All that is unique to Wilmington College and University of North Carolina Wilmington

that makes it "Seahawk Style"

tra·di·tion    (tr-dshn)
  1. The passing down of elements of a culture from generation to generation, especially by oral communication.
  2. A mode of thought or behavior followed by a people continuously from generation to generation; a custom or usage.                                                  
  3. A set of such customs and usages viewed as a coherent body of precedents influencing the present: followed family  tradition in dress and manners.
  4. A time-honored practice or set of such practices.


What is a Seahawk?

Why a Seahawk?

History of the mascot

School Colors

School Motto

School Seal

School Logo

School Songs




Mission Statement

What is a Seahawk? 

Ask the person on the street and the answer will vary with geography... a bird that lives near the ocean or

circles over head at the nearest fast food venue... or maybe a west coast professional football team.  But

along the Atlantic Seaboard the answer will be ...that mascot of the University of North Carolina Wilmington,

the athletic teams, any student attending or alumni.

To further identify it could be anyone that supports the school and its programs.



Why a Seahawk?

The first student council of Wilmington College adopted this nickname in 1947.  “Seahawks” were chosen

due to the popularity of the Iowa Seahawks, known for its excellent athletic teams at the time.  Suggested

by Carl E. Mason and LeRoy Towles and then voted on by current students.  Maurice “Houck” Moore was also

involved with this process according to Adrian Hurst.  This fit Wilmington College due to its close proximity to

the Atlantic Ocean. 

The prize for the suggestions was two free season tickets for all basketball games for two years, but Mason and

Towles both played basketball and did not need the tickets.

UNCW Sports


History of the mascot

The many faces of Sammy the Seahawk over the years.

Here is the whole story of how the mascot was chosen and visual changes through the years.

Mascot Story

2004 - November - student newspaper Seahawk sponsored a contest to give the Seahawk a formal

            name.  Over 200 entries were submitted with the winning one suggested by student

            Kristen A. Jorgenson - "Sammy C. Hawk"

Sammy's blog


School Colors 

The traditional colors are directly related to the University's geographic proximity to the ocean,

Gold, for the sand and Green, for the ocean as suggested by then art instructor, Emma Lawson.

1992 Athletic Director, Paul Miller suggested adding the color Navy for contrast.

And then came TEAL! An unusual color that helps set UNCW apart from all the others in the sixteen campus system.

What about teal as a school color? School Color

Changes had to be made in the School Fight Song to include this new color.


School Seal

Adopted by the Board of Trustees in 1958 it was redesigned in 1968 to include the school motto.

In 1969 it was redesigned again to include university status. The seal is restricted to more formal useage such as legal documents and diplomas.

University Seal .


School Motto

Discere Aude


School Logos

1987 – introduction of pediment style for 40th Anniversary as a uniform symbol to represent UNCW.

It denotes visual identity of Georgian style architecture found throughout the campus. Designed by Graphic Spectrum

and it is a registered trademark of the university.  The logo was updated in 1993 and the official font

changed in 1994.

Seahawk – 1st looked like a parrot 1950s, 2nd attacking pose 1960s, 3rd, 1973-74 soaring bird, 4th feisty-strutting

bird porting UNCW on chest.  Current logo futuristic version of Seahawk features a masked bird with a wave.


School Songs

1957 Seahawks Fight Song written by Bob Shaffer with music by Carl Wilson. 

“Here come the Seahawks, Let’s give a cheer.  Stand up and shout so that they can hear. 

When they jump and pass and shoot, be sure you’re there to clap and root! 

We know they’ll win the game tonight, Cause they will get in there and fight. 

So come on gang and shout for all, The Seahawks, we love them all!"

1957 Alma Mater written by Charles Hunnicutt with music by Lloyd Hudson. 

It was done under the guidance of the writing club Pen Pushers.

Victory Song

  UNC, Wilmington
It’s blue, teal, gold for me.

Soaring Seahawks, scoring Seahawks,
Champions of land and sea.


The Seahawk team we proudly hail,
Our Seahawk pride will never fail.

  Hail to thee, oh mighty Seahawk.
On to victory!





1949 - Naming contest held for upcoming school publication with the winner to receive a free annual. 

The price of owning one was $3.50 if ordered before Christmas and $4 thereafter.  Student Jack Moore

submitted the winning entry "Fledgling - a young bird when after receiving training in its mother's nest,

starts out into the world on its own to make its way with that training it received as a foundation."

1950 - Student produced yearbook, 1st published 1950 while Wilmington College until 1989 as UNCW. 

This offers a window into the past of the college via photographic images of students, faculty, sports and social activities.


Beginning as a few mimeographed sheets, the official campus newspaper started in 1947. 

It was limited in editions and dissolved by 1952.  The first printing as a news print paper began in 1958

and continues until this date.  The Seahawk offers a source of student and faculty information as well as

serving as a time capsule of campus events and ideals.  There have been several unofficial student newspapers

including the Seasquawk.

Hawk's Eye

A column that ran in the Wilmington Star Newspaper featuring events about the college. 

Established strong community ties. Articles in the Wilmington Star News 1949

(Carlton Rhodes- assistant business manager of annual, associate editor of Seahawk)

column named by student Ed Hughes (Sunday edition through school year)

Campus Communique

The official bulletin of UNCW from 1970 until 2004 when it became an electronic publication under the name of @UNCW

The Atlantis

Literary magazine of UNCW, pulbished semi-annually since 1970.


Publication of the Department of Modern Languages from 1965-1968.



WC – was the moniker used by Wilmington College in 1947-49, but this was somewhat confusing at the

time as the Greensboro Women’s College also used ‘WC” as their identification.  Gradually, Wilmington

affectionately shortened its nickname to “Wil Co.”



Georgian Architecture standard as suggested by Frederick B. Graham, member of the Grounds and

Buildings Committee of the Board of Trustees in the 1960s.


UNCW Mission Statement

Adopted by the UNCW Board of Trustees on July 21, 2000.


The University of North Carolina at Wilmington is a public comprehensive university dedicated to learning through the integration

of teaching and mentoring with research and service. The college of arts and sciences, the professional schools, and the graduate school seek to stimulate intellectual curiosity, imagination, critical thinking, and thoughtful expression in a broad range of disciplines and professional fields. The university is committed to providing the highest quality undergraduate and graduate academic experience in an extensive array of programs at the baccalaureate and master’s levels, as well as a doctoral program in marine biology.  Our goal is excellence in teaching, scholarship, research, artistic achievement, and service.  UNCW encourages public access to its educational programs and is committed to diversity, international perspectives, and regional service. Our campus community strives to create a safe, supportive, and technologically progressive environment in which students, faculty, and staff work together to develop their interests, skills, and talents to the fullest extent. UNCW seeks to celebrate and study the heritage and environment of the coastal region, and to enrich its quality of life, economy, and education.

Statement adopted by the UNC Board of Trustees on April 29, 2005,
and pending Board of Governors' approval