Skip to main content

Communication Studies Department holds Mountaineer v. Mothman Debate

Should the Mountaineer be the official mascot of West Virginia University, or should it be the Mothman instead?

Towards end of the Fall 2023 semester, students taking classes in the Department of Communication Studies took to YouTube to debate this very question. Mountaineer v Mothman debate poster with QR code to enter and Comm Studies logo and a cartoon of both characters

Around 20 students entered the debate and created short videos that argued their point. They gave speeches, wrote poems, acted in skits and drew pictures to back up their arguments. Then, students and members of the Department of Communication Studies judged the debate entries over pizza and chose the best overall video, honorable mention, funniest video and most creative video. 

The prizes at stake? Target gift cards. 

“We were looking for something that would be fun and bring us together, but that would also tie in the skills that students learn in communication studies classes. Things like building strong arguments and connecting with audiences,” said Lindsay Morris-Neuberger Woodburn Professor and Chair of the Department of Communication Studies.

While both the Mothman and the Mountaineer had their merits, there was one clear winner: the Mountaineer, of course.  

“I thought the Mothman was really good mascot idea, but people were not feeling it,” Morris-Neuberger said. “We have a whole lot of Mountaineer fans.” 

All of the debate videos and the winners in each category are listed on the contest’s website.

The list of winners on the Mothman v Mountaineer debate website