April 18, 2012

Erin Kurtz Named Head Swim Coach and Director of Aquatics

YORK, PA – York College is proud to announce that Erin Kurtz has been hired as the first full-time Head Swimming Coach and Director of Aquatics. Kurtz was named to the position after an extensive national search.

Kurtz comes to the Spartan program after spending last winter as a volunteer assistant at her alma mater Shippensburg University. Kurtz served as the interim head coach for the Red Raiders during the 2009-2010 season.

Kurtz brings a wealth of experience to the Spartan program. She spent three seasons as an assistant coach at Kutztown University prior to her stint at Shippensburg. Kurtz also has Division I coaching experience as she was a graduate assistant coach at Texas Christian University.

York College Assistant Dean for Athletics and Recreation Paul Saikia is confident that Kurtz is the right coach moving forward for the swim program. "We were very pleased with our pool of candidates for the position. We interviewed several very qualified people--Erin stood out. The committee is excited about her experiences, her competitiveness, and how she will integrate with our staff and our plans for the future."

In her time at Kutztown, Kurtz coached two swimmers to NCAA automatic cuts while the Golden Bears broke 13 school records during her tenure.

Kurtz is excited to get started in York. "I'm very excited to be joining York College as the Men's and Women's Swimming Coach and Aquatic Director," states Kurtz.  "I'd like to sincerely thank Dean Merkle, Paul Saikia and the rest of the search committee for this wonderful opportunity. The demand for excellence is very apparent throughout the athletic department, and I am determined to meet those demands in the water."

Kurtz has extensive experience and an impressive track record in the pool. She was a four-year All-Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference (PSAC) swimmer at Shippensburg while she earned All-American status in the 500, the 1,000, and the 1,650-freestyle in all four of her seasons as a Red Raider. She won the PSAC title in the 1,650-freestyle during her junior year. She picked up seven All-American awards as a sophomore, including four in relay events at the NCAA Championships.

She finished her career with four individual PSAC championships and 16 NCAA Division II All-American awards. Kurtz still holds Shippensburg school records in four of the six freestyle events. All four of those record finishes came during the 2004 NCAA Division II Championships where she finished third in the 1,000-yard freestyle, fourth in both the 200 and 500 freestyle and ninth in the 1,650-yard free.

Kurtz feels the York College swim program will be a great place for not only current student-athletes, but also potential swimmers that want an all-around balanced college swimming experience.

"My immediate goal is to impact the current team with tough workouts, a great dry land program and a fantastic academic experience," says Kurtz. "I'm looking forward to continuing to build two programs who will be a strong force within the Capital Athletic Conference. As the season gains speed, I'm eager to coach our current athletes to new personal bests on an individual and team level all while bringing in top notch talent to York College swimming. We've got beautiful facilities at York College, and I'm looking forward to giving our students, staff and community new opportunities to gain access to the natatorium."

Saikia echoes, "We have an awesome opportunity to push two of our NCAA programs to a new level and to generate more use of our facility. We've set some lofty goals—we're energized by the progress and we are thrilled that Erin is taking the lead in these ventures."

Kurtz, who is a Reading, Pennsylvania native, is married to Chris Kurtz. She will officially begin her on-campus duties on July 1.