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Sparks and Reno hiring part-time workers ahead of summer

Immediate openings for positions include lifeguards and recreation leaders
Published: Apr. 20, 2021 at 9:08 PM PDT
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RENO, Nev. (KOLO) - There’s a lot going on at Alf Sorensen Pool these days. While this pool has been open for months, the City of Sparks is eager to get the Deer Park Pool and Sparks Marina open to swimmers on Memorial Day weekend. There’s just one problem...

“We need lifeguards,” says Shawn Olson, Aquatics Manager for the City of Sparks.

Olson says they have about 15 on staff right now, but need about 25 more and time is running out.

“Normally at this time, a couple of years ago, we’d probably have about 30 people on staff,” says Olson. “But this year, it’s different. We have to hire more people.”

“We are in desperate need of lifeguards right now,” says Tony Pehle, Acting Parks and Recreation Director for the City of Sparks. He says a lot of businesses and organizations are hiring right now and that means more competition for people seeking part-time work. He also says teenagers aren’t going after jobs the way they used to.

“I don’t think as many young people are working as when I was younger,” he says.

Pehle says the city’s lifeguard jobs -- and other seasonal positions -- are perfect for high school or college students. They’re flexible and the city will even pay for someone to get trained and certified as a lifeguard. But if the city can’t get enough lifeguards to safely guard the pools, it won’t be able to fully open all of the swim facilities at a time when they’re needed the most.

“We had very limited swimming last year and we want to be able to open up full-time, to get the kids back in the water. And water safety is so important. If we can’t open it up, or we have to limit the amount of swim lessons, that’s a lot of kids who don’t know how to swim and we don’t want that,” says Pehle.

The City of Sparks also wants to make sure kids have a safe place to play outside of the water. With summer coming up, they’ve got day camps that will need receation leaders. They will also need additional preschool staff. On the ball fields, they’ll need maintenance workers.

“Now that things are really starting to ramp up, with the Governor saying we’re going back to 100 percent capacity, we’re excited to go full bore, but we have to have the bodies to make it happen,” says Pehle.

The City of Reno is also hiring at this time as it looks to expand its programs this spring and summer. This is the Parks and Recreation Department’s busiest time of year so it is actively recruiting for a lot of different part-time positions.

“We’ve seen an explosive use of our parks which is fantastic because recreating outdoors is one of the safest things you can do, which is why we have such a greater need for park maintainers because when people use parks, there’s a lot more maintenance that comes with that,” says Jaime Schroeder, Director of Parks and Recreation for the City of Reno.

Schroeder says there are about 40 jobs available right now through the City of Reno’s Parks and Recreation Department.

For more information on positions available in Sparks, go to www.cityofsparks.us/jobs

For more information on positions available in Reno, go to www.reno.gov/government/departments/human-resources/jobs-recruitment#prcs

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