Have you seen the Spartan at South Ninth and East San Fernando?
Measuring 15 feet across, the large symbol was installed Sept. 15. It’s the product of the Associated Students of SJSU’s Campus-to-the-City initiative.
“The goal is to bring Spartan pride into downtown and surrounding sections of the city so that SJSU is recognizable not just on campus but in the entire area,” said Mykel Jeffrey, ’15 Political Science and A.S. director of internal affairs.
The initiative began with last year’s A.S. board, headed by then-President Nicholas Ayala, ’14 Management Information Systems, who was inspired by a similar effort at other campuses.
“Cultivating Spartan pride beyond SJSU’s walls will help students feel more at home while they’re in school and help foster the everlasting memories they’ll want to come back to and revisit as alumni,” Ayala said.
More than 40 street banners will be installed this fall. The buffer zone around bike lanes will take on a gold-and-blue hue this spring. With both projects, A.S. seeks to connect the main and south campuses to foster a sense of community and safety.
Next year may bring three more Spartan symbols to intersections around campus. But first, officials would like to see how the initial Spartan stands up to wear and tear over the next six months.
The initiative has been a lesson in how to get things done in a complex city. The A.S. board has been working with the San Jose Department of Transportation and Office of Cultural Affairs. The group has also met with the Office of the Mayor and Councilmember and mayor candidate Sam Liccardo.
“This doesn’t feel like a college town (and) we’re trying to change that,” Liccardo told the Spartan Daily. “I know this is something folks have been trying to do in various ways…this is needed.”