Faces of FOSS: Anaiz Cernas

Anaiz Cernas
Site Director
Libertyville, IL

How long have you worked for FOSS?
I’ve worked at FOSS for just over 5 years. I started in 2012 as an instructor, then a deck assistant, a shift coordinator, and most recently site director of the Libertyville location.

What is your favorite part of working for FOSS?
Getting to witness and be a part of each swimmer’s journey. Getting to watch the swimmers that started as babies grow up to be on swim teams is an amazing feeling.

What is your favorite level to teach and why?
My favorite age group to teach is babies. They never cease to amaze me with all they can learn at such a young age.

What is your favorite activity to teach and why?
It would have to be diving for rings. Especially when they dive down for rings and swim up and flip over to breathe. Getting them to that point feels like a job well done.

Can you share a favorite breakthrough moment you observed in a swimmer?
I remember Molly, she was terrified of the thought of swimming on her own. Even though she was never one of my students, as the shift coordinator I spent many classes in the water helping her teachers reassure her and build her confidence. It took a while but when she finally gained her confidence it was an amazing feeling seeing the excitement on her face and the relief that mom felt. Molly never looked back. The other day I saw Molly and her mom and found out Molly was rocking it on the school swim team and it brought happy tears to my eyes.

Can you share your own swimming experience?
I loved the water as a child and have fond memories of learning to swim. Growing up with The Little Mermaid as my favorite movie made me want to spend every second in the water. To this day, I love being at the beach with my family. We spend all summer at the lake.

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