camp sleepover. On Wednesday or Thursday, they will be expected to work coverage for Discovery Camp. In addition, despite not having campers on Saturday, Day Camp staff will be expected to help finish up projects on Saturday morning while Discovery Staff is still working with campers. We are one camp, after all.

When counselors work Discovery Overnight Camp….Counselors will wake up in their workspace: Bighorn, Henry, or Snake River Village. The wake up time differs every morning depending on the activity that day. They will eat and be with their campers all the time, with the exception being Wednesday or Thursday night, one of which they will have off. Campers arrive on Monday afternoon and are picked up on Saturday morning.

The rewards that come with being a KSS counselor, though, do not stop when the work week ends. Keystone Science School prides itself on its strong staff community. The two weeks of staff training at the beginning of the summer allow for friendships to be established. On the weekends, staff members go adventuring with one another and many of the friendships created here last years beyond people’s time at the Science School.