Archie turns 45

Madison Nelson

Archie the Eagle has been around almost as long USI  school itself.

Archie’s official birth date is Oct. 20, 1965. Every year the Volunteer and Alumni Services puts on Archie’s Birthday Bash.

Assistant director of Alumni and Volunteer Services Caylin Blockley is in charge of the bash which includes cake and other fun birthday activities throughout the day.

Blockley said Archie was created in 1965 and went three years without a name. In 1968, there was a contest to decide on a name for the beloved mascot and Archibald T. Eagle was the name chosen.

“Archie has been through three makeovers in his lifetime,” Blockley said.  

Heather Noslen said she has been around to see two of those versions of Archie.

“I wouldn’t say he was scary back then but he’s definitely more realistic now,” said the alumni who graduated with a bachelor in elementary education in 1994.

Noslen who has a daughter in this year’s freshman class said she spotted Archie at her daughter’s orientation and was surprised by his new look.

“He definitely looks good for 45,” she said.

Today Archie plays a big role in the school.  He not only appears on several pictures of the university’s homepage but is the star of orientation videos. Archie even has his own club called “Archie’s Army.”

Archie not only has Archie’s Pizza named after him, but a food pantry with food for students who lack money to buy the basic necessities.

For his birthday, instead of presents, Archie would like students to make a donation in his name to the USI Foundation or bring canned foods to Archie’s Food Closet says the Department of Volunteer and Alumni Services.

Freshman Wes Ryan said it’s no big deal to see Archie visiting with students.

“Everyone loves Archie,”  the political science major said. “He is fun and when he is around it makes the day better no matter what is going on.”