Natsumi Taoka, a 2017 graduate of the College of Arts and Sciences, finished on top of this year’s rankings in the women’s longboard division of the Japan Pro Surfing Association and was crowned Grand Champion. Now in her seventh year as a professional, Ms. Taoka said realizing her long-time goal came as a relief, and she offered a piece of advice to current students: “I think it’s important to work toward some sort of goal each and every day.”
Ms. Taoka is currently competing at the Taiwan Open World Longboard Championship. “In the past year I’ve racked up a lot of valuable experience,” she said, “and I feel I’ve taken myself to the next level. I’ll be doing my very best at the world championship to finish in a higher position than ever before, even if it’s just one position higher.”
With her sights now set on being number one in the world, not just number one in Japan, Ms. Taoka will be battling against the best in the waters off Taiwan.