Counselor-in-Training (CIT) Program 

The purpose of the Counselor-in-Training (CIT) program at The Fresh Air Fund is to prepare young adults to take future leadership roles working with children in camps and other professional settings. The CIT program is designed to teach CITs the skills needed to work with children and to help them improve their leadership, team-building, and communication skills. Participants are asked to be role models to young campers by exhibiting positive leadership and behaviors.


All of The Fresh Air Fund camps are located on Sharpe Reservation in Fishkill, NY (65 miles north of NYC). Positions are available at Camp Anita Bliss Coler (ABC), Camp Hayden-Marks, and Camp Tommy. CITs at each camp will live together as a group in rustic cabins that may not have electricity. CITs will be placed at one of the following camps:

Camp Hayden Marks – Serves campers ages 9-12, all-boys
Camp Tommy – Serves campers ages 12-15, all-boys
Camp ABC – Serves campers ages 9-15, all-girls

All applicants must:

  • Be either 16 or 17 years old by June 27, 2017
  • Be available for the entire summer program (see dates below)
  • Be a former Fresh Air Fund participant or a participant of a similar camp program
  • Have an interest in working with children and improving leadership and communication skills through workshops and hands-on activities in an outdoor setting
  • Be flexible and open to trying new programs and being a cooperative member of a team
  • Meet the program requirements for The Fresh Air Fund:
    • Must live in and go to school in one of NYC’s five boroughs AND
    • Must be eligible for free or reduced lunch under the USDA income guidelines


The CIT program runs from June 27, 2018 through August 17, 2018. While our campers attend one camp session, CITs are required to attend all four sessions in order to successfully complete the program. Between each session listed below, CITs will return home for approximately three days. The Fresh Air Fund will provide buses to and from camp for CITs during the program.

Session 1                        Wednesday, June 27    –    Friday, July 6

Session 2                        Monday, July 9              –    Friday, July 20

Session 3                        Monday, July 23            –    Friday, August 3

Session 4                        Monday, August 6         –    Friday, August 17


Session 1 – Session 1 focuses heavily on skill building workshops centered on professional development, self-exploration, understanding camp life, team building, and beginning mental and physical training for the 4 day hike on the Appalachian Trail.

Session 2  Session 2 focuses on continuing preparations for the 4 day hike. CITs begin observing and shadowing program areas to understand the roles and responsibilities of staff members at camp.

Session 3 – CITs will hike the Appalachian Trail. CITs will also shadow general counselors to gain more hands on experience working with children.

Session 4 – Each CIT is placed with a group of campers to fully assist in the day to day responsibilities of camp staff in caring for campers.

In addition, CITs will have the opportunity to participate in camp-wide community service projects and a guided reading project, as well as plan various programs for the camp community. CITs will have nightly reflections and receive frequent evaluations from CIT staff to continually promote growth. CITs may also obtain CPR and First Aid Certification during their time at camp.


We are no longer accepting CIT applications for 2017. Please check back here in January 2018 for next summer’s application!