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Counselors In Training

The Counselor in Training (CIT) program gives youth 13-18 the opportunity to develop leadership skills during Metroparks Summer Camp program and other educational outreach events. CIT applicants should be at least 13 by June 1, 2024, and should not have graduated from high school prior to 2024.

Being a CIT is an excellent way to earn service hours, gain valuable experience and build friendships with other teens.

Time Commitment: The 2024 program involves a commitment to attend 3 training sessions and the availability to complete at least two full weeks of camp. Camps run from June 3 through August 2. All camps run Monday through Friday, beginning no earlier than 8:15 a.m. and running no later than 3:00 p.m. 

Variety of fun activities: CITs help with a variety of activities including archery, canoeing, outdoor exploration, wilderness survival, tree climbing, geocaching, fishing, arts & crafts, nature education, and more!

Training: Metroparks provides training for CITs in leadership, interpersonal skills and environmental education.

Application Information: Only 30 CITs will be accepted for the 2024 season. The selection process includes filling out a volunteer application, providing two non-related references, and an interview. Application and references are due by February 28.

Application process

New CIT Applicants

Read the New CIT Information, below, to apply, get your reference forms, and sign up for your CIT interview. 

Returning CIT Applicants

Contact Hannah Calandra at 419-407-9840 or to let her know that you want to return as a CIT for this summer. Once you have notified Hannah you will receive an email with the next steps in the process.

Important dates for NEW 2023 CIT Applicants:

February 28: Deadline for applications and reference forms

March 6 & 7: CIT Interviews in 15-minute timeslots between 5 and 7 p.m.; Wildwood Manor House

March 8: Acceptance date 

New CIT Applicant Information

To complete the application process, please follow these steps:

  1. Complete Volunteer Application
    Fill out a Volunteer Applicationby February 28. Indicate in the Volunteer Assignment section that you'd like to be a CIT. Volunteer Orientation is only recommended but not a requirement to volunteer. 

  2. Provide References
    Identify two potential references who have known you for at least one year and are not related to you. The references should be able to speak about your leadership goals and abilities. This could be a teacher, coach, religious leader, neighbor, a family friend, etc.

    Personally ask the two people if they will be a reference for you. Be sure to give them an explanation of the CIT program.

    Send the reference form linkto your two references by email. Instruct your references to complete their reference form no later than February 28 for consideration.

  3. Schedule an Interview
    Learn how to log in and schedule yourselffor an interview. Interviews are on either March 6 or  March 7 and are being held at Wildwood Preserve in the Manor House. Interviews are each 15 minutes long, and run between 5  and 7 p.m. Sign up for your CIT interview.

CIT Applicants acceptance into the CIT program will receive an acceptance email by March 4. If accepted, mark your calendar for these mandatory training sessions:

Orientation & Workshop A:  March 19 and 21, from 6 to 7:30 p.m., choose either day; Wildwood Preserve, Metroparks Hall. An adult is is required to attend along with the CIT. 

Workshop B:  Saturday, April 27, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.; Wildwood Preserve, Metroparks Hall. For CITs only, bring a lunch and a water bottle. Dress to be outside.

Workshop C:  Friday, May 31, 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.; outdoor skills training; Side Cut Metropark, Rotary Pavilion. Bring a water bottle and change of clothes, lunch is provided. Prepare to be outside, and to learn and participate in canoeing, archery, fishing and other outdoor skills.

Instructions on how to schedule yourself online for these CIT training sessions will be included in the acceptance email. 


Starting April 29, sign up for camp shifts on a first come, first-served basis. Each camp has a specific number of needed CITs. 

Questions? Contact Hannah Calandra, Volunteer Coordinator, at or 419-407-9840.

CITs need to complete at least two full weeks of camp. The two weeks do not need to be consecutive. Check your summer schedule and talk with your family regarding your available weeks this summer for camp. Factor in which parks are convenient for you to get to. 

Thank you for volunteering! We look forward to receiving your application, references, and to meeting you during your interview.

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