We are proud to announce that our first program fostering a new generation of ocean stewards has hit a critical milestone. Our three students from the Meriden School District have completed their confined water scuba diving program under the direction of Scuba Shack. Scuba Educational Alliance of Connecticut worked closely with Dave Sharron from the Meriden public schools to put together a comprehensive schedule to help develop this unique opportunity.
We started the journey by conducting two introductory programs to allow students to experience what it is like to be a scuba diver. From this group of students we selected our inaugural class of highly motivated and dedicated young divers for training.
Our program started with our selected students completing their knowledge development through an online course from the Professional Association of Diving Instructors. Prior to the start of training each student was fitted for personal gear at Scuba Shack consisting of their own mask, snorkel, fins and boots. With their electronic learning completed, it was time for in-person training. Our confined water training is a combination of classroom and pool work.
Over this six day period, our three prospective scuba divers worked on understanding the physics and physiology of diving, how to plan a dive and use a dive computer and how all of the equipment necessary to venture underwater works. They then practiced assembling and disassembling the gear before hitting the water for five days of diving. Over those five days our students completed their five confined water dives.
Our pool sessions ended with a photo shoot by the Record-Journal newspaper from Meriden.
In addition to Dave Sharron from Meriden, special thanks to Ron and Lizzy Weller who are both PADI scuba instructors from Meriden. They graciously donated their time to guide our class.
Next stop for our divers is open water certification dives at Brownstone Exploration and Discovery Park who are opening up the facility for this training free of charge.
Our journey to foster this new generation of ocean stewards is in full flight.
Introducing young men and women to scuba diving is an important first step in fostering a new generation of ocean stewarts. Scuba Educational Alliance of Connecticut working with the Meriden School District and Scuba Shack are continuing this journey of discovery. On May 8, 2023, we conducted our second Discover Scuba program for five more young men and women at Maloney High School in Meriden, CT.
After a short briefing on how the program would be conducted, we moved to the next step. With the help of our dive professionals, the participants were sized for the equipment needed - the buoyancy compensator, boot, fins and a scuba mask. We then moved onto the next phase - assembling the equipment and testing it for diving. It was now time to put on the gear and get into the water.
In the shallow end of the pool, our students started their experience by learning how to breathe deeply and steadily underwater. Then it was time for some propulsion by swimming back and forth using their scuba fins. It is here that they first experience the weightlessness of this three dimensional environment. After a few skills with the mask and regulator and some more swimming in the shallow end, the deeper part of the pool beckoned.
Once again, our newly indoctrinated students began to feel the weight of the water as the pressure began to build on their ears. We took it very slowly down the slope of the pool to the deep end. Some were having a bit of a challenge but ultimately most made it to the bottom and had a chance to do some more swimming around before heading back up to complete the session.
Several of our participants then completed the 200 yard swim. This is one of the watermanship skills required for the open water scuba diver course.
We are now in the final selection stages for this year’s flagship event. Our open water scuba diver class is schedule for the week that school ends for Meriden high schools. We are still going to fully fund up to four students in this program. It is a significant investment in time and dollars. Your donation to our program would be greatly appreciated. Meriden School District 2023 Campaign.
SEACT - on our journey in fostering a new generation of ocean stewards through scuba diving.