American Red Cross Offers Lifeguard Course and Certifications for UA Students

To provide opportunities for students to gain real-world skills pertaining to safety and aid in emergency situations.


Image via by Alyssa Alexsonshk.

Picture of the Student Recreation and Wellness Center at the University of Akron.

By Emily Price, Contributor

Graphic design junior Rachel Fox serves as a SRWC lifeguard. (Image via by Alyssa Alexsonshk.)

This fall, the American Red Cross University of Akron provides the opportunity to take lifeguard courses for University of Akron full-time students. Those intending to fulfill lifeguard positions for the University of Akron are required to complete this program. Students must honor the online pre-course requirements as well as attend the in-person training sessions. The pre-course tests will gauge the abilities of the swimmer while the training sessions will provide more interactive activities to learn the necessary skills. The in-person training sessions span from Oct. 22, 2021 to Oct. 24, 2021, and will be held at the Oliver J. Ocasek Natatorium, and in a Student Recreation and Wellness Center classroom. The course price is dependent on the completion of the course. If the course requirements are fulfilled, then all but $10 will be waived for the fee. 

The lifeguard courses not only provide direction and training in lifeguarding and water safety for university employment, but also practical certifications in performing CPR and using an AED. Attendance, participation in hands-on activities and achieving at least an 80% in the written parts of this course are essential. 

Biomedical science junior, Logan Wolfe fulfills a position as a SRWC lifeguard. (Image via by Alyssa Alexsonshk.)

“The American Red Cross Lifeguarding courses teaches a myriad of skills that can be applied to a student’s daily life,” Director of Student Recreation and Wellness Nick Weber said. “Students are taught concepts specific to lifeguard training, but many pieces of that information can be applied on a daily basis. Concepts such as how to look and act professionally, how to be prepared on a daily basis, decision making processes, and how to be mentally, physically, and emotionally prepared on a daily basis.” 

Years prior, Weber also taught the lifeguard class to a student who greatly improved his swimming abilities over the course of the semester. “He was passionate about becoming a lifeguard and we were passionate about training him,” Weber said. “This staff person has been working with us for a few years now, has taken on increasing responsibility during that time and can now teach the entire lifeguarding course himself, all because he persisted in finishing that first class when it got tough!”    

Taking the Student Recreation and Wellness Center (SRWS) also offers students the opportunity to get plugged into the campus community.  

Life jackets from the SRWC leisure pool. (Image via by Alyssa Alexsonshk.)

“I think, more than anything, we love people to know that working for the aquatics program (or any other program within SRWS) gets you access to a ‘home away from home,’ complete with a family of 50 other lifeguards” Weber said, “These student staff work together during the year, train together all year long, share their college experiences with each other, and are there to support each other throughout it all!” 

Oct. 18, 2021 was the final date to register.