Exploring the ocean: Brandeis SCUBA club takes students to new depths

February 15, 2008

02150804.jpgImagine a world in which you aren’t limited by gravity. You can move on any axis, in any direction, with minimal effort. Imagine a world where you see the strangest creature float harmlessly by, with nothing but an arm’s length between the two of you. Imagine a world where light eerily permeates the universe, illuminating all things in a perfect yet natural way. Welcome to the world of the Brandeis SCUBA Diving Club. Get ready to take the plunge of a lifetime.

The Brandeis SCUBA Diving Club, started last semester, was created to “raise awareness of current issues affecting the ocean, and to explore the mysteries which the sea holds.” Nina Rogowsky ’08 and Kelley Bostrom ’08 founded the club to pursue something for which they had a passion. “SCUBA diving is one of the most amazing things you can do.” said Rogowsky. “Some of the most wonderful things in our world exist within the ocean, and with today’s technology, anyone can experience them.”

SCUBA, which stands for Self Contained Underwater Breathing Apparatus, is one of the fastest growing recreational activities in the United States. Scuba Diving club provides members with the opportunity to become certified divers. “We’re trying hard to get as many Brandeis students who are interested certified. We work with a local dive shop which gives us the equipment and opportunities necessary to get that done,” said Bostrom. The SCUBA club outlines a three step certification process: “First, there is a lot of reading accompanied by quizzes so the student can learn the theory behind diving. After that, students practice skills in a diving pool so they can get used to being underwater. Lastly, students go on four supervised open water dives,” stated Rogowsky, who herself is a diving instructor. “The entire process is a very rewarding experience.”

On top of offering certification classes, the Brandeis SCUBA diving club offers weekly dive trips each fall. “For experienced and adventurous divers, the New England dive season is year-round, but for most it lasts roughly from April or May through November,” said Rogowsky. Not only is the New England area an excellent place to dive, it also boasts a large diving community. The club travels to the Cape Anne area near Gloucester as well as Cape Cod to embark on dives.

The SCUBA club encourages all Brandeis students to give Scuba diving a try. “SCUBA diving is one of the safest activities a person can do. A diver who follows all safety precautions and dives only within his or her own training and ability is very unlikely to get hurt,” stated Rogowsky. “As long as you take no unnecessary risks, you can make SCUBA diving a safe and enjoyable experience. In fact, one of the most exciting types of dives a person can do is night diving, which is typical. It’s not an extreme sport.”

In addition to providing opportunities for students to become certified and to set out on dives, the Brandeis SCUBA diving club also doubles as a recreational club. “It really is all about having some fun,” said Bostrom. Just last Friday, the SCUBA club held a movie night where the club watched “Finding Nemo” along with other members of the community. On March 9, the Brandeis SCUBA club is sponsoring a practice session at the local dive shop where participants will be able to experience the basics of SCUBA diving for free. In addition, the club also supports many environmentalist causes. “Preserving the ocean is a major goal of our club. Divers have a particular responsibility to care for the oceans. I see diving as an educational tool, as a way to teach people firsthand about the oceans and all of its creatures so that they will be motivated to protect it,” said Rogowsky. One of the Scuba clubs missions is to raise awareness of the state of the ocean environment in the New England area.

The SCUBA diving club offers a new experience available to all members of the Brandeis community. The chance to dive into a place where nature reigns supreme is once in a lifetime, and now it is at the fingertips of all Brandeis students. Why not try something new for a change?

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