Commercial diving graduates are being lured to the United States and overseas


On June 30, 2006, thirty-two young men and women will graduate from the Underwater Skills program at Seneca College in King City Ontario.  They have already been offered jobs by the largest diving contractor in the United States, jobs that include signing bonuses and other inducements.  The same contractor was in Prince Edward Island four weeks ago talking to graduates of the Commercial Diving Course at Holland College; now, at least six of those graduates are heading south to the Gulf of Mexico where the repairs to the damage wreaked by Katrina is nowhere near complete.  This aggressive recruiting by US diving contractors has lead to a shortage of commercial divers back home in Canada.  


Canadian commercial diver certification is recognized around the world.  Canadian divers are working in the North Sea, off the West coast of Africa and in the Far East.  The Canadian Diver Certification Board, the only national commercial diver certification agency in Canada is a founding member of the International Diving Regulators Forum which meets annually in London, England to discuss competency standards and certification for commercial divers.  Canadian standards, developed by the Canadian Standards Association and the commercial diving industry are the best in the world, and the world is beginning to recognize it.


In existence only since January 2003, the DCBC just issued its 1000th certificate.   Those 1000 certificates have been issued to graduates of accredited Canadian commercial dive schools, there are three, and to those of the largest US commercial dive school in Seattle, Washington.  They’ve also been issued to experienced divers who can demonstrate their competency, as well as to international divers who come to dive on oil and gas facilities off the East Coast.  The National Energy Board and the Newfoundland and Nova Scotia offshore petroleum boards have mandated the DCBC to ensure that any diver working off the east coast is competent and qualified to work in that most hostile of environments. 


Meanwhile, Canadian diving contractors are having a hard time finding the divers they need to work on hydro electric dams, municipal water systems, harbour facilities and the natural gas wells in Lake Erie.  According to John McFadzen, past president of the Canadian Association of Diving Contractors, this trend is only getting worse, if you are a contractor looking for a diver, or better if you are a diver looking for the most rewarding place to practice your profession.

Contact: David Parkes   
Telephone: (902) 465 3483

Cel phone: (902) 471 7155


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