Photo Information

Three Marines pose while participating in the Single Marine Program’s introduction to scuba diving class. The Olympus Dive Center came to Cherry Point’s combat pool to teach the Marines the basics of scuba diving.

Photo by Lance Cpl. Cory D. Polom

Down under: SMP Marines learn basics of scuba diving

24 Feb 2010 | Lance Cpl. Cory D. Polom

More than a dozen Cherry Point Marines recently got their feet wet with one of the Single Marine Program’s newest programs.

“The scuba class was the first SMP event I’ve attended,” said Lance Cpl. Benjamin D. Hendricks, a Marine Aviation Logistics Squadron 14 aviation electronics technician. “I think the SMP is a great program that gives Marines a chance to meet new people and try new things in a controlled environment.”

Cherry Point’s SMP hosted the basic scuba class for single Marines at the combat pool, Feb. 24. Staff members with the Olympus Dive Center in Morehead City were on hand to ensure the Marines got a feel for the basics.

After a brief course where participants learned about scuba equipment and techniques, the Marines spent the rest of the class underwater, using their scuba gear.

“It was pretty cool,” said Hendricks. “I have looked forward to scuba diving for years. Even though this is just an introductory class, it gave me the chance to try it out and not just read about it in a magazine.”

The SMP has scheduled another free scuba diving event at the combat pool, Saturday, from 1-3 p.m. The event is open to all single or unaccompanied service members. Interested Marines and Sailors are encouraged to register at Cunningham’s for the event.

This is just one of the many different events the SMP uses to keep Marines entertained while aboard Cherry Point.

“Our mission is to try to improve the quality of life for the single Marines,” said Emily J. Craig, a recreational assistant with Cherry Point’s SMP. “Every week we hold different tournaments and activities at Cunningham’s, such as Texas Hold’em, 8-ball and chess tournaments. We go on trips, go to sporting events, Ultimate Fighting Championship events, and even hold Karaoke contests.”

For more information on SMP events and activities call 466-3027 or visit the program’s Web site at

Marine Corps Air Station Cherry Point