Frequently Asked Questions about the Scuba Minor

Q: Who can I talk to about the scuba minor?

The coordinator of the scuba minor is Dan Walter.  Feel free to set up a meeting by emailing him at

Q: Do I need to be a great swimmer?

No, you do not need to be an excellent swimmer in order to be a good diver.  That being said, all students must be able to swim 250 yards continuously, tread water 10 minutes, and swim underwater 50 feet.  While scuba divers do not really swim, they all enjoy being in and around water (pools, lakes and oceans).   If you have a love of the water, then scuba is right for you.

Q: Can I get certified in this class?

Certifications are available at each level of scuba classes, but it is not part of the class nor is it required as part of the class. Toward the end of each semester, trips to open water will be offered so students can complete this part of their training. This training is outside of class time and costs extra.

Q: What are the costs of scuba training at WIU?

There is a equipment rental fee of $50 for each level. In addition, KIN 108 students also have a $15 charge to help pay for lifeguards. All students must have a current medical physical on file. If this is done at Beu Health Center, the cost is $15.

Q: What type of equipment will I need for these classes?

All the scuba equipment (mask, fins, snorkel, BCD, wetsuit, regulator, tank) will be provided for the class. You will need to purchase your books/workbooks and have by the second week of class begins.

Q: My ears hurt when I go to the bottom of a swimming pool or when I dive down snorkeling. Will that keep me from becoming a scuba diver?

No, assuming you have no irregularities in your ears and sinuses. The discomfort is the normal effect of water pressure pressing in on your ears. Fortunately, our bodies are designed to adjust for pressure changes in our ears – you just need to learn how. If you have no difficulties adjusting to air pressure during flying, you'll probably experience no problem learning to adjust to water pressure while diving.

Q: Does a history of ear troubles, diabetes, asthma, allergies or smoking preclude someone from diving?

Not necessarily, however, only a medical doctor can answer these questions.  We recommend that you consult with your physician and follow her/his recommendation.  All WIU scuba students are required to have a current scuba physical on file that certifies that they are healthy enough to dive.

Q: What is the employment outlook for Commercial Divers?

Click here to see what the Bureau of National Labor Statistics says about Commercial Divers.

Dan Walter

 Did you know...?

Every year, the scuba club organizes 3 or 4 diving trips to various locations in California, Florida, and the Caribbean.  During a recent trip to California, the divers were able to return with a catch of fresh lobsters.