Faces of FOSS: Jenna Cofield

Jenna Cofield
Site Director
Maple Grove, MN

How long have you worked for FOSS?
Over 12 years – I began working for FOSS in March 2005 as an office worker, then moved to the pool as an instructor, Deck Assistant, part time Shift Coordinator, full time Shift Coordinator and now Site Director!

What is your favorite part of working for FOSS?
Every day is different! There are so many different hats I get to wear at the site that my duties differ from day to day. Plus, getting to work with the kids keeps everything to so enjoyable. You never know what silly story they will bring to class! I also love my co-workers. FOSS looks to hire people with outgoing personalities and the ability to connect with others, so when we spend time together, it is always a fun time.

What is your personal favorite water activity?
I love tubing behind the boat in the summer! I find it so fun to go back and forth over the wake and try to stay on the tube. But really, I like all kinds of water activities. I grew up going to my grandpa’s cabin every weekend throughout the year. Whether we were swimming and boating in the summer or ice fishing and snowmobiling in the winter, we were always on the lake.

What is your favorite skill to teach?
My favorite activity is Chop Chop Timber. No matter the age, kids think it’s the greatest activity ever! I love seeing the pure joy on their faces when they jump into the water.

Can you recount a major “lightbulb” moment for a student of yours?
Recently, I worked with a child that was on the autism spectrum and no matter what we did he would say it was hurting him, even gentle activities. When he first came to my class, whenever I would mention that we were going to put water on our eyes, he would scream. But by the end of our 11 weeks together, he could so many of those same activities that he once said hurt without hesitation, he would hold his eyes in the water WITHOUT goggles for 3 seconds, and he would do a back float with just a light touch. It was one of the most rewarding swimmers I’ve gotten work with!

What was your most fulfilling achievement in the water?
I swam for my high school swim team as a distance swimmer. My favorite event was the 500 Freestyle (20 lengths of the pool). I was proud of my ability to set a pace for myself and maintain it throughout the entire race without getting tired early on!

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