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Press Release

Blu Water Scuba Becomes the First Dive Shop in Virginia to Receive the Certified Autism Center™ Designation

WINCHESTER, Va. - February 13, 2020 - (

​​​Full-service dive center Blu Water Scuba has earned the designation of Certified Autism Center™ (CAC), awarded by the International Board of Credentialing and Continuing Education Standards (IBCCES). This demonstrates their commitment to ensuring individuals with autism and other sensory needs have the best possible experience when visiting their center or taking a dive class. They now hold the distinction of being the first such facility in Virginia to complete the training needed to receive this designation.

Blu Water Scuba has served the dive community since 2010. They provide fun, safe, and affordable diving lessons that engage the whole family. Blu Water Scuba also offers certification for divers of all ages and skill levels. Scuba and other aquatic activities can be very enjoyable and beneficial for individuals with autism, however, new experiences and sensory stimulation can be a challenge. By obtaining certification through IBCCES, Blu Water Scuba is ready to meet these challenges head-on with a wealth of skills and knowledge to help fulfill sensory needs, as well as safety concerns unique to those on the spectrum.

“Here at Blu Water Scuba, we don’t believe disabilities should limit anyone from experiencing the most they can out of life. We have witnessed how scuba has opened up a different world for individuals with autism, and we are dedicated to helping enrich every person we meet,” said owner and trainer Tom McKee.

For almost 20 years, IBCCES has been the leader in cognitive disorder certification for healthcare, education and corporate professionals around the globe. IBCCES is the only credentialing organization providing this type of certification, which includes evidence-based information as well as the perspectives of individuals with autism, alongside other tools and resources to ensure the program is a long-term commitment and has a lasting impact.

“Blue Water Scuba’s commitment to providing the very best possible experience for all individuals exploring the immersive world of diving is commendable, and we are excited to see the opportunities that arise for them and those they serve,” said Myron Pincomb, IBCCES Board Chairman.

IBCCES also created, a free online resource for families and individuals looking for travel and recreation options that lists certified destinations and travel professionals. Each destination listed on the site has met Certified Autism Center™ (CAC) requirements.



Meredith Tekin, President of IBCCES
Phone: 904.508.0135 // 904.434.1534

Tom McKee, Owner of Blu Water Scuba
Phone: 571 379 7000

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Original Source: Blu Water Scuba Becomes the First Dive Shop in Virginia to Receive the Certified Autism Center™ Designation
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