about Steven

“My mission is to ensure my students have a positive experience, so they associate chess as something fun and good for their minds.”
— Steven Vigil
Steven (left) shaking hands with the legendary Garry Kasparov (right), reigning World Chess Champion from 1985-2000

Steven (left) shaking hands with the legendary Garry Kasparov (right), reigning World Chess Champion from 1985-2000

About Steven

Steven was born in Orlando, Florida. His father taught him to play chess at the age of five and he immediately fell in love with the game. Steven graduated from Bishop Moore High School where he started a chess club.

Next, he earned a degree from the University of Florida with a major in Political Science and a minor in history. He was a member of the UF chess club where he began to play in tournaments.

Steven started teaching chess in Central Florida in 2003. He has a passion for teaching, especially children. His teaching strategy is to present the material in a fun and interactive way by using stories, humor, anecdotes and puzzles to challenge his students. In his 14 years of teaching, Steven has learned much, but stays humble and continues to improve and add new techniques and stories to his regimen. He feels blessed to be able to teach chess and bring joy to kids’ lives.

Steven is bilingual fluent in both English and Spanish. Besides chess, he also enjoys traveling, hiking, surfing and playing guitar. He now lives in Merritt Island, Florida with his wife Jessica.

Teaching Kids Life Skills

Like music and art, chess is a universal language that brings people together. Chess is so much more than just a game. It’s an art, a sport, a great way to sharpen your mind and is a microcosm of life! Many of life’s lessons are present on the chess board.

Chess is about considering the consequences of our decisions before we make them. It’s also about living with our mistakes, which are not failures, but opportunities for learning and growth. Like life, chess teaches us that there are endless possibilities. It allows us to be creative and to develop our own style. Whether you have a great position and are searching for the win, or have an inferior position and are fighting back: belief in yourself, hard work and determination are important life skills that chess helps us practice.

Chess also teaches us that we must follow the rules and treat people with respect. As in life, there is no perfection in chess but rather the constant ability to improve, grow, learn and even discover something new.