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Friday, March 12, 1999 Published at 01:06 GMT


Surf's up - to a degree

There's more to life...

An English university is offering what it believes is the world's first honours degree course in surfing.

The University of Plymouth's three-year BSc degree in Surf Science and Technology will start in September.

The entry standard will be 16 points at A level, or the equivalent - the university expects a lot of overseas interest.

Colin Williams tells News Online: "We're very excited about it"
One of the organisers, Dr Colin Williams, says there will be a practical element but the emphasis is on multi-disciplinary academic work on the technology, environment and business aspects of surfing.

"I suppose the natural tendency when people hear the title of the degree is to scoff," he said. "But as soon as they look at the academic rigour and the content they pretty quickly come on board, and realise how important it is.

Career opportunities

"We're actually meeting one of the government's requirements in that we are co-operating with industry and trying to provide the sorts of graduates that industry requires.

"We're also trying to inspire many of the students coming into science and technology degree in an area which they will already find interesting."

Surfing equipment companies have responded keenly to the idea, he said.

Graduates could expect to move into a wide range of jobs, such as working in or running surf-orientated companies, but also research and development on surfboards and wetsuits, or research on coastlines.

Those interested in applying would not need to be surfers, he said.

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