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University Advancement

Media Contact: Carmen Ramos Chandler
(818) 677-2130
carmen.chandler@csun.edu
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Public Relations and Strategic Communications

MEDIA RELEASE

Boating Instruction Safety Center Opens at CSUN Aquatic Center

(NORTHRIDGE, Calif., Sept. 11, 2007) — A spacious, well-equipped new Boating Instruction Safety Center (BISC) operated by Cal State Northridge opened its doors this summer at Castaic Lake, the scenic Santa Clarita Valley paradise located northwest of Los Angeles near Six Flags Magic Mountain.

Built with grant funding from the state Department of Boating and Waterways, the 10,000 square foot BISC at the Castaic Lake Recreation Area now is one of just a handful of boating safety centers in California. The $1.8 million facility includes a $700,000 dock to support its boating safety programs.

Under the auspices of the CSUN Aquatic Center in partnership with the Los Angeles Department of Parks and Recreation, the new BISC features faculty and staff meeting rooms, small conference rooms and a section considered ideal for conference retreats or workshops. It can accommodate up to 300 individuals.

The new boating safety facility enhances programs already offered by the CSUN Aquatic Center, known since its establishment in 1976 for its excellence in boating and water safety education. Annually serving nearly 10,500 individuals through its credit, non-credit and community service programs, CSUN offers one of the two largest instructionally-focused aquatics programs in the nation. Other large programs are at CSU San Diego and CSU Sacramento.

John Van Arsdale, CSUN Aquatic Center director, estimated that about one quarter of those the center serves are CSUN students. "We get a lot of students whose first contact with Cal State Northridge is through all of the youth programs that we provide," the CSUN alumnus said of Aquatic Center programs that serve such groups as the Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts, Los Angeles Police Department PALS (Police Activity League Supporters), and various groups serving people with disabilities.

Children can earn certification through the center’s "Aquasmart" water safety program, and adults—who come to learn everything from sailboat rigging to kayak maneuvers—also can earn state boating safety and sailing certifications.

Northridge’s Recreation and Tourism Management Department students delve into courses such as an introduction to the back country, and lab work involving canoeing and kayaking. They enjoy activities offered by the center, from traditional water skiing, sailing, fishing , kayaking, canoeing and nature walks to wakeboarding and wakeskating.

"Over the years here," Van Arsdale said, "we’ve kind of set the standard nationally." CSUN is the nation’s only two-time university-level winner of the National Recreation and Parks Association’s National Aquatic Branch Excellence in Aquatics award.

To contact the CSUN Aquatic Center, call (818) 677-3202 or (661) 257-0571.

California State University, Northridge at 18111 Nordhoff Street, Northridge, CA 91330 / Phone: 818-677-1200 / © 2006 CSU Northridge