Celebrating Amanda Thompson

Staff Member Spotlight: Amanda!

How have your summers at Camp Laurelwood shaped you into the person you are today?

They say college is some of your most transformative years, but I disagree. I think time spent at camp is some of the most transformative years in one’s life. Growing up, I was quite shy but the more time I spent at Laurelwood, the more I was pushed out of my comfort zone. Without camp, I don’t think I would’ve developed a skill set that enabled me to go to a university across the United States from where I live, study abroad in Singapore, or succeed in other growth opportunities. Also, thanks to camp, I’ve grown closer with my brothers and made many meaningful relationships with mentors, campers, and lifelong friends.

Tell us more about your internship experience and the projects you worked on!

This past summer, I worked as a Mental Health and Wellness Intern for the Foundation for Jewish Camp. We received training on mental health topics and learned about social-emotional wellbeing and resilience. Based on the trainings, we worked in pairs to create and develop a resource to elevate, enhance, and promote mental, emotional, social, and spiritual health and wellbeing for the field of Jewish camp.

My partner and I worked on a series of nine ready-made musical playlists (which you can find on Spotify), and are color-coded based on mood. We decided to categorize the playlists into colors rather than feelings because we felt there is so much more range and depth in both rather than a one-dimensional word, such as “happy” or “sad” to describe how you are feeling. The color playlists include pink, red, orange, yellow, green, blue, purple, black, and white. My personal favorite is the green playlist because it gives me camp-vibes, but these playlists are open to interpretation!

How has CL helped to drive your future career?

I’m so thankful for Camp Laurelwood because it has given me roots to grow and wings to fly, and with that, I get to see my own campers grow, both as leaders and people. Working as a counselor and then later a division head, I quickly realized that I loved working with kids. I love being able to help them work through adversities and help them develop their own skill sets, which is why it is my hope to become a pediatric psychologist.

Thank you, Amanda! We are so proud of you and wish you the best of luck on all of your future endeavors!

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