Emerging Leaders in Music (ELMs)


A one-week camp program for high school students passionate about music and leadership.  Participants attend camp during the Herter Band Camp program and experience leadership lessons, music-specific learning experiences, and camp activities.

The program is designed specifically for high school students (ages 15-16) in the gap of being too old for Herter Band Camp (10th grade) and too young to be a camp staff member.

ELMs are camp program participants.  They are mentors and role models for younger campers but not responsible for camper supervision.  They are placed with a counselor and a cabin of younger campers (with at least a two-year age difference).  ELMs share most meals, evening reflections, cabin activities, and overnight lodging with this cabin of younger campers, while also learning from the leadership and guidance of the in-cabin staff counselor.  Throughout the day, they learn and grow from specific leadership lessons, identified below.  They do not perform with the bands or at closing concerts.

This program is designed to benefit those who have a passion for leadership, music, and working with younger students.  Benefits include:

  • Opportunities to gain hands-on experience facilitating discussions, leading teambuilding activities, and providing mentorship to small groups.
  • Leadership training in group facilitation skills, leadership styles, icebreakers, communication skills, and the group formation process
  • Roundtable discussions and presentations on music-based topics by band directors, educators, and YMCA camp staff, such as college marching band experience, advice for aspiring music educators, tips on applying for college music programs.

Registration is open to students with at least one year of experience in the Herter Band Camp program, or with a letter of support from their high school band director.  Capacity is limited to only 8 participants per session.

The cost of the program is $490 per participant for 6 days, 5 nights of lodging, meals, and programming. A $50 deposit is due at registration, with balance due by June 1, 2021.

Online registration available at ELMs Online Registration.

Two sessions are available, each lasting from Sunday morning through Saturday afternoon consistent with the schedule of Herter Band Camp:

  • June 13-19, 2021
  • June 20-26, 2021

The following are features and experiences intentionally designed to help ELMs learn and grow in their leadership and facilitation skills:

  • Breakfast and Dinner with Cabin – opportunities to be a role model for younger campers and facilitate conversations, with their assigned cabin group
  • ELMs Session – training on leadership, small-group facilitation skills, teambuilding, communication skills and more
  • Cabin Activities (2) – assist counselor staff with facilitating cabin-based activities with an emphasis on being a role model for younger campers
  • Learning Lunch – ELMs have lunch together with guests to learn about music education, career path advice, college marching band experiences, and more from directors, sectional leaders, and camp staff
  • Behind-the-Scenes Session – a daily music-based presentation from guest speakers, band directors, or camp staff
  • Sectional Observation – observation of music sectional with ability to assist with warm-up and other tasks
  • Evening Cabin Reflections – participate in cabin-based evening reflections with their assigned cabin, with the opportunity to plan and facilitate at least one reflection

This program overlaps the Herter Band Camp, but all registrations, payments, and programming will be coordinated by our YMCA Camp Timbers’ team.  As you have questions, please contact us at 989-345-2630 or BAMiller@SaginawYMCA.org.

Register Online