Professional Divers: 9 Dream Jobs for You

So, you have the diving bug and cannot wait to build your dream diving career, but where do you start? Most people think professional divers are all instructors or dive guides but there are so many other cool scuba jobs out there! Get inspired with our round-up of 10 dream jobs for professional divers and start making your career dreams come true today.

1. Underwater photographer.

If you have a knack for photography and love diving, becoming an underwater photographer could be the right path for you. Underwater photographers take photos and videos of marine life, underwater landscapes, wrecks, and divers. Some even work in the fashion industry with underwater models and mermaids.

Many dive resorts, centers and liveaboards have in-house underwater photographers who take photos and video for guests and share their knowledge by teaching photography workshops as well.

To work as an underwater photographer, you will need:

  • A creative mind and an eye for detail.
  • Good people skills so you can network and work easily with a variety of clients.
  • Great editing skills to manage the lighting and color challenges of underwater photography.

If you want to see if underwater photography is right for you, join the SSI Photo & Video specialty.

This course provides all the knowledge you need to start exploring the addictive world of underwater photography and videography.

2. Underwater model.

Being an underwater model is a fun and creative way to express your love of the underwater world. More people are choosing to become underwater models these days and take part in photo shoots with ball gowns, in mermaid costumes, and other outfits.

As an underwater model, you can help create stunning images for books and websites or highlight the plight of our oceans in unique ways. You can work with popular scuba diving brands and swimwear companies or experience the joy of working as a professional Model Mermaid.

To work as an underwater model, make sure you are:

  • Comfortable in the water and an experienced swimmer.
  • Relaxed about diving underwater without a mask, with your eyes open, and without your nose pinched.

You may also need this training:

  • For shoots in shallow, controlled conditions -  basic freediving knowledge and experience.
  • If you are going to breathe compressed air -  good freediving training and numerous scuba dives under your belt. This is considered stunt work.


3. Marine biologist.

Being a marine biologist is one of the best jobs for professional divers. It takes commitment and time to become a marine biologist, but the rewards are worth it!

Not only will you have a greater understanding of our oceans, but it opens up numerous career opportunities.

Professional divers who are marine biologists can work at marine conservation projects around the world, conduct vital research, and teach diving and non-diving students.

You can work with universities and non-profits, become a lecturer or researcher, a consultant, or even teach people online with your own marine biology courses.

To become a marine biologist, you will need:

  • A marine-focused degree such as marine biology, coastal ecology, marine science, oceanography or similar.

4. Scientific diver.

If you love conducting research and diving but do not want to be a marine biologist, consider becoming a scientific diver instead.

They come from a range of disciplines such as archaeology, underwater engineering and scientific journalism, and use scuba diving to study their science and collect data.

You could study the impacts of climate change, conduct conservation research, become a marine archaeologist, or share the plight of the oceans with science-based journalism.

To be a scientific diver, you will need:

  • Some projects will allow you to work in this field without a science degree.
  • Most employers will still need a degree from another discipline.


5. Dive guide or instructor.

Okay, so we could not resist mentioning dive guiding and instructing. They are the most popular jobs for professional divers and are fantastic ways to build and enjoy your dive career.

As a dive guide, You get to take divers through underwater landscapes you love and share your passion for the oceans every day. You can assist instructors or go all the way and get qualified as an instructor yourself.

As a scuba instructor, you get to help people become confident and safe divers, support them through their challenges and celebrate their successes.

It is such a privilege and the start of an exciting career with endless teaching opportunities.

With more than 70 SSI digital programs in over 40 languages, you can follow your passion and build a dive career that works for you:

Whether you want to work at a dive center, set up a new dive business, or go freelance, you can.


6. Dive center owner or manager.

Keen to build your own business or put your feet down in one place? Becoming a dive center owner or manager is a great way to develop your  business skills and create a dive community where you live.

As a dive center owner or manager, you will be involved in all aspects of your business.

You need to have an understanding of (or be willing to learn about):

  • Finance
  • Business planning
  • Recruitment
  • Team management
  • Marketing

We work closely with SSI Professionals around the world to make sure they have the support they need to grow their dive businesses.

Read the article below to find out how we help our professional divers to thrive.


7. Commercial diver.

Being a commercial diver is not a job that appeals to all professional divers, but it is satisfying work for those who enjoy it.

Commercial divers work underwater performing tasks such as repair work, site inspections, research and installation work. You can work as a commercial diver in a variety of different settings and locations.

To be a commercial diver, you will need:

  • Specialized commercial diver training.
  • To be comfortable working in challenging dive conditions with limited to zero visibility.
  • Able to work for a few weeks at a time, then take a few weeks off to decompress and rest.

8. Public safety diver.

Professional divers with an interest in law enforcement can make a successful career out of being a public safety diver.

These divers work in a variety of waterbodies to recover people or evidence from accidents and also on crime scenes.

As with commercial diving, the underwater conditions can be challenging and with very limited visibility.

To be a public safety diver, you will need:

  • Specialized public safety diver training.
  • To be ready for the mental and emotional demands of this type of work.

9. Digital marketer.

If you love writing and sharing your dive experiences, consider becoming a digital marketer. It is a great way to earn some money when you are not diving and can also be your full-time career.

This is a popular route, so make sure you:

  • Are a good, detail-focused writer.
  • Have knowledge and experience of digital marketing.
  • Have a strong portfolio of online and print publications.

If you don’t have any experience, consider if you are willing to work free of charge or as an intern to build up your first portfolio. Some companies and media outlets offer those opportunities for new content creators.

There are many different types of digital marketing to choose from, such as social media, offsite marketing, copy writing, PR, and SEO marketing, to name but a few of them.

If you love writing but do not want to learn about marketing, become a travel writer instead. There are plenty of great outlets looking for experienced divers who can tell a good story.

So, what are you waiting for? Take the first step of your professional diver journey by choosing your SSI Professional pathway.

You can choose from a variety of training options in each of our disciplines and begin your training online today.