Our StaffTennis & Life Camps

We have one of the country’s top tennis facilities and a trained staff who have coached thousands of students from beginner to advanced. They are tennis professionals and coaches who, when they move into new positions, are a prominent presence in the upper Midwest professional tennis teaching community.

Neal Hagbert 

Meet Our Staff 

Neal Hagberg '81 is the TLC Director. He has taught tennis, led music and entertainment, directed counseling, and headed the “life” portion of TLC since 1981, and has served as Director since 2011. Neal and his wife Leandra are nationally acclaimed singers and songwriters who have been awarded two McKnight Foundation Fellowships. He has also earned the USPTA's Elite Pro Certification. Neal’s unique combination of inspiring talks, motivating music, perceptive tennis teaching, and leadership skills have been crucial for the camp’s success.

 Cal Carlson ’17 is the Assistant Director of Tennis and Life Camps. Calleigh has been with TLC since 2015, serving as a supervisor since 2018. Calleigh graduated from Gustavus in 2017 with a degree in both Communication Studies and Religion. Since graduating from Gustavus, she has worked in the business world, at the U.S. Open, at the Super Bowl, and in Lutheran Ministries. Calleigh now oversees the business and marketing operations of Tennis and Life Camps and serves as a resource and point person for all staff member and camper needs.


 Liz Rezlaff is the Assistant Director of Tennis. Liz has been with TLC since 2004, serving as a supervisor since 2008. She received her B.S. in Exercise Science with a minor in coaching, from Minnesota State University, Mankato in 2008. She then went on to earn her M.S. in Physical Education with an emphasis in Outdoor Adventure Education from the University of Wisconsin, La Crosse. Liz works as a High School Physical Education Teacher in Green Bay, Wisconsin, in addition to overseeing the tennis curriculum and the development and training of instructional staff at Tennis and Life.

Barb and Steve Wilkinson directed TLC from 1977 to 2010. Barb continues to serve on the TLC Board of Directors after Steve's passing, and continue to assist TLC in many other ways. In 2010, Steve received the International Tennis Hall of Fame national education award and was inducted into the Intercollegiate Hall of Fame.

Professional Staff
Our staff includes USPTA professionals, university, and high school coaches. Current and former All-American players and collegiate players. All instructors are trained in tennis teaching methods, first-aid, human relations, and counseling. They are known for their high energy levels, outgoing personalities, and positive reinforcement skills. A student/teacher ratio of 4:1 ensures individual attention.

Working at Camp 

Summer employment at TLC is a dream job! You can pass on to others the joys of tennis and an enhanced approach to life that is impacting many people. Working in a high-energy environment where everyone is emphasizing the positive, smiling, and saying thank you is transformational. Former coach Betsy Mork wrote “What you are doing is truly changing the world, one camper and staff person at a time. It has affected me deeply, and helped me to choose my profession…teaching.”

Former coaches Carrie and Michelle Wiersma, now speech pathologists, claimed that working at TLC taught them who they wanted to be. “This job is not just about learning how to run a great lesson on court, but learning what kind of person you are and what kind of person you want to become. Every summer we found out more about ourselves.”

The TLC full-time staff works hard during the off-season to help their summer staff members acquire internships and explore job opportunities in their respective fields. Former Instructor Cody Anderson, a Gustavus alum, wrote "The connections I have made through TLC have been indescribable and the opportunities that it has provided me have been endless."

Employment Opportunities

Summer Tennis Educational Coach
Tennis & Life Camps employs 30-35 summer tennis coaches over the summer. At least one year of college is required and a UTR of 5 and above is preferred. A 4.5 playing ability and high school varsity experience are required. Varsity college playing experience and previous tennis teaching experience are recommended. Exposure to tennis educational materials and previous coaching are valuable. Previous counseling, leadership, music, and public speaking experience strengthen the resume.

The job averages 54 hours per week (Monday-Sunday) of tennis teaching and non-tennis teaching responsibilities. The first-year staff starting salary is $4700 + room and board. Additional stipends available for dorm counseling and stringing. All staff stay on campus in apartments and meals in the Gustavus Dining Service are provided. 

Other responsibilities besides teaching tennis include eating meals with campers, participating in variety shows, skits, social hours with campers, greeting campers and their parents, and attending staff meetings.

