August 23, 2012

On Tuesday, Michael Hay began his first day as with the Carthage swimming programs.  Hay will be the graduate assistant for both women’s and men’s teams while also serving as a program officer for   A native of West Chester, PA, Hay attended Lehigh University where he was a four year letter winner and team captain. After graduating from Lehigh he went into the business world as an accountant before coming back to swimming.  Hay spent the 2010-2011 and 2011-2012 seasons as an assistant coach at Villa Maria Academy High School where he helped the Hurricanes to back-to-back PIAA Division AA State Titles.  Hay also served as an assistant coach at the Upper Main Line YMCA where he helped the Otters to a 6th place finish at the 2012 YMCA Spring Nationals. Hay is working on his master’s in education at Carthage.

10 Questions with Michael Hay:

Why did you choose Carthage College?

How could you not choose Carthage?  It has great facilities, an outstanding academic reputation, and one of the best Athletic Departments in all of Division III.  In short, it was a place where I felt that people who are dedicated to having success have all the resources to achieve it.

What attracted you to Carthage College?

Carthage has a reputation of success within the swimming community. It was important to me to continue to have the ability to work with talented and motivated individuals who want to succeed both in and out of the pool. Greg and Beth both have great reputations and will provide me with the ability to learn a great deal about developing individuals, not just athletes. It wasn’t the case where there was one coach for me to learn from.  They bring different things to the table with regards to their swimming expertise and I look forward to the opportunity to learn as much from them as possible.

In your first few days on campus, what's impressed you the most?

It is very obvious that Carthage is dedicated to reinvesting its resources back into its students and employees. Even in the time since my interview last spring, the campus has continued to be improved for the benefit of both the students and staff.  Case in point - the new cafeteria is nothing like what I ate at on my interview.

What are your favorite events?

I was a sprinter in college but most of my recent swimming has been open water.  My favorite events are the 50 Free, 50 Breast, and 50 Fly. At Lehigh I was a Patriot League Consolation Finalist in the 50 Free, 100 Free and 100 Breast over the course of my career while also contributing to all 4 of the sprint relays.

What was the highlight of your swimming career?

The greatest highlight of my swimming career would have to be making a Consolation Final in the 50 free at the 2004 YMCA Spring Nationals in Fort Lauderdale. I faced a lot of adversity during the season, suffering a broken back, but thanks to hard work, dedication, and the assistance of a great coaching staff, I was able to squeak out a night swim and score our team’s first points at the meet.

Why did you trade Public Accounting to coach swimming?

At Lehigh, our accounting program was named #1 in the country by Business Week Magazine and it helped me get a position at Clifton Larson Allen, one of the ten biggest firms in the country.  Accounting provided me with a great career, job security and a very comfortable standard of living, but not the emotional satisfaction that came from swimming.  I come from a swimming family; both of my parents are very passionate and successful coaches in the greater Philadelphia area. My father was named to the Chester County Sports Hall of Fame as Swimming, Track and Cross Country Coach before he passed away in 2010. My Mother continues to build her legacy in the community. Being a swim coach has provided me with the opportunity to develop athletes both in and out of the pool, and few things in life are as satisfying as helping others to achieve their goals.

What are some of your passions outside of the sport of swimming?

In the summer, I am a member of the Cape May Beach Patrol.  At 101 years old, the CMBP is the longest standing professional ocean lifesaving organization in the world. We also have the best record of professionalism and success in the world, with no drownings while a lifeguard is on duty for the history of our patrol. This is especially noteworthy because the lateral currents (among the strongest on the east coast) are extremely dangerous due to Cape May’s proximity to the Delaware Bay.

What’s on your iPod?

I like most music except Country and Pop Rap. My favorite Bands include Red Hot Chili Peppers, Pearl Jam, Incubus, Weezer, David Bowie, The Beatles, Jurassic 5 and others.

What is your favorite moment in sports?

This is a tough one, but I can narrow it down to three. In no particular order; The Philadelphia Eagles winning the NFC Championship in 2004, the Villanova University Wildcats making the Final Four on a last second buzzer beater by Scottie Reynolds in 2009, and Jason Lezak coming from behind to win the Men’s 400m Free Relay, beating 100m Free WR Holder Alain Bernard for the gold in the 2008 Beijing Olympics.

What are you most looking forward to this season?

I am most looking forward to the opportunity to work with athletes at the college level. I look forward to doing whatever I can to help Carthage College continue its reputation of success both in and out of the pool. I am especially looking forward to the opportunity to take what I have already learned and experienced, and make it available to our program.



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