San Mateo Athletic Club

In the spring of 2010, the District opened a state-of-the art fitness and aquatic center on the campus of College of San Mateo in the newly constructed Health and Wellness Building. This incredible new building provides classrooms and labs for career and technical programs including nursing, dental assisting, cosmetology, health fitness, and dental hygiene (when state funding permits).

The San Mateo Athletic Club is a professionally managed enterprise program sharing the state-of-the-art fitness facility. The San Mateo Athletic Club shares the instructional and training space on two levels of the Health and Wellness building that includes a large main floor along with four exercise studios on the second level and an aquatics complex with a 50 meter Olympic size competition pool along with a 25 meter instructional pool for Adaptive Fitness and other group exercise classes. The San Mateo Athletic Club and its members enjoy this multi-use College of San Mateo facility that provides credit classes, non-credit classes, community education and adaptive fitness.

Operating as an enterprise, the San Mateo Athletic Club is a community-centered, fee-based operation offering numerous service options to the San Mateo campus community and the community-at-large. The concept of a multi-use space enables the District to maximize the use of facility resources and create a revenue stream that will supplement the College budgetary needs including equipment maintenance and replacement. The San Mateo Athletic Club provides the community broader access to the College of San Mateo and demonstrates in a very real way that the District is a community-based organization serving a broad spectrum of educational and training opportunities.

The mission of the San Mateo Athletic Club is more than providing a revenue stream to the District. Our mission is to create a healthy environment that engages students, staff and community members in the pursuit of health and physical fitness. With a facility such as this, the emphasis is on enjoying exercise for its own sake and learning fitness habits for life. This means that students have a place where they can focus on lifetime fitness goals and individual achievement, and community members can find opportunities to improve their health and well-being.

San Mateo Athletic Club also engages the community in a way that we as a District have never done before the opening of this enterprise. The interaction between community members and students sharing the same space in pursuit of similar goals has been an invaluable asset for both groups. The engagement of members of the community in life at the College has been equally important. San Mateo Athletic Club has attracted many of our neighboring schools to partner with us in the use of the facility.

With much excitement and as a result of significant collaboration, the College academic team and the San Mateo Athletic Club team continue to work to brand San Mateo Athletic Club as a “teaching health club.” This is certainly an innovative concept for a college and a health club! This partnership will offer students at College of San Mateo who are pursuing a career in the still growing fitness industry (despite the current economic conditions) to work as interns in San Mateo Athletic Club, perform field work and team teach with certified instructors to earn certificates that will qualify them to work in the community as fitness professionals. The synergy between the academic program and the athletic club represents fully the vision of what a professionally managed health club in our District could do, not only for revenue generation but also for workforce development. San Mateo Athletic Club is successfully addressing the District’s strategy to make the entire Health and Wellness building a premier Career-Technical Education facility in the County of San Mateo and in the State.

As a new enterprise, the San Mateo Athletic Club was actually not projected to begin supporting itself until its third year of operation and not break even until the end of the fourth year. Due to the first class facility and the professionally managed operation, we continue to experience membership growth with just over 3,700 members as of March 2012. We expect to run a surplus of nearly $400,000 this year and have been operating in the black since 2011. As we enter our third full year of operation, we expect membership to remain strong. We do not anticipate that we will be able to continue growing at the same rate due to the size of our facility but we will continue to maximize our membership. In addition, we will continue to explore new partnerships and offer more continuing education programs and certification classes to add to the workforce development part of our mission.

We are very proud of the accomplishments made at San Mateo Athletic Club in such a short period of time. We continue to exceed expectations on all levels and will always strive to be the best facility in the Bay Area which offers not only a place to work out, but also a place to teach, learn and develop habits, knowledge, skills and abilities that will benefit all those we serve for a lifetime.