I have just returned home from completing my IDC Staff Instructor course at Rainbow Reef CDC in Key Largo. I chose to complete the course there because a year ago I completed my IDC there with Course Directors Ross Neill and Bill Findley and knew that I couldn't go wrong by continuing my education with them. Having served in the Navy for over twenty years, I have been involved in many training programs, both as a trainer and a trainee. In the Navy I earned recognition as an Afloat Training Specialist and a Master Training Specialist but I still learned a lot about training from Ross and Bill during my courses with them. In addition to the CDs, Master Instructor Claude Smyth was part of my IDCS training and also a big help and influence on the way I will interact with my future students.
The fact that all of the IDC candidates that made it through the IDC that I audited with Rainbow Reef passed their IE wasn't a surprise to me. I knew from my experience in my IDC that if the candidates could meet Bill and Ross's standards then the IE really wouldn't be a challenge for them. What I was impressed with was how much effort the staff was willing to put in to ensure that everyone could meet those standards. A couple of the IDC candidates were very challenging to deal with and I think would have been failed out of a lot of IDCs and labeled as not being worth the effort. I even asked a few times why one candidate was being allowed to complete the IDC since I didn't have much faith in him passing. I was told that the candidate "had the ability to do it as long as the right approach could be found to draw that ability out of him." Bill, Ross, and Claude. continued to work with the candidate to make sure he could meet the standard but definitely did not lower their standards and give him a free pass. In the end he passed his IE along with the rest of the class. Hopefully I will be able to give my students as much of a chance to reach their goals as I saw the Rainbow Reef CDC staff give to their candidates.
I learned a lot while working with Bill, Ross, and Claude and will do my best to take what I learned from them and pass it on to any students that I might influence. I will also highly recommend them to anyone looking for training that I can't provide. Their knowledge, professionalism, and dedication to their students was impressive and reached a level that I have seldom seen attained in any training course, military or civilian.