Monday, November 18, 2013

UIS to hold meetings about possibly changing 'Prairie Stars' nickname

University of Illinois Springfield officials will hold three public forums on campus next week to gather feedback about possibly changing the school's longtime nickname and mascot, the Prairie Stars.

The forums are scheduled for noon and 5:30 p.m. Monday in the Lincoln Residence Hall Great Room and 9 p.m. Tuesday in The Recreation and Athletic Center.

UIS' Student Government Association will present six nicknames in the running to be the school's nickname and mascot. A news release issued by UIS Friday said two of the names are the existing "Prairie Stars" and the shortened "Stars." The other four choices won't be revealed until next week's meetings.

The six names were suggested by a consultant paid for by the UIS chancellor's office, said Aaron Mulvey, the SGA president and a senior communications/political science major.

The process to possibly move away from the Prairie Stars name began in earnest last year, when the SGA conducted a survey on campus that indicated 75 percent of respondents wanted a change, Mulvey said.

A task force consisting of students, faculty and others from UIS was then created to analyze the issue. Following next week's meetings, which will provide an opportunity for people to vote for their favorite name, the task force will submit a report to UIS Chancellor Susan Koch, who will make the final decision on the name.

In addition to voting at a meeting, people also can submit their feedback about the names by emailing

The story was reported by The State Journal-Register on November 16, 2013.

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