This year started just right! Yes, I’m a scuba diving instructor now, and I’m going to tell you how it has been to reach this goal. I can tell you it wasn’t easy. Stay tuned and follow me on my diving journey...
My 2019 plan
In 2019, I went back to the roots of my dive journey, back to Orca Dive Club Somabay in Egypt where I did my openwater licence and all my training to become a Divemaster. Following this, it was my goal to become an Instructor the summer before the busy season started. Unfortunately, life doesn't always go according to plan. I was needed more in Reception than in the water, and there was no time at all for my dreams. Even if I was sad that things didn't happen, I did my best to support my colleagues as much as I could.
My time was coming
Luckily for me, an initiative from SSI Egypt and the SSI headquarters meant there was a ITC training event planned for the beginning of 2020 as part of SSI’s 50th anniversary! They asked diving centers to select their best candidates for an Instructor Training course and I had the honor of being one of them!
Two months before the course started
Finally I was on my way to becoming a scuba instructor. I realized more and more that I hadn’t been working in the water for two years. I had done around 10 dives in two years and now I needed to remember all I had learnt for my Divemaster training and study to become an instructor.
I used my daily one hour journey on the staff bus to study. I used the SSI digital materials which were always with me because I never go out without my phone, who does nowadays? Even on the way home, when it was already dark, I could read my manuals and standards, watch the skills reviews and answer the questions. After a long day working it’s really hard to stay awake and not fall asleep, but I had to reach my goal, so I tried my best to stay awake and continue studying. I read, and if I checked what I was reading, after a while, I forgot again. So I repeated everything. It was a lot, but it was also very interesting information, and while I studied, I imagined myself as an Instructor already.
January 2020: BOOT DÜSSELDORF
The ITC was getting closer and I still had a trip to Düsseldorf, Germany for the BOOT Show ahead of me.
It was the first time that I had worked at the BOOT Show, I was so happy for the opportunity, but of course I had no time to study, so I used my time in the taxi on the way to the fair to study, and if possible, at the hotel in the evening.
Just a brief review of the BOOT Show and my experience: it was incredibly nice to see the people I had met during my time in Egypt. Some I had not seen for a long time, some had just been to our dive center and a lot of friendly faces planned on visiting us at the Orca Dive Club.
After the BOOT Show, I visited my family because they are close to Düsseldorf, then at the beginning of February I had to fly back again with just five days left until the ITC started. I started to become super nervous.
In 2018, my aunt had promised to visit me in Egypt with her family and get her Openwater Diver certification with me if I was an instructor. That was great motivation and I was really looking forward to it!
08/02/20: First day of the ITC
Then it got serious. 18 candidates, 2 Instructor Trainers, 1 Assistant Instructor Trainer and a Certifier, all with the same goal, to become instructors. On this day I still didn’t understand what an unforgettable experience I was about to have!
No pain no gain
We listened to academic presentations every day, learnt how to do them by ourselves, did them by ourselves and went from the classroom to the water and from the water to the classroom. There was almost no time for lunch, just time to study, study, study.
Besides all that, we haven't forgotten the fun we had. We really supported each other and became a really good team. Now that the course is over, I have the feeling that everything passed by far too quickly.
I want to thank everyone
I am very grateful to everyone I met on the course. I got to know many lovely people who are part of a new phase in my life.
Thank you to all my fellow candidates, thank you for being as you are, thank you for your support, for not losing the fun and making this experience an unforgettable one.
Thank you to Targa Trading (SSI Egypt) and SSI HQ for making this special course possible and thanks to Orca Dive Clubs for hosting us in Orca Village.
Thank you so much to our Instructor Trainers Adel labib , Mohamed Bakkry, and our Assistant Instructor Trainer Annita Stoppini for your support, advice, and for being patient with us.
I would also like to thank Karim Salah, who was there for our IE and made sure all candidates’s performance met with SSI Instructor quality.
Thanks a lot with all my heart.
The journey had just begun...