Any graduates of the Diver's Institute of Technology in Seattle out there?

I'd like to hear from folks that have completed/graduated the Diver's Institute of Technology in Seattle.

Specially if you have attended within the last 5 years. 

My son has been looking at this school, and we have been trying to find current info  about it.

We've been looking at different diving forums, and it seems that not many graduates are actually working in the field--usually about 5 per class.  So what happens to the rest of the people that attend DIT and other cdiver schools?  Are they working as divers or tenders, or is the career field saturated?

If you have diving jobs, are you able to stay employed for long stretches of time, or do you have to constantly hustle for the next gig?  

What do you do about health insurance--get it through an employer, or is it hard to procure due to the inherent danger of the job?

Did the job placement actually help you find employment, or do they just give you a sample resume and point you towards the door?

Are you satisfied with your training, or do you regret forking out the dollars for the school?

Did the school actually teach you work skills that you can use underwater, or did you have to learn more once you got on your job site?

We asked the school if there was a place to interact with graduates but were told they couldn't provide any info due to "privacy issues".  We were also told one can expect to earn about 7-8k per month as a graduate.  Not sure if this is as a tender since other info suggests about $15 per hour as a tender.

Thanks for any input.  I know there are threads that discuss some of these issues, but I couldn't find anything recent.


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My name is Britt Coates. I am a commercial diver and an instructor at Divers Institute. If you want all your questions answered openly I will tell you what you want tot know. You can email me at

Take a hard look at Santa Barbara City College Marine Technology Training Course.

Best in the business and you get college credits. 1/4 the cost. and the industry prefers its graduates.

If your son has construction trade experience then learn to dive. Learn to dive without skills means he will work at McDonalds and get to show pictures and pay on a student loan.

Remember the schools are in business to make a profit not rehabilitate or spark an interest in higher learning.

Divers Institute is an accredited school and offer international certification. Our graduates are also highly sought after in the industry. You picture on dive schools is highly cynical. True they are a business and have to make money but we put out the most well rounded and prepared individuals in the industry. I have worked from Alaska to Antarctica and the name of DIT has held its weight.

With 55 years in the industry I know the product the dive schools produce.

None including the one I run at Chino (Chino Divers) can top Santa Barbara for the quality of there product. If you look at who owns the major diving operations you will find that the CEO's are graduates of Santa Barbara. It is not a puppy mill.

Right on that's the truth, the more you know, the longer you live and a long career.
Hey guys, this doesn't need to be a p*****g match over which school is better. It just makes it sound like you're a recruiter for the school. I'm currently looking into both programs and have the same questions as this guy and his son. Chiefly, how hard is it to get hired on and stay on with a good company as a fresh guy out of school? I'm a veteran transitioning out of the military and think this kind of job would be a good fit but have heard good and bad things about how many jobs as well as the quality of jobs that are available.

Recommendation is if you do not have a construction trade skill you should enter into an apprenticeship, Carpenters, Pile Drivers, Welders etc.

Divers are only called on to repair, inspect, or build something underwater that's where the skilled trade comes in.

Divers are not paid to blow bubbles. Once you have completed your apprenticeship then go to diving school. that way when you are hired to do a job underwater you will not get run off because of lack of skills.

I'm coming from a military explosive ordnance disposal background (military Bomb squad). How many jobs would explosives experience help me out in?

Use of explosives is rare in underwater work now due to environmental concerns.

Land demolition companies are around that do explosive work.

also there are a couple of civilian outfits that do EOD work.

In over 50 years of diving explosives were used twice - that's two days in 50 years.

There is more EOD work in Europe due to WW2 stuff lying around on the bottom.

Still suggest you get into an apprenticeship then hit the diving. Pile Drivers in Long Beach in dire need of new blood for massive projects going on in LA Harbor.

I use explosives 8-9 times per year offshore in the Gulf. We're doing platform removals and the contractor gets guys from DMT or another explosives company to come out and set up the charges. I take them and stick em in a h***, no background needed.


