Commercial Diving Alumni
Interview Kaleb Bouvier
CDA Technical Institute Alumni Class #0616B
What made you decide to attend CDA Tech?
Kaleb considered other dive schools, but the on-campus dorms at CDA Technical Institute allowed him to go to school without having to work a job.
How was your experience at CDA Tech?
Regarding the training, Kaleb said it was “overall good, mostly hands-on with lots of dive time underwater”.
When asked how his classroom studies have served him in the field, he stated that “academics helped as well. Specifically dive charts, dive anatomy and [topics pertaining to] decompression and recompression”.
What was your favorite aspect about commercial diving training?
“My favorite part was probably the diving, and most of all the instructors.”
Describe the process of finding a job out of school.
“There were a lot of people – before I went to school and even during – that told me it would be impossible to find a job. Why hire an entry-level diver when there are more experienced ones out there? I graduated November 4, 2016 and took two weeks off. I sent out 3 resumes and they called me 4 hours later offering me a commercial diving job in Florida.
I had 4 jobs to do – which was kind of like an interview. My dive supervisor, based in FT. Worth, Texas said ‘you’ve got to hire this guy if he’s willing to relocate to Ft. Worth’.”
Kaleb accepted the commercial diver position with Water Technology and relocated to Texas soon thereafter. However, shortly after accepting the position with Water Technology in Ft. Worth, he received another job-offer from a commercial diving company based in Kentucky.
Although the dive company in Kentucky offered better compensation, he declined as he had already accepted the first offer in Houston.
Describe your role as a commercial diver for Water Technology.
“I clean and inspect [underwater structures] utilizing underwater cameras and underwater photography. If needed, epoxy is used to repair water towers, potable water tanks, and ground tanks with a capacity up to 10.5 million gallons.” Kaleb also utilizes ROVs (Remotely Operated Vehicles) to perform inspections on underwater structures that are difficult to reach by a diver.
“We have two ROVs (Remotely Operated Vehicles) when inspecting ground tanks that big. These are remotely controlled and equipped with cameras and lighting. I just got off a 4-month job in El Paso, Amarillo & New Mexico which were all dive inspections. We sent in the diver, and performed underwater photography while inspecting the tank.”
Water Technology trained Kaleb on how to pilot the remotely operated vehicles. In addition, they also paid for two additional OSHA certifications – which will add to Kaleb’s resume in the long run. And although Kaleb utilizes underwater technologies such as ROVs, he spends more time in the water diving than behind the controls of an ROV.
ROVs are typically utilized when an inspection needs to be made in rough terrain or an otherwise unreachable area. Kaleb goes on to say that “if the diver can get in the water and it is safe, then we’re always getting in the water”.
What makes a commercial diver employable?
“If you actually want to be a diver, you just have to want it. I’ve wanted to be a diver, I love being underwater and I applied myself when it comes to getting a job. You just have to want it and apply yourself. A lot of people think that because you graduated and got you certifications that everyone will hire you. It doesn’t work like that. However, another diver in my class graduated on a Friday and went to work the very next day. Work is out there. You just have to find it and be dedicated.”