SPRINGFIELD, Mo. – On Wednesday, Evangel University unveiled it’s new mascot.
“Having a solid character to be able to celebrate and cheer for is just going to be great across the board here at Evangel,” said Erin Hedlun, Director of Marketing and Communications.
From the classrooms, to sports facilities and uniforms, to advertising, a horse named Valor is the new face of EU.
Hedlun said, “The horse represents the best of Evangel in that a horse is a messenger. And, we like to be messengers of good news here. A horse is looked at as strong and brave and courageous.”
“I feel like in sports and everything we are going through, it is important for the mascot to symbolize what we represent and what we stand for, and so I think it is really cool that they are redefining what Evangel stands for. And, that symbolizes strength and courage going forward,” said Kali McCroskey, a junior student.
Valor is replacing the Crusader, a mascot that had been with the school since it’s founding days in the 1950s. The crusader is a character that’s historically tied to violent wars between Christians and Muslims in the Middle East in the 11th through 13th centuries. After much debate, the Evangel Crusader mascot was retired last spring.
Hedlun explained, “We recognize that we have alumni that serve all over the world and we want to be sensitive to that. We want their mascot of their alma mater to be one that they can firmly embrace and we didn’t have that in the Crusader so we decided to make that transition.”
Hedlun said the conversation about the mascot has been ongoing for years.
“The retirement of our crusader mascot. And, I say retirement purposefully…because it is not a canceling of our history or our past but rather a retirement and look to our future.”
Evangel says it will start rolling out the new logo on some larger projects such as sports facility floors and fields in eh coming months. It could take a year or two before the transition is complete and Valor shows up everywhere.
“Especially, with everything that has been happening over the past couple of years, to be able to stand firm in the new mascot- I think will be really exciting for Evangel,” McCroskey stated.