Dream Job as a PADI Dive Instructor on Koh Tao

“See you soon on the way to work (usually it’s a nice walk on the beach) or in the office (yep…that will be underwater!)!”

The dream job…this is what we always hear.

Working in the diving industry is as a matter of a fact the dream job. The office for us, is “The sea”. How does that sound to you?

Koh Tao IDC
Out in the water after your Koh Tao IDC

Every month, along with Dive-Careers.com, our PADI Dive Masters take the step up to Instructor. Once their have completed their IDC (Instructor Development Course), they are ready to work, to share their passion to others and start their new careers.

Dive-Careers.com is not only offering a great training, but we are also offering a lifetime of support once our candidates have completed their training. Helping them finding a job is part of what we do, what we want and like to do.

Job opportunities are not only for Koh Tao, Thailand. The fact that we teach IDC’s in 8 different locations around the world, that we’ve been in the industry for two decades, that everywhere we go we like to meet and spend time with our former graduates, gives us the advantage of having a great network throughout the industry and the strong plus of being able to really help our dive instructor candidates network and find great careers.

The PADI Dive Instructor level is a ticket to travel the world. Certification is valid globally. The PADI Instructor is the one that can grab his bag, go where the sea looks great and settle down for the time of their life.

Last month on Koh Tao, we had 9 IDC candidates. I am writing these words 1 month later and I am proud to state that all 9 of them are now working as dive instructors.

Koh Tao IDC
Successful group of new instructors after their Koh Tao IDC

This time, most of them chose Koh Tao  for now, but who knows what destination they might end up in as PADI Dive Instructors.  That’s the beauty of our job anyway, being able to simply choose.

Shadeh, England, decided to complete her MSDT along with the new trendy specialties of Sidemount and Self Reliant. Not even having the time to complete her internship, poufffff, she is now working and applying to her daily life what’s she likes.

Koh Tao IDC
Shadeh teaching her first Advanced student after completing her IDC on Koh Tao.

Lisa, New-Zealand, started off with some assisting courses as part of her MSDT and, as well, didn’t get the time to complete it yet as she has been asked and contacted for work in dive centres around the Island.

Koh Tao IDC
Group of happy students taught by successful Koh Tao IDC Instructor Lisa.

Carlos, Portugal, started off right away with Open Water and Advanced courses. And in Portuguese as well! What are the chances to teach his first course in Portuguese,  his native language?! It all happens for a reason!

Since he started teaching and freelancing around the Island, we tried to get him to teach a course for us…but he is always busy!!

Koh Tao IDC
Carlos with newly certified divers at Siam Diving center after his Koh Tao IDC.

Szandra, Hungary, got a call for 2 Open Water students. She thought she would be more assisting to get use to the dive center’s operation, but no! Surprise, they are yours!! Ready for it?! Of course she was! Nothing can stop Szandra!!

Koh Tao IDC
Szandra on her first open water course at Coral grand Divers after her Koh Tao IDC.

Stephen, England, used to work as a Photographer/Videographer. He decided to leave the camera on the side and start teaching instead. First phone call: Rescue Course. Ahhhhhhhhhh!!! The one that a lot of Instructors fear (which they really shouldn’t!). Did he get it done, yes he did! Was the student happy, Yep! Since then, the phone is ringing non stop! When was your last day off Stephen?!!!!

Koh Tao IDC
Anna with a group of Open Water students after completing her Koh Tao IDC

Anna, France, is jumping around! She is literally walking around with her arms up, dancing and singing on the “I love my life” beat! Her first course was a PADI Scuba Diver in English. It has been followed by some DSD (Discover Scuba Diving) in French and it is continuing with Open Water Diver student in Spanish! Speaking a few languages can be pretty useful sometime!!

Ming, Wen and Shun, team China, didn’t waste time and were in fact assisting courses the morning after their IE (Instructor Examination), meaning the morning after the IE Party (I still don’t know how you managed that!!). Waiting for their numbers, they were assisting on Chinese Courses, but as soon as they received the email from PADI with their Instructor number, paf, straight into work with their own courses. Ming is now on a holiday in Bali (not a bad life isn’t!!) and Wen and Shun are on the boat…diving everyday! Though life!!!

Koh Tao IDC
Chinese team out teaching open water courses with whale sharks after their Koh Tao IDC

And this is just the last IDC we had! Every month it is the same. Here and every where we go to teach our Instructor candidates.

These guys are in, doing what they like, sharing their passion and promoting themselves via social medias which is now a very important of their and our job.

Australia, India, Indonesia, Philippines, Sicily, South Africa, Sri Lanka, it’s the same every where we go. The words “Dive-Careers” stand for something important and we make sure we are there to support it with our huge network around the globe.

If you fancy the sea as your office, don’t hesitate! It’s possible as you can see!!

Cheers and see you soon on the way to work (usually it’s a nice walk on the beach) or in the office (yep…that will be underwater!)!!

Cheers!

