October 2017

Youth Leadership

Youth Leadership Programs
Challenging opportunities for teens and youth

The Trail Blazers youth leadership program combines focused summer intensive opportunities with year-round leadership summits. Our Leaders in Training and Internship programs offer a unique combination of outdoor adventure, life skills and environmental leadership development that take participants through the summer and beyond. This is an exciting opportunity for high school students to engage, connect and grow.

Leaders in Training is a four-week overnight camp program crafted to develop teens into well-rounded, productive adults. Using the resources of our 1000 acre estate in Northern New Jersey, LITs live and work together in a rustic smallcamp, with a multi-night Vagabond as a highlight of the experience. The Trail Blazers Internship is a full-summer program designed for 17- and 18-year-old Trail Blazers who have participated in at least one session of our LIT program. Our Internship puts skills gained during prior summers to the test through outdoor adventure challenges, and sets our teens up to take on the challenge of life after high school through job skills training, in-depth goal setting and reflection as well as a paid work opportunity at camp. Participants of the LIT and Internship programs are invited to further enhance the skills they have acquired during our specialized year-round summit opportunities.

Environmental Stewardship

An immersive experience in the outdoors provides constant opportunities to reflect on the world around us and our role in shaping and caring for our local and global environments.

Community Service

Through discussions and needs assessments, our young leaders plan and implements projects to benefit their communities at camp and at home.

Leadership Development

Training opportunities and workshops modeled after our staff training program, deepened through opportunities for work experience at camp as part of our Internship.

Personal Growth

Goal setting and personal reflection happen daily - with a supportive cohort of young leaders around you, there's nothing you can't take on!

Select for more information:
Leaders in Training Program

The Leaders in Training program gives youth an in-depth opportunity to focus on four areas specifically crafted to develop teens into well-rounded, productive adults.

Environmental Stewardship
Taking a cue from our year-round Under One Sky program, LITs expand the notion of environment to include everywhere we work, live, and play. Program Highlight: Environmental training inspired by Leave No Trace outdoor ethics, driving home the ideas of personal responsibility and respect for the world around you.

Community Service
LITs have the chance to become better citizens, more engaged in the world around them, and to see themselves as active participants in their communities. Program Highlight: The opportunity to accumulate community service hours through a project of your design, a great way to boost your college application.

Leadership Development
Being a Leader in Training gives youth the opportunity to become positive role models and strong leaders, and to put those skills into practice by leading younger campers. Program Highlight: Leadership development training that mirrors the training received by our camp staff.

Personal Growth
LIT participants learn how to reflect on what they are experiencing, what they value, and who they are. They talk about what motivates them, set goals, and learn how to focus their efforts. Program Highlight: American Red Cross First Aid and CPR training, so you can leave camp with a certification good for two years and confidence knowing that if an emergency arises, you’ll be able to step up.

Summer Internship Opportunity

The Trail Blazers Internship is a full-summer program designed for 17- and 18-year-olds who have participated in at least one session of our LIT program. Upon successful completion of the internship, participants will be invited to apply for a position at Trail Blazers the following summer. The Trail Blazers Internship is divided into three phases:

The Ultimate Trail Blazer

This is a rigorous program designed to test the participants’ growth in each of Trail Blazers’ six value areas. Interns design this portion of the program, collaborating with each other to plan a two-week schedule. Their program includes a vigil fire, 24-hour solo, and a four-night Vagabond.

Anticipated Outcomes: Ability to overcome significant challenges, plan and execute events, and set concrete goals. Increased capacity for teamwork and communication. Demonstration of perseverance, tenacity and grit.

Life Skills and Staff Training

Participants receive life skills, college readiness, and job readiness training, along with training specific to their upcoming work experience at camp. Guest presenters lead sessions on career planning, job interviews, and civic responsibility. Interns participate in workshops on personal health, intentional decision making, healthy relationships and communication.

Anticipated Outcomes: Ability to articulate short- and long-term goals. Increased understanding of healthy behaviors and relationships. Acquisition of job readiness skills including resume-building and interviewing.

Work Experience

Participants join Trail Blazers for the second half of the summer as interns, receiving a $250 stipend at the completion of their 4-week work assignment. They work closely with their direct supervisor, receiving constructive feedback that they will be responsible for implementing. At the completion of this phase of the internship, participants receive a letter of recommendation from their direct supervisor or the camp director.

Anticipated Outcomes: On-the-ground job skills. Increased ability to manage time, stress, and communication. Increased ability to receive and implement feedback. Increased confidence.

Internships are offered to youth who have previously participated in at least one session of the Trail Blazers LIT program. Acceptance into the Internship program is by invitation only.


Leaders in Training Session Dates
Participants are eligible to sign up for either Session One or Session Two of the Leaders in Training summer intensive.

LIT Session 1
Sun July 2nd – Fri July 28th

LIT Session 2
Sun July 30th – Fri Aug 25th

Internship Dates
Note: Participation in the Trail Blazers Internship is by invitation only.

The program runs from July 2nd through August 25, with breaks where interns are required to return home. Specific dates will be communicated to participants.

Ages, Cost and Registration

The Trail Blazers Internship is a full summer program designed for 17- and 18-year-olds who have previously completed at least one session of the LIT program. Participation in the Trail Blazers Internship is by invitation only. The Internship is a free program, with interns receiving a small stipend upon completion of their work assignment.

Our 4-week Leaders in Training program open to current high school students ages 14 through 17.

All Trail Blazers programs are offered on a tier basis, loosely linked to family income. Important: Cost should not deter you from sending your child to camp! Additional discounts are available at ALL TIER LEVELS. Requests are honored after your application has been submitted. For more information, email us at

TIER 1 (family income up to $30,000 annually)

  • Leaders in Training: $1000

TIER 2 (family income $30,000 – $60,000 annually)

  • Leaders in Training: $1500

TIER 3 (family income $60,000 – $90,000 annually)

  • Leaders in Training: $2000

TIER 4 (family income over $90,000 annually)

  • Leaders in Training: $2500

Your tier is self selected during the application process. Our aim is to make summer camp possible for all kids who want a chance to experience Trail Blazers, and we look forward to working with you to make this happen.

Download Fee Details Enroll Today