Pathfinder is the new public face of ACTC. It wears a blue sweater and blue shoes, and it carries a walking stick with a pennant attached. And it is a fox.
ACTC has adopted the fox named Pathfinder as its official school mascot. It was introduced to faculty and staff at the all-college meeting in August.
Although seen several times on campus this fall, the Pathfinder will be making its first official public appearance in the Ashland Christmas Parade.
Why have a mascot? A mascot presents the goals of the college in a way that students can relate to, said Steve Woodburn, Dean of Student Success and Enrollment Services. Pathfinder represents our students perseverance to reach their goals and adds a social element to our vision of the college.
And why a fox? Through the Kentucky Community and Technical College System, ACTC and the other colleges worked with the Raymond Entertainment Group, the branding firm that has created mascots for the Cincinnati Reds and Miami Heat, among others. The goal was a mascot that did not complete with team mascots in the area but that embodied the values of community and technical college education.
The result was a fox with the following story. "The old ones speak of the Pathfinder as a traveler of great wisdom and curiosity. They say he is a seeker, a giver of truth and a source of strength. His pioneer spirit runs through the blood of every Kentuckian, and his timeless presence continues to guide and pave the way for any traveler journeying to new and unfamiliar destinations."
The story continues: The Pathfinder has seen many changes and challenges over the years, and like ACTC students, it is on a journey. With the Pathfinder's assistance, they are able to focus on an educational destination, find a clear path to a degree or credential and have the confidence, endurance and strength needed to complete their journey."
Pathfinder can become a valuable part of campus life and will help us reach out to future students, Woodburn said.