Training Webinars Provided by Markel – Diabetes Education & Camping Association

Training Webinars Provided by Markel

Markel’s 2019 webinars now open for registration!

Photo of Bob Ditter

Bob Ditter
New thinking about managing staff stress and anxiety at camp
Wednesday, February 13, 1:00 pm eastern
The level of anxiety in campers and staff in the United States continues to be at epidemic proportions. More and more camp directors have reported having staff members who have had to leave camp early because of anxiety they felt they couldn’t manage. In this highly insightful and practical webinar, Bob will present all new material on the wave of anxiety plaguing our young people—anxiety that is impacting their ability to be at camp—what you can do about it.

In this Webinar, you will learn the following:

  1. Four critical contributors to high stress and anxiety among young people today
  2. The failures of many interventions among young people with anxiety
  3. A critical and practical approach to anxiety in youngsters
  4. Specific practices for managing one’s own anxiety
  5. Strategies and exercises to use with staff to help them manage their stress and anxiety
  6. A tool for helping staff think about how they cope with stress at camp

Register     Download materials

Chris Thurber headshotDr. Chris Thurber
Waterfront safety design: Top ten ways to prevent accidents and injuries

Thursday, March 21, 1:00 pm eastern
Certified guards and brand new kickboards are a good start, but preventing injuries and drownings at your waterfront requires careful design of the physical plant, as well as the procedures you use for instruction, accountability, maintenance, and site-specific training. In this compelling webinar, Dr. Chris Thurber will use personal photos and his 30 years of experience as a lifeguard and waterfront director to give participants 10 safety principles that have saved lives and limbs. Now is the time to refine your pre-season safety audit and lifeguard training goals.Register

Photo of Dr. Deborah GilboaDr. Deborah Gilboa
How to put young people in jobs they’re not ready for

Tuesday, April 16, 1:00 pm eastern
We hire promising staff every year, and then give them leadership opportunities. We flex and shift our staff over the summer, putting teens and college students into jobs they’ve never done and need them to excel almost immediately. Dr. G will talk about how to set our staff – new and returning – up for success in their new roles, and how to build next year’s leadership staff this summer.


2018 Recorded webinars

Photo of Bob Ditter

Camp staff harassment safety in the age of #metoo
by Bob Ditter
It is a story that has been unfolding for over a year: the exposure of often long-standing sexual abuse and harassment of both male and female victims, by mostly men, in various positions of power. Camps have done a terrific job creating a safe environment for campers. What is needed now is a clear, nuanced approach with staff that distinguishes between healthy interest and unwanted advances, overtures, or worse. This timely webinar is targeted directly at staff, and Markel is inviting all camp professionals to participate. Additionally, the webinar will be recorded for those unable to attend the live presentation and available to show to your own staff during camp orientation. This program comes with a director’s training guide for creating a powerful, clear staff training program that has universal application to camps far and wide. Harassment is an issue that will be on the minds of staff everywhere. This thoughtful presentation and the training guide by Bob Ditter will help you be ready!

Watch now Download the Director’s Training Guide

Bob Ditter is a well-regarded child, adolescent, and family therapist from Boston, Massachusetts. He is a nationally recognized trainer and consultant for organizations that work with young people. He has been called “camping’s most articulate spokesman” because of his work with children’s summer camps since 1982. He has visited over 600 summer camps in the United States, has authored four books for camp professionals, and has developed 14 training DVDs.  Bob’s materials are available at:

2018 webinars available until June 30, 2019

Yesterday, Today, and Tomorrow: Discovering Staffing Strategies That Work
Tuesday, November 13 by  Kim Aycock and Deb Jordan
Let’s face it! Yesterday’s hiring practices aren’t achieving the results needed to get staff to work at camp in today’s world. Stack the odds in your favor by understanding the latest staffing trends and taking a look at promising practices for recruiting and hiring. Learn initial findings from ACA’s Task Force, Project Real Job, to help overcome the realities of filling staff positions and focus your energy with effective tactics for this year’s hiring season!

Watch the webinar  Download the handout

Kim Aycock, MSTKim Aycock, MST, has 30+ years of experience blending the skills of a master teacher with the knowledge of a seasoned camp expert. She trains camp staff at all levels and speaks professionally at regional and national conferences. Kim has the ability to connect with and motivate learners of all ages through her interactive and innovative presentations. Kim can be contacted at:  and Camp 2 Campus Learning Solutions.

Deb JordanDeb Jordan, Re.D., is a professor and Department Chair in the Recreation and Leisure Studies program at East Carolina University and deeply involved in the camp world. Deb is an active author having written three textbooks (leadership, programming, and an introduction to leisure), over 40 articles and book chapters, and more than 30 technical research reports. Deb conducts staff trainings and makes presentations on diversity, leadership, and ethics across the country. She is an energetic speaker who believes that people best learn by doing; thus, her sessions tend to be interactive and engaging. Deb can be contacted at

Deb and Kim are the co-leaders of ACA’s Task Force, Project Real Job, whose purpose is to examine issues related to summer camp employment and to support efforts to recruit, hire, and retain summer staff and position summer camp employment as a valuable workforce readiness experience.

What high-performance managers do differently and why it matters
Wednesday, October 10 by Dr. Jennifer Selke
Great managers are the cornerstone of every organization. Yet less than one-third of Americans are engaged in their jobs in any given year. Learn what decades of research says about what makes a great manager. Learn how focusing on the 12 needs every staff member increases staff engagement and retention. Make a plan to take your next steps to create a high performing team.

Watch the webinar Download the handout

Dr. Jennifer SelkeDr. Jennifer Selke is dedicated to helping people find jobs they love that best utilize their strengths and to helping companies engage workers for maximum impact and value. Since 2003, she has used Gallup’s strengths-based management model to successfully manage one of the nation’s largest summer camp programs at the University of California at Berkeley, employing approximately 150 high school and college students each summer. Jennifer’s expertise on the millennial generation including its culture, trends, the latest research focusing on this group and its future implications for employee engagement, motivation, retention, and workplace adaptations.

Jennifer holds a Ph.D. in Educational Psychology from the University of California at Berkeley. She is a Licensed Educational Psychologist (LEP #2858) and is on the faculty in the Graduate School of Education at the University of California at Berkeley. Her services involve direct coaching programs and workshops geared toward helping recent college graduates and high potential employees excel in the workplace.

With a background in training large groups (200+) of summer camp staff, Jennifer excels in providing dynamic, learner-centered, and experiential workshops for both large and small groups.

Developing high-potential individuals to become the next generation of thought leaders is not only Jennifer’s mission but her passion. In addition to supporting a large staff at UC Berkeley, She is also a featured facilitator with BRAND U Events, a talent accelerator working with young professionals in Fortune 500 companies and media agencies.