Fringe benefits include tennis instruction during off hours, ball machine access, deeply discounted tennis equipment, indoor court time, and use of other campus facilities.

Apply Today!

Operations Assistant Internship
Tennis & Life Camps employs two Operations Assistants over the summer. As an Operations Assistant will need to meticulously set up camp, run reports, manage our camp Pro Shop, and direct check-in/check-out, among other duties.

The job averages 49 hours per week (Monday-Sunday). The first-year staff starting wage is $11.00/hr + room and board. On campus apartment housing and meals in the Gustavus Dining Service are provided. No health or retirement benefits are included. 

Fringe benefits include tennis instruction during off hours, ball machine access, indoor court time, and use of other campus facilities. 

Apply Today!


Digital Media Coordinator Internship 
Tennis & Life Camps employs three Digital Media Coordinators over the summer. This position distributes Tennis & Life Camps' media in a variety of ways, monitoring and managing all forms of social media, including Facebook, Twitter, TikTok, Instagram, and Snapchat.

The job averages 49 hours per week (Monday-Sunday). The first-year staff starting wage is $11.00/hr + room and board. On campus apartment housing and meals in the Gustavus Dining Service are provided. No health or retirement benefits are included. 

Fringe benefits include tennis instruction during off hours, ball machine access, indoor court time, and use of other campus facilities.

Apply Today!

Frequently Asked Questions

  1. When can I start working at camp?
    Typically our instructors have completed one year of college before becoming a TLC staff member. Most instructors are varsity collegiate players with a UTR of 5 or above. Many are interested in and have experience working with youth, currently play or played tennis growing up, and are interested in coaching or teaching. Others join camp for their own personal and professional growth and dedication to the mission of TLC.
  2. Where do staff live?
    Staff are housed in the College View Apartments on campus which are adjacent to the Brown Tennis Complex. There are typically 4 staff members per apartment. Each apartment has two bedrooms, one or two bathrooms, a living room, and a kitchen. Apartments come with a couch, chair, and table and each bedroom includes a bed, desk and desk chair.
  3. Do staff stay with the campers? 
    Staff members will be dorm counselors for junior camps on a rotating basis. There are typically 6 dorm counselors for each junior camp and staff members receive a $20/night stipend each camp they dorm counsel. Dorm counselors are responsible for bringing campers to breakfast each morning, making sure campers are in their rooms by lights out, and creating a sense of community with their section.
  4. Is room and board included?
    Yes, staff members are housed in the College View Apartments and all meals are included except for Sunday evening and Monday morning when staff members are on their break.
  5. What about time off?
    Staff members are granted three days paid leave which can be requested on a first come first serve basis. Additional time off may be allowed after discussions with the leadership staff.
  6. How long do campers stay at camp?
    There are two camps per week which run Monday-Thursday afternoon and Thursday evening-Sunday afternoon. Each camp consists of two full days of activities and two half days.
  7. How old are the campers?
    There are three different types of camps that occur each summer junior, adult, and family camps. Campers can be as young as 7 years old for family camp. Junior campers range from 11-18, adult campers are ages 18 and above, and family camper ages are from 7 and above.
  8. Am I allowed to play tennis in the bubble after hours? 
    Yes, instructors are able to use the tennis facilities and other facilities on campus when they are not being used by camps.
  9. What is a typical work day like?
    Camp runs from 8 am - 7:30 pm each day. There are additional activities at night that staff members are required to attend on certain days. Staff members will receive approximately a 2 hour break at some point during the day. Each camp is structured so that each staff member will have a shorter day where they will be done around 4:10 and a long day where they will be done later in the evening.
  10. What is the summer schedule? 
    We have 15 campers throughout the summer with 2 camps per week. Staff members typically arrive on campus a week before camps begin for a week of training. There are no camps during the week of the Fourth of July and staff members will receive that week off. Staff members typically start early June and finish up with camp early-middle of August. 
  11. Should I have a car with me during the summer?
    You will not need a car in order to fulfill your job responsibilities but some staff members like to go off campus during their time off. Mankato is a 20 minute drive away from campus. It is recommended to bring a bike or scooter so that you can quickly navigate around campus. The tennis complex, dorms, and dining center are 3 separate buildings but are a 7-10 minute walk away from one another.

Apply Now

Do you want to join our staff and be a part of an unforgettable experience? You can find our application here!