Some of the benefits of working at Wonderland Camp include:

  • Living on the beautiful Lake of the Ozarks
  • Free room and board
  • Earning college credit if you make arrangements with your professors
  • Learning skills like teamwork, communication, and organization that will prepare you for your future career.
  • Helping make a difference in the lives of others.
  • Creating life-long memories and friendships with other staff members.


  • You must be at least 16 years old to apply for a paid position at Wonderland Camp and 18 years old for cabin and program roles.
  • You must provide two references we can call who will vouch for your good character and work ethic..
  • You must be able to pass a background check and pass a medical physical administered by your personal doctor.
  • You must be able to attend paid staff training in person at camp from May 16 -20; Ropes course staff training is required from May 15-20.
  • All staff except nurses, kitchen staff, and certain other support team members will sleep in the cabins with other counselors and our campers. All will help take care of the personal care needs of our campers, including helping them use the toilet and take showers.
  • You will have a phone or face-to-face interview with the Camp Director or Assistant Camp Director that you will arrange when you complete the online application.
  • Priority is given to staff who are available for all 11 weeks of camp. If you will need time off, you will need to inform us during the interview.

A Day in the Life of a Wonderland Camp Counselor

Summer Jobs at Wonderland Camp

There are many jobs to do at camp in the summer. Almost all of them interact directly with our amazing campers. Be sure to read A Day in the Life of a Wonderland Camp Staff Member as you consider which job might be perfect for you. See our FAQs about working at camp, too.

Job Title: Cabin Leader  - FILLED
A Cabin Leader must be 18 years or older. A Cabin Leader is in charge of daily operations of cabin life during camp. They are responsible for cabin cleanliness and camper personal care, maintaining the schedule, supervision of Cabin Counselors, all responsibilities that come with being a mandatory reporter, and assisting in camper care. These individuals typically have at least a year of experience with individuals with special needs, summer camp and/or supervising peers.

Job Title: Counselor
A Counselor must be 18 years of age or older. Counselors should be able to organize and conduct activities with campers. They help campers with all aspects of camp including activities, personal care (including but not limited to helping campers dress, shave, shower, brush teeth, use the bathroom, and change adult diapers such as Attends) and down time. Counselors should be able to follow directions from Cabin Leaders and Program Staff. All Counselors participate in all camp programs with their campers. A Counselor should be able to work with the Wonderland Camp staff as a team. Please read A Day in the Life of a Wonderland Camp Staff Member page for a more in depth view of this position. 

Job Title: Leadership Team - FILLED
The support team should have extensive knowledge of camp, serving individuals with special needs and/or supervision of peers. The CST members supervise and support the cabin and program teams. They work with the Camp Director and Assistant Camp Director to ensure the highest quality of staff training and support. Positions include: Program Director, Assistant Program Director, Residential Life Coordinator, Cabin Coordinators, Waterfront Director, Evening Program Director and a VR Coordinator.

Job Title: Camp Clinic Director  - FILLED
The clinic director is responsible for the overall operation of our medical clinic and for all clinic staff supervision. The director will be a registered nurse, a physician's assistant, or a medical doctor who ideally will live on site for the 12 weeks of the summer and be available to help manage staffing and operations during spring and fall weekends if possible. The director will respond to medical emergencies as needed, and supervise the charting, dispensing, and documentation of all medications given to campers by the clinic. The clinic director will report to the Camp Director.

Job Title: Cabin Medication Aide
Our Cabin Medication Aide (or CMA) role is very similar to a counselor position but with the added medical responsibilities. (Be sure to read “A Day in the Life of a Wonderland Camp Counselor” above.) Our CMAs work under our nurses to help check in, prepare, and administer camper medications each week. This is a great opportunity for a nursing student to gain a lot of hands-on experience in the field! This position also lives and works in the cabin; when not doing medical- specific duties they will be helping campers with activities, personal care, etc. This is a challenging position at camp that takes dedication, organization, and a lot of hard work! 

Job Title: Medical Professional (Licensed Practical Nurses)
Our camp clinic is staffed 24/6. People in this role will live onsite and respond to camper and staff medical needs as well as emergencies. They report to the Clinic Director and Camp Director. They will work closely with our certified medication aides, and the camp support team. They’re often called upon at night so will need to sleep with a walkie-talkie nearby.

