MARION CENTER name and colors slide

After a lack of a certification course, Mrs. Monica DeHaven, a longtime teacher at the high school, looked to bring back the lifeguard certification course into students’ school day.

When the course was taken out of schedules in 2016, there were only a couple of guards around the school who were certified and able to work all of the activities hosted at the pool. As students graduated, that number continued to shrink, and as the need for more guards rose, something needed to be done. Beginning last year, DeHaven began teaching, training and certifying new lifeguards in a free course that counted toward their graduation credits.

This re-amped class helped to fill the need for community guards, as well as guarding positions throughout Indiana County, and the program keeps growing every year. After success with the course last year, the high school is also offering an alternative gym class (water mania) as well as a water safety course that will help build on the lifeguard certification and allow students to get an additional certification to begin teaching swim lessons.

These classes are helping to grow high school students into helpful, working members of the community, while also helping to strengthen their character and future r←sum←. This isn’t just good news for the community, but students and participants have also been very appreciative of the new classes.

Prior to the classes offered by the school, during the school day, students would have to get these types of certifications outside of school, generally a long drive away, and in most cases pay between $150 and $200.

“It’s convenient because it’s during the school day, so you don’t have to travel after school,” said junior Allison Krecota. “Also, you don’t have to worry about rushing through the training since you have an entire semester to complete it.”

With all of these benefits for the students and for the community, these classes are ones students are hopeful stay at the school for years to come.