Arkansas State University-Beebe unveiled a new spirit character for its new mascot, the Vanguard. Chad Miller of Beebe designed the spirit character and won a design contest administered by the college.
The new Vanguard mascot pays tribute to the first newspaper publication on campus, which started publishing around 1951. A vanguard is a group of people leading the way to new developments or ideas and has a special meaning for students, faculty, and staff in ‘leading the charge’ in education.
Miller’s depiction of the Vanguard was a stylized knight charging forward with sword drawn on a white horse. There is also a front-facing version of the character. The character is drawn in the university’s new official colors.
For winning, Miller was awarded a $250 cash prize along with spirit merchandise and recognition. Miller is an advisor for the Baptist Collegiate Ministries organization held on the ASU-Beebe campus.
“I am very honored to have my design chosen as the official mascot logo for ASU-Beebe. Art has always been a special hobby of mine and I’m blessed to have the opportunity to use it. I have grown to love the students at ASU-Beebe and it’s a great privilege to have my design represent them,” Miller said.
The Vanguard mascot design contest was announced in late August with submissions due October 1. The contest was open to all students, faculty, staff, alumni and community members. Each of the four campuses had its own judging panel comprised of students, faculty and staff. The final design was approved by ASU-Beebe administration.
“Each judging panel did a great job of providing input and giving opinions on each design. They were all very passionate about the new mascot,” said Arch Jones, director of the Student Center and Student Activities. “It was clear to see this mascot was a unifying symbol for all of our campuses.”
Jones led the judging panel discussion on each campus and said the winning design was unanimous. “It was a design that all campuses agreed upon and were very excited about,” he said.
The mascot design will be part of the university’s brand image. A mascot standards guide is being developed to ensure the mascot is accurately represented with each use. The mascot will be printed on clothing and specialty items sold exclusively in the bookstores of the ASU-Beebe campuses, and used by student organizations and intramural sports.
A costumed character for the Vanguard is being created and should be ready by spring.
Arkansas State University-Beebe was established in 1927, and is the oldest two-year college in the state. ASU-Beebe is an operationally separate, two-year institution of the Arkansas State University System. With campuses located in Beebe, Heber Springs, Searcy, and the Little Rock Air Force Base, the university offers associate degrees, certificates, and non-credit training for business and industry. The Beebe campus also collaborates with Arkansas State, a four-year university in Jonesboro, to offer baccalaureate and graduate degrees on the Beebe campus.