CIT Program

 The Gratton Leadership Program

The Gratton Leadership Program (Counselor-In-Training program) is a long-standing camp tradition at YMCA Camp Grady Spruce. The Gratton Leadership Program is a co-ed program for campers who have turned 16-years-old by June 8th of their eligible summer.  It is an application and interview-based process; applicants must demonstrate maturity and be able to represent yourselves in the same manner that we require our staff to conduct themselves- in the highest standard.

We hope that the application and interview process will help provide you with skills for the next step, i.e., college applications and ‘real world’ job interviews. It is our goal to mold strong leaders who understand that dedication and hard work will lead them to better outcomes when making choices. We are looking for those who want to give back to the camp that has given so much to them.

Program Summary

  • The 2-week co-ed Gratton Leadership Program is designed to teach leadership, community and counseling skills and teambuilding in regard to working with youth to 16-year-old participants.
  • The Gratton Leadership Program works to develop and encourage leadership, problem-solving, responsibility and independence which is essential in our staff’s futures, both at Camp Grady Spruce and life at home.  CIT’s participate in creating, supporting and leading some camp activities while enjoying the fun of camp.
  • A successful participant will have shown themselves to be enthusiastic, dedicated, hard-working and devoted to the YMCA Camp Grady Spruce Mission.
  • The CIT Leader will use the dynamics of shared experiences and responsibility to bond the participants. CITs will be visible at camp as leaders in CIT skits at campfires, hosting chapel and talent shows, assisting counselors in cabins and a canoe trip, and service projects are some of the ways the CITs will make themselves known to the camp community.
  • It is important to remember that CITs are still campers and not on staff. Their special leadership program is co-ed and includes much autonomy. They are expected to demonstrate excellent behavior and be a positive role model for the campers and camp staff. They will be held accountable for any inappropriate actions.

The Gratton Leadership Program Application Process

  • Applications must be received by December 31st, 2019. There is no deposit needed with the application.
  • Please submit all applications to our Summer Camp Director, Chance Orton, at by the deadline date. It may affect your acceptance if your application is late.

2020 Gratton Leadership Program Application Instructions 

Scholarship Assistance

Looking for help with paying for camp? Please click HERE for our Financial Assistance packet. For questions regarding Financial Assistance please contact Adam Ayres,

Fees & Dates

After acceptance, registration will begin on January 1, 2020.
CIT Session Cost: $1,525
CIT Dates: June 28th-July11th



Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Is a CIT a camper position or staff position?
A: Counselor-In-Training is a 2-week camper program.

Q: Will I ever be able to work at Camp Grady Spruce if I’m not a CIT?
A: Yes, when you are 17 you can apply for a Jr. Counselor position. When you are 18 and a high school graduate you can apply & interview for a Camp Counselor position.  First priority is given to applicants who have completed the CIT program.

Q: Can I get volunteer hours for being a CIT?
A: No, Counselor-In-Training is a leadership program.

Q: When will I know if I have been accepted to the YMCA Camp Grady Spruce CIT program?

A: All decisions will be made by February 1st, 2020.  The quicker one submits an application the quicker they will know if they have been accepted.

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