University of the District of Columbia President Allen L. Sessoms recently joined other faculty and staff in a ribbon-cutting ceremony surrounding the newly-renovated natatorium in the school's Aquatics Center.
"Having our Natatorium back in operation is a great benefit for our students and the community," said Sessoms. "Our student-athletes, faculty, staff, and student body deserve a quality facility in which to train, and we encourage our community to come experience what we have to offer."
The natatorium features a 25-yard pool with six lanes, a separate diving well with a 1-meter diving board, a spectator grandstand, offices and locker rooms. Students, faculty and staff of the University of UDC's Van Ness campus and community college campuses can use the facility at no cost. Others can use the natatorium during designated hours by purchasing a pass.
Barbara Jumper, vice president for real estate, said the project initially called for a repair of the pool's existing mechanical system and some interior upgrades. But in order to ensure the most beneficial return on the University's capital investment, she said the project was enhanced to include replacement of the pool's antiquated mechanical system.
"We are very pleased to have played a role in re-opening one of the University's more popular amenities," Jumper said. "Over the past two years, the facility has undergone a comprehensive renovation. This project is considered to have resulted in developing a space that better reflects the University's position as a premier flagship institution in the nation's capital. With the renovation completed, the facility can return to being a critical part of the academic program as well as a valued community asset."
The new facility will eventually be home to Divsion II men's and women's swimming and diving teams.
Lauren Fuchs, who was announced aquatics director and head swimming coach in September, is currently in the process of building a women's swimming and diving program while the school is still in the planning stages of adding a men's program.
For membership information, hours of operation, rules, regulations and other information please visit: http://www.udcfirebirds.com/information/CampusRec/aquatics
Source: UDC Office of Communications