Diving Safety Officer

Center for Marine Resource Studies

Turks & Caicos Islands


Institutional Mission: SFS creates transformative study abroad experiences through field-based learning and research. Our educational programs explore the human and ecological dimensions of the complex environmental problems faced by our local partners, contributing to sustainable solutions in the places where we live and work. The SFS community is part of a growing network of individuals and institutions committed to environmental stewardship.



Center Objective: The SFS Center for Marine Resource Studies (CMRS), a field station located on South Caicos Island in TCI, is committed to providing educational and research opportunities to visiting students while collaborating with local stakeholders on setting the research agenda and sharing research outcomes. We operate year-round, delivering two semester and two summer programs. The Center strives to make a meaningful contribution to the sustainable management of South Caicos marine resources and ecosystems, to the better management of the terrestrial environment, and towards the preparedness of the local community for the advent of mainstream tourism. The Center research activities are carried out in three areas: assessment and monitoring of marine environments and species, conservation and management of marine resources, and socio-economic conditions for development.


Position Summary: Under the general direction of the Center Director, the Diving Safety Officer (DSO) is responsible for a variety of support duties associated with SFS/CMRS sponsored academic and scientific activities on and underwater in order to ensure these activities are carried out in an effective and safe manner in accordance with SFS and CMRS specific policies.


Duties and Responsibilities:

General - The routine operational authority for the diving and waterfront programs, including conducting training, leading dives (and snorkels), certification, and skill assessment for activities based out of the waterfront, in conjunction with the Marine and Operations Coordinator (MOC). This includes, but is not limited to swimming, snorkeling,,and SCUBA diving. This is a hands-on position and involves frequent SCUBA diving and boat driving.


Dive & Snorkel Program Management and Training

• Oversee and deliver the Open Water and Advanced Open water courses with assistance from the MOC 

• Supervise the organization of all recreational student diving and snorkeling trips and frequently lead activities. Ensure all dive/snorkeling activities are recorded. As needed, coordinate these activities with the MOC

• Responsible for overseeing staff diving and snorkeling skills and providing training and skill development as needed

• Work in coordination with MOC to ensure all staff exercise prudent seamanship. Facilitate training and skill development as needed

• Management of student compliance with all waterfront policies


Safety, Risk Mitigation

• Provide primary oversight for waterfront, boating, dive, and snorkel safety with assistance from MOC

• Oversee student compliance with all waterfront policies.

• Review all field exercise risk management plans (RMPs)

• Work with the Safety Director and Student Affairs Manager to screen all student medical records, and reports to the Center Director with a summary each semester.

• Maintain all student records for mandated time periods

• Responsible for ensuring base-site radio coverage and safety support during all student boat activities, ensure logs are entered

• Report all boat, scuba and waterfront related incidents to the Marine and Operations Coordinator, SAM, and Center Director in a timely manner using the standard ‘Incident Report' form


Dive & Snorkel Equipment Management

• Work with the MOC to ensure student crew packs are ordered and gear packages arrive in time for student training

• Assist MOC with cylinder servicing including visual and hydrostatic testing as needed

• Assist MOC with the maintenance of the Center's air compressor and ensure breathing media is in compliance with compressed breathing air specifications

• Under the direction of the MOC assist with maintenance of all waterfront equipment, including boats, compressor, SCUBA gear, mooring systems, etc.


Management of Waterfront Interns

• Direct supervision and coordination of Waterfront Interns on a daily basis ensuring adequate training provided, daily duties are completed, and academic and program functions are staffed at appropriate ratios

• Provide training to waterfront Interns with respect to student supervision and safety

• Consult with MOC on waterfront operational matters that Waterfront Interns can assist with


Program Support

• Participate in planning activities prior to the program start and in review/analysis following students' departure

• Participate in preparation of the Final Reports, SFS-CMRS Dive Manual revisions, updating SFS-CMRS waterfront policies, manual revisions, and other required reports.

• Participate in training activities for new center staff prior to and during the program

• Participate in and lead parts of the orientation and re-entry components of the program presented to students at the beginning and end of each program period

• Participate and/or lead community outreach and engagement projects

• In cooperation with other Center staff, provide day-to-day coordination of Interns and contribute to Intern performance reviews

• Participate in resolving group management issues and student discipline problems

• As requested by the Center Director, assist with other logistical, group management and administrative tasks


Daily Center Life

• Live on-site for the duration of each program period and take meals with the students

• On a rotating basis, take responsibility for Center-specific "staff of the day" duties

• Take part in, and occasionally lead, Center upkeep projects, social and field activities

• At the request of the Center Director, serve as caretaker for Center during program breaks and center rentals

• Drive standard transmission vehicles and boats as needed

• Adhere to, actively model and enforce all SFS and Center policies and procedures

• At all times, work to ensure good relations between the Center and local community


Required Qualifications:

• Active status SCUBA diving instructor's certification from a nationally recognized agency (i.e., PADI, NAUI, BSAC)

• First Aid/CPR instructor

• Oxygen administration instructor

• Extensive small boat handling experience

• Experience in outboard engine troubleshooting and mechanics

• Certified in visual inspection for cylinders and experience with hydrostatic testing

• Related experience with an academic institution

• Experience with marine rescue and hazard identification


Preferred Qualifications:

• Captain's License

• Bachelor's degree (highly desirable, marine related discipline an advantage)

• Experience in leadership (management) and personnel supervision

• Caribbean diving experience and knowledge of marine life highly desirable

• Experience in group living situations

• EMT qualified

• Wilderness First Responder certification

• Tank inspection capability

• Shallow water diving experience


Other Expectations:

• Willingness to work flexible hours and live on site at the field station with a small team of permanent staff, groups of US undergraduate students and visiting researchers or programs, and participate in all center activities.

• Represent SFS at local and international conferences.


Reports To: Center Director


Compensation: Salary plus on-site room & board and an excellent benefits package.


Start Date: January 2017


To Apply: Submit a cover letter outlining relevant experiences and addressing the qualifications and expectations stated above and resume online at References will be required upon request.


Equal Opportunity Employer.


Company: Center for Marine Resource Studies
Location: Caribbean
Town: South Caicos
Country: Turks and Caicos
Map position:
South Caicos, Caicos Islands, Turks and Caicos Islands


Contact person: The School for Field Studies
e-mail: Email:

Diving Safety Officer at The School for Field Studies