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In the surf, sun, or stands, life is swell for Pepperdine’s resident merrymaker, Willie the Wave.

Pepperdine People

  • For the best views of any sporting event, Willie recommends scoring a seat in the Riptide Student Section of Firestone Fieldhouse. It has an unobstructed view of the court and is situated right by the Rally Crew, a spirited group of students who know how to get the crowd going.
  • Matt Young, assistant director of athletics for strength and conditioning, helps keep Willie in shape with a workout routine that includes everything from hitting the sand dunes to stand up paddleboard yoga.
  • Willie stands 6 feet 4 inches at high tide and maintains a balanced diet of fish and chips, sashimi, and kelp. He admits to indulging in Swedish Fish candies and sea salt caramel ice cream once in a while.
  • Fans got a peek at Willie’s updated wardrobe, which includes basketball and volleyball uniforms, as well as general workout apparel, at Waves Weekend 2017. Willie’s favorite uniform update: his new shoes. He feels more agile in the Nike sneakers that allow him to do so much more than his old flip-flops.
  • While Willie loves all Pepperdine sports, he feels most at home when cheering on the beach volleyball team. Beach volleyball became an official Pepperdine sport in 2011. The team won the AVCA national championship in both 2012 and 2014 and were runners-up in the 2017 NCAA championships.
  • Like many mascots around the world, Willie has taken a vow of silence. Despite this, he brings a tidal wave of school spirit on game day.

Conservation Observations

Explore all the ways Pepperdine keeps the Malibu campus focused on the environment.

Sustainability practices at Pepperdine University Source: Pepperdine University Center for Sustainability


Our social media accounts captured the buzz surrounding the new Starbucks on the Malibu campus.



Pepperdine just got a Starbucks on campus and I’ve got meal points to spare


If Pepperdine had had a Starbucks in Payson when I was there, breaks during Great Books would have been lit


We only had Folgers instant coffee back in my day!


Now I really have to return to do my LLM here

Did You Know

Students, faculty, and staff proficient in German, Spanish, French, Arabic, or Chinese may attend chapel services led in those languages by Seaver College professors.

Sound Bites

“You can’t transfer someone from poverty to prosperity and just expect that all of their problems are going to go away. The way that we grow up, the habits that we develop, the attitudes that we form...those things continue to influence us even if we’re lucky enough to get out of the that we came from.”

J. D. VANCE, author ofHillbilly Elegy: A Memoir of a Family and Culture in Crisis

EVENT: W. David Baird Distinguished Lecture Series


“Ambiguous losses are a particular type of loss that lack a definition and lack closure. The ambiguous loss of singleness is particularly challenging to navigate. Humans don’t do uncertainty well.”

KELLY MAXWELL HAER, Relationship IQ program director at the Boone Center for the Family, as quoted inO, The Oprah Magazine


“Don’t let your self-doubt be an out. Don’t let lack of faith in yourself be something that stops you from engaging. Surround yourself with people who will push back against your own moments of inadequacy.”

JULIA ORMOND, actress and founder of the ASSET Campaign, on her advice to those who wish to effect transformational change

EVENT: Careers for Women in Policy & Politics


“You’re on a lot of journeys: you’re on an educational journey , then you’re going to be on your economic journey. You’re also on a spiritual journey. Even atheists in the room have to decide, ‘What is the meaning of all of this?’”


EVENT: A Religious Literacy Event: The Baha’i Faith

From the Archives

When the George Pepperdine College campus first opened in Los Angeles, Helen Pepperdine, wife of founder George Pepperdine, embroidered the GPC monogram on all the blankets in the men’s and women’s dormitories. Here, students Leon Manley and Thomas Scott study in their dorm room at Baxter Hall circa 1938.

George Pepperdine College embroidered blankets