The sun is coming up over Cabrits National Park, and I can see the dive shop clear across the bay. The anticipation is giving me goosebumps, and I love it! Although I have been assisting with PADI IDCs (Instructor Development Courses) not teaching new students or continuing education, today is the day. I haven’t been in the water ‘teaching’ in what seems like forever. But After renewing my instructor status, learning new skills and training techniques, at Rainbow Reef in Key Largo FL, I feel confident as ever to get back in teaching ALL levels of diving. I get to start out slow and small, groups of teens doing a summer program just like I did when I was their age. Even though I’ve only got them for a short time I can only imagine that at least 1 of my students over the next 6 weeks will catch the bug, find their passion in diving, and perhaps one day pursue professional diving in one capacity or another.
I couldn’t imagine my life without diving. Recreationally it has taken me to destinations all over the world, taught me about myself and the environment around me, especially the impact of our terrestrial lives on the undersea world. Professionally it has allowed me a career that evolves, that I can do part time or full time and its one of the things that has allowed me to leave the US and tackle a dream so many have yet never live – moving to a tropical destination!
I will say that professional diving isn’t for everyone, to some it is their sanctuary in which they don’t want to bring responsibility, or maybe it’s the idea of learning ‘dive theory’ or ‘going back to school’ that takes the fun away for them. Some people just weren’t meant to be teachers no matter how much they love diving. But, if I’ve learned anything from diving, it is that it has the power to change people, to make them better at various aspects of their lives, make them a more well rounded person, if they give it the chance to.
I didn’t start thinking about teaching diving professionally until I was 19, disappointed in the college I had transferred to, and thinking about what I really loved in life… DIVING! I searched the internet for Dive Master courses & IDC programs and found one nearby to where I was living in LA. It turned out they had great reviews and as soon as I met with them to discuss my future in diving, I knew I had made the right decision. There I stared on a 2 month mission, I would be working in the shop, learning everything there was to know about the current dive industry, as well as dive culture in California,and at the same time beginning my Dive Master course and internship. The internship seemed to fly by, and I quickly acclimated to diving in cold water, something I had previously thought I would never do. When I started the Instructor Development Course I felt at ease, completely comfortable around students, and imparting my knowledge and passion to certified divers and students alike.
It took a lot of fun diving, and time away from teaching to regain that ultimate passion, to realign my sights so that I could once again see why I loved teaching, and where I wanted to go with it. I couldn’t be happier that I took up teaching again, that I realized that I was so close to the next Instructor level, how close I could be to my original goal of becoming a Course Director. What seemed such a far off yet attainable goal when I first started teaching had somehow been lost in the hustle of teaching and working for someone else. When I got back in the water, back behind my teaching slates, I knew that Course Director was still a goal I could achieve, still what I wanted out of diving, to not only get people in the water, but keep them there, and to nurture other diver’s like myself who’s place really was under the sea.
Now here I am, an IDC Staff Instructor, just need to certify a few more Emergency First Responders, and I’d like to certify some more Dive Masters before I can apply for the title of Master Instructor. Each step I take seriously, with dedication to my craft, dedication to the system of PADI teaching / learning and keeping it fun along the way.
I am so looking forward to teaching many more students this summer, as a great precursor to opening my own dive business on the island, one step at a time, one certification at a time, and I will achieve all my goals, in time ❤
Peace & Love
For more information on joining us in Dominica to learn how to dive or continue your dive education, please check out the contact page and drop us a line. I will be happy to supply you will all the information necessary to get you started and hopefully get you in the water with us soon!
All photos on this page were taken while I was teaching in Los Angeles California just in case you were thinking they didn’t look very tropical!