Apr 032012
Authors: Moonier Said

With low participation leading up to the Feb. 29 ram handler application due date, the university’s alumni association is still looking for applicants interested in caring for CSU’s mascot, CAM the Ram.

Applications will be accepted on a rolling basis until next year’s openings are filled.

Because of the level of responsibility and determination needed for this position, Dustin Synn, a current handler, said applicants should not take the job lightly.

“A good candidate would show a strong desire to represent the university, sound moral character, and a desire to work hard,” said Synn, a senior sociology major.

Ram handlers are not only responsible for CAM at sporting events, but at multiple events that span across Colorado. CAM sometimes attends up to 80 events ranging from the Rocky Mountain Showdown to birthday parties.

Colleen Meyer, the executive director of CSU’s Alumni Association, helps decide who will become a ram handler.

“The public doesn’t understand that the only way CAM can appear at an event is if we have the student ram handlers to accompany him,” Meyer said. “These are full-time students that volunteer their time as ram handlers, hold jobs and are involved in numerous service organizations.”

Each ram handler must devote one week a semester to feeding CAM his diet of ground alfalfa and flaked corn mix, as well as cleaning him for appearances.

Emma Taylor, a junior social work major, said she became a handler during her sophomore year – proving to others that not all ram handlers are majoring in agriculture.

“I thought it was so cool to see the people standing around him,” Taylor said. “I love CAM and I thought to myself, ‘I will do anything to be one of those people.’”

According to Taylor, each ram handler has their own memorable experiences with CAM.

“My favorite event this year was down in Denver at a place called Monkey Business where CAM had a birthday party,” Taylor said. “A little girl gave him a card and called him an elephant.”

Junior agricultural business major Ryan Finnegan started handling his freshman year and said he plans to continue until he graduates.

“My motivation was what could be cooler than running with the mascot,” Finnegan said. “I’m busy like no other and I’m in a fraternity too, but getting to represent (CAM) is a lot of pride for me.”

Collegian writer Moonier Said can be reached at news@collegian.com.

Requirements to be a ram handler
Be able to lift 50 pounds
Able to run 80 yards at a sprint
Have a GPA standing at 2.5 or above
Willing and able to stand for long periods of time

 Posted by at 3:17 pm

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