The Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) is offering a free waterfront lifeguard course to those 16 and older and possibly a job when successfully passed.

The lifeguard course will be offered April 3 through April 6, from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. at the Lynch Literacy Academy in Amsterdam for individuals looking for a  job with the DEC summer recreation programs. Individuals 16 and older who complete the course will be considered for employment.

The lifeguard course includes certification in all required waterfront lifeguard skills, Cardio-Pulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) for the professional rescuer, and first aid. A prerequisite fitness test will be given on Tuesday morning April 3, 2018. Candidates must successfully complete each component to continue with the course:

  • A 550 yd. (22 lengths) continuous swim (front crawl or breaststroke only);
  • Treading water for 2 minutes using legs only; and
  • Swim 20 yds., surface dive to retrieve a 10 lb. brick, return to the surface and swim on the back & return to the starting point. Exit the water without using a ladder or steps.

Applicants must be at least 16 years of age and meet agency medical and vision (20/70 or better) requirements. Immediately following the course, candidates who pass will be given the opportunity to take the DEC qualifying procedure. Only individuals that pass the qualifying procedure can be employed as DEC lifeguards.

Seasonal lifeguard positions are available at DEC campgrounds throughout the Adirondack and Catskill parks this summer. The current hourly rate for DEC lifeguards is $13.27. Additionally, most facilities offer free housing.

For more information, updates, or to pre-register, call 518-457-2500 ext. #1, e-mail DEC at, or visit the Employment Opportunities in Summer Recreation web page on DEC's website.

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