October 31, 2014

VIDEO: Webster University Extends Indoor Pool Hours to Attract More Students

Webster University’s indoor swimming pool is empty most nights of the week. The water is still and the lifeguards on staff do their homework. The indoor pool hours usually end at 9 p.m. but in order to get more students in the pool, Webster University’s Aquatics staff has extended their night swimming hours from 8:30 p.m. to 10 p.m. Tuesday and Thursday nights.

The campus pool tried to extend the hours during last year’s fall semester but the program simply didn’t work. Swimming hours were extended to 10 p.m., but students didn’t seem to take advantage of the new scheduling.

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Community swim team members practice in the pool during rental hours.

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Last year’s swimming program, Get Skinny, Dipping, never really caught on to students around campus. This year, Aquatics and Fitness Center Coordinator, Myrna Homm hopes to see more students enjoying the benefits of swimming as exercise.

Community Members Create More of a Splash than Webster Students

The Fitness Center’s indoor pool has been known for being a staple in the Webster Groves and St. Louis area community. Webster Groves High School students to Clayton residents that form community swim groups use Webster’s pool facilities the most.

Webster University rents the pool to the community throughout the week from 4:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. in order to generate revenue for the fitness center. Webster’s pool is the only local facility that has lap swimming all of the time.

The money helps the aquatics staff create more programs for students, such as group swims and other events. The rental space set aside for the community has made some students feel that there is not enough time for student swimming hours.

[pullquote]“The community groups who use the pool during the rental hours may make it difficult for Webster students to use the pool. The extended hours may encourage Webster students to use the pool because they won’t have to battle over lanes with the kids’ swim teams,” Myrna Homm said. [/pullquote]

Extended Hours May Help Students Find More Time

Rental spaces for the pool usually consist of 4 to 6 lanes which leaves 2 lanes open for Webster University students during the afternoon. Aquatics Coordinator, Myrna Homm says that the limited space may make Webster students avoid the pool.

So Much More Room for Activities

Homm hopes the extended hours on Tuesdays and Thursdays will generate more campus activities involving the indoor pool. When she started working 19 years ago, Homm remembers the nights where The Creature from the Black Lagoon: 3D played in the pool while students floated on inner tubes and watched the movie. She’s hoping that the extended hours will bring about more campus activities like there were in the past.

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