A group of scuba divers in Oman has successfully completed the PADI Instructor Development Course (IDC) allowing them to participate in the PADI Instructor Exam.
IDC is the course one needs to take to become a PADI Open Water Scuba Instructor (OWSI). IDCs are taught by PADI course directors, the highest level and most respected professional rating in recreational scuba diving.
Oman is known to have one of the most pristine and beautiful scuba diving spots from north to south. Moreover, the diversity of marine life intrigued many neighbouring countries to come and enjoy snorkeling activities in the sultanate, said that organisers.
In the last few years, Oman witnessed a big drop in the scuba diving industry despite the huge market potential. According to the passionate divers in Oman, proper training of scuba instructors would not only help Oman take maximum benefits out of its huge marine resources, but would also help in environment protection while undertaking scuba diving activities.
In September this year, with the persistence of a PADI Course Director who is the only one authorised to conduct the IDC programme in affiliation with Gulf Divers (Euro divers) Oman was finally able to revive this programme.
The instructor exams, an evaluation programme following the IDC is conducted by a PADI examiner only, witnessed a 100 per cent success rate with all the participants clearing the certification this weekend in Muscat.
While sharing her thoughts, one of the candidates said, “There are moments when your capacity is tested despite having adequate knowledge and skills. The effort that I have put in for the course was extremely rewarding and worth it. I have grown as a diver and I can’t wait too long to continue my professional education.”
Another candidate said, “I never thought that I would be able to become a scuba instructor. The experience and learning we had during our IDC has allowed me to pass the IE very comfortably. I can’t wait to start having my own students and teach them how to love our ocean.”
PADI course director Bechir Chehab said, “The PADI IDC is an intense but very rewarding programme, the aim is to make sure that we work towards developing knowledge and skills so that the new instructors can also do the same.
“The candidates worked very hard. Passing this specific programme didn’t come to me as a surprise but came out of passion and commitment of my students towards our ocean and in particular Oman which has many beautiful protected marine reserve area, there is a massive potential. I am very pleased to see that we were able to conduct this programme again after such a long time. Worth mentioning that anyone that meet the requirements and after passing a successful IE, one can have a full time or part time job with extra income as well.”
In conclusion, Bechir said, “Another role that we all must embrace even as non-divers is how we can protect our marine environment. With more instructors we will be able to offer additional tips, support and initiative and have more awareness towards the ocean.”
The Instructor Development Course (IDC) is made up of two parts – the Assistant Instructor (AI) course and the Open Water Scuba Instructor (OWSI) programme. Most diving professionals complete the entire IDC and go on to attend an Instructor Examination (IE), which is the final step to earn a PADI Instructor certification. The programme can only be conducted at five star IDC diving centres and currently Gulf divers/Euro divers Oman is the only dive operator hosting it in Bandar Marina Bander al Rowda, Sidab.