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Eastleigh College students witness life as a military diver

24 March 2017
A group of students from Eastleigh College recently visited the Defence Diving School (DDS) on Horsea Island to see for themselves what life as a military diver entails.

The group began their visit with a briefing by Army Diver Warrant Officer Clive Robertson and a presentation which introduced the equipment used by the divers and explained the procedures for training them in underwater demolition techniques.  

Moving down to the lake, the group met some of the student divers who then treated them to a demonstration of the Standby Diver drill which simulates the rescue of a diver who has got into difficulties underwater.

The students, who all have moderate to severe learning difficulties, are undertaking a two-year course at the College as an alternative to a more traditional work placement programme. 

It’s been great. The DDS staff have accommodated us brilliantly, it’s been really, really good and we want to come back here as much as we can

Mike Sheedy, who organised the visit and accompanied the students

This course aims to teach them work, independence and inter-personal skills and involves the students in visits to various establishments and organisations.

Mike Sheedy, who accompanied the students, organised the visit to the Diving School using contacts he’d built up during his 20-year career as an Army diver.

Speaking of the visit he said, “Today we’re here at the Defence Diving School to learn about the roles of the instructors and the divers. It’s been great. The DDS staff have accommodated us brilliantly, it’s been really, really good and we want to come back here as much as we can.”

Freya Maxted-Pettman, one of the Eastleigh College students, agreed and added, “It’s my first time here and I’m having a lovely time.”

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