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Five Reasons I Love Teaching at FINS

I am Coach Anna Kopf, and I work as the FINS Head of Administration and as a swim instructor. I am a graduate of St. Cecilia Academy, and I am starting my junior year at Clemson University this fall. This is my second summer working at FINS. Keep reading to learn more about five of the reasons why I love teaching swim lessons at FINS.

1. The Children

The number one and most important reason that I love teaching swim lessons at FINS is the children! It is the kids’ bright smiles, eager attitudes, and capacity to learn and grow at FINS that keeps me coming back each summer. The children make me look forward to my job every morning. They give me a purpose and a passion for teaching. There are some early mornings and long days at FINS, but seeing the energy that these kids bring to the pool, at all hours, is truly inspiring! Their enthusiasm instantly puts me in a better mood and makes me feel excited to work with the children in the water.

2. The FINS Team Members

The FINS work environment is extremely high-energy, positive, and fun! Working with people who are just as excited as me to spend the day in the pool teaching lessons allows for a job that is relaxed, stress-free, and productive. My co-workers are also the people who push me to become a better instructor and leader within FINS. Coach Hannah Neilsen, one of my close friends from St. Cecilia Academy, and I work together running the daily operations of FINS. She holds me accountable, teaches me how to approach unforeseen events, and maintains a positive attitude and demeanor that I aspire to always attain! Another aspect of the FINS work environment which I believe has developed my leadership abilities would be the wide range of ages and experiences that the FINS employees bring to our team. I work with instructors both older, younger, and even in my own family (Coach Madeline and Coach Sarah). The diversity in age range, experience levels, and my personal relationship with each instructor have taught me how to work alongside many different people, increasing my work awareness, and bettering my communication skills.

3. Old Natchez Country Club

Along with incredible children and team members, Old Natchez Country Club makes FINS the best place to be in the summer! Old Natchez Country Club has been very supportive of FINS’ operations throughout all of our summers. They allow us to teach lessons in their pool, use their equipment, and provide lifeguards for safety, all making our job easier. The Old Natchez pool is a perfect place to teach swimming lessons for all ages. The zero-entry pool and shallow sections allow for beginner swimmers to ease into the water. However, the lap pool, slide, and deep-end make for exciting new challenges amongst our more experienced swimmers. Overall, the environment and atmosphere at Old Natchez Country Club makes it the perfect place for a summer job!

4. Leadership Opportunities

Leadership has always been something I have been passionate about. I wanted to find a summer job that would offer me ways to lead outside of college and prepare me for my future career as a nurse. Although a connection between swimming lessons and healthcare may seem like a bit of a stretch, my job with FINS has taught me many valuable lessons about leadership, people, and children that I will carry into my future career endeavors. I have learned how to correspond professionally and efficiently with clients, manage employees, take charge in new situations, and get creative with new initiatives for FINS. I also have learned how to make children feel comfortable in the water, build their confidence, gain their trust, and keep them safe. All these lessons in leadership and in life will certainly serve me well in the future, and they are a main reason why I love FINS!

5. Progress

I chose progress to be my last reason I love working at FINS because it exemplifies in a tangible way what I love about teaching swimming lessons specifically. I love to see kids make progress! I love to see it not only for me, their instructor, their siblings, or their parents, but also for themselves. There is nothing like a kid whom you have spent hours with in the pool finally learning to swim or gaining enough trust to jump! The smiles on their faces, the pride they feel, and the confidence they gain inspires me. The best feeling is when a kid has done something brave or gained a new skill and then they run up to their parents or siblings to show it off. By making progress in the water, I am not only helping the child become a safer and better swimmer, but I am also helping them gain confidence in themselves and their surroundings!

Without a doubt, these are my top five reasons that I keep coming back to work at FINS! They span from the children that I teach to the opportunities I have gained from my summer job. I truly am thankful for my experience at FINS, and I hope you have enjoyed your summer with us at the pool!

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