Lenny the Celt, UST’s lion mascot head, went missing in early March before spring break.
Former Sports Club Association President Antonio Mata said he noticed the head was missing from the mascot body when he went to the second floor of Jerabeck Activity and Athletic Center, where the mascot is usually stored.
“It’s always in the JAAC, in the hallway,” Mata said. “It was just gone one Saturday morning.”
A police report was filed with UST’s police department, but no one knew where it went, Mata said.
After the head went missing, however, Dean of Students Lindsey McPherson dismissed Mata because of emails from Mata that were presented at a monthly SCA meeting.
The Independent has tried contacting several members of SCA to learn the content of the emails, but these attempts went unanswered. Mata said he no longer had access to the messages because they are contained in a separate SCA gmail account, and said he can’t remember what was in them.
An attempt to reach the SCA office through the gmail account provided on UST’s website went undelivered. Instead an error message was sent back saying that the gmail account does not exist.
Mata argues that he was dismissed unconstitutionally.
“The proper way to dismiss an elected student president is by following the constitution, and the constitution wasn’t fully followed,” Mata said.
McPherson declined to comment on Mata’s firing.
“All I know is that the mascot head disappeared,” she said. “I’m sorry, but I won’t be much help with the story.”
According to the 2017 SCA constitution, a two-thirds vote from the council is required in cases of impeachment or non-academic removal such as Mata’s.
McPherson, however, followed the general student handbook for student organizations rather than the constitution, according to Mata.
“McPherson said that the handbook trumped our constitution,” Mata said.
Starting Fall 2019, John Tran, sophomore, will serve as the new president for SCA, which will be called the Club Sports Association under the new student organization structure created Spring 2019.
A new mascot was purchased by the Marketing and Communications department for the University, and Mata said it should be ready to use in Fall 2019.
In an earlier publication The Independent misspelled Club Sports Association President’s name John Tran. We sincerely apologize for this error.