Gerald Durant, LAFD dive master (Courtesy photo)

 Entrepreneur Educational Center, Inc. (EECI) will offer a vocational scuba diving and lifeguard certification course to minority entrepreneurs residing in L.A. County’s 2nd and 4th Districts and the city of Los Angeles’ Council District 15.

As part of its efforts to promote blue economy jobs, the nonprofit will sponsor the class, “EECI Dives to the Blue.” Gerald Durant, dive master for the L.A. Fire Department, will coordinate the class.

Participants can sign up at free open enrollment business seminars on Saturday, April 22, from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m., at Ted Watkins Park in Watts and on Saturday, April 29, at the Dollarhide Community Center in Compton. Also, attendees can enroll in EECI’s Miracle’s Business Plan Development course.

“The objective of the first Blue Economy Program, conducted at the newly renovated Ted Watkins pool and AltaSea at the Port of Los Angeles, is to train and educate the multitudes in the 2nd County District and the northern end of the 15th Council in the jobs and small business opportunities,” explained Durant.

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“The students will be trained in Deep Sea Diving and all of the certifications attached and other jobs including boat bottom cleaning, lifeguards, and attendants,” he said.

“The students complete approximately 100 hours of instruction and training. Upon completion of the course, we will direct them to jobs in the blue industry, but we will only be able to determine who proceeds by the interviews and sessions in the pool.  EECI will pay their certification cost for students who complete the course,” he added.

Sponsors and supporters of the 2023 EECI campaign, “Miracles Can Happen for You,” include the state of California, L.A. Department of Parks and Recreation, City of Compton, Enterprise Business Bank, Northern Trust Bank, Farmers & Merchants Bank, City First Bank, Bank of Hope, and City First Broadway Bank.

To learn more about EECI programs, call (323) 757-7506 or visit,