All posts by joemalone01

Wolfie: the growth of SBU’s mascot

Stony Brook University’s mascot, Wolfie the Seawolf, turned 20 years old this year. Stony Brook Athletics transitioned to Division I in the NCAA in 1994, and the name of the sports teams was changed from Patriots to Seawolves.

Today, Wolfie has a busy schedule. He can be found at anywhere from 300 to 500 events each year, according to Andrea Lebedinski, Coordinator of Annual Giving and Branding for Stony Brook Athletics. Lebedinski, who graduated from Stony Brook University in 2008 as an undergraduate and again in 2010 with a master’s degree, has managed Wolfie for the past five years.

Ten years ago, when Lebedinski began attending Stony Brook, Wolfie had a scarce presence. Wolfie would only make a handful of appearances per year, at major events such as Homecoming or championship games.

“I saw that Wolfie was an under-utilized representation of what we are about here at Stony Brook,” said Lebedinski. “For me that was a big thing. I’ve always been into school spirit.”

Continue reading Wolfie: the growth of SBU’s mascot


“A boy’s struggles”: A well-made audio slideshow from LA Times

Screenshot 2014-10-03 at 12.15.30 AM

The pictures above are from an audio slideshow by the Los Angeles Times multimedia journalist Liz O’ Baylen called “A Boy’s Struggles.” The piece is about a young boy who revealed to his mother that he was molested by a school aide at the age of 6.

The single most impressive thing I found about “A Boy’s Struggle” is how the photographer, Liz O’ Baylen, hid the boy’s identity in very creative ways. The most interesting way O’ Baylen hides the kid’s face is through shadows. In other shots, the photographer shoots him from behind, or just his mouth. We see the boy a lot, but we never see his full face. We get to learn about his story, but he remains anonymous. He gets to share his very personal story, but it remains a secret to his classmates and neighbors.

It is evident that the photojournalist became very well-acquainted with the mother and boy before interviewing them. The mother and boy are telling a very poignant and private story, but they sound very comfortable talking about it.

The first 1:00 of the piece is inter-titles that explain the context to the story. While one minute is ordinarily an excessive amount of time for inter-titles in an online news video, it is necessary for this example. The information in the text effectively got my attention.

A Day in the Life of Wolfie


For the audio slideshow, I am going to seek out who plays Wolfie, the school’s mascot, and see if it is possible to profile them. I do not know who plays Wolfie yet, I’m going to ask Athletics staff.

I would ask the person behind Wolfie what it is like to be in the costume, interacting with students and others, and why they decided to take the job.

Since Wolfie is at events all the time, I would not be in shortage of photo opportunities.

I’m not sure how protective Athletics is in keeping Wolfie confidential, but I will find out, and I’m still thinking of a back-up idea.