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Mayor Bowser and DPR Offer Free Lifeguard Training Certification Courses, Encourages DC Residents to Apply

Friday, December 7, 2018


DPR Customer Service: (202) 673-7647
DPR Media Contacts: Michael Tucker Jr., (202) 717-4242, [email protected]

(Washington, DC) - Today, Mayor Bowser and the DC Department of Parks and Recreation (DPR) announced free lifeguard training certification courses are now open and will be available until July 2019. DPR will waive all fees for those who enroll in lifeguard training certification courses before March 1, 2019. DPR’s lifeguard training certification courses will be provided at multiple recreation centers across the District.

DPR employs the International Lifeguard Training Program (ILTP), an objective driven program that produces high level lifeguards, to train and certify lifeguards to work both indoor and outdoor aquatic facilities throughout the District. Candidates must successfully pass the written exam with a minimum score of 80 percent, demonstrate skill competencies to the instructor during practical scenarios, attend all scheduled class sessions, and maintain professionalism all times. Lifeguard candidates must successfully pass written and practical (“hands-on”) tests. ILTP Course Completion Certification is recognized internationally and can be used to gain employment at any aquatic facility around the world.

All candidates must pass the following prerequisites during the first day of class:

  • Completing a 100-yard swim (continuous using an approach stroke, freestyle, or breaststroke)
  • Retrieve a 10-pound dive brick from the deepest part of the training facility.
  • Tread water without the use of your hands for 1 minute.
  • Exit the pool unassisted and without the use of steps or a ladder.

The starting rate for DPR lifeguards is $13.95/hour. Lifeguards are expected to maintain a valid ILTP certification, relevant skills at a “test-ready” level at all times. Please note, DPR lifeguards are in a “safety-sensitive” position and are subject to suitability screening. Passing the ILTP course does not guarantee employment with DPR. 

To register for an upcoming certification course, visit dpr.dc.gov. For additional information on the International Lifeguard Training Program (ILTP), visit www.jellis.com.

Starting March 1, 2019, the courses will be available for a nominal fee. For questions concerning lifeguard training, please contact Brandon Vahey at [email protected].


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About DPR

The DC Department of Parks and Recreation (DPR) provides quality urban recreation and leisure services for residents and visitors to the District of Columbia. DPR supervises and maintains area parks, community facilities, swimming pools and spray parks, and neighborhood recreation centers. The agency also coordinates a wide variety of recreation and educational programs including sports leagues, youth development, therapeutic recreation, aquatic programming, outdoor adventure, camping, and senior citizen activities. Adaptive programs and facilities are available for persons with disabilities.