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Diver on structure

Underwater Skills Program Overview

The Seneca College Underwater Skills Program (UWS) has been training commercial divers to meet the needs of the diving industry since 1974. Graduates from the UWS Program work in every sector of the diving industry including inshore and offshore construction, salvage, inspection and offshore oil and gas exploration and production.

The program includes 34 weeks of extensive training starting in mid-September and ending in June each year with the majority of time spent at King campus, located just north of Toronto, on Lake Seneca. The deep diving portion of the program takes place on Georgian Bay from a 16 x 9 meter dive barge which is anchored in over 50 metres of water depth.

Graduates of the program meet the requirements of CSA Competency Standard for Diving Operations and receive a DCBC Unrestricted Surface Supplied Diver certification.

 Certificates issued by the DCBC are recognized by Australia (ADAS), France, Norway, South Africa, the United Kingdom (HSE) and the International Marine Contractors Association (IMCA). Students of UWS also have the opportunity to take optional courses such as Occupational Restricted SCUBA, IMCA Diver Medic Technician and CWB underwater welding.

Areas of Study

Part 1

September – December
  • English
  • Diving Physics
  • Diving Physiology
  • Rigging and Hoisting
  • Compressors and Tools
  • Systems and Equipment I
  • Applied Diving I

Part 2

January – February
  • Salvage and Explosives
  • Hyperbaric Chamber Operations
  • Navigation and Chart Work
  • Surface Welding and Cutting Theory
  • Applied Diving II


Part 3

March – April
  • Surface Cutting and Welding
  • Small Engines and Compressors
  • Underwater Cutting
  • Applied Diving III
  • Construction Diving Techniques
  • Systems and Equipment II


Part 4

April – June
  • IMCA Diver Medic
  • Underwater Welding
  • Applied Diving IV
  • Deep Diving