Marie

Platinum PADI Course Director

marie@dive-careers.com

www.dive-careers.com

www.divingonkohtao.com

 

Conducting PADI Divemaster Internships on Koh Tao, Thailand

PADI Divemaster Koh Tao
PADI Divemaster Skills workshop in the Buddha View pool, Koh Tao Thailand

My father once said, “if you find a job you love, you will never work a day in your life.” I think this was the best advice I could have ever received, and I used it as a catalyst in finding my dream job as a dive instructor in paradise. Now working with students hoping to enter the professional world, just as I once had, I hope to inspire and help lead the way. Running the Dive Master program in one of the busiest dive schools in Thailand, has been an amazing experience so far. It definitely keeps me busy and there is never a dull moment.

PADI Divemaster Koh Tao Thailand
PADI Divemaster Beach Clean up on Koh Tao, Thailand

My days are usually filled with workshops or lectures on diving theory. This allows me to have constant variety in my schedule, and the flexibility to try new things. Since I’m constantly working with divers of such a diverse background, I can easily adapt and change things to meet their needs. For example, if I know they have completed the workshop before, or have more experience under their belt, I can add new skills to challenge them. I always enjoy coming up with new ways to make my workshops as beneficial as possible for my candidates.

PADi Divemaster Koh Tao Thailand
PADI Divemaster Skin Diving Workshop Koh Tao Thailand

Allowing myself to keep learning as well, definitely gives me an advantage in my own teachings. I was very excited to complete my Tech40 & Side mount course. Even though I’m teaching within a recreational scope, I can incorporate these skills in my workshops to make my candidates more knowledgeable and well-rounded. In Tech40, a large amount of time was given to dive planning. We calculated our own personal surface air consumption rate, then used a more conservative SAC rate, to figure out exactly how much gas we would need for each stage of our dive. Every single ascent and stop was planned in advance, and we were taught to follow it diligently. It was great to apply this concept to the Deep Dive Scenario workshop. I had the candidates collect data on their dive to calculate their own SAC rate, then use it to plan the second dive. Supervising the workshop in side mount configuration, allowed me to also act as an emergency drop tank, where my candidates could simulate emergency decompression, breathing out of my long hose. ( A great tip a I learned from my Tech Instructor Julien Fortin). The point is that the more we learn, the more we can pass down as teachers. Even if it doesn’t directly apply to you and what your are doing at that time, it will allow you to have a better understanding and respect for your trade.

PADI Divemaster Koh Tao Thailand
PADI Divemaster certification Buddha View, Koh Tao Thailand

I hope to keep my candidates excited about diving, and allow them to continue to grow as I do. It’s an amazing feeling, to see how much someone can accomplish in such a short time. I remember how it felt to lead my first dive, and the pride that came with being a leader. I can see that feeling evolve in my own students, and I am glad to be a part of it.

Everyday I get to wake up and go to a job I love, in an office that constantly amazes me. Thanks for the great advice dad!

PADI Divemaster Koh Tao Thailand
PADI Divemaster celebration at Buddha View Koh Tao, Thailand

Andrea’s Scubapro Equipment Training Expereience

SCUBAPRO PROSALES TRAINING

Scubapro equipment training
Andrea’s Scubapro Equipment Pro Sales certificate.

Living life as a professional diving Instructor, has allowed me to do some amazing things. The Scubapro Equipment Training Course, took me on an exciting adventure to the other side of Thailand. I can’t wait to share what I’ve learned, not only now, but to everyone who is joining me in this amazing Industry.

Scubapro Equipment training
John and Andrea modeling the new Scubapro Hydros BCD

As a instructor, it is part of the job to help your students find the equipment that best suits them. This can a daunting task for most brand new instructors. I know myself felt the same way coming out of my own Instructor Course. The idea of selling, made me feel like a used car salesman. This is the exact stigma that we want to get away from.
Once completing the Scubapro Pro Training Course, I was certified as a Professional Equipment Advisor. This has given me the self-assurance to be truly confident in the equipment I’m recommending for my students.
The course was broken up into individual pieces of equipment over the span of four days. Not only did we go through the interworking’s of each piece, we also went through techniques on how to comfortably asses our customer’s needs. It was all about listening to what the customer really wanted, and finding the piece that benefitted them best. Since we had spent so much time looking at all the features and characteristics of the equipment, I found it incredibly easy to take each feature, and personally connect it to a variety of customers and students.

Scubapro Equipment training
John Seddon presenting Scubapro regulators

I think what we can really take from this course, is that you are never really selling if you understand and believe in your product. I was excited about the equipment line myself, and could see how so many pieces benefitted me as a professional diver. My biggest mistake when purchasing my own personal equipment, was not understanding what I needed, and what I could need in the future. I limited myself to equipment that suited me at that moment, and did not grow with me as I continued to move forward. I now know, I will not make that mistake again, and will not allow this to happen to my students.

Scubapro Equipment training
Scubapro Equipment catalogue

What is great, is Dive-Careers, will now be offering this seminar on every Instructor Development Course. I am optimistic that all new diving professionals will enjoy it the same way I have. It will hopefully allow them to have more confidence in the future, while advising new students. As divers, it is our responsibility to keeping growing and learning every single day. I can not wait to continue to work with Scubapro, and learn more about the equipment that will help me grow into the diving professional I truly want to be.

