Andark Scholars account & experience review


I did my rescue diver course with Andark at the end of march this year in a group of 8 and it was a very intense but incredibly rewarding experience. The weekend started off with a daylong EFR course, this covered many aspects of first aid and the PADI emergency oxygen provider specialty. We went through topics such as CPR, bandaging, allergies, heart conditions and many more, throughout the afternoon there were a number of scenarios which we as a team responded to following our training to practice the theory we learned in the day.

The following day the actual rescue diver course started in the pool, this is all about learning the right was to help a victim in the water, I found this to be the most helpful part of the course as we got to practice situations without the stress to make sure we are comfortable with the right way to help a casualty if an incident was to happen. The scenarios start with practicing skills learned on other courses such as cramp releases and progress to helping an unconscious diver under water. I feel that it is particularly important to practice like this in the pool as it means you can react to problems faster when in open water as you are already familiar with what you need to do and stops you from panicking yourself because you don’t feel prepared to deal with what’s going on in front of you.

The last day of the course was the open water day, this was the one I found most challenging as we had learnt all the content on the course and were putting it into practice in more realistic situations. We were helping people with general first-aid emergencies all day along with people with simulated diving problems and carrying out search and recovery tasks. On my particular rescue course there were 3 women, all of us relatively petite, so over the weekend we proved to ourselves that by using the correct techniques someone of our size can actually be of immense help to anyone. Before this I assumed that I would be little help to divers bigger than myself, but it was really rewarding realising that we can in fact make a huge impact just by doing the proper training and taking the rescue course. This is why I would encourage everyone to continue on to rescue diver, you don’t only learn to be a safer diver but also can show you that you are more capable of helping others than you realised.

Andark Divemaster Scholarship Programme


Why I Chose the programme…

Welcome Hope Cheney

I am one of this year’s scholars at Andark to do my PADI Divemaster training this year. I have just finished my first year at the University of Southampton studying Marine Biology with oceanography so for me diving is not just a hobby but will hopefully be a career in the future, that’s why I am doing the scholarship, as it is the perfect way to spend my summer…

I am mostly interested in gaining experience from the scholarship as working with Andark means we are learning about the day to day running of a dive centre so in future we will be ready to work and know what we are expecting. We are also helping with many non-diving related courses which is providing loads more industry experience to better prepare us for our futures in diving. For me, the scholarship is the best way to get experience in all aspects of the industry to set me up for a scientific diving career (hopefully in a nice hot country with interesting coral reefs) and I couldn’t think of a better place to be learning!!

Why I Chose the programme…

Welcome Antonio Gulisano

Hello, my name is Antonio I am twenty years old and very pleased to be one of the scholars this year. Finishing college, I had no desire to go to university, and was looking for a career or general path. Around this time my family and I decided to get our open water qualifications at Andark to perhaps go on holiday as my dad had enjoyed diving at around my age…

I cannot stress enough how much I enjoyed my Padi Open Water (OW). By far the greatest reason I enjoyed my OW was as someone who enjoys new experiences from paragliding to 4X4 off-roading, my OW allowed me to push myself in a new direction using skills I had and those I didn’t know existed.

I chose to apply to Andark’s Scholarship program as this is an excellent opportunity to get a look inside the industry with hands-on experience. Being in this environment with so many people each of which has a wealth of knowledge in a slightly different area has allowed me to learn a wider breadth of understanding. Part of this experience for me was the opportunity to try lots of different pieces of gear to see what I prefer and what fits me best. Examples of this would be my Beuchat Maxlux mask which I enjoy as its light weight gives a good field of view and low profile. Also, I have greatly enjoyed diving in a Scubapro T-ONE. I’ve the T-One to be light, comfortable and reliable however lacks suitable “D-rings” for mounting equipment.

My favourite dive by far was my dive at Vobster Quay this was incredible as there was so much to see from sunken planes and boats to submersed cars and vans.

In the near future I hope to dive with a wingset as this seems incredibly fun and allows for twin cylinders. In the more long-term future, I’d like to do my instructor qualification and teach both in the UK and abroad before doing my commercial qualification.