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College wants mascot that fits it to a ‘J’

Lena Price January 15, 2013 6
The Parham Road campus of J. Sargeant Reynolds Community College.

The Parham Road campus of J. Sargeant Reynolds Community College. (Photo by Michael Schwartz)

Nutzy the Flying Squirrel and Rodney the Ram are about to get more competition.

J. Sargeant Reynolds Community College is looking for a mascot of its own and is considering creating athletic programs.

JSRCC RFP

Download the request for proposals [Word document]

The 40-year-old school recently published a request for proposals for the selection, design and production of a mascot and mascot costume to “embody the JSRCC brand and bring that brand to life.”

“The College seeks to embrace the personality of a mascot and use it as a tool for community engagement, increased awareness and to build college pride among students, alumni, donors, and employees,” the school said in its request for proposals.

In addition to the quest for a mascot, the college is exploring entry into the National Junior College Athletics Association and considering the creation of sports teams.

Kelly Smith, JRSCC’s marketing director, did not respond to a request for comment on the mascot project.

The school is looking to select a mascot through “community and college-wide involvement,” according to the notice. Sealed proposals are due Jan. 31, according to the notice.

The college has four campuses in the Richmond area, including a downtown campus on Jackson Street, a large complex off Parham Road, a smaller facility on Brook Road in Ginter Park, and a campus in Goochland. About 19,500 credit-seeking students are enrolled in the school.

Making a mascot takes more than a funny name and a googly-eyed costume.

“It’s all about community engagement,” said John Linder, owner of downtown marketing agency 93 Octane. “Students, faculty, donors, alumni. It can help create a sense of civic pride.”

Costs vary for a project of this magnitude, but Linder said the price would likely be upward of $10,000. He said it’s possible that the college could recoup the money spent on design and production in licensing fees.

“A mascot can be a really powerful tool for a brand,” Linder said. “It can make something tangible that’s often intangible to the community.”

The spotlight found several area mascots in October when local frozen yogurt brand Sweet Frog released a “Gangnam Style” tribute video starring mascots Scoop and Cookie and featuring cameos from Nutzy (the Flying Squirrels), WebstUR (the University of Richmond), Rodney the Ram (VCU) and Kickeroo (the Richmond Kickers).

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6 Comments »

  1. Brad Marrs January 15, 2013 at 9:45 am - Reply

    I suppose military-style team names are out of fashion, and anything harkening to the area’s Confederate history would be out of the question these days, but it would seem like something that would make it possible to have your mascot be “Sarge” would be in order. Maybe given the political resume of the school’s namesake, The Lieutenants? Not so different from Christopher Newport’s Captains.

    As a baseball fan, one thing I’ve always found disappointing is the dearth of JuCo baseball in Virginia. In other states, JuCo ball is VERY big. The thought of this getting a foothold here in Richmond is exciting, not just for fans, but as an incentive for some to continue their education beyond high school. Right now we lose most of our JuCo baseball guys to NC, which has powerhouse teams at Pitt and Louisburg.

  2. jd January 15, 2013 at 10:05 am - Reply

    How about “The Commuters”

    • Ruben Foster January 15, 2013 at 11:05 am - Reply

      I think we have a winner

  3. hoonu January 15, 2013 at 6:36 pm - Reply

    The “Wrappers”? (Reynolds wrap …)

  4. fred January 22, 2013 at 12:36 pm - Reply

    THE RAVENS

  5. E. Pulliam Jr February 2, 2013 at 10:24 pm - Reply

    Jays

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