As kids, AIPHS seniors Aiden Yip and Nathan Huynh initially swam together, but became reacquainted after they both enrolled at AIMS. Since, they have been best friends and began to swim competitively for clubs at the beginning of their junior year. But when the then juniors Aiden and Nathan were informed that AIPHS would have its first sports program during the 2017-2018 academic school year, they were initially met with mixed emotions. While sports would be a dream come true to the current batch of students and the hundreds of AIMS graduates in its 22 years of existence, Aiden and Nathan would not be able to swim for any potential high school swim team once they joined the Bay Area Charter School Athletic Conference. To wit, the solution to this dilemma was a simple one: the Swimming Elite of American Indian Public High School (S.E.A.) Eagles swim team would be included as part of its initial batch of sport offerings at AIPHS.
Fast forward to today. With less than a week to go before its first swim meet of the season, the Oakland Section Swim Invitational, AIPHS swim interest has boomed to 40 swimmers (21 Girls and 19 Boys), more than a tenth of AIPHS’s total student population.
Selected for his prior swimming experience and rapport with students, first year AIPHS PE Teacher, Jesse Rubino III, serves as the Head Coach of the S.E.A. Eagles. From the Bay Area, Coach Rubino, earned his BA in Recreation from CSU Hayward, and MA in Education at USF. Coach Rubino III has coached swimming for the past 18 years and has extensive coaching experience that ranges from clinics to junior collegiate levels. Coach Rubino is also an avid swimmer and played water polo for 19 years including summer league to junior college experience. Given his extensive swimming experience, Coach Rubino and experienced swimmers like Aiden and Nathan are also helping to develop several S.E.A. Eagles members that do not have prior swimming experience.
“In the short few weeks coaching, I am enjoying working with these unique individuals who have bravely decided to step into the sport of swimming,” said Coach Rubino. “In the first year the high school having sports and a swim team, the athletes have put in the hard work with great effort and desire to do well in their training. Swimming has given great expectations for the athletes and goals to achieve as a team and individuals. I look forward to seeing the growth and improvement these athletes will make from the start to the end of the season.”
To say that Aiden and Nathan are excited to be part of first S.E.A. Team in their senior year at AIMS would be an understatement: “Sports have been the one thing we really wanted this school to have and throughout the 5-6 years that we’ve been here. We are looking forward to leaving a mark for future S.E.A. Eagles to follow."
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UPDATE: The S.E.A. Eagles Swim Team needs your help! Please consider supporting S.E.A. Team One and AIPHS Athletics by donating to the upcoming S.E.A. Eagles Swim-A-Thon. For more information, please email Coach Rubino at Jesse.firstname.lastname@example.org.