LIFEGUARD SUPERVISOR SCHUYLER KIRBY HELPED LAUNCH A JUNIOR LIFEGUARD PROGRAM AT CRYSTAL COVE IN 2013.
A little over two years ago, Schuyler Kirby—a California State Park peace officer lifeguard supervisor—was part of the team tapped to launch Crystal Cove’s first-ever junior lifeguard program. The six-week summer program has been met with incredible community support since its inception, providing high quality aquatic safety training, surf rescue, marine life studies, CPR, first aid and more to participants.
Schuyler has played an instrumental role in advancing and growing the Crystal Cove State Park Junior Lifeguards program, all while ensuring that resource education and park protection remains in focus—something that sets this program apart from those on neighboring beaches.
“We provide a higher instructor to student ratio than other local programs, which allows us to be more hands-on and do a wider variety of activities,” Schuyler explains. “We have a focus on resource protection and include education on both the aquatic side of our Park (MPA guidelines, tide pools, et cetera) and the backcountry.”
He developed the program based on department policy and guidelines, but adapted it to fit the needs, goals and community of Crystal Cove State Park. In his current role, he supervises all the employees involved in the program and also assists with the administrative work.
Under Schuyler’s direction, the program more than doubled after its first year. For its third summer in 2015, it’s expected to double again, operating out of the Muddy Creek area in addition to the normal operations out of Moro Beach.
When asked what he enjoys most about working at the Park, the answer is an easy one for the seasoned lifeguard supervisor: “The teamwork and camaraderie I have with all the employees.”