The University of Massachusetts Dartmouth hired Owen Worden as its swimming and diving head coach after a tumultuous year.
Worden most recently served as the Recreation Supervisor II and Certified Pool Operator at the school, where his responsibilities included operations, maintenance, and scheduling. He’s been with the program since 2012, and he’s worked as an assistant coach and recruiting coordinator for the men’s and women’s swimming and diving team for eight seasons.
“Having spent eight seasons working as an assistant, I am confident my institutional knowledge and familiarity with the Little East Conference will prove to be valuable,” Worden said in a press release. “I also want to thank and recognize former Head Coach Cathy Motta for her 20-plus years of service to the swim program here at UMass Dartmouth.”
The Division III school announced it would cut both the men’s and women’s programs in July 2020 as part of a larger move to eliminate eight athletic programs. In May, it reinstated the women’s swimming and diving program, but not the men’s team. The school’s press release associated with the reinstatement noted the decision was made at least in part to “better align athletic participation opportunities for women with the female undergraduate population.”
At the 2020 Little East Conference Championships, the women’s team finished second. The women finished sixth overall at the 2020 New England Intercollegiate Swimming and Diving Association Championships.
Worden’s prior swim coaching experience includes serving as associate head coach of Kingfish Rhode Island Swimming. Prior to his time at UMass Dartmouth, he also worked as a recreational facilities supervisor and lifeguard supervisor at Horseneck Beach from 2008 to 2017.
He graduated in 2012 from Colby-Sawyer College, where he was a two-year captain of the swim team and three-time swimmer of the year. He also received the Chargers’ Male Scholar Athlete Award in 2012.
“I’m looking forward to working with a wonderful group of student-athletes who will help us continue to grow and further develop our women’s swimming and diving program,” Worden said in the press release. “It will be exciting to see our student-athletes competing once again for individual and LEC conference championships. It’s time to get to work! Go Corsairs!”