Local Q and A: UA student to start swim clubBy Luci Willis | 03/31/2016 7:23pm
Photo courtesy of Daniel Hayes.
The University of Alabama is known for its world-class athletics, and in order to achieve this reputation, most sports mandate a level of intensity and time dedication that makes many students choose not to participate. This leaves a large group of talented high school athletes who miss the competition and camaraderie of their younger years.
Sophomore chemical engineering major and swimmer Daniel Hayes has an answer for them, or at least the ones who love the water as much as he does. After swimming competitively throughout his high school career, Hayes is anxious to start a swimming club team here to offer a more laid-back alternative for his fellow students.
CW: What is your plan for the club team here?
DH: It would be another sports club here at school. Right now we have 14 students interested, and the goal is to get it started by the fall. We’re thinking of probably having practices four days a week, Monday through Thursday, and going to other schools to compete and hopefully eventually hosting a meet here. That’s the intended goal, to have a practice schedule and be able to travel to compete.
CW: How long have you been swimming competitively?
DH: I swam all four years in high school. I started freshman year, and I absolutely loved it. I loved so much that I’m trying to start a club.
CW: Why did you decide not to join the collegiate team here?
DH: To be honest, I could have talk to the coach more here. I got offered a swim scholarship to another school, a mid-sized engineering school in Missouri. I was torn between there and here. Honestly, it ended up being too expensive. So there’s that.
I didn’t speak to the coaches here as much as I could have, and also I think this team, the caliber is a little bit above me.
CW: Why are you starting a club team, and why should people consider joining?
DH: The club team would not be nearly as intense as the collegiate team. You’re not going to be spending every hour of every week. The main focus is not so much the swimming; it’s giving the opportunity to do both. When you’re on the collegiate team, you’re so focused, but the club team would allow you to relax a little more, give you a little more freedom.
I feel like it’ll be a little more fun, since it won’t be as intense. Sometimes I miss the intensity, from time to time, I’ll miss the really intense workouts, but I don’t want to be doing that every day, you know, while I’m learning how to do my future job. At least for me, that’s what most important. If you’re on a collegiate team, there’s a lot less freedom.
CW: Who has been involved so far with building the club?
DH: Me and one of my friends, her name’s Amanda Tomasko. I think we started talking back in January. We’ve been both collaborating, trying to get a club together. If’s us two right now leading, and we have about 14 people interested so far, and we’re trying to find a treasurer. That’s what you have to have to officially start a club: president, vice president, and treasurer.
We’re having an interest meeting next week, a week from today. It’s a general interest meeting, we’ll tell people about the club, what the plan is, you know, try to recruit a treasurer.
We’re still looking for an advisor. Amanda knows someone, and there’s a faculty member here that’s in charge of a club team for high schoolers, it’s like this sort of club team, but for high school and bellow. He coaches that and is a faculty member here. So we’re going to get in touch with him and see if this something he’d be interested in.
CW: When do you anticipate the club starting?
DH: Our goal is to have it running by fall. We just have to get the treasurer and advisor and get it approve. Then we can start meeting at the Aquatic Center.
For more information, attend the swim club team general interest meeting at 6:30 pm. in the MAR (Multi-Activity Room) in the Student Recreation Center.