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UTB Mascot Unveiled

View a video of the unveiling event

UTB Community Welcomes Its New Mascot, the Ocelot

BROWNSVILLE, TEXAS – AUGUST 31, 2012 – And the winner is... drum roll, please… the ocelot!

Students, faculty and staff at The University of Texas at Brownsville welcomed their new mascot with cheers at a noon ceremony on Friday, Aug. 31.

“I am very honored to be here at this time with each of you as we share in this historic moment,” said Dr. Juliet V. García, President of UTB. “We will always remember that we were here the year, the month, the day and the moment when the mascot was revealed.”

As music played and confetti fluttered into the courtyard of the Education and Business Complex, filled to capacity, excited students reached for T-shirts printed with “UTB OCELOTS” as they were tossed to the crowd from the balcony.

UTB Community Welcomes Its New Mascot, the Ocelot
Students celebrate the ocelot as the new mascot of The University of Texas at Brownsville.

“This is an exciting moment to be here and be a part of UTB’s history,” said Normalinda Vera, a senior communication major and member of the Mascot Search Committee who served as the program’s emcee. “This was a student-led decision that culminated in a campus election that garnered 3,519 votes.”

One by one, throughout the ceremony, the non-winners were announced, beginning with the fourth runner-up, the parrot. Of the five large banners that hung from the balcony railing, the parrot banner was the first to be untied and allowed to dramatically fall to the ground.

“Be proud of your school, embrace the mascot that is chosen today; this is part of who you are,” said John Villarreal, Brownsville City Commissioner and Vice President of the UTB Alumni Association, who took a turn at the podium.

As the tension grew, Hilda Silva, Vice President of Student Affairs, reminded the crowd how UTB and TSC had proudly shared the scorpion over the 20 years of the partnership.

“Now we are creating the foundation and moving forward with UTB 2.0,” Silva said.

After the parrot, the jaguarundi and the vaquero were eliminated, accompanied by drum rolls by theMusic Department Drum Line. The final drum roll revealed the first runner up to be the bull shark with 20 percent of the votes, and the winner to be the ocelot with 53 percent of the votes.

UTB Community Welcomes Its New Mascot, the Ocelot
Normalinda Reyna, Vice President of Administration for the Student Government Association, announces the ocelot as The University of Texas at Brownsville new mascot.

Although the ocelot wasn’t their first choice, Rhiannon Hobbs, a junior business major from Brownsville, and Patricia Mallea, a junior mechanical engineering student who grew up in San Francisco before moving to Los Fresnos seven years ago, both said they will be proud of the school mascot, no matter what it is.

Freshman criminology major Salvador Godinez from Brownsville was not a student last spring when the voting took place, nevertheless he said he is very happy with the selection.

Adán Lozano, a sophomore communication major from Matamoros, said he was very pleased with the outcome.

“I voted for the ocelot; I think is it the best choice to represent the school,” Lozano said. “The ocelot is a beautiful wild cat that will defend its territory, and that is symbolic with how we students feel about our school.”

The Mascot Search Committee was comprised of representatives from several UTB departments and included members of the Division of Student Affairs, the Office of Student Life, staff, students and alumni with the mission of helping facilitate the selection of the new mascot.

UTB Community Welcomes Its New Mascot, the Ocelot

Dr. Juliet V. Garcia, President of The University of Texas at Brownsville,
speaks at the mascot unveiling ceremony in the
Education and Business Complex Courtyard.

An open forum was held wherein the community could voice their thoughts on the mascot finalists. The university polled the opinion of the community at large on the finalists for the new mascot. It also sought the opinion of students from the Brownsville Independent School District and surrounding school districts.

The announcement of the mascot is part of Welcome Weeks, with activities during the first two weeks of classes, beginning Monday, Aug. 27 and ending on Friday, Sept. 7.

The highlight of the first week of class is Orange Crush, held the first Friday of the semester, Friday, August 31. Orange Crush takes place at the Recreation, Education and Kinesiology Center, the REK.

To learn more about the Welcome Weeks events, visit

For more information on the mascot selection, visit or contact the Mascot Search Committee at


Mascot Events

August 31
UTB Mascot Revealed!

April 20
Open Forum

April 11 - 23
Office Decorating Contest

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