A psychology major at college, Sam Aldredge has a cool life philosophy summed up by his favorite quote: “Everybody is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid.” This approach is perfect for Sam’s role as Assistant Director for Camp Jordan where he cares for a variety of children from all walks of life at the Y’s overnight summer camp each year. He is also responsible for coordinating camp activities, daily programming, and hiring camp staff.
Sam’s interest in summer camp began at just 5 years old when he attended YMCA Camp Kern in Ohio, the same camp his parents first met as campers. He became a Camp Kern counselor at 18 and then a full-time employee as Teen and Family Coordinator. He has worked for Disney Cruise Line as a Youth Activities Counselor and for YMCA Camp Widjiwagan in Nashville, Tennessee, as Summer Program Coordinator. “My parents made an enormous impact on me,” he says. “Their love for and connection to the camp I grew up attending is one of the main reasons I have such strong ties to camping. It is something I am really passionate about and that all comes from them!”
Sam loves the Bangor Region YMCA because of its connection to community. “I feel like I am part of something that is truly making a difference in the lives of those who are part of this community,” he says. No wonder that the Y’s core value of Caring resonates most strongly with him.
In addition to his talent for all things camping, Sam was an active member of his high school hockey team in Centerville, Ohio, and is a talented musician, playing trumpet in the Wind Ensemble, Jazz Band, and competition marching band while attending youth competitions all over the Midwest.
When he is not working, Sam likes to hike, swim, canoe, kayak, sail and go boating. “Being around water brings me calm and peace,” he says. “I also love traveling home to visit my amazing family. I have a really close relationship with all of my siblings, cousins, aunts and uncles and we always have a lot of fun when we are able to all be together.” One thing people might not know is Sam’s passion for traveling. “I have visited 15 different countries on three different continents,” he says. “I would love to visit every continent eventually and every state in the U.S. as well.”