How to get a summer job as a lifeguard in metro Atlanta

Lifeguard Emma Sistrunk keeps an eye on the pool as Martin Luther King Jr. Middle School students participate in a swimming lesson.

Lifeguard Emma Sistrunk keeps an eye on the pool as Martin Luther King Jr. Middle School students participate in a swimming lesson.

If you're a strong swimmer who's interested in being a lifeguard, summer is filled with job opportunities in the metro Atlanta area. You'll get to spend your day by the pool in a fun atmosphere, but you'll also have the responsibility of making sure that guests remain safe.

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Here's what you need to know about getting a summer job as a lifeguard:

What employers are looking for

You'll need to be physically fit and be a strong swimmer, and you'll also need to be able to stand and sit for long periods of time in direct sunlight.

Since you'll be responsible for spotting potential signs of trouble, you'll also need to be aware of your surroundings and not easily distracted.

Depending on the duties your employer assigns, you may also be responsible for applying and/or checking pool chemicals, and cleaning debris from the pool. You'll also need to be comfortable with the public, and you may have to pass a background check since many lifeguard jobs involve interacting with young children.

Many employers also want you to be certified. Some offer their own training and certification, while others want you to get certified on your own. In order to take a certification class, you'll need to be able to meet certain requirements to test your swimming skills and endurance.

Classes and certification that meet the American Red Cross standards are widely accepted and respected, and they're offered at various sites throughout metro Atlanta. During the course, you'll learn teamwork, rescue and surveillance skills, how to provide CPR and first aid and more. Review courses are also offered.

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How much does it pay?

The average salary for a lifeguard in Atlanta is around $17,520, according to Glassdoor.

What are some possible interview questions?

Glassdoor respondents reported being asked the following questions when interviewing for lifeguard jobs in Atlanta:

  • Why do you want to be a lifeguard, and what do you want to get out of it?
  • How long have you been swimming? Are you a team player?
  • If there was a parent who is drunk and being wild and throwing things in the pool, how would you handle that situation?

Who's hiring?

SwimAtlanta Pool Management is hiring lifeguards in Alpharetta, Atlanta, Dallas, Decatur, Forsyth, Johns Creek, Marietta, Milton, Roswell and Woodstock. If you're not already certified, you'll need to register for a training course at your interview.

American Pool Georgia is hosting several hiring events, and you can also make an appointment to be interviewed if you can't make it to an event. Camps are offered so you can obtain American Red Cross lifeguard certification.

Cobb County Government has part-time lifeguard positions available at their indoor aquatic centers. You'll need to have completed American Red Cross lifeguard certification.

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