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What kind of a course is that?!

Discussion in 'Q and A for Scuba Certification Agencies' started by Elkfriend, Jun 19, 2009.

  1. Elkfriend

    Elkfriend Solo Diver

    # of Dives: 100 - 199
    Location: calgary, canada
    Here is a post in relation to the PADI Divemaster course.

    Hopefully it sparks some discussion and helps others like me decide what to do:

    I have rescue for several years now and have been toying with getting a DM, but just for fun and to increase my personal skills. I have no time and interest to make this a career or to teach.

    So I signed up for an information session at a local dive outfit.

    Turns out, they want to suck you into an "internship" (I have a full time job, no time to hang out at their store and count inventory for them!) and basically you work and slave for them for free.

    I want to dive and learn how to correcty demostrate drills and stuff like that, not cleaning their toilets and showers!!


    Anyways, I was really disappointed. I am a business man myself and I can smell cheap labor and low cost initiatives as they come - no need to disguise it as a course!!!!!!

    I love reaching instructor levels in sports I love (ie I am a skiing instructor too), just for personal growth, hopefully I can achieve that with diving some day, when I find the right course...
  2. Crowley

    Crowley Master Instructor

    # of Dives: I'm a Fish!
    Location: Planet Crowley
    There's nothing in the PADI DM course which says you have to clean toilets - however an internship is the best way to go forward to DM. Often, shops will reduce the cost of the course in return for your work - and often this includes all aspects of working in a busy dive shop, which might mean helping out with cleaning and stuff, as well as assisting with courses.

    It's ironic that so many people here complain about 'fast track' DM courses and yet here is somebody actually complaining that they were offered an internship and all the experience that goes with it and feel they are being ripped off. Perhaps you simply want the skills and knowledge and as you say, you don't want to work within the industry. In that case, there is a version of the PADI DM course which you can complete in 10 days or less; speak to dive shops about the different versions - but the internship is usually the preferance of both schools and students.

    As always, there is very little to the DM course and the Instructor course that will teach you about diving; they teach you to function in a professional capacity within the dive industry, not how to be a better diver - at least, not specifically anyway - although you will learn better dive skills during other aspects of the course.

    As you are a businessman, I would invite you to look at the margins and overheads within the dive industry. DM courses are often loss-makers for dive schools and hence helping out around the shop during an internship is something that most interested parties are willing to do. In return, many internships will include free use of tanks, weights and equipment whilst you're diving or assisting with the dive shop.

    I mean this post with all sincerity and am trying to be as objective as possible so perhaps I don't fully understand what your LDS has asked you to do, but what you posted is pretty much par for the course. If you need help with any respect of the DM training or what might be required of you then please feel free to ask - I am here to help.

    To improve your dive skills you may wish to visit other areas of the dive world - for example the Master Scuba Diver or Master Diver - or perhaps look into some of the DIR techniques for more advanced training.

    Safe diving,

  3. DevonDiver

    DevonDiver N/A

    # of Dives: 5,000 - ∞
    Location: Subic Bay, Philippines
    I don't know of any shops that would have DM interns clean toilets...or jobs of that nature. It may be different in the USA (I've never worked there), but I doubt it.

    Your main focus would be on assisting instructors and qualified divemasters with their in-water activities. This is a great learning experience. Non-diving specific, but interesting nonetheless, jobs that you may be asked to do would be to assist with retail and operations functions. Everything from filling cylinders, blending nitrox through to assisting customers complete their paperwork, answering their questions or helping them fit rental equipment.

    Another 'nice' side to the internship program is that you can put aside your work-week worries and just muck in with the rest of the team. I found this refreshing and enjoyable - and a nice break from my career responsibilities.
  4. BCSGratefulDiver

    BCSGratefulDiver Mental toss flycoon ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 2,500 - 4,999
    Location: On the Fun Side of Trump's Wall
    If it's diving skills you're interested in, then why take a leadership course? They don't generally focus on diving skills, they focus more on how to manage students and sell continuing education.

    Find a non-pro level class that's going to focus on your goals ... namely, diving skills. Depending on the instructor, you may have to go outside the PADI program to find one that suits you (e.g. the NAUI Master Diver course ... which is NOT the same thing as the PADI Master Diver recognition rating).

    Or find an independent instructor who's willing to put together a series of skills workshops or specialty classes to focus on the specific skills you want to strengthen.

    If your eventual goal is to get into more technical diving, then an Intro to Tech type class (TDI, IANTD, GUE, UTD) may be suitable.

    Point is, you don't go into leadership classes to improve your diving skills ... that's just not what they're designed for.

    Unfortunately, many dive shops use these classes as a means to get cheap labor ... usually by offering the classes at a reduced price, or by offering shop incentives like reduced prices on trips or gear.

    ... Bob (Grateful Diver)
  5. Matt83

    Matt83 Instructor, Scuba

    # of Dives:
    Location: Palm Beach Gardens, FL
    Im not sure I understand why you want to learn to teach skills if you dont want to teach. If youre demonstrating skills without being an insured instructor or under the supervision of an instructor you are going to get yourself in a world of liability issues. If you dont want to get into the business of diving then stay at the rescue level and spend the extra money on a few trips. The best experience you can get is more diving. If you do decide to get the divemaster rating understand that there isnt much you can do with it if you arent willing to pay a few hundred dollars a year to be insured. Even then, you cant do much other than assist an instructor with their classes.
  6. philmayer

    philmayer ScubaBoard Supporter ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Knoxville, TN
    I've never heard of a PADI DM course that requires candidates to clean toilets. Everyone who I know has only worked with instructors and students in the classroom and in the water. Part of PADI's focus is on understanding and selling equipment, so perhaps the shop you talked to includes that in their internship. And make no mistake about it, internship is a very important part of the course.

    As the others have said, you don't get a DM rating to be a better diver, you do it to be a professional. The dues, training, and insurance requirements reflect that.

    If you want to become a better diver, take some specialty courses and spend a lot of time in the water.

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