Here's everything you wanted to know about joining the Carleton Varsity Ravens Swim Team...

Q. How fast do I have to be to join the Varsity Team?

A. Most of those who join the Varsity team do have some previous competitive experience and already know at least three of the four competitive strokes (fly, back, breast and free), as well as some basic racing skills (racing starts, flip turns). That said, anyone who can do 10x100 free on a 1:45 pace time (1:50 for women) and 10x100 of other strokes and IM on 2:00 (2:05 for women) is most welcome to join the team. (For those unfamiliar with that terminology, that is 10 repeats of 100m of front crawl, starting each 100m 1min45sec after the previous one started, etc.) Those who are already under the OUA standards and/or who would make Carleton's All-Time Top 20 lists (see web site) will obviously have no problems qualifying for the team.

Q. How many workouts are there and how many must I attend?

A. We hold 9 workouts per week during the regular season (see web site). Swimmers attend at least five of these per week (on average). We encourage swimmers to get ahead on their attendance early in the season, as they can carry over their extra workouts and use them if they have a particularly busy week at school. Adjustments are made to a swimmer's attendance quota is cases of illness. Varsity athletes are permitted to register for their courses before the general population to try to avoid conflicts with their training sessions. If you have supplied me with your details by early June, you will be automatically included on the early registration list.

Q. How many competitions are there? How many will I attend?

A. Swimmers are expected to attend all the competitions for which they are eligible unless there are extenuating circumstances. Most professors will make exam/lab accommmodations for Varsity athletes. The meet schedule varies from year to year but usually has a similar number of out of town trips (Southern Ontario in October, Divisional Championships in November, Kingston in January, OUAs in February). See the draft meet schedule on the web site to get an idea of the number of meets.

Q. How much does it cost?

A. It costs $150 per year to swim on the Varsity team. (Note the increase for 2005-2006!) This includes all training at Calreton (including the optional pre-season training camp but excluding the Florida training camp over New Year's), swim wear and gear, a locker (possibly shared), towel service, athletic therapy (if required), plus travel, accommodation and a meal allowance when travelling to meets. The

Q. How many swimmers are on the team?

A. The maximum size of the swim team is 20 men and 20 women. At most 19 of each gender (18 able-bodied, plus 1 SWAD) can compete in any competition.

Q. What are the rules with regards to courses and marks for Varsity Athletes?

A. You must be a full-time Carleton student to compete for Carleton. For undergrad students, this means that you must be taking 3 courses (3 half-credits) each term that you compete (usually both Fall and Winter). For grad students, you must be considered full-time by your department. If you attended a University in North America this past year, you must have passed 3 credits (between September and August) to be eligible to compete this coming year. If you attended another University in North America this past year (i.e. not Carleton), you must not have swum for that University this past year (unless there are extenuating circumstances). Note that you must also be in "good standing" in your program (i.e. not on academic probation / suspension) to be eligible to compete.