The ceremonial mace has been used through the centuries as a symbol of order and authority. At Purdue Northwest′s commencement ceremonies, the Mace is at the head of the academic procession. It is carried before the Chancellor and other dignitaries in the platform party, but did you ever wonder how it came to be and what it means?
The Purdue Northwest Mace was specially designed and fabricated by PNW students Jesus De La Cruz, Jr. and Tom Radziejeski. Both are students of the College of Technology. De La Cruz is a current graduate student pursuing a Master’s of Science in Technology and expects to graduate in December 2019. Radziejeski recently graduated with his Bachelor’s of Science in Mechanical Engineering Technology.
First used at the Spring 2018 Commencement Exercises, the Mace′s heavy, baton-like shaft was designed to reflect the unity of the Hammond and Westville campuses and the University’s mission of learning, discovery and engagement.
Here is the meaning of other visual elements of the Mace.
The Purdue Northwest Mace was designed to resemble the structure of a tree. The base of the Mace, the roots, portrays the birth of the University with a single star representing the original demand for the two campuses after World War II. The structure of the Mace is strong and solid like the trunk of a tree.
The Three Pillars
The pillars start under the handle and continue above it. The three pillars represent a rigid support for the three stated aims of the University – education, research and service.
The Three Rings
The Mace has three sets of rings: below the handle, above the handle and below the pentagon. These rings represent the land grant tradition: learning, discovery and engagement.
The pentagon sits above the three pillars. The pentagon’s five sides represent the five academic Colleges of the University: College of Business; College of Engineering and Sciences; College of Humanities, Education and Social Sciences; College of Nursing; and College of Technology.
The Seal Mount
The seal mount sits on the pentagon, with the University seal above it. The mount resembles a double helix. The crossing over of each side represents the unity of the two campuses of Purdue Northwest.
The University Seal
The Purdue University Northwest seal features a griffin, the symbol of strength in medieval heraldry. The three-part shield indicates the three stated aims of the University – education, research and service.