Historically, skateboarders haven’t had the best relationships with educational institutions. When skating is the number one priority, it can be hard to see the importance of being in school. Playing the long game is a hard path to stick to, but as more and more lifetime skateboarders grow older we see more and more how relevant an education is to success.
On Wednesday, May 10th, over 30 NYC area skateboarders came together at the House of Vans for a “Going to College” Workshop. The Harold Hunter Foundation & Collegiate Skate Tour partnered with House of Vans in Brooklyn to bring attention to the importance of education, a skateboarder’s options in selecting a school or program and the steps to take to make moves toward a new life chapter.
Going to college right after high school isn’t always the correct path, but for many it will be. Whether it be community college, a four-year university, community college leading to a four-year university or a private trade school, there’s something available for everyone. And grants & scholarships exist to help people of all backgrounds and income levels get to and through school.
Collegiate Skate Tour’s own Keegan Guizard opened up the workshop with a presentation on all of the above, with room for questions from the audience. Lots of raised hands in the room showed good interest in higher education from the crew that day. Following the presentation was a Q&A panel with five skateboarders of all different backgrounds and with all different experiences with higher education:
- Mo Floyd of Harold Hunter Foundation – current student at CUNY New York City College of Technology
- Michael Cohen of Shut Skateboards – former student at Fort Lewis College & Pratt Institute
- Bill Ryan of Bullswax – graduate of Cornell University & former student at many colleges beforehand
- Arianna Gil of BRUJAS – former student at Oberlin College
- Mike Herrera of Harold Hunter Foundation – master’s graduate of University of Pennsylvania
After the main presentation and some solid questions from the crowd, it was time for some skateboarding! House of Vans was kind enough to open its doors to their skatepark for the skaters that evening, making for a great session with the Harold Hunter kids and panelists alike. I personally had a great time, skating and eating pizza with the same kids that showed up to learn.
For those that were already on their path, the Workshop was informative. For those that may have been thinking of going (back) to school, we hope that it inspired! Collegiate Skate Tour will return to New York City to work with HHF on a Round Two for the “Going to College” Workshop Series in the fall.