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Skateboarding Professor, sometimes seen as Skating Professor, is an advice animal-style image macro series that uses a photo of University of Nebraska-Lincoln professor Tom Winter riding his skateboard between classes. Typical captions relate to skating culture or characterize the professor as having a hip persona.
Redditor Tr0llzor posted a photo to the pics subreddit on April 4th, 2012 of Doctor Thomas Winter, a professor at the University of Nebraska Lincoln who became notorious for getting around the campus with a skateboard. The post hit the front page with 31,534 upvotes and 2521 points overall.
Later that day, an image macro featuring the photo titled “Hip Professor Harold” was posted to the Advice Animals subreddit, but only received 6 points. On April 5th, another image macro of the professor was posted with a caption referencing a skateboarding trick known as a manual. This post received 6674 upvotes and 1319 points overall.
Doctor Thomas Winter, who is currently a classics and religious studies professor, has been teaching since 1970. He has been skateboarding around the campus since 1993, when he made the conscious effort to lead a more active life. In 2008, Winter was profiled by the Daily Nebraskan in which he called himself a “role model” for students who see him skating at age of 62. On Rate My Professors, Winter has an overall score of 3.3 out of 5.
On April 6th, a series of the image macros was posted to Skateboarding Magazine and the Pleated Jeans Tumblr, where it received over 14,000 notes in three days. The next day, Dr. Winter was featured on Yahoo! News and Mashable. On April 8th, Skateboarding Professor appeared on FunnyJunk and Digital Journal.
As of April 9th, 2012, the Quickmeme page has over 500 instances.
Lincoln Journal Star – Skateboarding professor becomes Internet sensation
Digital Journal – Tom Winter, 68-year-old skateboarding professor goes viral