Meghan Stanger – Co-Executive Director of Swim 4 Success
What’s your major? What year are you?
I am a sophomore studying International Development and English
How did you get involved in Swim 4 Success? Have you ever done anything similar to Swim 4 Success before?
In the beginning of freshman year, a friend told me about this organization that gives disadvantaged youth free-swimming lessons. The first semester I fell in love with the kids and got an amazing feeling from visibly changing a child’s swimming ability.
About how many children are signed up for lessons presently?
Our cap is 45 children at Reily. However, more than 100 parents signed their kids up and the number of Tulane volunteers was the same.
What other campus activities are you involved in?
I am in Kappa Alpha Theta. I do Project Raintree and am a community scholar.
I am also part of the dodge ball, flag football, and soccer “Hurricane Diesel” intramural team.
Is it challenging to balance your schoolwork/work, Swim 4 Success, and any other activities that you are involved in?
Yes, it is very challenging, but I am passionate about everything I do, which makes it worth it.
Do you see yourself continuing with Swim 4 Success in the future? Or doing something similar? This program has become something that I plan on expanding until people cannot avoid recognizing drowning as a major issue. Because of Swim 4 Success, I have decided to double major in International Development and English, which will give me the skills to make a difference in issues that need to be acknowledged and then acted upon.
What has been the funniest moment you’ve experienced working with Swim 4 Success?
The kids are the best part of Swim 4 Success. They are so imaginative and tell you the funniest stories.
What is the best part of Swim 4 Success?
On my way to a class, freshman year, I remember trekking through knee-deep water wearing flip-flops. I learned the hard way that rain boots are not just a fashion statement at Tulane, but also a necessity. Despite the always-present danger of extreme flooding, New Orleans schools do not prioritize swimming. There are currently no public, year-round pools in New Orleans.This entire experience has taught me that when no one speaks up, it doesn’t mean the cause doesn’t matter; all it means is that you have to do something. I student teach at a local public school. One day, I read a story about the beach with a kindergartner. I asked him if he knew how to swim. When he answered no, he told me that his parents are afraid of the water and that his brother drowned during hurricane Katrina. After that day, the cause itself has become the most important aspect of the program.