December 8, 2016

SGA, students to give Webster a gift for anniversary

Webster University President Elizabeth Stroble revealed her secret on Monday afternoon; there will be a new Gorlok on campus next year. Only this Gorlok will be made of bronze.

The Student Government Association (SGA) came to Director of Student Engagement Jennifer Stewart last summer when they decided in a meeting they wanted to give a gift on behalf of the student body, to celebrate the 100 year anniversary of Webster University. The SGA decided in that summer meeting, after some brainstorming, the gift should be a statue of the University mascot; the Gorlok.

“We’re celebrating bridge between our first century and next century,” Stroble said. “And so it’s  good if new traditions come along that connect us with our history, and Project Gorlok is an example of that.”

Project Gorlok is a campaign by SGA and the Student Ambassadors to bring new traditions to

Webster University. Their first mission is the $13,000 Gorlok statue funded by donations from students, faculty, parents of students and alumni, Stewart said.

Though the statue was not in the master plan for Webster, it is in a location that will be central to the growing university, Parent & Student Programs Billy Ratz said. Webster has plans to expand the current quad passed Edgar road to the East Academic Building. he Gorlok will stand in between Emerson Library and Sverdrup Complex.

“And so it (the quad) will be opened up so you can see the theatre, EAB,” Setwart said. “So this (the Gorlok statue and library plaza) will kind of be an end point of that.”

Ratz added “And a beginning point for this (the current quad) part.”

Stewart said the University researched artists and even looked at alumni to construct the statue and the settled on the St. Louis Sculpture Factory. They are based out of Maplewood and are familiar with the campus.

The statue will be bronze and sit on a pedestal of yet to be determined material. The statue will stand 36 inches tall, according to a Project Gorlok flier.

Stroble explained that the Gorlok is a mix of many animals hailing from many parts of the world,  just like Webster University calls many countries home.

The Gorlok is part buffalo, cheetah and Saint Bernard. According to a Project Gorlok flier, the Gorlok “embodies the highest standards of speed, agility and stamina in an atmosphere of fairness and good conduct.” The name, for the streets Gore and Lockwood, and mascot were decided by a campus committee in 1984.
Project Gorlok donation boxes can be found around campus. If a student donates $100 or more to Project Gorlok they will get a brick with their name and graduation date on it, Ratz said.

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