June 23, 2021

Keep our identity, we are Eagles, not Aggies


This archived article was written by: Alex Anderson

I am not an Aggie with an Eagle as a mascot; I am a Golden Eagle and will bleed Gold for years to come. I have gone to Eastern two years and working on my third year. Eastern has given me everything I need to continue in my higher education goals, which is why, when I was told that Eastern is taking on the Aggie name, I got frustrated.
I was frustrated because Logan didn’t give me everything I value at USU Eastern; they didn’t give me small class sizes and one-on-one relationship with my professor and peers. Why am I an Aggie, because my degree saying Utah State University? That isn’t a good enough reason for me.
My experience is not the same as students in Logan, Vernal, Tooele and Moab experience on their campus. I am frustrated because the color gold is practically banned from campus and I can’t say “oh golden Eagles” when I sing Eastern’s fight song. My school pride is being taken away from me.
It’s not like I don’t want a more unified connection with the other campus, I do, and I just don’t feel like this is the way. I know there are recruitment benefits to Eastern becoming an Aggie, but what about the students who already are here and the alumni who went here? Did we get any say, were we in on the meeting that decided this huge change on our campus?
I think my biggest concern is that this allows people to forget about the specialness of Eastern even more than they already do. Sometimes when I am taking a broadcast class at another USU campus, I get the vibe that people don’t care about Eastern. They don’t care we have a great theater program with so many talented students, or the best welder in the country attends USU Eastern.
Us taking on the Aggie name feels like those things will be forgotten and will be underappreciated even more than they already are. Will Eastern’s rich history be preserved, or is it when I come back to campus in a few years, students will be awkwardly kissing over a block A instead of Gibby?
With everything going from gold to blue and from Eagle to Aggie, where is Eastern suppose to store its history, it’s culture, where are we going to display our accomplishments as Eagles?
This is why I am frustrated because, as a student that invested interest in this school and can’t wait to send her children here, I’ve been left in the dark. A few notable exceptions Greg Dart, who I feel is always open and as honest as possible in his conversation about the state of Eastern and where it’s going.
Here’s my point, Eastern’s players were never known as “the Farmers” like USU Logan players were known as back in the day. Eastern was never an agricultural college; we don’t have the history that USU Logan has with Aggie as we have with Eagles.
When I become an alumna, I want to know that I am trying to better the school that I went to so that future students have as great of a time as I did. As it stands, the way Eastern is moving, I won’t have that because I will not be able to relate to this campus or the students in it. I say within the next 10 years this campus will be completely different.

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