Another Successful Pondicherry India IDC – Dive Instructor Training

Once again had a great time in Pondicherry India on the PADI Instructor course.  Pondicherry has a wonderful French colonial feel to it and it is always great fun to get back in touch with the guys from Temple Adventures 5 Star IDC.  Plus I get the chance to take the bullet for a ride, at least when I can get it started.

India IDC
Always enjoy a ride on the bullet during the IDC in India

The India IDC had a great group with Meenal from Chennai, Vinay coming down from the Andamans, Shannon joining us from northern Ontario and Rajesh, I think finally working out that he is from Bangalore.  Leon, one of the Temple Adventures instructors, joined us for some more PADI Specialty Instructor training.

India IDC
Out at the quarry for our open water presentations on the India IDC

Shannon actually completed her divemaster with us on Koh Tao and followed Julien our tec instructor to India for more experience with the tec diving.  She is now back on Koh Tao for the MSDT internship and will once again follow Julien to Mexico for some cave diving.  She is obviously a Julien groupie.

India IDC
Shannon demonstrating skills in the container on the India IDC
India IDC
Shannon finding her way int he quarry during open water presentations on our India IDC
India IDC
Shannon descending in the quarry on our India IDC

Rajesh was actually working as a divemaster for Temple Adventures 5 Star IDC and has stayed on in his new role as instructor.  Vinay has returned to working in the Andaman Islands, and Meenal has gotten a job with the newly opened Dive Chennai.  Great to see you all doing so well.

India IDC
Rajesh with a mask removal and replacement demonstration on our India IDC
India IDC
Rajesh with my mask when he forogt his for the confined water presentation on our India IDC

And of course I appreciate the feedback:

“Dear Sir,

Yeah I survived the party and it was a blast. It was a privilege to be with you and your guidance helped me a lot during the entire course.  I am back in Andamans and I hope too see you soon here.  Please keep in touch and I would always be grateful for all your help.  Take care and once again my heartfelt THANKS!!!!”

Regards
Vinay Raj

India IDC
Vinay having done his hair before a photo at the quarry on our India IDC
India IDC
Vinay demonstrating during India IDC

Hi Mark,

We all had a fantastic time during the course and the party. Been seeing your facebook updates and looks like Thailand was fun. 
Thank you for all the effort and the faith you had in us.”
Meenal
India IDC
Meenal doing a CESA during our India IDC
India IDC
Meenal in the container during our India IDC
I even completed some further Scubapro technician training with Jonah Skoles from Temple Adventures PADI 5 Star IDC. It was an excellent opportunity to meet many dive professionals from around India and valuable training with the equipment.
India IDC
IDC candidates in the container on India IDC

Nusa Lembongan – IDC Destination Manta Ray and Mola Mola

I recently completed our first Instructor Development course on the Bali Indonesian Island of Nusa Lembongan.  The course was held in conjunction with Two Fish Divers that have had a successful, well respected dive resort on Nusa Lembongan for the past four years. Nusa Lembongan, just a 30 minute boat ride away from the main island of Bali, Indonesia, is growing quickly as a popular destination for divers, regular manta ray and seasonal mola mola sightings, plus a laid back vibe drawing divers from around the globe.

Bali IdC
Celebrating great presentations on the IDC

Our PADI IDC in Nusa Lembongan had a great group of students from around the globe.  Plus it was an excellent opportunity for me to catch up with many old friends that are now settled in Nusa Lembongan.  I had a great time on the IDC.  Maybe a little too much some nights but it was great fun catching up with former candidates and friends.  And I think the candidates had a great time as well judging by some of their reviews.

Mark the miracle man!

“Couldn’t have been happier with my IDC experience with Mark. I call him a miracle worker as the person that walked through the door at the start to when I walked out at the end are two very different people. I’m extremely happy with the outcome and feel that he trained us to a very high standard which meant that the exam was a breeze for all of us. Mark’s years of experience are very evident in the way he teaches, he has it down to a fine art. ” Nicole from Adelaide, South Australia

Bali IDC
Rhome practicing her pick up lines during the IDC rescue training.

Amazing course director

“Doing the IDC with Dive Careers and more specifically with Mark Soworka, was for sure the right choice. We had 12 solid days of preparation including a lot of theory and GSP exams which made us 100% ready for the IE. The inwater preparation was also great as we had to demonstrate and brief several skills in both confined and open water. A few days before the exam, we also had a mock IE which allowed us to put ourselves in the propel exam conditions! Sharing my IDC experience with others, I realized that we had much more training than usual which made all of us succeed! I will highly recommend Mark! Also the people at Two Fish have been very useful during the whole course which could be a bit stressful. Special thanks to Frederic Brysse, Brice, Rowan and Danielle Drury”  Rhome with an accented e, from the Basque region of France.

Bali IDC
Typhoid Flora and Tristan practicing the CESA on open water presentations on the Nusa Lembongan IDC

Professional & fun

“If you are considering a professional dive career than look no further, @ Dive-Careers they know what it’s all about.” Ben from the Netherlands.

Bali IDC
Kim looking decidedly happy after IDC evaluating.

