Vollmer leaving GHS for writing career

May 10, 2014

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Nick Vollmer made quite a splash as an athlete and coach for the Granbury High swim program.

Now, he’s hoping to do the same in the world of literature.

Vollmer said Tuesday that he will leave Granbury at the end of this school year to pursue a writing career in California.

“I’ve absolutely loved my time working for Granbury ISD,” said Vollmer. “The people have been wonderful, and my time here has helped me grow immensely.

“The swim team means a lot to me, and I’m doing all I can to ensure they are left in good hands.”

Vollmer said he wants to be closer to his younger sister, four-time Olympic gold medalist and Granbury High alum Dana Vollmer.

He plans on writing for videogames.

“It’s something I’ve always been interested in as I believe videogame storytelling has massively untapped potential, and I’m fascinated by the idea of writing material with genuine user choice,” he said.

Vollmer, an English teacher, has had a strong interest in science fiction and fantasy. He’s dabbled with a few writing projects.

Vollmer even did some corresponding for the Hood County News when Dana was in her first Olympics in Athens, Greece in 2004.

Vollmer was named the District 7-4A Coach of the Meet in January after both the GHS boys and girls won the league championship.

He coached freshman Kaylee Brawner to a sixth-place finish in the 50-yard freestyle at the Class 4A State Meet in February.

Vollmer began coaching at GHS in 2010. During his tenure, numerous swimmers advanced to regional competition.

Vollmer graduated near the top of his class from GHS in 2004. He was a three-time state qualifier for the swim team.

Vollmer’s swimming and coaching success came without having year-round access to a pool of competitive length. In most of their meets, the GHS teams are going up against teams that have access to competitive pools.

The team practices at the Dana Vollmer Swim Center, an outside facility, until the temperature gets too cold.

The local indoor facility at which they practice has a pool of only 20 yards (competition pools are at least 25 yards). Sometimes the team travels to Fort Worth for practices.

When the new YMCA is completed, the team will have an indoor pool of competitive distance in which to practice.

Vollmer went on to swim at TCU, where he received a degree in English with a focus on creative writing and a minor in Japanese.

Vollmer, while swimming at GHS, specialized in short and distance swims. He still holds several GHS swimming records, including the boys 50, 100 and 200 freestyles, 200 freestyle relay, 200 medley relay, 400 freestyle relay and 500 freestyle.

“It was an incredibly difficult choice for me to leave, but I’ve been offered what is basically my dream job in California,” he said. “I have to take the opportunity or it will be something I spend the rest of my life wondering about.

“I’ll never forget all the students and swimmers I was blessed to have had the chance to work with, and I hope I’ve had as much of a positive influence in their lives as they’ve had on mine.”

Vollmer was also a longtime member of the Granbury SEALS summer swim team. In addition to competing for coach Janet Steenberge, he was one of her assistant coaches for many years.

Vollmer is the latest of several coaches to leave the GHS program since last summer.

Former assistant girls basketball coach Mike Pinkerton is now the head girls basketball coach at Aledo. Brad Hart is the head baseball coach at Burleson Centennial, Jeff Bramlett is the head tennis coach at East Texas Baptist University and Chad Kimberling is the head softball coach at New Caney.

Also, Leta Andrews announced her retirement as head basketball coach of the Lady Pirates at the end of this school year. She is the winningest basketball coach in history.

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Category: Sports