Becoming the Kean Cougar

An inside look on how to become the Kean Cougar Mascot

Campus Life > Becoming the Kean Cougar
Becoming the Kean Cougar
Student, Amirah James, with the Kean Cougar.
Justin Kanski, Staff Writer

Ever wonder what it is like to become the Kean Cougar itself? The mascot that walks across campus and shows up to almost all major events bringing high energy and enthusiasm, wherever it goes? Well, now is the time to roar.

No matter what type of event there is, the Cougar mascot represents the entirety of Kean University. For many years, the Kean Cougar has been the spirit for all of Kean University. Whether it means welcoming incoming freshmen at Undergraduate Open House or entertaining a campus-wide event hosted by different organizations, becoming the face of Kean University can be a life-changing opportunity for those who want to become more involved or practice their networking skills.

Formerly known as the Kean Squires, the university voted and adopted the Cougar as the new mascot back in 1985. Expressing the cougar pride, the university even adopted 2 living cougars named Scout and Sage, who are located at Turtle Back Zoo in West Orange, New Jersey.

There are many different departments on campus that have their own versions of the Kean Cougar mascot outfit to wear at events. Some of these organizations are:

Many more departments and organizations have their own versions, as well.

Becoming the Kean Cougar allows the person in the costume to become the best version of themselves and allow everyone around them to embrace the mascot's energy. Everyone can join in the excitement of representing Kean University as both an institution and a welcoming environment for students to call home. The people inside the costumes are highly motivated, current Kean student volunteers who are willing to take the time out of their busy schedules to put on the many different components of the outfit and go out into the world representing Kean.

"You are your own person with the costume. You develop a better characteristic and a more open personality after wearing a costume like that, because then you understand that people actually do have passion...usually, when you initially meet people, they have either a sour face or don't seem that happy, but with the Cougar costume, people always seem happy and are always excited to meet you. So, that's a good way for attention seeking, or just a great way to just interact with other people," said Yaa-sin Abdul-Qawily, a current Kean student, who reflected on his experience of wearing the Cougar mascot costume.

The student volunteer does not even need to speak to express their excitement and pride for Kean. If a student is not a very social personality, that is okay. The costume completely hides the person who is wearing it and allows the individual to show their cougar pride through movement and expressions. Becoming the Cougar mascot is a huge responsibility, but it is definitely a rewarding experience for those who want to showcase their passion for attending Kean University.

If you are interested in becoming the beloved mascot and want to represent Kean at the many major events that are hosted across campus, then this is the opportunity for you. Please contact one of the organizations mentioned above and find out how what it means to be a motivational inspiration for incoming Freshmen and the entire Kean Community. For Admissions, contact Jordan Cascino and for the Office of Student Government, contact Alexa Cantres. It is time to showcase that Kean pride and hear that roar as cougars climb higher.

about the author

Justin Kanski, Staff Writer

Justin Kanski is a junior majoring in Communication with a focus on Media/Film. A Staff Writer for The Cougar's Byte, Justin is also a part of Kean TV, and WKNJ 90.3 Cougar Radio. He is a member of the Leadership Institute Gold Level and has served as a New Student Orientation Leader as well. Justin’s favorite shows are  “Power” and Wild’N Out while his favorite movies are anything in the Marvel Cinematic Universe and he also loves listening to Hip-Hop music. Whether it be in front of the camera or behind it, Justin aspires to be a media mogul.