Job Title: Dietary/Nutrition Intern
This individual should be studying to be a dietitian, nutritionist, or for a position in a food-service- related field. They will work with our kitchen teams and learn all aspects of the kitchen (meal planning, food prep, sanitation, serving etc.) The Dietary intern will work to plan healthy daily snacks for campers and staff. They will also assist with camper check-in to discuss special dietary needs/allergies with families and caregivers to ensure we are supporting those needs. When not working in the kitchen they will help within cabins, gaining more experience serving individuals with special needs. This position is a blend of kitchen staff, dietary specialist and camp counselor. They should expect to be cooking, serving food, doing dishes, prepping special diet meals, and all other aspects of working in a commercial kitchen as well as being in cabins serving individuals with special needs of all ages. (These are paid internships)

Job Title: Kitchen Staff
Kitchen Staff members work in our industrial kitchen in our large dining hall. We need prep cooks who will work under the supervision of our kitchen manager to prepare three meals a day plus snacks, clean our kitchen and dining hall, and clean the dining hall restrooms. The kitchen staff work week is from Sunday afternoon through Friday at noon, and you’ll either work the morning shift or the afternoon shift as determined by our kitchen manager. Kitchen staff do not stay in the cabins, but housing may be available to those who are interested. Please ask during your interview. The salary is $8.50 per hour but may be higher depending on experience.

Job Title: Waterfront Director - FILLED
Our waterfront director should be great at leading their peers and must have strong organizational skills. Having a lifeguard certification and/or Missouri boating license is a plus but not mandatory. (We can help the right candidate obtain these.). The WF Director will help the Program Director make the weekly schedule for boating, communicate with boat and tractor drivers, help schedule our lifeguard team at the lake, and operate all aspects of the waterfront such as fishing, paddle boats, etc. In addition to waterfront responsibilities the WF Director will live and work in cabins just like all program staff positions, help with evening programs, camper care etc. 

Job Title: Program/Activities Staff 
Includes: Arts and Crafts, Nature (Birds, Wildlife, Hikes), Recreation (Group Games, Sports, Water Play, Fun!), Music/Drama (Singing, Talent Show), Shooting range (BB guns and archery) Photographer/Social Media (Weekly DVD, Pictures, Facebook), Lifeguards (pool and waterfront), Evening Program (responsible for the planning of all evening programs, dances, carnivals, etc). Program Staff must be at least 18 years old. They will help plan and facilitate activities. Program staff are also assigned to cabins and will be helping Counselors with camper care. They must have the appropriate current certification, if required, in their designated area (America Red Cross or other National Certification for Lifeguards, etc). The Program Staff should be able to organize and supervise groups consisting of campers and counselors. The Program Staff should display interest, knowledge and skills in their activity area and the ability to instruct others. Creativity and adapting activities for individuals with disabilities a MUST.

Job Title: Challenge Course Staff
Challenge Course staff members are part of our program staff who spend most of their time helping campers use our high ropes equipment, including our climbing wall, giant swing, tree climb, and Burma bridge. Challenge Course staff must be physically fit and have good body balance and coordination. They also must attend an extra five days of paid training prior to the beginning of all-staff training. If they leave camp before their commitment without prior approval, they must reimburse the cost of the training to Wonderland Camp. Challenge Course staff will live and work in the cabins just like all program staff positions and will help with evening programs, camper care, etc.

Job Title: Leader in Training  - FILLED
The Leader in Training (LIT) must be 16 or 17 years of age. The LIT will shadow a Cabin Leader or Counselor to learn various skills that are needed to become a Counselor. An LIT is not directly responsible for any camper needs but will assist as needed and will gain leadership and professional skills.

Wonderland Camp is an equal opportunity employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability, or protected veteran status.


FAQs About Working at Camp

What kind of people do you look for to be staff?
The answer is, all kinds! Because we do not serve only one type of camper, we do not look for one specific type of person to work here. Special needs experience or  camp experience is great, but really, we want people who are ready to spend their summer serving others and giving our campers the time of their life! We can teach just about anyone the ins and outs of camp, but we can’t teach people to care. This is a hard job:  we serve children and adults; we help with personal care; and we work crazy long hours; but we feel you get back tenfold what you put in. If that all sounds good to you, we would love to have you apply!

Do I have to attend the staff training week?
Yes! Our goal is to have everyone at staff training! It’s not only important to learn all the things we do but also to come together as a team! Plus, you get paid! For excellent  returning staff who can’t make it to training, we will consider doing a condensed training upon arrival, but such decisions are made on a case-by-case basis. If you’re hired mid-summer, you will receive a condensed training session when you arrive covering the most important aspects of camp. You may be asked to read some preparation material before you arrive, as well.

