An Apple Watch will be awarded to a student participating in the second survey.
By Sergio Medina
The mascot committee from this college is conducting a survey closing at 5 p.m. April 16 to narrow the list of 10 mascot candidates to a final three.
The 10 selections are:
In a Zoom interview April 13, Christina Horton, chair of the mascot committee, said it is a unique opportunity to participate because not everyone gets to choose their school mascot.
“How many students in the city get to say that they gave voice or helped select a mascot that theoretically will be around forever?” she asked.
The Ranger was this college’s mascot from 1959-2020.
Horton said an extra incentive is the committee will award an Apple Watch to a student participant.
She said it is important that those participating do so through the link sent to their school email because every link is unique. A forwarded link from another source may render a void webpage.
The email was sent to students, faculty and alumni April 1.
Horton said the committee has received feedback about hesitancy to click the email’s links because of the sender’s address.
However, she said that if the email comes from firstname.lastname@example.org, then it is safe to click. The email is titled, “IMPORTANT: Link To SAC Mascot Survey.”
Horton said the committee condensed 370 submissions into 160 entries from the first survey in February, which was open to the public to be able to include alumni.
From there, the team narrowed the list to 10, based on the prescribed criteria that the candidate unifies the community and is not historically problematic for the college, as was the Ranger.
The mascot was retired because of the tyranny many Mexican-Americans suffered under the Texas Rangers.
Between 1821 and 1832, Stephen F. Austin enticed 8,000 people to move to Texas from the United States to settle in central Texas on land occupied by Native Americans.
He hired 10 men in 1823 to fight Comanches and Mexican bandits on the western edge of land claimed by new white settlers. In 1836, the Rangers became an official law enforcement agency.
The latest rendition of the Ranger mascot, Gnome “GR” Ranger, was based on a mural of beer-guzzling gnomes in the Koehler Cultural Center’s basement.
Gnome “GR” Ranger was retired in July after a College Council vote deemed the ranger image inappropriate for a Hispanic-serving institution.
That vote was prompted by protests by Somos la Gente, a group composed of students and faculty from the Mexican-American studies program.
The Texas Rangers have a history of harassment and murder of people of color well into the 20th century.
To learn more about the organization’s history, read, “More than a mascot — how the Ranger name echoes a racist past,” published by The Ranger.
Horton said a third survey will open about 10 days after this survey closes, and will be open only to this college’s students.
The survey will be emailed to students, asking to select between the three finalists. The survey will be open for two weeks.
Horton said the committee also has an undisclosed “very lucrative prize” for a participant in the third survey.
Horton said the winning mascot idea will be announced soon after the final survey closes, but the formal introductory events will be in the fall.