Image of summer workers.

About Summer Camp at MSU Tollgate Farm

MSU Tollgate Farm is a fun and enriching opportunity to experience the natural world hands-on. With 160 acres of beautiful farm and forest, our camps offer the best in farm and food, discovery science, and natural resource exploration. As part of Michigan 4-H Youth Development, we place significant value in the experiential model of "Do, Reflect, Apply," allowing campers to take the experience and relate it back to concepts learned in the classroom. In doing so, young people are empowered to be in charge of their own learning, instilling a passion for self-directed, life-long exploration.

We offer various exciting camp themes. In addition to the pinnacle summer camp experiences of archery, canoeing, horseback riding, fishing, and hiking, youth explore food system awareness by gardening, cooking with produce they harvested, and caring for the farm animals. A typical day at camp will include project based STEM activities, Garden Time, Garden Kitchen, and Animal Chores. 

A Summer Opportunity Like None Other!

MSU Tollgate Farm camps encourage discovery, learning, and outdoor play for kids ages 6-11. Our camps are incredibly active and take place outside—even when it is raining, hot, or chilly. Summer Camp Educational Leaders are responsible for planning educational activities using prepared curricula, leading day camp sessions, and performing other tasks that support the safety and success of our camp.

We are seeking staff with a background in one or more of the following activities: education, animal science, agriculture, fisheries, wildlife, gardening, cooking fresh food, science and nature knowledge, hiking and outdoor skills, cooperative games, and music. Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis.

Working at camp is demanding of one’s time, energy, and emotions. It requires a great deal of self-motivation, patience, and creativity. It will also push you to grow by leaps and bounds as an educator, non-profit staff member, and a person. You will be part of an amazing team. You will positively impact the lives of the youth that we serve, and you will spend your summer teaching, playing, and learning in the great outdoors. Check out the fun we have had at past camps on our blog:

Camp dates: June 25 - August 24 
Hours: Monday - Friday 8:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.
Training provided between June 12 - 23.
Camp wrap-up date: August 24

Michigan State University (MSU) Extension helps people improve their lives by bringing the vast knowledge resources of MSU directly to individuals, communities and businesses. For more than 100 years, MSU Extension has helped grow Michigan’s economy by equipping Michigan residents with the information that they need to do their jobs better, raise healthy and safe families, build their communities and empower our children to dream of a successful future.

Tollgate Education Center and Farm promotes food system awareness through exploring the sustainable, nutritional, and cultural aspects of agriculture.

MSU is an affirmative-action, equal opportunity employer, committed to achieving excellence through a diverse workforce and inclusive culture that encourages all people to reach their full potential. Michigan State University Extension programs and materials are open to all without regard to race, color, national origin, gender, gender identity, religion, age, height, weight, disability, political beliefs, sexual orientation, marital status, family status or veteran status. Issued in furtherance of MSU Extension work, acts of Ma 8 and June 30, 1914, in cooperation with the U.S. Department of Agriculture. Jeffrey W. Dwyer, Director, MSU Extension, East Lansing, MI 48824. 

Download Summer Day Camp Educational-Leader Job Description

Registration for Tollgate Summer Camp Educational Leader is open.
Registration closes at 11:59 p.m. on May 13, 2018.

Download Summer Day Camp Communications Coordinator Job Description

The Summer Camp Communication Coordinator will share each exciting day at Tollgate Farm Camp through photo journalism on the camp blog.

Registration for Tollgate Summer Camp Communications Coordinator is open.
Registration closes at 11:59 p.m. on May 13, 2018.

Download Summer Day Camp Garden Kitchen Leader Job Description

The Garden Kitchen Leader coordinates the choice of recipes and guides youth in techniques of preparing and cooking healthy and delicious snacks in Garden Kitchen.

Registration for Tollgate Summer Camp Kitchen Leader is open.
Registration closes at 11:59 p.m. on May 13, 2018.


Michigan State University is committed to providing equal opportunity for participation in all programs, services and activities. Accommodations for persons with disabilities may be requested by contacting the event contact two weeks prior to the start of the event. Requests received after this date will be honored whenever possible.

Contact Information

For more information or questions contact Ellen Koehler at 248-347-0269 ext. 227 or