INTERNSHIPS FOR TRAINING
Puffin has a very long history of training individuals who have a deep interest in learning about Scuba. The detailed requirements that are required in many ancillary areas associated with diving are in some cases very complex and in others it takes real skill and practice. Some people are naturally adept at the acquisition of skills due to previous experience or association with parents who have provided skills during childhood others take a little time to gain skills. Whatever your start point you can gain by the courses taught at PDC and the close association with your mentor. A mentor is usually an instructor who has experience and has fully understood the process of training customers at PDC and understands how to operate as a specialist in a particular area.
Internships are not for everyone - Even though you are on a course and you are the customer you are expected to learn to become a crew member. There is little that can be called easy about the internship course. Early starts preparing boats or classes for standard customers. Learning the maintenance schedules that allow PDC to operate or getting involved in regulator servicing protocols or learning how to prepare Drysuits for factory finish results - it is all more than average.
It is true - you get to be involved at the sharp end - PDC a company of nearly 30 years of experience has learnt a thing or two about how to care for customers and equipment.
Interns who are willing to join these courses are eligible to undertake and complete (required pass levels) a superb range of Diving courses. From Open Water through to Instructor, from Commercial tender through to HSE Scuba Diver. From RYA Pt1 through to Advanced Powerboat with all of the other related course - First Aid at Work, AED Defibrillator, First Aid Instructor, GMDSS, Oxygen Provider and many more (see list below)
Interns are selected from applicants who have met the initial requirements and are then subject to selection before being a place on a course.
Finally it is worth explaining the objective - Our successful candidates post course completion are sought after. The CV of the completing intern for instance is impressive. Not only does the intern have many standard course completions together with logged activities and dives but has dozens of mini - courses applicable and relevant in diving or water related subjects. Interns have a great range of experiential dives with experience of using equipment not normally available to customers. A prime subject (maybe more than one if the internship is longer) where the intern is qualified in a specialist role. (This can mean great opportunities especially when dive centres are located in more remote parts of the world.) Leadership level activities are encouraged through out the course with planning, logistics and a host of other competition beating skills! PADI, HSE, RYA and other agency training will be taught giving a world wide opportunity for employment post course.
30 YEARS OF TRAINING
Impressive as 30 years continuous provision of training is, it pales into insignificance when stacked along side of our safety record. We have operated our courses in all weathers ensuring that the quality of provision has not deteriorated just because the weather has. Innovative strategies has made our courses stand out amongst other providers. How this for starters : All normal in - water course activities are on a one to one basis! All courses are managed by a dive supervisor! All student in water dives have a computer fixed to the pillar valve of each diver and this is the company log book print out and dive discussion forum! Your own instructor in the water on each dive - no sharing with other enthusiastic "newbies". This philosophy is what you will be trained in and what you will be able to make money from in the future.
The Professional Association of Diving Instructors
We have been Professional members of the association for as long as we have been a dive training centre. We actively teach all PADI courses including all the professional level course providing IDC's and instructor courses. The courses are not designed to be anything other than a full introduction to the subject matter - experience comes later however in the internship courses experience is during the courses giving our interns a great boost in the application of the subjects taught and enjoyed. We will only certify a candidate if we are satisfied that they have fully met the requirements of the course. PADI set the general standard - PDC set the local requirements and required detail to ensure the quality of any PADI course. The PADI courses are world renowned - interns are trained in how to get the best out of these courses and how to maximise customer satisfaction from the training. A PADI Divemaster, Assistant Instructor and Instructor are all levels of professional diver that provide your passport to diving and travel around the world.
ARE YOU A POSSIBLE INTERN?
One of the problems associated with getting started in a career in the dive industry is cost. The sheer cost of courses is enough to put anyone off. Even if you spend sometime on the fringes of the dive industry it is still hard to get enough impetus to be able to get experience - what the dive centre wants is a trained person and well developed skills with defensible qualifications. This programme allows both to occur at the same time. That is the reason we put this internship programme together. Every year young motivated people wanted a clearly defined path to success and were willing to work hard to achieve it - unfortunately the usual pattern of non availability meant seeking alternative career paths! PDC started the internship programme with several types of course for internship customers:
Short Internship Course - less than two weeks
Medium Internship Course - less than six months
Long Internship Course - less than a year
You have to be committed to the programme. willing to learn working practices and apply techniques that take much practice to acquire. The skills are not gained lightly. Whilst constant help from your "mentor" is available you are required and encouraged to apply first principles of try again. Success is gained when the excellence is apparent and provable - not just because you feel it is so! Running several programmes allows us to generally ensure that the direction for each intern is maintained however some tailoring is employed as different end objectives may be required by different individuals. Also as the internship progresses sometimes the original objectives may be modified in favour of other interests within the framework which were not apparent to the intern at the outset.
This serious approach to a dedicated personal development programme is the key to lasting success during and post the programme. Several ex interns have become long term staff members at PDC. It is gratifying to talk to some of these individuals and listen to their success (and some failures) as they went from "green" newbies to confident and well qualified and experienced individuals. Ex interns have gained some very notable positions after completing stays with PDC. Of course there is no such thing as a guarantee of success but the general understanding is clear. The more prepared you are to make success the more opportunities seem to follow.
INTERNSHIP V's A TRUCKLOAD OF COURSES
Some people have tried to "glue" a series of courses together in an attempt to create a qualification based alternative. Unfortunately this strategy (apart from the cost burden) does not satisfy the basic experience levels required to be an "all rounder" or "well rounded" intern. Although it appears that time has passed in the study and even qualifications have been well gained the fundamental necessity for working with and for responsibilities is not the same. Team based activities may not always be applied and importantly daily reviews and critiques would not be the same. Even pass marks required are different for interns. If you are a an "ordinary" customer the expectation by your tutors whilst high is not the same as the requirement for an "intern".
