Holland College Blog

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Holland College students create mascot

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The kidney is now preparing his next appearance.


The staff and students at Holland College frequently get requests for assistance from local non-profit organizations. Whether it’s a request for students to volunteer their time and skills for a worthwhile cause or something a little more ambitious, like building cottages for a children’s camp, if there’s a way for us to help, we gladly do so. 

So when Wood Manufacturing – Cabinetmaking learning manager Graham Hicken received a request to build a kidney last spring, he immediately put three students on the job, and the college entered the wonderful world of mascot manufacturing! 

The request came from the Kidney Foundation’s PEI Coordinator, Crystal Fall. She and her volunteers had been toying with the idea of creating a mascot to raise awareness for the foundation. A friend suggested contacting the college about the project, and three students stepped up to the plate. 

Student Chris Strang (right) and learning manager Graham Hicken (right) with the mascot before he was painted.


Chris Strang, Eric Gilmore, and Oscar Hornyck set to work creating a pattern from drawings supplied by Crystal. It took about a week to construct the mascot, and then a little more time was spent fine-tuning it to make sure his wiper motor-powered arm was up to the task of waving for prolonged periods of time.

Kidney Foundation president Leslie Hunter, picked the little guy up in the late spring,  and Crystal painted him a cheery yellow. He debuted at the Summerside Lobster Carnival parade earlier this month. 

“The Kidney Foundation is so pleased with the construction of our new kidney mascot.  He was a crowd pleaser, particularly for all of the children who waved, sometimes frantically, at him!” Crystal said. “We are especially grateful to the Holland College staff and students who took our design and created such a cheerful character for us.” 

His debut at the Summerside Lobster Carnival, surrounded by volunteers and well-wishers. (Photo courtesy of the Kidney Foundation)


“Prince Edward Island now has a Living Donor Reimbursement Program so that donors don’t lose financially when they assist a loved one or a co-worker who needs a transplant. Having our mascot in parades give us the opportunity to discuss this program with people,” she said. 

His next appearance will be in Charlottetown’s Gold Cup and Saucer Parade next month. For this parade, he will doff the lobster claw he’s currently sporting, and don an outfit more suitable for the parade’s theme of Alphabet Soup, A – Z and Everything in Between

So if you happen to see a kidney sporting a chef’s hat and waving his oven-mitted hand on the day of the parade, wave back, won’t you?


Written by Sara Underwood

July 21, 2010 at 4:33 pm

Posted in Alumni, Staff, Students

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