Just keep swimming: Alumni returns to coach swim team

Lillian Smith

While most students graduate and never return to their high school again, alumni Uylesses Tirado has chosen to come back to coach the swim team. Coach Tirado graduated from BHS 5 years ago, and many swimmers have been able to see the improvements Tirado has brought to the team. Junior Asa Ayers has seen how he is learning to fill the coaching position from the best.

“Coach Tirado provides encouragement that pushes people to try much harder,” Asa said. “People’s times have really improved and under the guidance of Coach Rampy, he has developed into a really good coach.”

Even kids who have been swimming their entire lives have been able to find something to improve with the addition of Tirado. Senior Rachel Hutchinson, who swam for nine years before joining the BHS team freshman year, has been able to polish her skill set.

“Coach Tirado is such a fun guy to be around, so the overall team spirit is way better,” Rachel said. “Also, I have seen my diving and overall times improve this year.”

Rachel sees how swimming is a different type of sport, especially in the way it offers a different approach to staying healthy as well as making lifelong friends.

“Swimming is unique. And it offers a very different workout compared to other sports,” Rachel said. “It also forms the closest friendships, nothing like suffering in ice-cold water brings people as close together.”

Coaches Rampy and Tirado work to train and organize the swim team. Rampy was coaching when Tirado was a swimmer and has been able to witness her former student continue the hard work that he started years ago.

“Coach Tirado has brought a new intensity to our practices and our times and work ethic have overall improved,” Rampy said. “He really gets to know each kid in order to help them improve.”

While everyone is happy to have an experienced and youthful coach, Tirado is also happy to be back to prove his knowledge while also improving the team.                   

“I love swimming. It is a passion of mine and I feel like this is a great opportunity to show all that I have learned over the years,” Tirado said. “ I am able to implement different techniques from the coaches I have had to give the next generation of Bryan High swimmers an even better experience.”

The whole team seems to be enjoying swim since Tirado has noticed a bond forming between all the teammates. 

“I have seen the swimmers improve their communication skills and they have all become close,” Tirado said. “The whole team is like a family.”