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May 6, 2009 > Making tidal waves

Making tidal waves

By Sargunjot Kaur

The Milpitas Tidal Waves (MTW), the city-sponsored swim team, welcomed their new full-time coach, Jaime Chew, on April 6. The Milpitas City Council finally approved to grant the swim team a full-time coach this past August in response to a petition by 530 MTW supporters.

The swim team parents were particularly concerned about the overcrowding and safety issues as the size of their team grew to over 100 swimmers.

Those applicants who fulfilled the certification requirements in Lifeguarding, First Aid, CPR, AED and had a current USA Swimming Coaches certificate along with a background in competitive swimming went through the interview process in February and March of this year, before the city decided on hiring Chew.

"The position of a swim team coach is very similar to that of a swim instructor in that they are both expected to teach participants on swimming stroke techniques. However a swim team coach focuses more on the competitive aspects of the sport," said Chew.

Along with now being the head coach for MTW, Chew also maintains her job as the Recreational Services Supervisor as she has been for the past two years.

As a competitive swimmer in high school and a lifeguard and swim instructor for Milpitas for ten years, Chew is experienced in the leadership and swimming aspects required for the job.

"As head coach, I am looking forward to working with the other coaches and maintaining well-run practices," said Chew.

The Milpitas Aquatic Center is now looking forward to recruiting lifeguard and swim instructors on board for the upcoming summer season. "We have already received over 50 applications for the position and I am currently in the process of interviewing all the applicants," said Chew.

For the City of Milpitas, the summer position is for both a Lifeguard and a Swim Instructor. "The difference between the titles is that a Lifeguard is expected to vigilantly observe the pools and surrounding areas during swim programming to ensure the safety of all participants, while a Swim Instructor is expected to teach swimming," said Chew.

A Lifeguard must also abide to the American Red Cross Standards that the City of Milpitas goes by. To qualify for the job, applicants must be at least 15 years of age and maintain certifications in Lifeguarding, First Aid, CPR, and AED.

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