Academia and Surfing

Academia and Surfing

Although tens of thousands of recreational surfers have enrolled in colleges and universities over the decades, and coastal-area college surf teams and clubs have been around since the mid-1960s, surfing and the academy have had little effect on each other, and connections between the two are still for the most part regarded as novel, quirky, or gently amusing. Just a small number of well-known surfers have earned graduate degrees of one kind or another, including Ricky Grigg (Ph.D., oceanography, Scripps Institution, 1970), Peter Cole (M.S., informational sciences, University of Hawaii, 1971), and Sarah Gerhardt (Pd.D, physical chemistry, UC Santa Cruz, 2003).

The number of first-rate academics who also surf is proportionally small, and includes Kary Mullis, a San Diego longboarder and 1994 Nobel Prize winner in chemistry; the late Donald Cram, another San Diego surfer, who earned his chemistry Nobel in 1987; and Garrett Lisi, yet another San Diegan, and the brains behind the physics-based “Theory of Everything.” It is estimated, meanwhile, that between one-third and one-half of the world pro tour’s top 44 surfers in any given season are high school dropouts.

Continued: http://encyclopediaofsurfing.com/entries/academia-and-surfing

Advertisements