In terms of school mascots, most schools try to pick something intimidating or scary. You know, like a bear or a pirate. Something that will make opposing teams quiver in fear.

Of all the intimidating or scary things to pick, why did UR choose the Yellowjackets? While it is true that some people are deathly allergic to bees, they don’t exactly inspire images of strength and power.

A little cartoon bee, while cute, just doesn’t have the scariness factor of a lion or a knight.

To find out the reason behind our unusual mascot, we talked to Vice President, Dean and General Secretay to the President Paul Burgett.

Burgett said that “We’re not entirely sure” as to how the name originated.

He did, however, suggest a possible theory. According to Burgett, the football uniforms during the 1920s were yellow.

“A student named Howard Garnish, I think he was in the Class of ’27, liked to shout ‘Go Yellowjackets’ at football games, in reference to the color of the football jerseys.”

“The uniform was yellow. We think that’s where it originated,” Burgett said.

He added, however, “The student government was not so much in favor of the idea,” because they were sick of tradition.

So how did we end up with the Yellowjackets, if the student government was not in favor of the idea?

“The student body voted overwhelmingly to have the insect as our mascot in 1930,” Burgett said.

Evidently, someone in that class was allergic to bees.

Smith can be reached at ksmith@campustimes.org.



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