Athlete Stories
University Spotlight: University of Pepperdine – Malibu

Who doesn’t dream of a life in Malibu, California? Daniel de Jonge, coming from Vlissingen, the Netherlands, makes it the reality! We thought it was time to showcase Daniel and ‘his’ Pepperdine University in this week’s University Spotlight.

California dreaming, this is what Daniel’s current student and tennis life looks like. As a real ‘Pepperdine Wave’ Daniel is making great progress. Three months ago, Daniel was voted ‘Rookie of the year’, an award that was only given to a Wave once before. An achievement that both Daniel, the University and his coach can be proud of!

“Daniel has made a huge impact on our program in a short time. We are excited for him to receive this recognition and look forward to his continued success as a Wave.”

Pepperdine Men’s Tennis Head Coach Adam Schaechterle

The rookie of the year award is not Daniel’s first great achievement. Daniel owns multiple ATP points in singles and doubles, and is already ranked amongst one of the 20 best tennis players in the Netherlands, an impressive achievement. During his tennis career in Europe, Daniel studied at a university in Belgium before transferring to Pepperdine as a sophomore. His adventure in America is far from over yet. Keep it going champ!

Pepperdine is, both athletically and academically, a great opportunity for Slamstox players. We asked Daniel what makes Pepperdine special for him:

“What I like best about Pepperdine is the small number of students, making friends was never this easy! Besides that, Pepperdine is definitely one of the most beautiful Universities in America.”

Daniel de Jonge – Slamstox Tennis Player

Every university has its own special and unique features. Is is extremely important to get a good feeling with your future University. Read more about Pepperdine and the Waves in this article!

The campus

In Southern California, in the middle of the Malibu Canyon and overlooking the Pacific: that’s where you will find Pepperdine University! It’s not difficult to say that Pepperdine owns one of the most beautiful university locations in the US. The year-round fishing, surfing and whale-watching opportunities in the Pacific make Pepperdine no less attractive.

This makes on-campus living, which is required for first- and second-year students, the best way to experience what the student life in America has to offer. In addition, the university offers a large and diverse range of communal events and group activities: a party for every student.

Finally, downtown Los Angeles, one of America’s most talked-about cities, is less than an hour away. Whether you’re surfing, visiting the Walk of Fame, or spending a day at Universal Studios, a day off at Pepperdine never has to be boring!

Curious about the campus? View the online campus tour here!

Sport

Pepperdine’s location looks like a fairy tale, but to become part of this fairy tale, hard work is required! And this hard work pays off, Pepperdine has won the NCAA Division 1 Championship in five different men’s sports! A success that only one in 18 universities have achieved.

Go Waves
The Waves! The nickname for all student-athletes at Pepperdine since 1987. The Waves wouldn’t be the Waves without, yep, Willie the Wave! Pepperdine’s mascot is indispensable in many sports competitions. While the stands turn blue & orange, Willie ensures that even before the match starts, the atmosphere is already great.

Athletic results
Pepperdine comes out in the West Coast Conference. In many areas, the university also excels at the national level: the university achieved a total of 13 different championships! Out of these, 9 were in the NCAA.

In addition, three Pepperdine student athletes have received an individual NCAA Division 1 title, all of whom are tennis players. Pepperdine has been included in the top three of ‘most successful athletic programs for non-football Division 1 schools’ 8 times in the past 15 years.

Finally, 48 Pepperdine graduated students have competed in the Olympics, 7 of which have won an Olympic Gold medal. Go Waves!!

Jr. Waves
The junior waves! A bunch of events to get the youngest kids involved in Pepperdine’s athletic program. From ball boy or girl during basketball or baseball games to a children’s party on the campus: once a wave, always a wave!

Cheerleading
Besides the beautiful location, strong sports programs and the high academic level, Pepperdine is also known for cheerleading! The girls of the ‘pom squad’ steal the show prior to the basketball games with their impressive performances. In addition, the cheerleaders travel to Las Vegas every year to encourage the Waves during the West Coast Conference Championships.

Academics

Pepperdine offers many courses, more than 70 programs in total! Pepperdine’s majors are divided into eight categories:

  • Business administration
  • Communication
  • Fine arts
  • Humanities and teacher education
  • International studies and languages
  • Natural science
  • Religion and philosophy
  • Social science

In addition to a wide range of courses, the university also has a lot to offer internationally. In addition to the main location in Malibu, teaching programs are also offered in Buenos Aires, London, Shanghai and Florence. Enough possibilities for everyone!

Pepperdine offers a very good student-faculty ratio, which is 13: 1. This means that there is one teacher available, per 13 students. Pepperdine also appears to be entrepreneurial. According to Forbes, an American business magazine, Pepperdine deserves a 10th place in the ranking for most entrepreneurial universities.

In addition to offering the best possible academic level, Pepperdine also pays a lot of attention to sustainability. The university sees itself as an example for students and directly surrounding communities. That is why we continuously work on issues about the environment and sustainability, these issues are often discussed during the lessons. In this way, Pepperdine ensures that every student leaves with a diploma and a great awareness of people, nature and the planet.

 

Fun facts

Every university has its own traditions and characteristics, which makes every university unique! A number of Pepperdine’s fun facts are described below.

Willie’s competition
Mascot Willie has been part of the university since 1987, but has had quite some competition ever since! When Willie just made his introduction, Joe the Pelican came around the corner. However, the concept of Joe was not continued and Willie remained in the lead. A few years later, a new name for Willie was suggested: King Neptune. But this wasn’t a success either. Willie has been left alone for several years now and steals the show at many games and competitions. We are Team Willie! Are you?

Famous Waves
Pepperdine left a number of well-known former students to it. Major Leaque Pitcher, Jon Moscot, is one of them. He was a pitcher for the Waves until he was drafted by the Cincinatti Reds in 2012!

XOXO, Gossip Girl here.. Chase Crawford, the hunk of Gossip Girl also studied at Pepperdine in 2003! However, he stopped a few semesters later to focus on his acting career, luckily this worked out well! Chase is not the only well-known actor and former student of Pepperdine, as is Eric Christian Olsen! Mainly known from NCIS: LA, in which he had one of the main roles. Eric studied psychology before he started acting.

Fight song
Some universities do not only have a personal chant for encouragement, they have complete songs! Of course the Pepperdine Waves have its own song. The same song has been sung in competitions since 1979, but it has been modernized in 2008:

We’re gonna fight! Fight! Fight!
Roll-on-you-Waves
Roll-on-you-Waves

Fight! Fight! Fight!

Curious about the complete lyrics? Check it here!

Do you, like Daniel, want to become a student-athlete at Pepperdine? Or do you want more information? Reach out to us!