My PADI CDTC experience
After years of teaching diving at all levels throughout the world, I started the road to the PADI Course Director Training Course in 2014. Sander Buis and Joeri van Hal were great mentors in Oceans 5 Dive Resort in Gili Air, Indonesia and cannot thank them enough for their support. The CDTC is a course for PADI Master Instructors who meet the requirements and have gone through a thorough application process. When successful, the CDTC Candidates become Course Directors and can conduct Instructor Development Courses (IDC) independently and thus, be part of the elite scuba diving instructor trainer community.
I arrived a couple of days before the course started in mid March 2016 to have some time to explore the beautiful region of Sabbah, Malaysia. Once acclimatized, I was ready to embark on the 9 day journey driven by the team of highly experienced and qualified PADI evaluation staff. They guided us through a journey to the Elite!! The course was hosted in the beautiful setting of the Shangri La Hotel in Kota Kinabalu. The hotel is spacious enough to accommodate all the candidates and served us amazing food at lunch and snacks throughout the days. Borneo Divers, the dive shop located in the hotel, took exceptional good care of all of us during the pool and the open water sessions. The latters were held on the gorgeous tropical Mamutik island which gave us all a nice break from the classroom sessions.
Each day, the 42 candidates from over 20 countries and divided in 6 teams, played different roles in various environments: the IDC student role giving IDC presentation in the classroom, in the confined water and in the open water; and the evaluator’s role, role the Course Director has during the IDC. Evaluations on our evaluations were given to us each day, so that we could all progress in the areas we needed. This part of the course, of constantly being evaluated was a little stressful at first for me but throughout the days, as I got to know my teammates and build confidence and managed to relax more and more. During the course, a part of each day was spent in a conference room where, in turn, the PADI team gave us presentations on various topics, thus delivering great tools for teaching at the highest level. The Psychology of Evaluation presentation was one of the most fascinating for me as I have used a lot of psychology through my teachings over the years to get the messages through to students with very different personalities, issues and abilities.
Each team was given a mission at the beginning of the course: build a Dive Operation and attract James Morgan, PADI Americas “Vice President of Training and Customer Service” to do an IDC with this Dive Operation. After many team meetings and brainstorming sessions and utilizing all of our newly acquired skills, Team Hamachi won the final contest of the CDTC!!! We won James’ heart. I felt it was a great team building exercise; we put all of our skills together, broke the language barriers and learnt a lot from each other. Team Hamachi was made of 3 Japanese, 1 Singaporean, 1 American, 1 New Zealander and 1 French. After 9 fun days building skills, team spirit and friendships, PADI put on a great show to reward the hard work of the 42 of us! After an early evening aperitif in the gardens of the Shangri La, the show started!!!! Local dancers invaded the room and got us all to participate to the local Magunatip dance, or bamboo stick dance. We all laughed a lot as we got our ankles caught between the bamboos and worked up an appetite for the delicious buffet which was served afterwards. Finally, the graduation ceremony started, each of us coming to collect our Course Director diploma from the amazing PADI team. I could feel the support of the whole room and of my team as I collected my reward and the joy of having achieved a big step in my career as a scuba dive professional.
Now it is time to put all the lessons into practice and start a new journey as I start teaching the IDCs in Oceans 5 Dive Center, Gili Air, Indonesia, and guess what? I am super excited!!
Are you thinking of becoming a dive professional and live on a tropical island? For more information in English, French, Spanish or Dutch, please contact me on firstname.lastname@example.org and visit www.oceans5dive.com