Editor’s note: This story corrects a typo in the print version of this story that listed an incorrect amount that was sought from Youngstown City Council. We regret the error.

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) – The Youngstown Lifeguard Academy received approval to start as a state demonstration project for the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services.

A new set of training classes starts in December.

The academy hopes to have forty recruits. It has 20 interested groups from across the country which would like to start one in their communities. Cincinnati is already requesting 10 lifeguards for next summer.

The academy believes its program is an economic development program for the city.

“I said before I take my dirt nap, I said I want my city to get a win, and this is a win for us. We just need a small investment. We’re not a major corporation promising something. We are a small non-profit that has proven that this works,” said organizer Kevin Tarpley.

The Lifeguard Academy is seeking $600,000 in American Rescue Plan funding from the city and county ($100,000 from the city’s ARP Committee, $50,000 from each Youngstown City Council member and $150,000 from Mahoning County Commissioners).

The Youngstown Lifeguard Academy is sharing its success story later this month at a national workforce development conference.