Lifeguarding Course

Lifeguarding Course


Lifeguarding Certification
This course prepares candidates to recognize and respond quickly and effectively to aquatic emergencies and prevent drowning and other incidents. After successful completion of the course, participants will receive the following certifications: Lifeguard Training (2 years), First Aid (2 years), Cardio Pulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) for The Professional Rescuer (2 years) and Automated External Defibrillator (AED) (2 years).

If you have any questions, please email Maggie McGuffee at

2024 Upcoming Courses:
May 29 - May 31, 2024
Days: Wednesday, Thursday, Friday
Times: Wednesday 8 a.m. - 4 p.m., Thursday 8 a.m. - 4 p.m., Friday 8 am - 4 pm

*To register, please contact Maggie McGuffee at

Fees include instruction, certification, facilities and materials.

  • Rice Student - $150 (Fee may be waived if waiver requirements are met.)
  • Non Rice Student - $225

Waiver Requirements
You must be enrolled in at least six (6) hours at Rice University to qualify.

  • Passing the Lifeguard course and earning a Lifeguard certification does not guarantee employment. Students must attend a scheduled hiring session with the aquatics director. If the student does not attend a hiring session, the student will owe the full course fee of $150.
  • Students must commit to working for the Rice Recreational Aquatic Center.

Participants must be at least 16 years of age by the last day of class. Those under 18 must provide identification.
The first class day will consist of the prerequisite swimming skills evaluation. Satisfactory completion of the skills must be achieved in order to take the course and become certified. If not satisfactorily completed, the participant will not be able to continue in the course and the participant will lose $30.

The following prerequisites will be tested on the first day of the course:

  • Complete the following sequence:
    • Jump into the water from the side, submerge, recover to the surface, and swim 150 yards.
      • While swimming, you must swim continuously, keeping your face in the water and demonstrating good breath control. You may use the front crawl, breaststroke, or a combination of both. Swimming on the back or side is not permitted. Swim goggles are allowed.
    • After swimming 150 yards, maintain position at the surface of the water without support for 2 minutes by treading
      • While treading, you can only use your legs. Place your hands under your armpits. Your head must remain above the surface of the water.
    • After treading for two (2) minutes, swim 50 more yards.
  • Complete a timed event within one (1) minute, 40 seconds.
    • Starting in the water, swim 20 yards. Your face may be in or out of the water. Swim goggles are NOT allowed.
    • Surface dive, feet-first or head-first, to a depth of 13 feet to retrieve a 10-pound object.
    • Return to the surface and swim 20 yards on your back to return to the starting point with both hands holding the object while keeping your face at or near the surface so you are able to get a breath. You should not swim the distance under the water. Exit the water without using a ladder or steps.

This is a Blended Learning course. You are expected to complete readings and assignments outside of the in-class time. If you fail to complete readings or assignments on time, you will not be able to continue the course and will not receive a refund. Before the first day of class, you must complete all the online training. You must be able to prove you have completed the online sections prior to the start of the in person session. Once you register, you will receive more information about the lifeguarding manual and the online assignments.