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The Perennial

The Perennial

Students Work at Lower and Middle Campus

   Whether it’s giving in to demands of constant Taylor Swift songs from third graders or comforting a kid after an “unfair” football game, Pinewood students have a lot on their plate when working for camps and clubs in the Pinewood community. Whether it be counseling a sports camp or working at an academic summer program, Upper Campus Pinewood students have many experiences working across Pinewood’s campuses.

   A common opportunity for students seeking work is counseling at the sports camps for Lower and Middle Campus students  run by Andrew Slayton, the Lower Campus PE teacher. The camps occur in winter, spring and summer, giving students flexibility to find a time that works for them. Slayton offers counselors either volunteer hours, monetary compensation or a mixture of both.

   Slayton’s camps attract many students seeking to counsel for a variety of reasons. 

   “I really felt like it would enrich my social skills and it would be a fun way to fulfill my break this year,” freshman Adrian Bunanta said. 

      Sophomore Marie Redondo shared a similar sentiment to Bunanta when it came to motivations for joining the camp. Although Redondo’s initial reason for signing up was to get more service hours, she appreciated and enjoyed her work. 

   “As I started doing it more, I really started to enjoy working with all the kids from different grades, which I think is what has made me come back as a counselor so many times,” Redondo said.

   The camps also provide counselors with valuable skills.

   “It sets the idea of responsibility while also giving an opportunity to work with the younger Pinewood community,” Sophomore Zoe Detrick, a camp counselor, said, “I always chose to work this camp because it doesn’t even feel like work, I feel like I’m at my own camp.”

   Redondo agreed that the nature of the camp nurtured valuable skills.

   “I think working at his camp does essentially teach you a bunch of good life skills, such as how to solve conflicts, since the kids tend to get into disagreements a lot,” Redondo said.

   For many, counseling at Slayton’s camps served as a way to give back to the community.

   “I really enjoyed the freedom and authority at this camp,” Bunanta said, “it really is a full circle moment because I remember being a participant at this camp years back, so I feel like I’m giving back.”

   In addition to the various sports camps ran by Slayton and other members of Pinewood’s athletic staff, Pinewood offers students a job opportunity at the annual Summer Festival of Learning, an academic enrichment summer program that serves as both a transition and familiarity period for incoming students and an enriching experience for returning students. Junior Jamie Burton has worked at the program in the past and said it’s different from an average summer job.

   “It is a unique work atmosphere; it’s like a combination of pure camp counselor fun mixed in with valuable education experience that’s hard to find being just 16 or 17-years-old,” Burton said.

      Students across Upper Campus have given back to their community in a plethora of ways, dealing with members of the next generation of Pinewood students and fostering memories that will last forever.

   “A memory that stands out to me was the final couple days where we had ‘Splash Bash’ afternoons,” Burton said.  “all the little kids would team against the counselors in a giant water gun fight. It was awesome.”

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