UNCW student maintains schoolwork, surf academy, professional career
Published: Sunday, July 31, 2011
Updated: Sunday, July 31, 2011 19:07
Tony Silvagni is a busy man. Running a full-time surf academy while balancing his own schoolwork at UNC Wilmington would be more work than most could handle.
When Silvagni isn't hitting the books or teaching people of all ages how to surf, he's traveling the world, riding the biggest waves he can find. Turns out he's pretty good at it, too.
Silvagni recently took home the gold medal at the ISA World Title of Surfing in Playa Venao, Panama; the first longboard surfer to do so since 1996 and the first North Carolinian to win a world championship. He competes in events all over the world as the team captain of the USA Surf Team. When the 2010 ASP rankings came out, Silvagni was ranked ninth in the world, an accomplishment he always dreamed about.
In a phone interview with the multi-tasking extraordinaire, Silvagni divulged into just how big of a part going to UNCW has played in his life. "I love UNCW," he said. "The school is great, and I'm really appreciative of everything that the students and staff have contributed to make my time here so special."
He spoke about how UNCW has provided him with both a top-notch education and the opportunity to be close to the beach. "The ability to fine-tune my skills as a business man all the while being able to be in the water practicing every day has been crucial towards making me the man I am today, both in the water and out," Silvagni said. "The education keeps me focused on my lifetime goals while also helping me learn how to multi-task my surf school and competitive surfing."
Business is booming at the Tony Silvagni Surf School, where he works full-time. This August, Silvagni plans to finish his education at UNCW as a business major. As for surfing, Silvagni plans to take his talents all over the world, competing in major competitions, including Sri Lanka in early September and Italy in November.
Getting an education, running a full-time business and being ranked the ninth-best longboarder in the world—Silvagni is a busy man.