Last day of pool operation will be on or about March 31, 2019
Hackettstown, N.J., July 16, 2018— Centenary University will close its pool in the John M. Reeves Student Recreation Center on or about March 31, 2019. The University considered a number of important factors over several months before arriving at the difficult decision to close the pool. Among the most significant reasons were:
Space: Centenary University students have expressed the desire for additional recreational space. The University will use the space occupied by the pool to grow its intercollegiate athletic and recreational sports programs. This is part of an ongoing initiative to add new academic programs and facilities to better meet the needs of students enrolled at Centenary University.
Pool attendance: Over the past several years, pool attendance has decreased significantly among Centenary University students and Hackettstown residents, who were invited to use the pool for recreational programs.
Operating costs: While attendance has decreased, the University must still financially support the pool, which currently operates at a net cost of approximately $150,000 annually for maintenance and salaries. After the pool closes, student lifeguards will be invited to transfer to other jobs on campus.
Centenary University does not have an intercollegiate swim team, and the current pool does not meet NCAA standards for intercollegiate competition. However, several local high school swim teams, including Hackettstown High School, use the pool. The March 31 closing date will provide time for the high school swim teams to make alternate arrangements while proceeding with their upcoming competitive seasons. This closing date will also give the recreational swim programs and their participants time to find alternatives to the Centenary pool.
“We value the relationship we have with the Hackettstown community and thank those who have reached out for their outpouring of support for our pool,” said Centenary University President David P. Haney. “While change is always hard, Centenary University’s first priority is to devote our resources to the academic, athletic and recreational programs that best serve our students.”
While the pool will no longer be operational, the University will continue to offer other amenities to residents of Hackettstown and surrounding areas. These include complimentary use of Taylor Memorial Library, community-oriented events held on campus, sponsorship of town events including Hackettstown’s Hometown Holiday celebration and students who volunteer to assist local school students and elders. In addition, the University’s new baseball field, which is slated to break ground this fall, will be available for use by local recreation leagues and high schools.
ABOUT CENTENARY UNIVERSITY
Founded in 1867 by the Newark Conference of the United Methodist Church, Centenary University’s academic program integrates a solid liberal arts foundation with a strong career orientation. This mix provides an educational experience that prepares students to succeed in the increasingly global and interdependent world. The University’s main campus is located in Hackettstown, N.J., with its equestrian facility in Long Valley. The Centenary University School of Professional Studies offers degree programs at two locations, Parsippany and Edison, as well as online and at corporate sites throughout New Jersey.