Staffing the Lembongan IDC

“Mark and his exceptional knowledge made the IDC for all candidates very interesting and fun. Loved staffing the IDC at Lembongan!” Kim from the Netherlands via Koh Tao

Fantastic Time – Friendly and Thorough

“I had a fantastic time doing my IDC. Mark and the staff instructors were excellent and we couldn’t have been any more prepared for the IE. I was lucky to have some awesome team mates which made the whole experience really fun and enlightening. I would recommend Dive Careers and Two Fish to anyone wishing to do their IDC and have complete training and enjoyable experience at the same time. Two Fish staff were excellent and always willing to help and offer advice ranging from tips for being an instructor to fixing my regulator. Thank you to everyone:)” Tristan from the UK.

Bali IDC
Matteo and Tristan figuring out the compass on the Nusa Lembongan IDC

Good staff & people..

“The IDC at Two Fish Divers on Lembongan was a nice and educational experience. The staff, lead by Mark Soworka, were extremely good at teaching and knew their stuff.” Mikko from the cold, desolate Arctic, a man of much emotion.

Bali IDC
The IDC group together on the beach.

On our May IDC we had pregnant manta rays circling overhead.  The next Instructor Course is scheduled for September, mola mola season.  Looking forward to it.  If you have nay questions about our Indonesia programs just check out www.dive-careers.com and email me on mark@dive-careers.com .  Look forward to seeing you on your instructor course soon.

 

An IDC Success Story – Roshan Deepal Sri Lanka

Roshan Deepal – Teaching form the Heart

Sri Lanka, the pearl of the Indian Ocean, boasts spectacular coral reefs and famous shipwrecks for year round diving off many parts of the island. Tourism and scuba diving holidays remain on the rise after the end of the war making it critical for dive operators to continue to provide safe diving practices and develop comprehensive marine conservation measures and systems.

IDC Sri lanka
Roshan by the pool as a successful dive instructor in Sri Lanka

Dive Seenigama, Dive Lanka Water Sports Centre located in Seenigama, is a not-for-profit community based tourism initiative managed by Sri Lankan NGO, Foundation of Goodness (FoG). Dive Seenigama, Dive Lanka is committed to delivering a high quality recreational scuba diving operation while educating their customers, the local village community and area fisherman on marine conservation. FoG, in partnership with PADI and Platinum Course Director Mark Soworka sent Dive Seenigama, Dive Lanka head dive master, Roshan Deepal to Temple Adventures in India to take part in the PADI Instructor Development Course. This was all made possible through PADI’s Scholarship programme whereby Roshan’s PADI fees were fully covered by the organisation enabling him to obtain this esteemed certification.

Roshan’s scuba career began over 20 years ago in a small coastal fishing village in Dodanduwa in southern Sri Lanka. His first memories are of the sea where the village community comes together for work and life. He was given the opportunity to obtain a certificate through the Sri Lankan government in basic diving and swimming skills. Little did he know his first job as a lifeguard at a hotel in Negombo would be the start of an exciting adventure ahead. The hotel expanded on his government training and enabled him to be employed at their onsite diving centre taking hotel guests on scuba day trips. There began Roshan’s passion for showing others the wonders under the sea.

IDC Sri Lanka
PADI Instructor Roshan and PADI Course Director Mark Soworka meeting up after the IDC to see how Roshan is goign as an instructor

Roshan is very grateful for the opportunities he has been provided all along his scuba career and the pinnacle has been his recent IDC at Temple Adventures in Pondicherry, India. With PADI’s scholarship programme assistance, Roshan was able to secure something he never thought possible. He also met many new friends, networked with other professional divers and to his delight, went diving in a fresh water quarry for the very first time.

Roshan has since returned to Dive Seenigama, Dive Lanka with an enthusiastic outlook on growing the scuba industry and awareness of marine conservation in Sri Lanka. His first major task will be to teach OWD and conservation topics to the many disadvantaged rural young people who have gone through FoG’s diving & training programme. Without Roshan and FoG, a PADI certification would not be attainable within the resources of this rural community. He will also introduce marine conservation materials and coral planting initiatives to Foundation of Goodness for possible funding to continue preserving and repairing the coral reef off the Seenigama coastline.

In the coming years, Roshan would like to widen his experience and become qualified as an equipment specialist as this specialty is rather unique to Sri Lanka. He is grateful for the many opportunities and has always felt that his role within the Foundation of Goodness was serendipitous. Before he was hired on as Dive Seenigama, Dive Lanka’s Dive Master, he was merely weeks away from leaving his wife and two small children for a long-term diving job in Oman.

PADI IDC Sri Lanka
Roshan on his PADI Instructor Examination

Roshan never wants to stop learning and growing in his career. He wants to teach from his heart and ensure his students, Sri Lankan and foreign, are excited and learning to dive at the highest level of safety and care. He feels it’s his destiny.

www.diveseenigamadivelanka.com

More information:

The Foundation of Goodness, a local NGO located in a coastal village named Seenigama has been in operation since 1999 but really became most effective after the 2004 Tsunami which resulted in over 150 lives lost in Seenigama alone.

Before the Tsunami, for many generations, one of the main livelihoods in this coastal region was coral mining and burning to make quicklime, which was illegal, dangerous, and an environmental nightmare. Research conducted after the tsunami quickly showed that in areas where coral reef had been destroyed, the waves were much more powerful and destructive. This research led to the banning of coral mining resulting in many people (and youth) losing their means of making an income.

