JobsNOW: Lifeguarding is a year-round opportunity


Public pools look for lifeguards every summer, but some of the positions are more than seasonal.

Lifeguards are needed all year, including right now, along with swim instructors.

 A child playing in water is such a natural combination, and swimming is a great activity for adults to stay fit and healthy. It’s important when around the water to have a lifeguard watching. That’s why the YMCA has a need for lifeguards to watch swimmers and keep them safe.

To be a lifeguard, you have to be able to swim 300 yards, tread water without using arms for two minutes, and go through water training with basic first aid and CPR.

“We offer about five lifeguard training classes per year. We are actually in the middle of one right now – looking for daytime lifeguards. We will be offering another one in February and at least three before the summer season starts,” said Chris Hughes, YMCA aquatic director.

The YMCA also needs swim instructors to teach life-long skills, whether it be to a child or adult.  Knowing how to swim is the first defense against drowning.

“The biggest qualification is that you enjoy working with people and are enthusiastic. We can teach the rest,” Hughes said.

Lifeguards are needed year-round at indoor pools, which make it an in-demand career and more than seasonal work.

You don’t have to work in the cold and there are many benefits, especially learning skills that you can use anywhere.

“Many of the lifeguards that I’ve trained used lifeguard skills outside work whether it be helping someone in a choking situation or giving CPR out on the golf course. That happened this year,” Hughes said.

There’s also been an influx of older lifeguards at the YMCA, including a retired pastor and former helicopter operator.

Hughes has been a lifeguard half of her life. It’s also been a great way for her to start a career. She’s jumped from lifeguard to aquatic director of the YMCA.

“I see lifeguarding as a job that can kick tart your career, even if that is not what you are going to do your whole life. It does teach leadership, discipline, and it’s a good job,” Hughes said.

You can apply for the lifeguard and swim instructor positions on the YMCA website.

JobsNOW is a joint initiative between WKBN and the Youngstown/Warren Regional Chamber.

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