CHAPEL HILL, N.C. - Aaron Workman has joined the University of North Carolina swimming and diving staff as an assistant coach. Workman, most recently an assistant coach at Penn State, will be UNC's primary coach for speed-oriented swimmers as well as working with all aspects of the Tar Heel aquatics program. UNC head swimming coach Rich DeSelm announced the hiring Tuesday.
"I am extremely excited to join the staff at UNC. I am looking forward to working with Coach DeSelm as well as Mike (Litzinger), Abel (Sánchez), and Christie (Garth)," says Workman. "I grew up near this area and I am looking forward to having my family move back here."
Workman joined the Nittany Lion staff in 2010-11, coaching there the past three years. He coached previously at four other schools after a decorated swimming career of his own at the University of Kentucky.
"I am hoping to add to the tradition of excellence in UNC athletics and academics, and I know that big things are in store for our program," Workman added. "I want to thank the swimming staff and athletic department for allowing me to join the UNC family, and I look forward to helping the program succeed on a high level."
"We are extremely excited to add Aaron Workman to our staff as an assistant coach," DeSelm said. "Aaron is a dynamic coach and recruiter with a strong résumé. My staff and I felt Aaron's personality and proven success would be a great fit and we are eager to start the upcoming season together.
"Aaron will primarily focus his coaching duties on our speed-oriented swimmers, but he will be fully involved with all swimmers and all aspects of the program. We welcome Aaron, his wife Jaime, and his children Molly and Macon to UNC."
In 2012-13, the Nittany Lions finished 20th in the NCAA men's championships and 29th in the women's national meet. Multiple PSU swimmers earned All-America status with Nate Savoy claiming individual honors in the 100- and 200-yard backstroke events, Merritt Krawczyk earning accolades in the 200-yard individual medley and Megan Siverling meriting kudos in the 1,650-yard freestyle. Workman coached Paige Whitmire to a Big Ten Conference title in the 100-yard freestyle and she also broke the 50-yard freestyle,100-yard freestyle and 100-yard backstroke school records. He coached Shane Ryan, who qualified for the USA National Team this summer, by placing third and fourth, respectively, in the 50-meter and 100-meter backstrokes at World Championship Trials.
During his three-year tenure at Penn State, Workman helped the Nittany Lion women break 31 school records and the men topple 19 school marks. PSU also had six men and 17 women earn All-Academic Big Ten honors, and we had nine women named Scholar All-Americas.
During his first two seasons in Happy Valley, Workman has watched as 14 of his pupils earned All-America honors in the pool on 44 occasions. He helped the men's squad to a No. 17 showing at the NCAA Championships in 2012 and a No. 26 finish during his first season on campus. The women's squad posted a pair of Top 25 finishes, grabbing the No. 22 spot in 2011-12 and the No. 25 spot in 2010-11.
Prior to coaching at Penn State, Workman was an assistant at the University of Pittsburgh. During his time at Pittsburgh, Workman was in charge of assisting the head coach in all aspects of team preparation. His duties included designing and implementing practice and weight training plans. Workman was also involved with Team Pittsburgh Aquatics during his time in the Steel City.
Before working at Pittsburgh, Workman held the same duties as assistant swim coach and recruiting coordinator at UNLV from 2005-07. He helped coach his team to three straight Mountain West Conference championships.
His collegiate coaching ventures started when he assumed the head swimming and diving coach role at Hollins University from 2002-03 and continued the next season when he was named the assistant coach at Wittenberg University, holding that post during the 2003-04 campaign. At Wittenberg, Workman coached a pair of NCAA All-America honorees and a Top 20 NCAA Division III team.
A four-year letterman at the University of Kentucky, Workman earned All-America accolades four times, was named an academic All-SEC performer during each of his seasons on campus and was an academic All-America pick in 2001. The freestyle sprinter helped Kentucky to four consecutive Top 20 finishes at the NCAA Championships, including a 17th-place finish in 2001 when he earned All-America honors in four relay events. Workman also competed in the 2000 U.S. Olympic Trials.
Workman earned his Bachelor of Science degree in broadcasting from Kentucky in 2001. He is married to former Kentucky All-American swimmer Jaime Siegele. The couple has two children, Molly (5) and Macon (3).