By Jesse Cinquini, Currier Times Staff//
The Colonel has been the logo and face of Curry College for decades. It depicts an elderly white male with a white beard, black and purple suit, and a purple hat. But its existence has drummed up controversy in recent years. There have been accusations that the logo holds racist undertones because of how it doesn’t represent the diversity of the college campus. Also, the term Colonel dates back to the Revolutionary War, as it was the title given to wealthy southern land owners.
With that said, the Colonel logo is no longer associated with Curry College. Last August, the college decided to retire the Colonel as its mascot, leaving the larger decision, to get rid of the name “Colonel” all together, to a later date. This academic year the college replaced the decades-old logo with two large purple Cs. These double Cs, as they are commonly referred to, will be featured on Curry athletic gear moving forward.
Students interviewed around campus had various opinions about the changes.
“I am excited about it,” said junior Sadya Chase. “I always thought the thing was creepy, always.”
Some students said the Colonel discouraged a message of diversity. Djine Poisson, a freshman Criminal Justice major, said it was time to move on.
“Yeah, definitely, just represents like bad times in the American History,” said Poisson.
Others felt the logo needed a revamp but hoped the name Colonel could still work.
“I’m fine with them changing like the logo, if it’s like the logo that’s a problem, said Chris Michaels, a senior Accounting major. “I don’t see what the problem is with the name Colonel. I like it, I think it goes well, I like the name Colonel.”
Curry College is wrapping up an ongoing survey where students and faculty have had free reign to voice their opinions on the Colonel and what the symbol means to them. The college greatly values all responses and encourages students and faculty alike to complete it. Here’s a link to the survey, which doesn’t take more than a few minutes to complete.
The director of Public Relations for Curry, Lynda Curtis, said the college is still months away from any formal decisions.
“While the Colonel mascot image has been discontinued, the survey examining the Colonel name as an identity of Curry College will continue to collect responses this month,” said Curtis in an email to the Currier Times. “Given that we are still accepting feedback, we have yet to begin analyzing the survey results but anticipate reviewing the data this summer.”
Some see the Colonel as a heroic, long-standing symbol that adequately represents the Curry College community. Others see it as a racist, southern white figurehead that served no purpose but to remind us of a dark time in our country’s history. Whatever the case may be, there’s no denying the Curry College Colonel is a polarizing topic.