In response, the Seenigama Diving & Training Centre commenced in 2008 to redirect local diving and swimming skills from a destructive purpose to one that is constructive. Through our training programme, rural young people have the opportunity to gain diving qualifications to achieve well-paid employment in the technical and recreational diving industry. It is only through previous donation and support that the Foundation of Goodness has been able to successfully implement this project. In recent years, with the economic recession, it has become more difficult to fund this vital programme.  Therefore, in 2013, Dive Seenigama, Dive Lanka Water Sports Centre was established as a community based tourism initiative to sustain the Seenigama Diving & Training Centre. Dive Seenigama, Dive Lanka is the first not-for-profit dive centre in the region and 100% of the profits are reinvested back into the Foundation of Goodness.

 

Complete your PADI Instructor Course in El Nido, Philippines – Our newest location

El Nido is a truly magical place, with beautiful limestone cliffs, white sand beaches and a great marine bio-diversity.  Stunning scenery, great dives and a genuinely friendly atmosphere in Deep Blue Seafari Dive center make it an ideal location for the Dive Instructor course.

Philippines IDC
The view from the beach of our El Nido IDC

March 2016 saw our first IDC In El Nido.  Only a couple of candidates, Sean and Chris, made a great little course.  Allowed us to even schedule to meet Seans special needs.  Guess they had a great time judging by their reviews on  Scubatribe

Great IDC, amazing people and beautiful place

“Scenery that cant be beaten and staff that were amazingly helpful and friendly made for a great experience during my IDC. The guys at Deep Blue Seafari made me feel like a part of their shop family and did everything they could to make my time there as easy as possible. The shop, their boats, the staff, everything was 5 stars. Mark the course director wasn’t bad either. 🙂 All in all a fantastic place to do an IDC.” Chris.

deep blue seafari idc

“What a great experience! The owners and staff could not do enough to make our stay and learning experience there as great as possible. The diving was awesome with deep blue seafaris many dive trips and saw many critters and flambouyant cuttlefish on night dives but now need to return for some more caves after a taster!” Sean.

I also had a great experience.  El Nido, for me, was like a trip back to Koh Tao in the mid 90’s.  Felt like a 20 year old backpacker again.  Evan shared a house with the IDC candidates.  That helped ensure Chris would make it home after the beach.  We managed to intermingle the IDC presentations with some good restaurants and chilled little beach bars, an excellent, relaxed atmosphere facilitated by the incredibly helpful staff and owners of Deep Blue Seafari Dive Center.  And, importantly, resulted in the guys getting great results in the Instructor Exam and feeling confident to get out and work inthe industry as dive instructors.

My trip to El Nido was also a great opportunity to catch up with candidates from previous IDCs in Thaialnd and Philippines.  Even got visits from former divemaster candidates from years ago, with a social call from Tamara.  Excellent to see our candidates making a success of the dive industry, Tom getting into some interesting conservation projects in Palawan and Pauline and Simon running a great video training company in El Nido.

IDc Philippines
Some of the marine life during your presentations on your El Nido IDC

I would like to thank Diana and Jose from Deep Blue Seafari for having the vision to bring PADI instructor courses to El Nido and for making it such a relaxed and enjoyable experience.  As they say:

“We like our guest and students to feel like part of our family. We focus on quality customer service, quality equipment, very professional training and safety.”

IDC Philippines
Sean practicing rescue Ex 7 during the El Nido IDC

As the Course Director I had a great experience and so did the candidates.  Dive-Careers.com looks forward to continuing to develop the IDCs on El Nido with Deep Blue Seafari.  For 2016 we have 4 IDCs scheduled and look forward to a successful IDC future in Palawan, Philippines.

If interested in joining our El Nido IDc programmes or divemaster training contact me on mark@dive-careers.com

PADi IDC Philippines
Confined water during the El Nido IDC. Such a specatcular setting

The First Sri Lankan PADI IDC

Sri Lanka is truly an amazing country.  A generous and hospitable nation filled with wonderful stories, a rich and diverse culture and history, and fascinating dive destinations.  I had the great fortune in February 2013 to conduct the first PADI Instructor Development Course in Sri Lanka.  It was an excellent experience.

Sri lanka IDC
IDC Sri Lanka down on the beach

The IDC was conducted at Poseidon Diving Station Hikkuduwa with all Sri Lankan nationals as candidates.  Right from the beginning the stories and experiences started flowing.  The dive center was started in 1973 by Swedish adventurer Sven and Lesley Sembakuttige, father of the present owner Chami Sembakuttige.  Fortunately Sven was actually visiting with his family so I had the opportunity to listen spellbound to his stories of diving Sri Lanka in  the seventies.  At 82 he only gave up diving last year and has a lifetime full of adventures from diving in the first ever made dry suit, discovering wrecks and treasures around Sri Lanka, even showing me the tiny compressor that they smuggled into Sri Lanka to fill those first tanks; through to the stories of the importance Chamis dad played to the local community.

