- PROGRAM DESCRIPTION - 

In an effort to introduce more of our local Virgin Islands' youth to the marine environment, VIMAS launched a swimming program for November of 2018. As swimming serves as a foundation for many aquatic activities such as snorkeling and scuba diving, teaching swimming skills will serve as the necessary conduit to broaden students' knowledge about the ocean. Students are more receptive to learning about corals and the value our oceans play in our daily lives if they have a connection to the ocean and that is what this program aims to achieve. From this program, students would develop the swimming skills necessary to be recruited into the Youth Ocean Explorers Summer Program which uses the ocean as the lens through which students are taught STEM (Science Technology Engineering Mathematics). 

swimming


-PROGRAM MISSION- 

The VIMAS Swimming Program aims to increase Virgin Island's youth exposure to the marine environment with a target of emphasizing environmental stewardship ethics and increasing overall interest in STEM, particularly marine science. 


-ELIGIBILITY CRITERIA / IMPORTANT INFORMATION-

 

  • PROGRAM FLYER  |   COURSE INFORMATION
  • This program takes place on Brewers Bay beach, on Saturdays in 2 sessions; Session 1 from 9:00 AM to 10:30 AM and Session 2 from 10:30 AM to 12:00 PM (see complete schedule below).
  • Student should be in grades 1-12 (children as young as age 4 are eligible to apply). 
  • Interested applicant must reside on St. Thomas. (This program is not yet offered on St. Croix). 
  • American Red Cross Water Safety certified instructors are present during the program as well as American Red Cross certified Lifeguards.
  • There is no cost to attend this program. Applicants are accepted on a rolling basis per session. There is no selection process for this program; as long as you submit an online application along with the required release forms (and space is available for the intended course) your child/children will be accepted into the program. Do note that spaces will not be reserved if you have an incomplete application.  
  • Applications for Session 3 are not yet available. Check back soon for more details. 
  • This program features three courses which include Beginner, Intermediate, and Advanced and are tailored specifically to student skill sets. You can only register a child for one course during a session.
  • Students registered for the Intermediate and Advanced courses will be required to complete a Swimming Assessment to obtain clearance from the swimming instructor to continue with the course. This assessment will be administered on the student's first day of attendance.  
  • Each course has different maximum occupancy: Beginner - 30, Intermediate - 20, and Advanced - 10. 
  • Courses will operate for 6-weeks (6 Saturdays). We highly encourage participants to attend each session as they are all equally important and cover information that builds on previous lessons. 

-COURSE INFORMATION-

Course Age requirement  Minimum skill requirement Assessment 
Beginner Ages 4 and up 
  • Student has difficulties submerging head under water
  • Student cannot tread water 
  • Student cannot float on their back in water 
  • Student has little to no experience with swimming 
Intermediate  Ages 10 and up 
  • Student should be comfortable submerging head under water
  • Student should be able to float on back in water 
  • Student should be able to swim using the front stroke
  • Will complete swim test on Day 1
Advanced Ages 10 and up 
  • Student should be comfortable free diving to at least 5ft
  • Student should have some experience with snorkeling 
  • Student should be able to float on their back in water 
  • Will complete swim test on Day 1 


-HOW TO REGISTER-

IMPORTANT NOTICE: THIS PROGRAM WILL NOT REOPEN UNTIL OUR YOUTH OCEAN EXPLORERS SUMMER PROGRAM HAS CONCLUDED (August 2nd). PLEASE CHECK BACK BETWEEN AUGUST AND SEPTEMBER TO REGISTER OR SEND AN E-MAIL TO howard.forbes@live.uvi.edu TO BE ADDED TO THE MAILING LIST. 

  1. Please ensure that you have read the above information regarding the schedule and COURSE INFORMATION.
  2. Complete the ONLINE REGISTRATION FORM for the course you would like to register for  BEGINNER / INTERMEDIATE / ADVANCED.
  3. Complete the following supporting documents:  RELEASE FORMS, and the CODE OF CONDUCT FORM. If you are unsure of how to fill out the release forms click on the following links for help:
    Photo Release form help / Liability Release form help
  4. All supporting documents can be E-mailed to howard.forbes@live.uvi.eduPlease ensure to include your child's name in the name of the file(s) being sent. 
  5. Please note that your application is not complete until the online registration form along with the supporting documents are received. Applicants are enrolled on a rolling basis. 

-PROGRAM FUNDING / SPONSORSHIP-

CFVI Logo

The VIMAS Swimming Program was made possible through funding received from the Community Foundation of the Virgin IslandsIf you are interested in providing a donation to support the program, contact us using any of the methods listed below. The University of the Virgin Islands is a 501c3 institution so all donations are tax deductible.


-PROGRAM EXTENSIONS: SCUBA DIVING-

In an effort to meet the demand for locally trained scuba divers, this program aims to train students to become open water scuba certified. This means that they are capable of diving up to 60 feet; students complete the training at Coki Dive CenterUpon completion of the training, our team provides opportunities where students are able to volunteer and utilize their new skill for science such as coral reef restoration and diving cleanups. 

kean diver

- WHO IS ELIGIBLE -

Students who either:

  • completed the Advanced training for the Swimming Program or,
  • are at least 12 years old and can complete a swimming evaluation.

-HOW TO REGISTER-

  • Interested applicants should complete the online REGISTRATION FORM.

  • The first session for 2019 is currently booked but applicants can apply now for the second session. 

- CONTACT US -   new

Office Phone: St. Thomas (340) 693-1672
E-mail: St. Thomas (howard.forbes@live.uvi.edu)
Website: http://vimas.uvi.edu
Facebook brand logo icon Find us on Facebook
instagram brand logo icon 
Find us on Instagram

Virgin Islands Marine Advisory Service
Center for Marine and Environmental Studies
University of the Virgin Islands

St. Thomas
#2 John Brewers Bay
St. Thomas, USVI 00802