I needed to post this somewhere. I was sent a survey by the NCSU Aquatic Center. As you know I’m supposed to be learning how to swim. If you’re paying attention to me then you know I haven’t mentioned anything at all about swimming lately on any social network. That’s because it’s not happening. I have received some of the worst treatment by the NCSU Aquatic Center. At the end of this survey, there’s a space where you can “Please feel free to let us know your opinions so than we can continue to offer the best service possible. We appreciate your patronage and hope you will think of us for future classes and programs!”
This is what I wrote. You see no one is ever going to read their survey. No one’s ever gonna know my pain in this, and probably not even care. After I hit the send button, it’s going to go away into the abyss then it will all be over. But then I decided that I don’t have to keep in silence. I don’t want to keep in silence anymore. About anything. So I’m posting my open ended response that I wrote them here. Maybe someone will read this.
“I think my experience was really atypical. It wasn’t the best. I started this program in mid July because it was a life long goal to learn how to swim. I had developed a fear of the water due to nearly drowning as an adolescent. So when I signed up for lessons I was approaching mid 30’s. I’m a graduate student so the summer was the best time to take lessons. I signed up for the 5 lesson private sessions. I had my first meeting, then my instructor stopped emailing me and we couldn’t set a time up. He just stopped responding. He just wouldn’t respond. An entire month went by. I stopped by the manager’s desk 2 weeks after not hearing from my instructor and was told I should wait longer to hear from him before the center could set me up with another instructor. The day before asking for a refund back (because I’m a grad student) the Aquatic center emailed me to talk about setting up another instructor. He rocked! But by that point it was already early Sept. Finally I could resume lessons. Scheduling was difficult due to my graduate schedule but we did make lessons. We had two really good ones. Apparently the 3rd lesson was scheduled over Fall Break. The fault lies somewhat with me because I didn’t realize this and should have made sure. But since campus was shut down, I was away at a conference. I then was alerted via email that I had missed my lesson and that I was going to lose it. In other words, I just lost a lesson scheduled when school was closed. So although I started this out paying for 5 lessons over 5 weeks, I will receive 4 lessons over 3 months at the same cost. I have one more lesson left now. So I paid $95, still can’t really swim, and what should have taken 5 weeks max has now taken 3 months, and I’m being charged for a lesson that was scheduled when campus was shut down for holiday while I was presenting at a conference. I think after the first instructor bailed on me, I kinda became that problem that needed to be swept under the rug. I can’t really say that I’m satisfied with the treatment I’ve received or the level of progress I thought I would make. But assuming this case is atypical, no one is ever going to really hear about this and the Aquatic center will continue to get raving reviews from the patrons who attend. It just bothers me because of how important and how much of a personal thing this really means for me to try to be brave enough to get into water and then no one seems to value it but me. I know people have different personal journeys but mine is learning to swim. There is no victory for me on this end nor is there honor in this on the Aquatic center’s end. Instead, I’ve been let down by the Aquatic Center and at this point even wondering if it’s worth it to me to show up for this last lesson when all evidence leads me to think I’m going to have to sign up for MORE swim lessons with another company or private instructor not NCSU affiliated. It’s not fair and what started out as something so hopeful and enjoyable in the summer has become just another one of life’s little frustrations in the Fall.“
I don’t expect any type of movement to come out of this or any type of refund or any type of amends. But NCSU failed me on this one. And that’s just the truth.
Guess I better go get ready for that last lesson.