Adventure, Passion, and Fulfilment
Scuba diving instructor spotlight, Carlos Aguilar, JCA Elite Scuba
The professional part of his dive career went slowly, so he picked up technical diving. Technical divers go beyond the scope of traditional recreational, no decompression limits. This could include going beyond the 130ft limit that a recreational deep diver would, could include going into decompression and having mandatory safety stops on ascent, and even a combination of the two. Carlos achieved the ranking of Advanced Nitrox Diver and Decompression Procedures Diver in 2007. He didn’t stop there. In 2009 he achieved Trimix Diver which allows Carlos to dive on a gas mixture of oxygen, nitrogen, and helium. This program culminated in his dive on the USS Monitor at 241 feet in the Outer Banks of North Carolina . Carlos is also a cave diver..
In 2013, Carlos crossed over to NAUI to teach recreational divers. He describes this as the best move he’s ever made. “NAUI grants me the latitude to teach my students to become scuba divers, and not a person that just received a certification card.” Carlos does not work for a dive shop. He describes his business as a partnership with shops that must believe in his values, never pressure students into buying gear before they are ready or need, and will let him take the lead. I asked him if he found it hard to not have everything a dive shop has. He laughed and I seemed a little bewildered for a second and until he told me, “I feel sorry for them.” “They don’t have me!” Carlos’ business revolves around a schedule that puts the student first. He is open 24 hours a day, and while most of his business is done during traditional hours, most of his customers work during the traditional 9-5, store hours.
He describes this as his niche that dives shops won’t follow. Its not that he just offers independent and private scuba diving lessons, but he does it on the student’s schedule, comes to them for their educational requirements, and doesn’t have a deadline that they have to complete the program by. “By focusing on the student’s needs, their strengths come through.” “If I focused on a sales goal, once the student has bought gear, the relationship would be over.” By having this platform, Carlos’ students consider him “their” instructor. His goal is to create a lifelong relationship and continue their educational career, their kids, and one day, even their grandkids! Carlos doesn’t have any other job that people call, “career.” He just wants to teach and dive.
Scuba Diving Lifestyle Staff Writer