Meet our Students
Meet Eric Snortum
San Diego native Eric Snortum graduated San Diego Academy in Encinitas, and in the spring semester of 2009 he began his studies at MiraCosta College.
“I chose MiraCosta because it was convenient and affordable,” he says. “I have always been excited about learning new things and discovering new passions and MiraCosta presented itself as a great place to do such things.”
After his first semester, Eric decided to take a semester off and travel to New Zealand on a surf trip. “I really enjoyed my first semester, but just had the urge to take the semester off. When I arrived in New Zealand, as soon as I got off the plane, I got in a van and started driving. I had no idea where to go. I went to a gas station and they didn’t have a map – I ended up having a great time, just cruising around, and I was able to surf with penguins.”
Eric says the biggest challenge he overcame as a student was reducing the time he spent in the ocean. “There is a direct correlation to the quality of surf and the quality of my grades – if there is really good surf one week and I have an exam, chances are I’m not going to do too well.”
Although it has been difficult, Eric has reduced the amount of time he spends surfing, but it continues to be an important part of his life. “I’m a big surfer. I grew up surfing -- going to Baja in the summer, and travelling around the world to surf.” Eric’s surf trips are going to continue in the future. During the fall semester of 2012 Eric plans to take another semester off and travel to Chile on another surf trip.
As a student and surfer, Eric advises current or prospective students to “…be more selective. If your passion is something else, aside from school, you’re going to have to cut back a bit. You can’t do everything all the time,” says Eric.
Despite the difficulty, Eric has managed to balance his academics and love the of the ocean, and in the spring semester of 2012 he was named as one of the recipients of MiraCosta College’s highest academic achievement, the Medal of Honor. When asked about winning the award Eric said… “before I won the award I had no idea it existed. I was very happy that I won it, but at the same time I couldn’t believe I won. I didn’t know that my name would be allowed to be on a list like that. It feels nice, like a pat on the back.”
Transfer is in the very near future for Eric, but his plans are up in the air right now. “Where I transfer depends on the amount of financial aid or scholarships I am able to get. Ideally, I would like to transfer to UCSD because it is a great school and I have a lot of friends who go there,” says Eric.
Like many students, Eric has had difficulty choosing a major. “I still don’t have a major. I have focused more on math and science because I enjoy spending time studying the subjects,” says Eric.
During his time at MiraCosta College, Eric’s parents have offered him a great support system. “My parents are extremely supportive – I have a great relationship with them,” says Eric.
As Eric continues to move toward his goal of transferring to a 4-year university he looks back at his time at MiraCosta College with fond memories. “The most memorable experience I have at MiraCosta is winning the Medal of Honor. I will also remember all of my teachers and the students here. The teachers here are amazing. I have been able to spend time with them in class and outside of class. It’s great,” says Eric.