Indiana University East is on the search for a new mascot.
Interim Chancellor Nasser Paydar accepted a recommendation last week from a steering committee of students, faculty, staff, and alumni to change the mascot name from the Pioneers.
“It is an exciting time at IU East,” said Paydar. “We are looking forward to creating a new mascot name that captures the spirit and energy of our entire campus and symbolizes our growing impact in this region.”
With its new mission as a baccalaureate-degree granting campus, IU East is taking a more vibrant leadership role in enhancing the quality of life and economic development of east central Indiana and west central Ohio. The campus is also planning for future growth in student enrollment with plans to hire 13 additional faculty to support its developing bachelor’s and master’s degree programs. In addition, IU East recently launched intercollegiate athletics with its acceptance into the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) on October 1.
“It’s a new era at IU East,” said Mark Hester, athletic director and men’s basketball coach. “Our campus is on the move, and now is an ideal time to create a new identity. This will foster even greater pride in our athletic teams and our university as a whole.”
The process to name a new mascot will be comprehensive and inclusive of the university community and the public.
People are encouraged to visit the IU East Web site at www.iue.edu to submit suggestions for a mascot name. Participants will also have an opportunity to provide a brief explanation for the reason of their mascot choice. The online suggestion box will close on December 31, 2007.
The IU East mascot steering committee will then narrow the field and announce the finalists during the campus’s Homecoming celebration on January 26. Everyone will then have an opportunity to vote online for a favorite finalist. The committee will then make a final recommendation to Paydar. The new mascot name will be unveiled publicly by the end of this academic year and will be fully implemented by the start of the 2008-2009 academic year.
Additional information about IU East’s mascot name change is available at www.iue.edu/mascot.