Following a signing of a Memorandum of Understanding last year The Institute of Tourism Studies (ITS) and the Divers Alert Network (DAN) Europe Foundation have now signed an agreement that officially launched the International School of Diving Safety & Medicine (ISDSM) which will be operating under the Institute of Tourism Studies and based in the ITS Qala Campus in Gozo. This will be a premiere school that will make the Maltese Islands a hub for diving excellence worldwide. The agreement was signed during an event held at the Institute’s Campus in Qala, Gozo, in the presence of Dr Christian Zammit on behalf of Minister Refalo.
International School of Diving Safety & Medicine (ISDSM), will be coordinated by DAN Europe under the umbrella of the Institute of Tourism Studies (ITS) and will focus on Diving Safety and Sustainability and the Professional Management of Diving Activities. The ISDSM has developed a “first-in-the-world” Academic Program leading to a Bachelor Degree in the Management of Diving Tourism, which will provide Diving Professionals and Businesses with unprecedented competence and career opportunities. The School will also offer Diving Safety and Medicine Training Programs to Divers, Diving Operations and Diving-Hyperbaric Medical Professionals amongst others.
The ISDSM outreach will be international, aiming at making Malta a global Excellence Hub for Diving Safety and Diving Industry Sustainability. A Pilot Course will already be held in June 2017, a “Summer School” program is planned for July 2017, while it will also be offering an ambitious, internationally unique and unprecedented Academic Program leading to a Degree in the science of Diving Tourism Management. The latter will be launched in the next Academic Year 2017-18
The Divers Alert Network Europe Foundation (DAN) is an international non-profit organization assisting divers and conducting diving research since 1983. DAN’s commitment includes all aspects of diving safety, such as technology, physiology, medicine, ergonomics, sustainability. DAN is a leading reference for the international diving community. It was for this reason The Institute of Tourism Studies (ITS) has decided to form an alliance with DAN for the formation of this school which will be servicing one of the most important niche markets in the Tourism industry on our Island. The school will be in fact working very closely with the Professional Diving Schools Association Malta PDSA who will also be involved in the delivery of parts of the Curricula.
The ISDSM Program already counts on a prestigious international Faculty, comprising of experts coming from known international Institutions who are supporting the school including;
- The European Committee for Hyperbaric Medicine (ECHM), and the European College of Baromedicine (ECB), as the Bodies issuing the current European Guidelines and Academic Accreditation for Diving and Hyperbaric Medicine Programs
- The Bioengineering Department, Galatasaray University, Istanbul, and connected Spin-Off companies for the development of safety oriented diving monitoring systems and commercial diving training programs.
- The Polytechnic University of Marche, Italy, with its Bio-Engineering and Marine Biology Departments, for advanced physiological and environmental monitoring, also in cooperation with WWF Med in the context of marine conservation.
- The Diving and Hyperbaric Medicine Department, Stellenbosch University, South Africa.
- The “Tourism Research in Economic Environs and Society” (TREES) Program, North-West University, South Africa
- The International DAN Federation for the global implementation of the common Educational, Medical and Research Programs
- PADI Worldwide with both standard and specialized diving courses, up to Diving Instructor level
- The PDSA (Professional Diving School Association), Malta
Dr. Zammit Lewis noted that the Agreement between the ITS and DAN Europe will see the two organisations and the Ministries involved collaborating towards the creation of International School of Diving Medicine and Safety to establish the Maltese Islands as a premiere destination for drivers. “This collaboration will serve to attract divers and the global diving industry to Malta & Gozo and their waters, not only to explore our submerged attractions and treasures, but also for the opportunity to find the best training location for the safe and effective implementation of diving activities for recreation and tourism, science, technology and industrial scopes”, stated the Minister for Tourism.
The collaboration seeks to make Malta and Gozo a destination for those who wish to maximize their education and skills for the best, more efficient, safer, customer friendly Recreational Diving Centre Management. This will be achieved by educating and training the Maltese diving centres to not only be the best in the business but also to become tutors and mentors for the future students of the International Institute of Diving Medicine and Safety, emphasized Dr Zammit Lewis.