As SSI celebrates its 50th Anniversary, we also celebrate the relationships forged along the way that have helped shape us into the largest professional business-based training agency in the world. The day SSI began in 1970, we set out to do something different. To establish a unique culture of dive professionals that genuinely cared about the quality of divers we created, not the quantity. With this philosophy still acting as the pillar of our educational model, SSI has branched into every aspect of underwater recreation from Scuba, Extended Range, and Freediving to Swim and Lifeguarding.
Read more about SSI and the histroy in the SSI 50 Years Anniversry program here!
Now with over 3,300 Training Centers and Resorts across the globe, SSI continues to grow every day. Of these thousands, one center stands out in terms of longevity and loyalty to the SSI brand: Aquatic Sports. The first scuba training facility in Oregon and the oldest dive facility in Portland, Aquatic Sports & Scuba Schools, has been with SSI since day one. Owner Jeff Powelson recalls that his father, John Powelson, was the FIRST dive instructor for SSI when he opened Aquatic Sports in 1966.
Since its beginning, Aquatic Sports has partnered with SSI, even conducting the first-ever SSI Instructor program on the Oregon coast at Devil’s Punchbowl.
When asked if he’d ever considered switching to another training agency, current owner Jeff Powelson states that “SSI is in our blood. Since our family was at the beginning of SSI, there’s never been a reason to switch. SSI today provides us with all the tools and assets we need to be successful in the diving industry.”
Today Aquatic Sports loves nothing more than introducing divers to the 75% of the world that most people never get to see. And we at SSI love nothing more than helping our Training Centers do just that. With successful, committed, and loyal Training Centers like Aquatic Sports by our side, the next 50 years of SSI will be just as great, if not better than the first.