What Did You Expect? I'm Just an Anthropomorphic Squirrel

Smokey Bear has lasted almost 63 years, yet Kent State University's crime prevention mascot, Simon the Squirrel, may be abandoned after just one year because of budget constraints, reports the Daily Kent Stater.

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Smokey Bear has lasted almost 63 years, yet Kent State University's crime prevention mascot, Simon the Squirrel, may be abandoned after just one year because of budget constraints, reports the Daily Kent Stater.

Taking a cue from Iowa State University's Frank the Flamingo, KSU's grotesquely dark-haired "squirrel" was created to inform students in a "nonthreatening manner" about the consequences of alcohol and drug violations. Almost $2,000 worth of budget funds was spent on posters, T-shirts, ad space, decals, and—of course—nuts to promote Simon's message. The didactic rodent's fate is now in the hands of police, who will determine whether the stuffed squirrel has been worth two grand in undergrad drinking prevention. —Jackie Mantey