I graduated from D.I.T. in May of this year (2014), and as a recent graduate and previous 6 year army infantry veteran I would love to answer the questions in this post as well as for Robert in the comments section.  First of all, my experience at D.I.T. was absolutely phenomenal.  Every single instructor I had would go out of their way for students including staying late and coming in on their days off to ensure that the material being taught was fully understood.  I truly feel that every single instructor truly cares for the career progression of every single student, and they are not simply there to earn a paycheck and get students through.  In fact, several instructors and the school itself have called me multiple times after graduation to check up on my progress and see if they could continue to help in any way.  As a veteran, coming to this school couldn't have been easier.  The staff is extremely experienced in dealing with the VA and know the ins and outs of getting the G.I. Bill set up for tuition.  As far as the training received at D.I.T. again all I can say are good things.  The vast majority of instruction is all hands on. You get actual training on underwater hydraulic tools, salvage, surveys, rigging, construction, and underwater cutting and welding.  And its not a "try it out for a day and move on" training, but in depth evaluated and graded progress for each module that is a few weeks long for each skill.  This is why D.I.T. is longer and more expensive than other schools, because they focus on giving you the depth and experience needed to excel in the industry. Personally, I have zero regrets about the money or time I spent at this school.  Finally, all I can do to compare to other schools is what I have heard talking to co-workers who graduated from them and it seems that they all say the same thing, "we never got to do that, or I wish I could've done that stuff in school before I started working."      

So, here's the big questions: job placement and previous experience.  Out of my class of 23 students who graduated in May, almost all got jobs immediately. the ones who didn't either didn't want to start working right away or had other non-related issues arise. The job placement program at D.I.T. is incorporated into the entire last month of training.  the school works with you on making a professional resume and puts you in contact with employers. they are always monitoring the job market and if a job arises that suits an individual student, they go out of their way to inform the student and try to set up an interview.  i.e., a student wanting to stay as close to home as possible in the Midwest got set up with a company out of Kentucky.  Yes, there are diving jobs in Kentucky, and he got hired because the job placement instructor actively found that job, brought it to the student's attention, and directly emailed the company to set up a phone interview.  Personally, along with several other class mates, I traveled to Louisiana and got hired working in the Gulf of Mexico.  There are plenty of companies here and all are always on the look out for new graduates.  Furthermore, the company I work for is focused on employee retention.  They spend a lot of money on each new hire such as physicals and safety training and want to keep them for a long time. if you are a hard worker with a good attitude you will have a steady job for your entire career.  there is no need to bounce around or job hunt. Also my company has full benefits including health, dental, retirement, etc.  I did start at $15 an hour, but what that doesn't take into account is the schedules you work offshore, that being 12 hours a day 7 days a week while out at sea.  so with all the overtime added in, yes, you make decent money every month. there are slower times with less work, especially in the winter due to weather conditions, but none the less you stay employed with the same company and work steadily.  All of this is based off of my personal experience so far and talking with co-workers who have been working at this company, some for over ten years now.    

Finally, as far as experience goes, it can give you a leg up, but ultimately will not hinder you.  As I said, before now, I was Army infantry and had nothing to do with construction or diving.  Two kids I graduated with and also work for the same company as I do were straight out of high school when they began at D.I.T. and both were hired immediately and are still doing great today.  Another guy I graduated with worked at Starbucks and the mall with no other work experience before D.I.T. and likewise was hired immediately by a different company and is still doing great. I think this is another testament to how great the training is at D.I.T., it truly does prepare you to work in the diving industry. 

Well, a little long, but I hope that helps with your questions.  Best of luck!  


What is it that you actually do on an oil rig?  Are you a tender, or are you in the water?  Do you mostly sit around and wait for some issue to come up that requires fixing, or are there on-going tasks you have to accomplish? 

If the company you work for offers all the benefits you listed, how often do job openings occur, and what causes divers to leave the company?

I also would like to thank everyone that has posted comments--I've learned a lot and I appreciate your honesty.


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