Scottish terrier to make its debut as mascot Nov. 10
Over the last two weeks, students have been wearing shirts featuring a silhouetted Scottish terrier with the tagline “See what all the barking’s about!” Others have been walking the campus with ‘invisible’ dog leashes. These stunts are part of the university’s promotion of Carnegie Mellon’s official mascot graphic, which will be unveiled Saturday during the last home football game of the season.
This weekend’s launch of the primary mascot design is the first step in introducing the mascot’s graphic identity.
Additional graphics, including secondary and youth marks, are forthcoming. Once a Scottie dog costume is complete, the mascot will be part of student and community activities and will have an interactive online presence.
Carnegie Mellon’s bookstore will be selling official Scottie dog T-shirts and an expanded selection of merchandise featuring the new mascot by late November.
“The university hopes that an official mascot will enhance the student experience and create a greater sense of community across campus and with our alumni,” said Sophie Nassif, Carnegie Mellon’s director of Brand Initiatives.
Up until this year, the well-known Scottie dog associated with Carnegie Mellon has been an unofficial mascot. While there have been variations of the Scottie dog, none were officially trademarked. While some clip-art icons were grandfathered in 1998–99 for use in locations such as the bookstore, student organizations are not allowed to use the graphic on university apparel.
After repeated complaints from students, the university realized that a clip-art design was not enough and that Carnegie Mellon needed an official mascot. Last year, the Mascot Task Force was formed to solicit input from students, faculty, staff, and alumni in order to develop a proposal for an official mascot and mascot graphic for Carnegie Mellon. Based on the feedback the task force received, the message was clear — Carnegie Mellon wanted the Scottie Dog as its official mascot. The Task Force drafted a mascot proposal and sent requests to design and branding firms so that one could be selected to help design the mascot.
This fall, members of the task force formed a mascot steering committee to work with SME Branding, the designer and branding firm selected by the university, to go through the phases of establishing the official mascot and mascot graphic. The designers from SME Branding have developed the concepts and, with the help of focus groups consisting of students, faculty, staff, and alumni, have established the direction and detail for the design of the Scottie dog.
“I think that finally having an official mascot is going to make a huge impact on campus,” said Julia Kramkova, a sophomore business administration major. Kramkova was in one of the focus groups that viewed the mascot design.
“CMU is finally going to have an image that isn’t a piece of plaid cloth. It’s true, the Scottie dog isn’t all that intimidating, but at least we now have an animate object to represent our student body,” Kramkova said. “The Scottie dog has been a part of CMU since the times of Carnegie Tech and it is great to know that we are now officially embracing him. I saw the original design for Scottie and I must say I was pleasantly surprised. I think a lot of people will really like the new Scottie — he’s quite the bad-ass!”
The first documentation of the Scottie dog image for Carnegie Tech was during the mid-1930s, according to Jay Marano, licensing coordinator for Carnegie Mellon.
“Here we are, 70 years later, with an official graphic. We now have a mascot icon that people will be proud of wearing. Now [the mascot] is something unique and distinctive to Carnegie Mellon. When people see it, they will say ‘Oh, it’s Carnegie Mellon,’ ” Marano said. “I think the student body will be proud of the design that will be unveiled on Nov. 10. This will give us something to ‘bark’ about.”