The Other 10 Months: In the Office with Henry
By Henry Weltman
Anyone who knows me, knows that my love for camp and its mission does not disappear when the summer ends. After four summers working in the youngest boys bunk on camp, I have never gotten bored of teaching basic hygiene skills, telling exciting stories to my kids, and playing around with them like a child.
This Fall, I get to see something different — the other 10 months. I have the opportunity to learn even more about our camp as I have been working in Perlman’s winter office for the past couple weeks alongside the full time team, and will be for the remainder of the calendar year.
So far, Abe and I have met to brainstorm exciting and new programming for our campers. In particular, we have focused on redesigning our senior trips, as well as creating new trips for our middle-school aged campers with the goals in mind of team-building and Tikkun Olam. Candice and I have aggregated the Judaics survey data from Summer 2018 to make intentional and effective changes to the Jewish aspects of our camp. We are exploring ways to spice up Middot and the overall Shabbat experience to ensure that campers are engaged and continuously exploring their Jewish identities. Finally, Mollie and I have been collaborating on all things camp swag, alumni relations and events, and new social media initiatives to fill our page with more campers, families, and alumni. We’ve also begun work on this year’s upcoming alumni weekend as it is even more special — We are celebrating our camp’s 65th year! As a second generation Perlman camper and staff member, I enjoy finding new ways to reach out and include alumni from all generations of Perlman.
This time in the camp office is especially exciting, since I now have the opportunity not just to give back to camp year-round, but to build on and learn from the experience I’ve never had before. Through phone calls with alumni, team meetings in the office, and daily check-ins with Mollie, I have grown professionally as well as refined my communication skills. Working full-time for camp is a dream of mine, and now I finally have my foot in the door. My experience in the bunk has helped me to create relationships with campers, but the office has allowed me to see camp from a new perspective. I now see what it takes to recruit and sign up each camper, the time and effort that goes in to contacting parents and making sure they are heard, the collaboration that happens behind the scenes to make the Summer even better before it begins. The magic of camp does not just happen on its own, but rather it takes a hard-working and dedicated team to pull it all together. I cannot wait for camp to come around this year so I can continue to progress in my Perlman career. I also look forward continuing to grow and collaborate with Candice, Abe, Mollie, and Rachel to make Summer 2019 and the years to follow enriching and impactful for our campers and families.
Henry celebrated his 13th year at Perlman this past summer. He can’t wait to return to his home away from home for Summer 2019.