Numbers in courses are different. Interns are not one of many - they are individuals being developed! This key area is apparent in the selection process. A payment will not secure you an internship. You have to have a selection process and succeed in your trial period. Your application with a written CV stating your intentions, ambitions and requirements are all factors taken into consideration before successful selection. Their is a degree of latitude during the initial phases of your involvement but as the process continues it is necessary to accept that new tasks should be carried out using the already learned skills in a different format or using at least part of some previously gained experience.
ONLY TEAM PLAYERS SHOULD APPLY
You must be part of the team. You are just as much a part of PDC as the permanent staff. Some individuals cannot accept that the team is the central point and not them. Some peoples focus is only on how the world and events apply to them and concern themselves with their reasoning. This does not work well. Always the team philosophy plays an important role with constant shifts in how important each apparently trivial activity becomes. It is hard toi describe the many requirements of a team player or how minor activities by even a minor member of a team can reach critical importance during some activities. WE know it does and the "right" person does too.
You will be involved in maintenance of diving equipment to a technician standard. You will learn to manage and look after people of varying capability in the water in varying conditions. You will learn to trust and rely upon your equipment and handle situations with confidence. In this short description it is only possible to hint at the benefits and options but if you are still reading it seems that we have a least interested you and perhaps even struck a chord within your mind.
Most areas of PDC will be open for development training, accounts, meet & greet customers, chalet handovers, stocktaking, purchasing, commercial activities in remote locations, customer liaison, equipment testing, mechanical involvement. We are satisfied that this training is better than any group of courses regardless of the price!
SKILLS AND QUALIFICATIONS AVAILABLE TO INTERNS
It would be unfair to suggest that it is a foregone conclusion that success is automatic. Our policy is to match individuals with options and by close involvement and tutelage develop the skills best suited to that intern. The goal is to achieve recognised qualifications with experience - not just a "badge"
At the outset most interns have a general view of their subjects of interest and required topics within the diving world however as time passes this choice becomes focused on specifics within the range of available courses. Typically an intern may be suited to some commercial development, a range of recreational qualifications and perhaps entry level boating (RYA) courses taught here. The list of availability is long, see below some examples achieved by staff, customers and interns:
- Open Water Course (World wide standard using full dry suit capability on all subsequent courses)
- Advanced Open Water Course (PDC style with up to 12 Specialities)
- Rescue Diver (PDC Modules dealing with many additional skills for trainee instructors)
- Divemaster (Full responsibility teaching with TAD's, guided diving with groups and training practices)
- Assistant Instructor (training to deliver most modules for students with lots of hands on practice
- Instructor + (module delivery and training for groups and special subject matter)
- Commercial Diving with Scuba to HSE Pt IV
- Commercial Diving Surface Demand to HSE Pt 3
- U/W welding, load lifting, Supervision, Tender, Re-compression Chamber assistant, Oxygen tender
- RYA Powerboat level 1 & 2
- RYA Powerboat Intermediate
- RYA Safety Boat
- RYA Advanced Powerboat (with certificate of Competence)
- HSE First Aid at work
- RYA Short Range Certificate
- Office Administration (levels 1 & 2)
- Accounts, reconciliation, purchasing.
- Repairs technician for Dry suits, regulations (life support equipment), general equipment, etc
All of the above with the tremendous opportunity to benefit from comprehensive training. Obviously there are many aspects of involvement with PDC which do not come with a certificate - and you would not expect them to - however these skills will uniquely improve your employment prospects. The "face" that the customer public see when looking at a diving centre is very different to the reality you will see as the centre operates. Your activities and training will involve plenty of work experience and skill practice. Some of it very enjoyable, some of it just enjoyable and some just the way it is! With a good team and motivated staff the centre enjoys a successful operating platform which the customer public see!
HOW CAN YOU APPLY?
If only it was as simple as applying just with a credit card for automatic acceptance! The selection of an intern candidate is one of the reasons the programmes is so successful. Ordinary customers call up and buy a course - interns have to apply and go through a selection procedure with all the requirements of a successful interview. When you are invited to join us you will know the difference between those that have not made the standard and you.
Initially a general letter from the candidate with an idea of how you would like to proceed if you were given the opportunity of an internship course.
Next you will receive a telephone interview and on success be invited to provide a cv in the style shown for a normal staff application at PDC. This is followed by a process where we agree the initial cost and courses you will take. How much yo will contribute and what the terms are. It is hoped that during this process a full understanding of PDC can be achieved and a first period of agreed time for the course(s) can be established with some general goals and targets.
Arrive and start getting some excellent training!
HOW DOES IT ALL WORK - WHAT ARE THE TERMS?
Usual attendance 0730 to 1630
5.5 days a week
Involved in courses for longer and as required to achieve success or completion
Hours vary especially on duration courses and night diving
Interns can take up to 28 days a year non attendance on courses at their option & by agreement
Travel costs for international locations and trade shows etc not included
Joining fee is £565 (only payable on acceptance)
Some books, kit and specialised equipment is provided and kept on successful completion
Some home study
Practical practice sessions and repeats
Team training sessions which will involve late nights / early mornings
You are a customer on a course throughout - You are NOT a staff member
You may leave at any time - No refunds
The certifications provided are yours to keep
SOME PREREQUISITES AND DETAILS
You must be in good health and able to pass a divers medical
Ability to swim - training may be given to improve this skill
Non - Smoker
Have left school (or applying as part of a young persons school internship package)
After your application has been approved for selection you will be invited to Gallanach for a residential selection process with meals and accommodation provided. If you are successful during this period you will invited to join the course at an agreed start point.
Contact now by email for a discussion on how you could fit in and get a great career!