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Hastings Resident Enters 10th Summer as Lifeguard

HASTINGS-ON-HUDSON, N.Y. – Hastings resident Britt Shorter is in his 10th summer patrolling the local pool as a lifeguard, which has helped prepare him for a potential career protecting the water in quite a different way.

“At this point in a month I’m taking a test to be a Vermont state game warden so I’ll hopefully be switching over to that,” he said.

The 24-year-old Shorter graduated from the University of Vermont and said he will be looking to use part of what he’s learned as a lifeguard toward a new career.

“Vermont fish and wildlife game warden basically regulates Vermont state parks and the use of them and its resources,” he said.  “Basically everything from fish and wildlife dictates everything from checking permits to stopping poaching to arresting people for all different types of things and just regulating the use of Vermont’s natural resources.”

Shorter said he became a lifeguard when he was a teenager because it was one of the most appealing options for a summer job and something he was already connected to with his brother.

“Originally my parents suggested it and then my brother was a lifeguard, I think that’s what sort of started it,” he said.  “As well as I needed a summer job and at age 15 there aren’t many opportunities and lifeguarding is one of them.”

After a decade protecting swimmers and patrolling the Chemka pool, Shorter said he keeps coming back because it’s something he truly enjoys.

“I went to UVM and it’s something I’ve come back to in the summer because it not only provides a lot of flexibility, but it’s provided me the time between lifeguarding and school years to have a job already that I know I can go back to,” he said.

As required by law, Shorter has had to go through various classes to earn his certification as a lifeguard as well as renewing it at various times.

“It’s changed over the years like what’s involved, how things are done and how long your certifications last, but obviously your CPR for adult, child and infant is required,” he said.

Other certifications and skills Shorter studied consisted of standard lifeguard training, water skills, water safety, passive and active drowning, submerged victims, inline stabilization and removing victims from the pools using a backboard to name a few.

“Basically it provides you with every rescue skill you could be presented with,” he said.

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