No greater tribute to that exists than the comparatively low loss of life on Hikkuduwa in the 2004 tsunami.  Chamis family have strongly advocated protecting Hikkuduwas reef for decades.  During the IDC we had Oliver Ridley and Green turtles nesting and hatching right in front of the dive centre.  Swim twenty meters out to where we were doing the confined presentations and you have hundreds of trevally schooling, incredibly enormous turtles swimming around and interfering with the confined skills and a school of bumphead parrotfish.  A great testament to the local community protecting their reef. Reefs either side of Hikkuduwa have been decimated by generations of limestone mining.  During the tsunami, those areas that had lost the natural barrier protection of the reef were completely devastated with massive loss of life.  Few died where the reef remained relatively in tact.  A legacy to the forethought of Lesley Sembakuttige.

Some of the guys leading dives there, like Lal and Sunil, have been leading dives in the local area since the 70s and 80s.  Such an immense wealth of local knowledge and experience.  Lal was actually on the fisrt Sri Lankan IDC and has been a registered PADI divemaster since 1993.  When I checked his card at the commencement of the IDC I remarked on how worn and water logged the card looked. He replied how he actually lost his wallet in the tsunami, only to rediscover it three years later on the inner side of the reef, PADI Divemaster card still in tact.

Sri lanka IDC
One of the first Sri lankan PADI Dive Instructors

Next IDC I really hope I can organise a trip with these guys out to the Great Bassos 1701 silver wreck found by Arthur C. CLarke in 1961.  They still know where the treasure lies. But then again, I would also like to go diving in March/April off Tincomalee after seeing the video from one of the other IDC candidates, Menake, of diving with a pod of sperm whales.  Guess I will have to do several more trips to Sri Lanka.

WE also conducted the first Enriched Air instructor course on Sri Lanka.  This was at the insistence of Lakshmann who was doing his staff instructor course.  After years of diving on mixed gases and blending his gases at home, he thought he better do the course and check that he has been doing things correctly all of these years.  I guess that he has not blown himself up is proof that he was following correct procedures. He actually started diving with Mike Wallis who was filming underwater Sri Lanka back in the 60s and 70s and was invloved with Arthr C. Clarke in the finding of the treasure on Great Bassos.

PADI IDc Sri Lanka
Sri Lanka IDC celebrations begin after a super successful PADI Instructor Exam

Teaching the next generation of Sri Lankan divemasters and PADI Instructors is well underway.  Poseidon Diving were also hosting Plongeurs du Monde at the same time of the IDC.  Plongeurs du Monde is a group of committed dive instructors that devote their time and money, with support from PADI, to training scuba diving to local children in under developed regions.  Louis, the president of Plongeurs du Monde, has established programmes in Philippines, Vietnam, Sri Lanka and is also looking at India.  Since the 2004 tsunami they have trained over 200 kids in Sri Lanka.  This year saw their first batch of successful PADI Rescue Diver candidates and next year will be the beginning of PADI Divemaster training. They are doing a wonderful job at helping foster an appreciation and respect in local communities for scuba diving and the underwater environment, plus helping mould our next generation of PADI dive professionals.

PADI IDC scholarship
Community development programmes run in conjunction with Plongeurs du Monde

Such a wealth of experience on this IDC, but they were all still very nervous when it came to completing the PADI Instructor examination.  They did not know what to expect from PADI.  At the beginning of the IDC they had recounted how on the first ever PADI Member Forum conducted by Johnny Chew after the tsunami, they had all turned up nervous and worried, expecting PADI to administer exams and check their knowledge.  Luckily the PADI examiner, Rob Scammell put their fears to rest and made the IE as relaxing as possible, creating an environment conducive for these guys to show how knowledgeable as divers they are and how good as instructors they will be.  Drummers on the beach and drinks and curry we celebrated 100% success for the first ever IDC on Sri Lanka.  Congratulations Menake, Praveen, Feroz and Lal.  Sri Lanka will continue to grow as a dive destination with continued support from you guys and I look forward to IDCs on Sri Lanka in the future. Thanks also for the support and help during the IDC from Chami, Lakshmann, Devsiri and Rob.

EFRI IDC Sri Lanka
EFRI Trainer programme

IT was really a week of firsts.  After the IE Rob Scammell conducted the EFRI trainer course with Rob Partridge for Temple Adventures in Pondicherry, making him the first EFRIT in India.

After the IE I had the opportunity to travel around Sri Lanka for a few days and found a wonderful country rich in history and culture.  Visited some of the best ruins and examples of buddhist art that I have seen anywhere.  Plus glimpsed great national parks with a wonderful diverstiy of wildlife.  I really look forward to returning to Sri Lanka.  It is sure to become a must see travel destination in the near future and is simply a fantastic destination for an IDC.

Sri Lanka - a wonderful country to travel around after your IDC
Sri Lanka – a wonderful country to travel around after your IDC

Currently we are conducting three IDCs per year on Sri lanka.  March/April in Hikkaduwa, June/July in Trincomalee and November/December again in Hikkaduwa.  Contact me at mark@dive-careers.com if interested in being part of these programmes.

IDC Sri Lanka
Sunset on our Sri lanka IDC

South Africa IDC Adventure Destination

South Africa is rapidly establishing itself as an adventure destination for your Dive Instructor training. 

