State to begin lifeguard tests in January

Seasonal positions are available in state campgrounds throughout the Adirondack and Catskill parks

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  • (J. Rozell, NYS Parks, Recreation & Historic Preservation)

Qualifying procedures to become a lifeguard in New York State will begin on Jan. 20 and run through June 30.

The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation encourages anyone 16 and older who loves the outdoors and is looking for summer employment to take one of the agency's free tests. Candidates who qualify will be considered for employment.

Seasonal lifeguard positions are available in state campgrounds throughout the Adirondack and Catskill parks. The current hourly rate is $13.27, and most facilities offer free housing.

The procedure includes an in-water demonstration of lifesaving techniques and performance of Cardio-Pulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) skills. Candidates may attend the qualifying location most convenient to them, and the results will be forwarded to their preferred work location.

At the time of employment, state lifeguards must:

Be at least 16 years old

Possess a valid certification in Waterfront Lifeguarding, CPR for the Professional Rescuer and Healthcare Provider, and First Aid (if not included in the lifeguard training course)

Have successfully completed the New York State DEC lifeguard qualifying procedure

Submitted a current certification of the candidate's physical ability to perform lifeguard duties

Meet the vision requirement of 20/70 uncorrected in both eyes and be correctable to the 20/40 standard

Have completed a personal interview

Have attended a lifeguard orientation

Qualifying procedures will begin on time and late arrivals will not be accepted. Candidates will be given a 15-minute warm-up period to become familiar with the pool and equipment. Candidates must bring photo identification, current certifications (if available), and their own CPR mask.

Qualifying dates at the Catskill Recreation Center, 651 County Hwy 38, Arkville, will be held according to the following schedule:

Saturday, Feb. 10, at 4 p.m.

Friday, March 23, at 5 p.m.

Saturday, June 30, at 4 p.m.

For more locations farther north, or to pre-register, call 518-457-2500 ext. #1, e-mail, or visit

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