While a career as a commercial diver and underwater welder can be rewarding, it is not for everyone. The industry demands total commitment, long hours, extensive travel, a great attitude and superior work ethic.  If you’re interested in becoming a commercial diver and underwater welder then it’s important that you be ready for a physically and mentally challenging career.

What you will need

If you believe becoming an underwater welder is right for you, these are the minimum requirements you will need to possess:
  • High school Diploma or GED
  • Ability to swim
  • Mechanical aptitude
  • Commercial Diving Certification
  • AWS Certified Welding Training

Finding a School

A commercial diver certification requires significantly more training than a standard recreational SCUBA certification.  As a certified commercial diver, you are trained to work in industrial environments that frequently involve heavy construction and dangerous working conditions including electrocution and pressure related injuries. 
Commercial divers receive the specialized training that allows them to work in a wide variety of environments from inland dams and bridges to offshore pipes and oil rigs.
In order to become a certified underwater welder, you will need formal training from an accredited diving school and pass their program in accordance with the American Welding Society D3.6 standard. **Click the image to the right to see what type of training exercises you will participate in as a commercial diver student!
Choosing the right school is an important first step to getting certified.  You can learn more about all that CDA Technical Institute has to offer its students here.

Costs and Financial Aid

There are many costs associated with obtaining the required certifications to become a commercial diver. Financial aid – in the form of grants and loans – can assist you with the required costs of becoming an underwater welder. Here are some of the typical costs associated with the certification:
  • Tuition
  • Registration Fees
  • Room & Board
  • Books / Equipment
  • Dive Physical
To view CDA’s tuition and fees for the Air/Mixed Gas Commercial Diver Program (Underwater Welder) click here. And for more information on financial aid available at CDA Technical Institute, click here.

Get a dive physical

Prior to gaining formal acceptance into a commercial diving program, you will be required to take a “dive physical”. This needs to be completed by an approved hyperbaric physician. If you’re planning on attending CDA, this can be done on the first day of school ($399)  by a local Divers Certification Board of Canada (DCBC) approved physician.

After graduation

If you’ve just graduated, you may want to try contacting a company that hires underwater welders as apprentices. This type of position is referred to as a “diver-tender”.  As a graduate from Commercial Diving Academy you are entitled to career assistance from our placement department. Personnel from both offshore and inland dive companies are in contact with CDA regularly to recruit our graduates. Consequently, CDA’s job-placement rates are among the highest in the country.


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