Petition to Reinstate UCSC Swim and Dive Staff

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On June 30, 2017, the entirety of the UC Santa Cruz Swim and Dive coaching staff had their contracts terminated or positions removed. 

The threat of losing athletics at UCSC has loomed for the past 6 years, and the person responsible for leading the successful movement to save athletics has been Head Swim Coach Kim Musch.  He rallied not only his own athletes, but athletes across campus, alumni, future students and the community to pass a referendum last spring to fund athletics for the next 25 years.

The entire community, undergraduate and graduate students, alumni, faculty, and general public, campaigned and passed the referendum last spring, expecting the promised, and much different, outcome.

Instead of appreciation, the administration within OPERS, led by Andrea Willer,  decimated the swim team coaching staff and imperilled  the existence of the swim program they had claimed they wanted to save.  Coach Kim Musch, a tremendously respected and successful Head Coach for 19 years at UCSC, was terminated without notice.  Additional positions held by Head Coach Kim Musch, Aquatics Director and Physical Education Instructor,  were also terminated.  Instead he was offered an at will contract, from which he could be fired at any time. To stay on solely as Head Swim Coach, he would have to take a 60% pay cut. Coach Musch was given two days to decide whether to accept this disgraceful offer. The timing of the underhanded actions taken by OPERS clearly indicate all of their negotiations and planning were disingenuous from the beginning.  


The terminations were implemented after the end of the Spring quarter, when few students were on campus.

Assistant coaches, Joel Wilson and Matt Nauman, along with the Head Diving Coach, Joan Newby, all had their contracts terminated with the offer to reapply for positions with lower salary and no benefits. Ultimately, leaving the UCSC Swim and Dive team without a single coach.

Kim Mush has been with the UCSC swim and dive team since 1998. He has immense experience including coaching All American swimmers, Olympic athletes, collegiate athletes at the division 1 through 3 levels and serving on NCAA Division III Committees.  He has remained dedicated to bettering UCSC as a whole and his experience and passion for the university cannot be replaced.

The OPERS administration has left the swim team in an incredibly tenuous position. Executive Director of OPERS, Andrea Willer, is claiming to be seeking to model our programs after other Division III programs around the country. There are no other programs treating their coaches and athletes in such an irresponsible, misleading, and shameful manner. Andrea Willer is failing, across the board, to accomplish anything she claims to be working towards, and has no right to restructure the program the student body fought for, voted on, and passed to keep for the next 25 years.

Sign this petition to demand that UCSC administrators immediately reinstate Kim Musch as Head Coach for Women's and Men’s swimming, Aquatics Director and Physical Education Instructor, with the same benefits and job security. Along with Joel Wilson, Matt Nauman, and Joan Newby to their original positions and all at their previous level of pay.


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