Vancouver Community College (VCC) is thrilled to introduce the newest member of its educational family: Rainy the Racoon.
Inspired by top post-secondary institutions in the U.S. and across Canada, and in a moment of unprecedented school spirit during a recent meeting, VCC’s Board of Governors and Education Council unanimously agreed to adopt a furry and loveable mascot to represent the college.
“We may not have any athletic teams at VCC, a sports field, or even a gym, but why should that stop us from having a mascot of our own?” says Associate Vice President, Student Services Clayton Munro, who tabled the historic motion. “Every post-secondary should have the right to cover someone in fur and have them perform slapstick gags at campus events. Anything else would be unfair.”
The type and name of mascot was decided by a college-wide contest in early 2022. Finalists included Cackle the Crow, Spawny the Salmon, and an amorphous blob simply named Dampy.
According to VCC Marketing and Communications Director Karen Wilson, Rainy the Racoon won over the college community for a multitude of reasons, not least of which is his respect for personal hygiene. “Racoons are wonderfully clean animals,” says Karen. "They are constantly washing their oddly human-like hands and are even rumoured to wear masks when gathering in indoor spaces.”
According to Karen, Rainy will elevate VCC’s brand across the city. “Our alumni will now share a sense of pride whenever they see a racoon, be it in our backyards, parking-lot shrubbery, or public trash bins,” she says.
VCC’s leaders also determined that the mascot suit should be designed and constructed on campus by our highly skilled students and faculty. Rising to the occasion, VCC’s science and fashion departments teamed up to develop a new artificial fur that will resist matting and molding while also filtering air at a level equivalent to a KN95 face mask. “We wanted Rainy the Racoon to be huggable, pandemic or not,” says VCC Science department leader Jenn Kelly.
Another showcase of student work will come with the upcoming release of Rainy the Racoon merchandise. Designed and produced by VCC’s Graphic Design department, these will include bumper stickers, can coozies, USB flash drives, and a limited-edition jacket patch. All items will be available soon on a sidewalk-blanket outside our Downtown campus as well as a VCC-branded van near our Broadway campus at Dude Chilling Park.
While Rainy the Racoon is scheduled to make his first appearance in late April, the coveted role has not yet been filled, and VCC has now opened auditions to the wider community. The chief requirements include being able to spatchcock a chicken, perform oil changes, and apply gel nails.
Do you look good in fur? Sign up now for mascot auditions by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.