On April 1, 2022, Keiser University was joined by 12-time Olympic medalist Ryan Lochte and Miami Dolphins’ offensive lineman Solomon “Big Fish” Kindley to provide the community with updates on its Aquatic Center fundraising campaign. The press conference was attended by more than 130 people including elected officials, notable community leaders and first responders, and members of the Keiser University community.
Leaders from Keiser University shared that donations are well underway towards its plans to raise more than $8 million dollars for the construction of the facility which will serve as the future home of Keiser University’s NAIA National Championship swimming teams as well as a gathering place to engage the community and teach the importance of swimming.
“We are thankful for the progress as we continue our mission to support our student athletes and community friends and neighbors through the creation of this aquatic center and Olympic pool,” said Arthur Keiser, Ph.D., Chancellor of Keiser University. “We look forward to rooting for our students as they compete here at their Seahawks home, and to providing a venue for many in our community to acquire important swim safety skills.”
University officials also praised the 2021 passage of Every Child a Swimmer legislation which encourages parents to register their school-aged children for swim lessons by having public school systems in Florida distribute information on the important role water safety education plays in recreational swimming. Bill Kent, a member of the Keiser University Board of Trustees and Chairman of the International Swimming Hall of Fame, led the effort to pass the Every Child a Swimmer bill in 2021, which goes into effect in 2023. The bill does not mandate or require swim lessons, but rather provides materials to parents about local options for age-appropriate water safety courses and swimming lessons, including classes offered for free or at reduced prices.
Designed to serve as a community resource for Palm Beach County while bringing world-class aquatic events to the region, the facility will serve as a valuable location for children to learn the life-saving skill of swimming while providing a new home for Keiser University’s NAIA Championship and Learfield Cup winning swim teams. It will also serve as a venue for athletes from near and far to train as it enhances the area’s economic impact and stimulates bed tax revenues.
Lochte is an American professional swimmer and 4-time Olympian (2004, 2008, 2012, 2016) who earned 12 Olympic Medals (6 gold, 3 silver, 3 bronze) and currently holds the world record in the 200-meter individual medley. Solomon Kindley is a third-year player for the Miami Dolphins. He is a swimming enthusiast who earned the nickname “Big Fish” after saving a teammate from downing. Kindley is an advocate for early swim programs for children.
Avid supporters of swim safety, both Lochte and Kindley recognize the value of the aquatic center in providing community members the opportunity to learn to swim at an early age. “Being in Florida surrounded by water, giving back, drowning prevention, that’s where it is and helping this community out,” said Lochte after sharing that he’s instructed his two small children in the life-saving skill and looks forward to them someday passing along the knowledge to others.
For more information about Keiser University’s Aquatic Center fundraising campaign, please visit: https://aquaticcenter.keiseruniversity.edu/.
About Keiser University:
Keiser University is a private, independent, non-profit university serving nearly 20,000 students at 21 Florida campuses, online, and two international sites. Co-founded in 1977 by Chancellor Arthur Keiser, Ph.D., and Evelyn Keiser, Keiser University currently offers more than 100 degrees from associates to the doctoral level. Keiser University is a designated Hispanic-Serving Institution, a member of the Hispanic Association of Colleges and Universities, and was ranked No. 5 in the U.S. in Social Mobility by U.S. News And World Report in 2022.