South Africa has some stunning and exhilarating destinations both above and below water.  South Africa gives your the opportunity to dive with sharks, explore untouched wrecks, plus some of the most exciting game park safari destinations in the world.

IDC South Africa
IDc South Africa getting into the aquarium

Dive-Careers.com have been conducting IDCs in conjunction with Calypso Diving in uShaka MarineWorld, Durban.  It is great facilites with some of our shallow water sessions actually taking place in the aquarium with rays and groupers cruising past.  Excellent diving off the coast of Kwazu Natal, with some of the most world famous shark dives off nearby Aliwoal Shoal.  They programs have been really successful as you can see by the below Scuba Tribe reviews.  Our candidates have doen really well on the instructor exam, but, more importantly, we have helped launch them on great careers in the dive industry.

Awesome Adventure

“I did my IDC through Dive Careers in South Africa this past month and I was blown away by the amount of knowledge and guidance I was given! Having come from Mozambique and diving all day everyday to sitting in a classroom was not a pleasant thought, however thanks to Bas who was an incredible Course Director I could not wait to get in there and learn! I left with more confidence and a renewed passion to go out and teach diving to the rest of the world! I would definitely recommend this team if you want to get out and join the PadiPro world ! Big thanks to the team for all they did for us and for going the extra mile to get us ready for the world of teaching! Dive Careers gives you that step ahead and and constantly inspires you to achieve success! Top marks or in exam terms …5/5 !!!” Matt

IDC South Africa
IDC South Africa Open water

great service

“very good preperation, more social and conversation than lecture based which made it very easy and pleasurable to participate. very happy with the outcome and would definitely recommend dive careers” Ivan

Awesome IDC

“Thanks to our course director, Bas Van Riemsdijk, as well as the people on course with me, each and every moment was exceptionally AMAZING and definitely memorable! Bas has been a pure inspiration and role model for us involved in the diving industry and strive to share the same passion as he does!” Ruark

IDC south Africa
IDC South Africa briefings

Time of my life!

“Bas was absolutely incredible! Not only is he a great CD, but a great person too. We got along very well and I enjoyed every minute of the IDC. It was an incredible experience and I recommend dive careers to everybody. Thank you Bas and dive careers!” Brendon

IDC South Africa
IDC south Africa in the aquarium

Our programs in Durban continue to grow and offer new opportunities.  Arne, the owner of Calypso, is now also offering Technical diver training with fully closed rebreather training.  This is a very exciting new opportunity for our instructor candidates in Durban.  It iwll open up so many dive sites around Durban that are little explored plus opens up opportunities in the dive industry globally.

IDC South Africa
Mark Soworka Platinum Course Director on IDC in South Africa
IDC South africa
Briefings on South Africa IDC

IDCs are scheduled for Durban pretty much every 3rd month.  Take the adventure and join us in South Africa for your PADI Dive instructor trianing. Any questions contact me on mark@dive-careers.com

 

Our First IDC on Bunaken, Indonesia

An unexpected phone call that brought me an adventure; yep, this is how the story begins…and probably how I will have to end.

Working as a Platinum Course Director for Dive-Careers is the most fantastic job you could think of. We travel the world to teach people how to teach people how to blow bubbles underwater, yes, that’s it! We offer courses in Thailand (Koh Tao), India (Pondicherry and Andaman Islands), Philippines (Bohol and El Nido), Sri Lanka (Hikkaduwa and Trincomale), Sicily, South Africa (Durban) and this year we started in Indonesia where we will be offering IDCs in multiple locations such as Bunaken, Lembongan and Bali.

This is where is where my story begins: Indonesia!

bunaken by the pool 3

On the 12th of February, 7pm, I received a phone call informing me that there was a last minute change in our plans due to passport issues (yes…things like that can easily happen when traveling the world!!). This is what I heard on the phone: “Marie, you need to leave Koh Tao in 2 hours, get on a boat, get on a plane and make it fast as you have to be in a bit more then 24 hours in classroom, in BUNAKEN, Indonesia, for an IDC”!

AHHHHHHHHHHHHH (That was my reaction!)

It had to be done, despite the fact that I had to leave behind important people (and you know who you are!).

With some good help of someone who was trying to make me chilling a bit (let’s be honest…I was stressing a bit!), we got the ticket booked, I grabbed my suitcase and off I went.

Never thought that one day I would be running in an airport with Mark Soworka. Thank god he got in good shape the last few months!

Koh Tao – Surrathani – Bangkok – Jakarta – Manado – Taxi to the Marina and boom, 24 hours later, the staff from Two Fish Divers were waiting for me. The last step of the trip was to board their transfer boat. Direction: Bunaken!

buanken conf 2

Didn’t really know what to expect for our first IDC in Indonesia, but I know now that it went way beyond my expectations.

buanken pool 3

I’ve been welcomed and introduced to the Two Fish Divers efficiency right on arrival. It’s like being at home where even Mama cooks for you 3 times a day, where you walk 2 seconds from your bungalow to either jump in the pool or to the café to grab a nice cold Bintang. No need to go outside of the place, you got it all right in the front of your eyes.

buanken lunch

But hey! I wasn’t there for the food and the cold beer (even though, it was also very nice! Haha!), I was there for an IDC, which is why 1 hour after my arrival, I was jumping in the pool with the candidates for a Skill Circuit.

