Registration Begins in January!

The Junior Counselor Program emphasizes a high-energy, interactive hands-on learning experience! The program requires students to commit to one mandatory training camp and two-weeks of field experience. During training, mentors will review the curriculum, use team building techniques and experiential learning to prepare students for service. Once training has been completed, a Junior Counselor serves on site at a Howard County Recreation & Parks summer camp of their choosing as a "field experience".

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General Information


2024 Registration Dates


Registration for training sessions begin (for Howard County Residents):

Online registration starts January 31 at 6pm.

All other methods starts February 1.

Registration for training sessions begin (for out-of-county residents)

Online registration starts February 7 at 6pm.

All other methods starts February 8.

Registration for field experiences will open March 1, 2024 at 8am (all methods).



  • Must be 13-16 years old
  • Must possess a positive attitude and cooperative spirit
  • Must have a genuine interest in working with children and developing leadership skills
  • Must be able to respectively accept guidance and supervision
  • Able to follow rules and policies
  • Attend a training camp same year 
  • Available to spend a minimum of two weeks of field experience at a Howard County Recreation and Parks camp


  • M.A.D. Skills: Make A Difference
  • Earn service-learning hours (consult with your guidance counselor to ensure this camp meets the service learning criteria for your school) 
  • A great jump start for those looking to one day become camp counselors or program/event planners
  • Build self-esteem
  • Enhance leadership and communication skills
  • Become part of a professional team
  • Be a role model
  • Make new friends
  • Have fun!

Refund Policy & Transfers


Refund Policy 

We recognize that you may wish to withdraw for a variety of reasons, but our policy encourages early decisions so as to not affect other customers or our ability to efficiently deliver this program. 

  • Any refund request before April 15 will be processed with a 10% administrative fee withheld
  • From April 16 until four weeks prior to the camp start date, a 50% administrative fee will be withheld.
  • There will be no refunds given for requests received less than four weeks prior to the camp start date except for medical reasons accompanied by a doctor’s note. The amount to be refunded will be determined by the Program Supervisor. 

*PLEASE NOTE: The Junior Counselor refund policy is different than the Summer Camp Refund Policy*

A $10 transfer fee will apply to any movement between programs. Deadline for transfer requests is no later than the Wednesday prior to the start of the field experience. After that, no transfers will be approved.    




Please complete all required Junior Counselor Program forms. 


Contact Us


Melissa Byrne
Junior Counselor Program Supervisor

How to Register


Important Registration Information


Online registration tips: 

  • At least 48 hours before registration begins, confirm you have added your child to your account in our registration system.
  • If your child has not already been added, now is the time to do so.
  • Know your user ID & password to access the account.

Step 1: Training Camp Registration


In-person options are subject to change depending on safety precautions. If in-person options are changed to a virtual setting - field experiences may be removed from the program completely.

Training Camp
All Junior Counselors must attend one of the training camp options. No exceptions.

Returning Junior Counselors
Must attend a mandatory one day training
Click here to register

Returning Junior Counselors Extended Day
Click here to register

New Junior Counselors
Must attend a mandatory three day training
Click here to register

New Junior Counselors Extended Day
Click here to register


Step 2: Register for Field Experience


Register for two (or more) field experiences.

*Note: Registration for field experiences will open, March 1, 2024 at 8am (all methods).*

  • Junior Counselors can choose camps at which they would like to serve (first come, first served)
  • Junior Counselors can choose to serve more than two weeks
  • Weekly fees range, starting at $25 based on selection of half-day, full-day or multi-week field experience.

Days and Times Vary Depending on Camp Selection. Junior Counselors may begin field experiences only once they have completed mandatory same year training.

How To Search Field Experience Options:

  1. Visit
  2. In the SEARCH box, type “JRC”, press enter
  3. Use the Filter Box on the top to see options by location, date range, or category

This program went above and beyond any expectations. The classroom learning portion was so valuable and he learned a lot. He also enjoyed it very much!


My son has really enjoyed being a Junior Counselor for the past four years. He hopes to be employed next year and bring his sister to learn from him how to be a great counselor.


Wanted to share what my grandson told me when I picked him up from a boy scout activity, the purpose of which was to orient Webelos and cubs scouts. The troop planned activities and then worked with the younger boys. When I asked how things went, totally unsolicited my grandson said he had used skills that he learned being a Junior Counselor. He said it really helped him talking and leading the younger kids, made me glad that he saw connections.


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