Youth Camps

Course Instructors

Ian McGregor, Ph.D.: Ian McGregor and Associates Inc.
Jeff C. Heiser: Senior Assistant Director, Recreation, UC Davis
Shannon Vaccaro: Director, Sport Clubs and Youth Activities, University of Nebraska, Lincoln

Course Goal

This online course is designed for Campus Recreation professionals who have direct responsibility for Youth Camps. The primary goal of the course is to provide Camp Administrators with the knowledge and skills needed to manage the challenging, multi-faceted (and high risk) Youth Camps program — irrespective of the type of camp being planned (sport, activity, academic etc.).

Course Description

The Standard of Care required for Youth Camps is very high — mostly because you are dealing with minors. While some of the risk management issues discussed are identical to those handled on a day-to-day basis in other Campus Recreation programs, many issues are unique to Youth Camps — e.g. residence camps, camp counselors, employee background screening, medical screening for allergies, behavioral issues.

This course will focus on how to develop an operational ‘framework’ to help organize and manage safe Youth Camps. The framework provided focuses on the four key areas: Structure & Philosohpy; Camps Management; Managing Risk; Transportation Issues & Residential Camps.

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of this course, you will be able to:

  1. Develop a framework to effectively manage Youth Camps.
  2. Assess current and future camps from a risk management perspective.
  3. Assess appropriateness of facilities and equipment for camp activities.
  4. Learn the importance of supervision ratios and lesson plans.
  5. Determine which staff to hire and what qualifications they need.
  6. Learn the importance of employee screening and training.
  7. Implement an effective medical screening program for camp participants.
  8. Develop an effective Youth Camps Handbook.
  9. Communicate effectively with your key clients — the parents.
  10. Understand the key risk management issues impacting Youth Camps
  11. Understand the key issues to address when operating high-risk Residence Camps.
  12. Learn the key areas to address if your camps have a travel component.

Course Length

This is a 4 week course (fourth week is optional depending on whether you have a Residential component and/or transport campers to offsite venues. Course work and assignments should take approximately 5-8 hours per week.

Course Features

  • Online format means students work at their own speed, in their own timeRegistry-Logo01-blue
  • Webinars used to deliver online ‘lectures’ – also incorporate student Q&A
  • Small class size maximizes class interactions
  • Course participants establish a network with colleagues from across North America
  • Results-oriented assignments are based on real department situations
  • Certificate of Completion’ issued to all participants who successfully complete the course (you must complete a min. 75% of each week’s assignments)
  • One (1) CEU credit available through the NIRSA Registry!

Course Text

While there is no course text, the ACA book ‘Basic Camp Management’ is highly recommended. Reading material will be provided.

Who is Course aimed at?

The course is aimed at full time professionals who are looking to implement a simple, practical and doable Youth Camps framework — or are seeking ways to improve and better manage their current program. Content is applicable for professionals new to Youth Camps and also staff who have previously managed Camps. There will be extensive networking opportunities, with ‘real’ project assignments being geared towards Youth Camps issues specific to your campus.

Course Outline

Course runs Feb 3 – 28, 2014 (4 weeks)

Maximum course registration: 16

Register now to secure your place!  To Register: go to ‘Add to Cart’ and pay through PayPal – you are then automatically registered and you’ll receive confirmation within 24 hours.

Fee: $455 USD

To get more information contact Ian McGregor directly at

The Risk Management Best Practice program provides institutionally-specific feedback allowing our University Recreation department to prioritize areas for improvement to enhance the safety and well-being of our participants.  The thorough analysis by areas of operations provides our staff tangible information to determine our next steps and most effective course of action.  This feedback would take much longer and be less objective if we attempted to undertake the reviews on our own. The comparative data is good for learning trends in best practices of other institutions.

George M. Brown

Assistant Vice Provost,
Director of University Recreation and Wellness
The University of Minnesota

For more information on our Online Courses,
contact us now!