Students 'Save Quad Squirrels'By Reed OMara | 11/05/2014 10:59pm
Mei Ray, a freshman majoring in biology on the pre-med track, participates in Save The Quad Squirrels Wednesday afternoon on the Quad. | CW Ashley Atkinson
Tess Severin, a junior majoring in finance, was a part of the event. She was dressed as a squirrel, holding a sign saying “Honk 4 Quad Squirrels” as she stood near University Boulevard.
“We’re raising awareness for the Quad squirrels because they get run over by lawn mowers and after people tailgate, they leave trash out and the squirrels can choke on the trash or try and drink alcohol and get alcohol poisoning,” she said.
The event, which Severin said had a Grounds Use Permit issued from the University, was a part of a project for an Honors fine arts class, titled Studioless Art. Class projects for the course have also included the “Crimson Unkindness” campaign.
“It’s kind of like if you’ve seen the ‘Improv Everywhere’ videos,” Severin said. “We’re doing one of those. We do art in ways that people don’t normally think of as art. It caught on really well because of the T-shirts, and I think it puts a smile on people’s faces and breaks up their day a little bit.”
The fliers from the group listed satirical statistics as to why Quad squirrels have become endangered, such as “30.6 percent [are] run over by lawn mowers each year” and “20 percent die from alcohol poisoning each year.” The same flier, titled “What are we saving squirrels from?” also contained some “Squirrel Not-So-Fun Facts,” for example, “Your friendly neighborhood Quad squirrel may be involved in as many as seven gang fights a day.”
The hosts of the event also were promoting the hashtag #SaveTheQuadSquirrels. Those who posted the hashtag on social media outlets like Twitter received a shirt pin and a T-shirt. Students were also given the chance to adopt a Quad squirrel.
“We started this campaign to save the Quad squirrels. They’re endangered for a lot of different reasons – lawnmowers, pledges chasing them,” Taylor Barron, a freshman majoring in business and hospitality management, said. “We took pictures of a lot of the Quad squirrels and gave them bios, personalities and names and let all the students come and pick out which squirrel they wanted to adopt.”
Barron said students responded to the event with positivity.
“There’s so many jokes about the Quad squirrels, and everyone thinks they’re really funny, so people can [now] love and save them,” she said.