What do we do in staff training?
We go over everything from how to help campers with personal care or work through a challenging behavior, to things like communication games and team-building activities. We try to make training fun, active, and educational. The schedule reflects a typical week at camp and will include things like how to help campers at archery or what to do in case of a medical emergency. We hire about 115 summer staff and so the other goal is to get to know your team!

Do staff get any time off during the summer?
Of course! During the days, you get at least an hour off. Also you’ll get another hour or two a week off during rest hour right after lunch as you’ll rotate with your cabinmates for who has cabin duties during the rest hour and who gets that hour off. If you’re on duty, you can rest on your bunk while your campers take a break, too. Finally you’ll have an hour at night between about 10:00 and midnight which you’ll schedule with your cabinmates.   We wrap up each week by 3:00p.m. on Fridays, so you’ll have Friday evening, all of Saturday, and Sunday morning off. On Sunday, you’re due back at 12:00noon as we gear up for another glorious week at camp!

During time off are we allowed to stay on site?
Yes, staff are welcome to head off site or stay on during the weekends off. Food is provided during the weekends. (We have a sign-up during the week so we know how much to food to prepare).

Do I need to work the entire summer?
Our summer is one week of training and 11 full weeks of camp. We give priority to staff who can work the entire summer, however, it is not unusual that staff need one week off for a wedding or family vacation. Sometimes staff also need to leave a week early to go back to school. If you are thinking about just coming for one or two weeks we would love to have you apply as a volunteer!

What is the difference between the ‘Cabin Leader’ position and the ‘Cabin Counselor’ position? 
Please read A Day in the Life of a Wonderland Camp Staff Member regardless of which position you are applying for! We hire one Cabin Leader per cabin (11 total) and about 55 Counselors. The Cabin Leader lives and works in the cabin just like a counselor but they have the added responsibility of supervising/supporting the counselors and program staff in their cabin. They make cabin hour-off, rest hour, and night schedules, and they communicate with other staff about any needs in their cabin.

Do we work in the same cabin each week?
Nope. We move around at the end of the week so you can have a chance to work with a wide range of campers. You could have 10-year-old boys one week and the next be with 70-year-young ladies! Our female staff do work with both genders; however, our male staff work only with male campers. This also gives you a chance to work with a lot of different staff!

A lot of the job descriptions talk about camper personal care. What is that?
Some of our campers do require personal care. This is different for everyone based on their needs and abilities, but may include help in the bathroom or shower, brushing teeth, eating, shaving, and getting dressed. We go over this extensively in staff training and it is never something a staff does alone. Personal care can, at times, be a big part of caring for our campers.

Can I bring a car to camp?
Sure, we have a staff parking lot. About 50% of our staff brings cars, so it’s not unusual to have one or not have one!

Are there certain things I should not bring to camp?
Yes, you will receive a suggested packing list with all the fun staff paperwork after we hire you. Some things we do not allow onsite include alcohol (no matter your age) or illegal substances, fireworks, personal outdoor rec equipment like rifles, hunting bows, knives, ATVs etc.

Can staff smoke onsite? 
No, we do not allow summer staff to smoke on camp property. Some of our adult campers do smoke in a designated area.

Will my cell phone work at camp?
Sometimes! Cell service at camp is tough at times, there are a couple spots that work great that we would encourage you to use during your hours off. AT&T seems to work the best; that’s what our year-round staff use.  Some people have success with Sprint (but Verizon tends to struggle).  You can use your cell phone in your time off, but not when you’re with our campers.

Can my pet come to camp? 
Sadly, no. We know it is hard to leave your puppy (or goldfish) at home but we must ask you to do so.

Can I do my internship or field placement at camp?
Yes! Many of our staff are completing these. Each college is different on requirements and what needs to go into these programs so we accept these on an individual basis. In the past we have had students doing an internship/field placement in areas of PT, OT, Rec therapy, Non-profit management, hospitality, AND MORE!

 I am an out of state college student in Missouri. Can I gain residency working at camp?
Yes! This is common for some of our staff; however, we are not experts in this area and recommend talking with your school on this subject. Because we provide room and board you will have a Missouri address over the summer as well as paychecks from camp which all go into gaining residency and in-state tuition



Wonderland Camp
18591 Miller Circle 
Rocky Mount, MO 65072