Steve had attended summer camps as a child, but as he got older, he found himself gravitating towards working summer jobs instead of prioritizing a camp experience. After visiting Camp Asbury during a winter retreat with the Mahoning Valley District Youth when he was in high school, he found his love of camp renewed. He was compelled to fill out an application to work at Asbury as a small-group counselor.

Beginning his camp journey again, this time as a counselor, Steve quickly learned that he had a great work ethic. However, his people skills needed attention. “I went to a small high school where all the people were the same.” He recalls, “At camp, the people were different, and I struggled to work with people of various backgrounds and experiences.” But despite being in uncharted territories, Steve learned to adapt. “I learned that we all come from different backgrounds, and everyone is learning and figuring things out in their own way. Camp taught me that learning how to work with people who are different than you doesn’t need to be a struggle. There’s a goodness to learning to see the world the way others see it.”

Once Steve got the hang of things, he soon found himself thriving at Asbury. He even donned the nickname “Scuba,” which has stuck around amongst camp community members to this day. Steve ended up working at camp for seven summers, and he wore many hats over that time. He served as Counselor, Naturalist, and then Lifeguard, and Ropes Director and even helped to work with the year-round retreats, and he loved consuming each role. “I couldn’t get enough of camp. I always wanted to learn more, move up the ladder, and take on new roles.” He mused, “I learned to never settle for where I am. At camp, I grew more confident in myself and learned not to fear failing at new things.”

Today, Steve works as a Lieutenant in the U.S. Navy and has just graduated from U.S. Naval Test Pilot School. Although it’s been a few years since he was last on staff at Camp Asbury, he looks back on his time fondly and constantly applies many lessons he has learned about himself at camp to his Naval career. While reflecting on his Naval journey so far, he had this to say: “I have hundreds of hours of flying in all different types of aircraft, but honestly, camp is still the best job I’ve ever had. I can’t recommend it highly enough! I’d go back in a heartbeat.”