Local pool provides summer job experience for MHS students

By Sebastian Bartlett, Wesley Bauer, John Hampton, Brittany Cook

Many teens typically spend their time during the summer at the pool lounging and splashing about with friends. It has been a different case for a number of MHS swim team members, who have been devoting their summer to working at the Mingus pool.

MHS freshman Cheyenne McNeely, sophomore Alyssa Hedgpeth, juniors Bridget McCarthy and Shaylen Brownell and seniors Brittany Banks and Derek Miller have all spent many hours working at the Mingus pool. Whether it be lifeguarding, conducting swim lessons, or working in the office, the students have been a large part of the pool’s workforce. Kathe Bourell, the pool’s director, believes students are a positive addition to the staff.

“Any swimmers interested in a job approach me,” Bourell said. “It makes me feel good that I can give them something.”

According to many of the students working at the pool, it is a great opportunity for them not only to earn money, but to prepare them for other future occupations they may pursue. McCarthy and Bourell believe it is a great way to learn how to have patience to deal with children.

“They learn how to deal with parents and kids,” Bourell said.

Miller finds it helps student staff members at the pool develop the ability to work with people and interact socially. Many of the swimmers, including Miller, also believe it is enjoyable environment to work in.

“I really like working here,” Miller said. “The smiles on peoples’ faces is nice.”

Bourell can tell the students are enjoying their time working at the pool. She sees positive body language and an excitement that shows how they want to be there.

“By their actions I can tell they want to be here,” Bourell said.

Hedgpeth, who started working at the pool three years ago, said she will continue to be part of the pool staff until she is done with her high school career.

“I think I’ll teach every summer until graduation,” Hedgpeth said.

Josie Keating, mother of Zuzu Keating, one of the many children taking swim lessons this summer, believes the students being part of this program is beneficial. According to Keating, having older kids is the best way to teach the young children. She believes children want to be around older kids and they learn better when it is this way.

“Kid’s like older kids, not necessarily adults,”Keating said. “I think that’s how it should be, kids learning from other kids.”