The 2016 BSAC Diving Conference has secured two highly sought-after international speakers – Dr Neal Pollock and Jill Heinerth – to talk at the event on 22 October at the NEC, Birmingham.
The Conference is for all members (not just Diving Officers and instructors) so don’t miss your opportunity to hear them speak.
World-renowned diving medicine expert Dr Neal Pollock will take to the BSAC stage to talk about thoughtful management of decompression stress. In his talk – Thoughtful management of decompression stress – Neal will look at the many factors that can alter decompression stress and the practical strategies all divers can use to optimise decompression safety. Speaking of his forthcoming experience Neal said: “It is increasingly common for divers to rely on dive computers for their decompression safety. Dive computers do not yet measure or integrate a multitude of factors that can alter decompression stress. This presentation will consider critical variables, those with the greatest impact and those most able to be influenced.”
Pioneering underwater explorer and filmmaker, Jill Heinerth, will be bringing her inspirational diving experiences to the stage. With dynamic images and stunning photographs from the last finite frontiers of this Earth, in her planned talk – Expedition Files – Jill will share stories about risk management, technology and synergism as she recounts her exploration inside of Antarctic icebergs and making movies deep inside submerged caves around the world. Speaking of her forthcoming experience Jill said: “I love having the opportunity to share stories from my expedition files. I know I will be speaking to the dedicated diving tribe, but if I can help increase the culture of safety or inspire someone to take on new challenges then that is a great reward for me.”
Also talking at this year’s BSAC Diving Conference…
Maritime archaeologist at Historical England, Alison James will share her knowledge of England’s protected wreck sites including what has been put in place to enable access for divers. In her talk Alison will look at how BSAC divers contribute to the knowledge and understanding of these sites and that through the involvement of dive clubs we can ensure these sites are monitored and enjoyed for years to come.
Senior Campaigner on the Marine Protected Areas campaign at the Marine Conservation Society, Rachel Alcock works to ensure the Government creates and protects a network of Marine Protected Areas around the UK. In her talk – Safeguarding British marine life – Rachel will update on the campaign, what divers can do and the ongoing work with BSAC.
You can buy tickets for this year’s BSAC Diving Conference here.
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Jump into… A career in diving
A career in doing something that you love… I have heard so many times that diving is just a hobby and not a career. A career by definition is ‘an occupation undertaken for a significant period of a person’s life and with opportunities for progress.’
I started diving at the age of 17. I became a PADI Divemaster and from this point progressed to an Open Water instructor, to Staff Instructor, to Master Instructor, to Course Director. Surely by definition this is a career path? The only difference (in some cases) that would dispute this matter… the controversial subject of pay!
I am 100% not going to say that no dive centres in the world pay. I myself do, and I know others that do, too. It does however seem to have become very much the norm, that the ‘because I enjoy it’ philosophy has eradicated the UK diving career path for years. Divers volunteering their help for little or no reward (again… not everyone before you stop reading). To eventually realising, that they are doing hard work, for not much to gain… even paying to carry on doing courses, and to become an instructor to work for that centre. What is all that about?!
If you are the type of person to be happy with that, that is completely fine, so long as you are happy. I was at one point… and then realised that I had invested a lot of my time and money, and when this realisation hit, started to feel undervalued. The instructor I was ‘working for’, for a free hot chocolate at the end of the day, would sit in the cafe whilst I taught in the 3 degree waters in the middle of winter. Obviously the paying customer had booked his course through this person and not me… I was happy with a hot chocolate and having fun… but aren’t all of the best careers the ones that we do not see as work. They aren’t all volunteer roles.
Those of you looking for a career in diving, don’t be put off. There are places that you can work, and a career in diving can literally take you all across the world. Those saying that there is no money in diving… ignore those guys too. There is. Obviously working for free is never going to get you there, but if you want to do it, then do it. There are plenty of places not only looking to employ scuba instructors, there are other jobs at aquariums, conservation roles, the Navy and many others for you to take a look at.
There are also grants to look at for education, the open water instructor course, or anything else after that is not exactly cheap… but still nonetheless worthwhile.
So, please do not take away the fact of diving being a career. It is. The only thing that I will leave you with (dropping a bombshell), is that if we accept the fact of ‘working for free’ then it will never change and still be hard to make a career in diving… I mean, of course there is limited need when there is still the alternate option for a business to have free labour.
Clare began Duttons Divers at just 19 years old and a short while later became one of the world’s youngest PADI Course Directors. Find out more at www.duttonsdivers.com
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