Cal Poly’s surfboard shaping program was recognized Tuesday by The Surfer’s Journal, “the ‘National Geographic’ of surfing magazines,” as Cal Poly business administration alumnus and surfboard shaper Nick Cooper called it.
Cooper is one of the surfboard shapers employed by Associated Students Inc. to help instruct the classes. He also owns Coop DeVille Surf Company.
The Surfer’s Journal is a bimonthly magazine started in 1992 by two former Surfer Magazine employees. Thanks to the high-quality ink and paper used, the magazine is revered and collected by surfers around the world.
The journal contacted ASI in hopes of learning about Cal Poly’s surfboard shaping program after hearing about it from a professional surfboard shaper in Santa Cruz.
“They hit us out of the blue; one day we got a call from (Surfer’s Journal), the next day we had a photographer come here. We definitely didn’t see it coming,” said Darren Connor, ASI assistant director for programs.
Josh Kimball, a freelance photographer and avid surfer from Cayucos, came to campus for the story.
Kimball, who has written and photographed for magazines such as Surfer, Surfer’s Path, and Transworld, planned on taking some candid shots of surfboard shaping as well as headshots of the instructors.
He estimates that the article will run sometime in the fall.
Though the surfboard classes are already extremely popular and many students are placed on a waiting list before being able to enroll, Connor thinks this article will help further highlight Cal Poly’s surfboard shaping program.
“As far as I know, we are the only university with this kind of program on the West Coast,” he said. “It’s unique and it’s great to be recognized for it.”
The surfboard class, offered at the Craft Center, is a great craft for students to participate in, according to Connor.
“The program highlights the handmade nature of surfboards. There’s no advanced machinery or fancy equipment necessary,” he said.