Name: Ryan Davis
Hometown: Lynchburg, Virginia
Year in School: Junior
Major: Marine Science (focusing in shark behavior)
When Ryan Davis moved to Conway from Lynchburg, Va., to start his college experience, he set off to grow in two passions: sharks and soccer. Although the two areas don’t have much in common besides the same first letter, Coastal Carolina University has helped him become better rounded in both.
Take sharks for example. Ryan enrolled in the marine science program and immediately met professors who inspired him and taught him about his interest. It didn’t take long for Ryan to become involved in the Elasmobranch (Shark) Club and ascend to the leadership role of president. Deeply involved with a charge to help with the conservation of sharks, he is doing important work in an area he has been interested in since he was a 10-year-old.
Then you have soccer. After high school, Ryan didn’t give up on the sport. He is a member of the club team here at Coastal. But for Ryan, it just isn’t about playing the game. Given the opportunity to help out with the Conway High School team, he started as a JV boys coach. After helping to grow the program, he is now an assistant varsity coach.
With the help of Coastal, both of Ryan’s passions could lead him to jobs. While his marine science background will help him with obtaining a position related to working with sharks, he hasn’t written off his dream of playing professional soccer either. It is his hope that the time developing his skills on the club team combined with his increased knowledge of the game that came from coaching might help him land a roster spot on a European team.
Keep an eye out for this trilingual student who enjoys skateboarding around campus. Chances are decent that he might have options in a couple of very different areas once he graduates.
Q&A with Ryan
How did you hear about Coastal?: I heard about Coastal from my older sister. She toured CCU back in 2008 and I came along. Although she decided it wasn’t for her, I immediately decided I loved the place.
Why did you come to Coastal?: I came to Coastal because I love the atmosphere here. It is laid back and the marine science program is one of the best in the nation. Also, honestly, the uniqueness of our colors (teal and bronze) had something to do with it too.
Favorite professor: It would be between Dan Abel or Katie Prince for sure. Dan is somebody I look up to because he has accomplished a lot and his knowledge on sharks is incredible. He was actually one of the deciding factors as to why I came here, just don’t tell him that! Katie was my English professor for both classes. She helped me become not only a better writer, but also a better individual and I still go to her for paper help whenever I have a question.
Favorite class: This is a no brainer, marine biology has been my favorite so far. I thought I knew a lot coming into that class but it definitely taught me otherwise.
Favorite aspect of Coastal?: My favorite aspect of Coastal is just how willing to help the professors are. They are all there for you and most of them will remember your name by the fourth or fifth week.
Favorite aspect of living in the Conway/Myrtle Beach area?: My favorite aspect of living in the area has definitely been the fact that I have been able to help grow the soccer program at Conway High School, first as a JV boys soccer coach and then an assistant varsity coach.
Clubs/Intramurals/other extracurricular activities involved in?: I am the president of the Coastal Elasmobranch Club (aka Shark Club) and I also play for the club soccer team.
Do you work anywhere currently (either on or off campus)?: I currently work at Ripley’s Aquarium at Broadway and I coach boys soccer at Conway High.
Plans after graduation?: My plans after graduation are fairly length but here we go. If I can I plan on going to Europe for the summer to earn a few trials to play pro soccer there and if that falls through I will either apply for an internship with the Bimini Biological Field Station or I will apply for one with the Alaskan Fisheries Observers. Afterwards, I plan on attending grad school at either the University of Miami or CSULB and pursue my Ph.D.
What are your hobbies?: My hobbies include surfing, playing soccer, playing video games, and basically anything outdoors. I love being outside so whenever I have an excuse to go outside, I take it.
Do you have any hidden talents?: I really can’t think of any other than the expansive amounts of puns that I know. If you don’t believe me, just ask any of my coworkers.
Bonus Info: Well I am trilingual in French, German and English. I am currently working on Italian.