Teen leadership

Counselor In Training

Take your skills up a notch, get valuable training, and spend an unforgettable summer forging friendships as part of a team!

Now Accepting School Year CITs!

Experience the benefits of our CIT program all year round.

As a Teen Counselor with Primitive Pursuits you will have the opportunity to learn and teach side by side with our seasoned year-round staff in the following areas:

  • Leadership & Team Building
  • Environmental Studies
  • Primitive Technologies
  • Curriculum Design & Implementation
  • Mentoring Practices

Many graduates have continued on with Primitive Pursuits and other local nature awareness programs as paid employees. Others, after graduating high school, have gone on to establish popular outdoor adventure programs while at schools like Tufts University and SUNY ESF - a testament to the experience they had here with Youth Environmental Leadership.

You will also have the opportunity to gain one-on-one mentoring in both primitive and naturalist skills, as well as gain assistance in any resume building endeavors you seek.

Who: Teens aged 13 -17

When: Spaces are also available for each after school, school break, and home school program.

Get Excited!
Summer CIT Applications available starting February 2020

A Day in the Life of a Summer CIT:

CIT's arrive at camp early to participate in the pre-day game plan with staff. This sneak peek behind the scenes allows teens to begin developing an awareness for both curriculum design as well as the need for improvisation, making last minute changes due to things like weather or new opportunities. Throughout the day they will play dual roles; both as participants, practicing skills with the group, and as assistants, being called upon to lead activities. At the end of each day they will be asked to participate with others staff in our daily debrief, and to assist in our after camp care.

We set a high bar for creating powerful experiences for all our participants, and our youth leaders are in the unique position of practicing mentoring skills with the support of our seasoned staff in a camp setting. If you join us this summer as a CIT or Jr. Counselor you will also have access to the following:

  1. Skill Training Days - CIT's get direct instruction from core Primitive Pursuits staff. Before the start of summer programs you will also attend our summer staff training.
  2. Leadership Opportunities - Mentoring younger participants at programs each week, and build on your interpersonal skills through engaging with others.
  3. One on one coaching and skill assessment in four core areas: Primitive Technology, Outdoor Skills, Teaching, Teamwork and Professionalism.
  4. Resumé Assistance - Put it on your Resumé or CV. We provide references for job and college applications!
  5. Regalia - The coveted, limited edition 2020 Mentor or CIT shirt.

Are you ready for the challenge? See below for more details about eligibility and details for being a Summer CIT.

Details about Primitive Pursuits CIT program:
  • Who: Teens aged 13 -15
  • When: CIT spaces are offered each week of summer.
  • What: CITs are eligible for Day Camps and Growing Wild Camps. CITs are eligible to work with instructors on our Advanced Day Camps and Specialty Camps by invitation only.
  • How: Fill out our application below - there are limited spaces available in the CIT program. We will schedule an interview with each applicant and start accepting people into the program in April 2020.
  • All CITS are required to participate in the Staff Training Day on Friday, June 26.
  • All CITs are required to participate in either Coyote Camp or Coyote Trek, based on their age.
  • CITs must apply and be accepted into the program first, before registering for the program.
  • CIT's are required to do at least 2 weeks as a CIT over the course of the summer, and encouraged to do more!
  • Additional weeks as a CIT costs $50-100, sliding scale.
Information about the 2019 Coyote Camp & Coyote Trek programs:
Coyote Camp for 13 and 14 yr olds:
Week 1: July 1-5, 2019 $300-400 sliding scale:
  • Included one week of Coyote Camp and two weeks as a CIT in day camp
  • Monday through Friday day camp, with Thursday Overnight for 14 year olds only (additional $60)
Coyote Trek for 15 year olds:
Week 5: Tues July 30 - Thursday, Aug 1, 2019 $250-350 sliding scale:
  • Included one week of Coyote Trek and two weeks as a CIT in day camp
  • Tuesday - Thursday overnight (3 days, two nights), picking up and dropping off at Arnot Forest Camp

*All programs are priced on a self determined sliding scale. Funds received above the base rate are tax-deductible and used for scholarships.


"Primitive Pursuits is the highlight of my son’s year! He loves everything about it." J.H., Parent

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