Lifeguard training course offered

The OCCC Aquatic Center will host an American Red Cross lifeguard training class almost every week through mid-June.

The next class runs April 7 through 16 on Thursdays and Fridays from 6 to 9:30 p.m., including two consecutive Saturdays from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

This course will certify people to be lifeguards at city pools in Oklahoma and most other states, said Aquatics Center secretary Jenny Kellbach.

There are slots available for individuals interested in the class. The cost of the class is $130, according to Recreation and Fitness Manual.

Students will learn the skills necessary to prevent and respond to water emergencies. To take the course, participants must be at least 15, must complete a 300-meter continuous swim and be able to retrieve an object off the bottom of the pool, Kellbach said. This skills test will be given on the first day of class.

American Red Cross Lifeguarding offers training in skill instruction, professional lifeguard responsibilities, first aid and CPR/AED training, according to Recreation and Fitness Manual.

American Red Cross Health and Safety Director Cathy Tortolini said, “It is the mission of the American Red Cross to help people deal with emergencies, including swimming and diving emergencies.

“Commodore Wilbert E. Longfellow brought this philosophy to aquatics in 1914 when he started the American Red Cross Life Saving Corps.

“This program was the first of its kind, and it contributed to a dramatic reduction in the number of lives lost as a result of drowning,” Tortolini said.

Individuals interested in lifeguard positions on campus need to apply at OCCC pays lifeguards about $8.25 an hour with tax breaks for students, Kellbach said.

For more information contact Kellbach in the Wellness Center at 405-682-1611, ext 7310.

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