Right there, the laugh started and I knew that it was going to be a very nice 2 weeks ahead of me with great company.

buanken on the boat 2

IDC Candidates coming from Belgium, England, France, Indonesia and USA and two members of the Two Fish Divers Team coming from England and New Zealand joined us for their Staff Instructor Course.

If we add the French Canadian on top of that (!!), we were representing 7 countries. But the nationalities don’t really matter do they?!? Most importantly, the vibe was at it’s best.

Time in the classroom, in the pool and in Open Water was the plan. Our schedule looks the same everywhere we teach, offering a consistency and high quality level of training, but can I add something?! The WATER and the DIVING here were unbelievable! After our 1st presentation, I was hoping so much that the candidates would have enough air left so that we could go on a dive. And thank god, they did!!

First presentation was at “Rowi”, perfect for muck diving. We even heard whales during the dive, only problem is that the whale has a name: Bryce, the Staff Instructor.

Second presentation was at Lekwan 3…and the drop off right behind us was really tempting! How could we have not fly in the blue after the great presentation of the candidates.

Oh, and we heard “Bryce the whale” again!

For the third presentation at…I can’t remember the name…was as spectacular as the rest. Simply magic to have to evaluate in these waters.

Of course we did spend time in the pool in between as well…and I can’t think of one single presentation during which we didn’t crack up!

bunake pool 2

Classroom?! Yes of course, but it was all about discussion, interaction, sharing experiences and knowledge in between 8 fabulous people (I am counting my self in!).

We always hear as Course Directors, the candidates say that the IDC was an absolutely amazing experience.  This even includes the days they definitely wish their CD slept in and didn’t show up!!!). Our first IDC in Indonesia proved this once more.

It is intense, yes, but it is also the occasion for such a good time.

For us, the Course Directors, every IDC is a simple reminder that what we are doing, is fantastic. At the end of the program, when the candidates are standing holding their diplomas, same as they did in Bunaken, you can imagine the feeling!

bunaken efri

Adding to this brilliant time, the Two Fish Divers team has been exceptional. Perfect resort with a relaxed, tranquil and happy atmosphere, with the local staff playing guitar and singing! All services for the guest are being done at a top quality level. Really cool to see such well organized dive resort.

I wish I could have done a “Two Fish Run” by visiting more of their locations (They also have dive facilities LEMBEH, MANADO, NUSA LEMBONGAN, BALI AND SOUTH LOMBOK), but it will be for next time! At least I had the chance to visit Lembeh where we went with the candidates once the IDC was done to complete their Specialty Instructor training. Deep, Wreck, Nitrox, Night, Drift, O2 provider, Photography and AWARE Fish ID was on the menu.

Amazing experience again and this, because of the Two Fish Divers spirit! The diving? What can I say when we see 5 Pygmy Sea Horses on the first dive on one single little piece of 30cm of Coral!

I can’t wait to back for more! Maybe I should mistakenly (like the “oups” type of mistake!) drop water on a certain passport?! Haha!

No, but seriously, today, new PADI Instructors are walking in different streets of Indonesia with their heads up. Today, there is a Course Director on her way back to Koh Tao, Thailand, with a very proud feeling. You guys will be amazing and we are looking forward to work with you.

Yep, an unexpected phone call that brought me an adventure!

buanken classroom 2

A massive thank you to Two Fish Divers team. Thanks to you new Instructors and thanks to you too both Staff Instructors! Absolutely amazing time and we will have more!

The guys must have had a great time an dMaire did an excellent job despite the last minute change, judging by the SubaTribe reviews:

Great IDC in Bunaken

“Marie gave us the best preparation for not only the Instructor Exam but also for the carreer of a diving instructor. The whole two weeks have been well organized, efficient but also full of fun… i can only recommend to go through this great experience 🙂

Next IDCs in Indonesia:”

Fantastic experience, CD and course!

“I signed up for my IDCS course with Dive Careers and Two Fish Bunaken – what a great experience and a fantastic location! The classroom, pool and dive centre was really convenient as it’s all contained in the resort. Loads of support from the whole Dive Careers team, not just our awesome CD, Marie-Lise Roux. The whole two weeks was great fun, both me and the other IDCS were able to get involved with the candidates and we are able to add our experiences while at the same time learning some great new skills. Recommended!” DD

Informative. Helpful. Fun

“Had a great time and learned lots. Really felt supported and like I was important…even though I know you do this constantly and teach 4 million people. The IE was a breeze after all the thorough preparation”. Roya

 

Well structured and fun IDC

“The IDC was really well structured and taught. It was also great fun! Highly recommended! 100% passed” Simon

 

Two Fish LEMBONGAN

-From the 28th of April until the 12 of May 2016

-From 15th until 29th of September 2016

 

Two Fish BALI

-10th until 24th of July

-23rd of October until 6th of November

 

Contact us for more information.

All the best!

Marie

marie@dive-careers.com

Platinum CD 639725