Sarah Perez is a senior from Bethesda, Md., majoring in interdisciplinary studies and is a co-director of Aubie. Her involvement with Aubie began through serving on Aubie Committee and she eventually took over her current position as Director of Aubie Productions where she coordinates the production of the Aubie Calendar and Aubie Claus. Learn more about her below.
What brought you to Auburn University initially?
One of the biggest draws for me coming to Auburn was the small town feel and the big time school spirit…the minute I walked on to Auburn’s campus I knew this was where I wanted to be. I cannot imagine the experiences I’ve had during my time here being at any other school. I believe whole-heartedly in the Auburn Family and the kindness and hospitality that we thrive on. I still drink my unsweet iced tea like a northerner, but the south has truly captured my heart.
What led you to getting involved as an Aubie Co-Director?
Before becoming a Director of Aubie, I worked with Aubie Committee building props that Aubie used during home football games. I was able to meet the co-directors at the time and they really explained the time commitment that goes into being a director, along with the perks of working with an award-winning mascot!
What do your responsibilities consist of?
The Aubie Program has three Aubie Co-Directors that handle the behind the scenes aspects of the program. Our jobs consist of acting as a liaison between our favorite tiger and the local community, managing Aubie’s schedule of over 1,000 appearances a year, and planning fundraising events for the Aubie Program.
What all do you do to help Aubie with appearances, and gameday experiences?
Since Aubie is a tiger, it is our job as directors to be his voice during an appearance. On game days we are down on the field with Aubie making sure he isn’t getting into too much trouble and assisting him with his props.
What is your favorite part of working with Aubie?
My favorite part of working with Aubie is taking him to appearances, especially at children’s events or elementary schools. You have not seen pure joy until you have seen a 1st grade student’s face when Aubie walks into their classroom. The chants of “Aubie, Aubie, Aubie” stick in my head the rest of the day. But not only children, everyone gets a smile on their face when they see Aubie, even if for only a minute as they pass my car and see a tiger in the front seat.
Did you travel with Aubie to the UCA Mascot National Championship? If so, what was it like preparing for that and how was it to experience another win?
I was fortunate enough to travel down to the UCA Mascot National Championship with him in Orlando. We have been preparing all year for this competition. The first component is a video submission that accounts for 50% of your total score. Since April, the directors filmed Aubie at different events or games to collect footage for the video. We ended up getting first place in our video, earning us a bid to the national championship. The last 50% of a mascot’s score comes from a skit performed at the championship. Aubie came up with the jokes and choreography of the skit, and then the directors helped him build all of the props he needed. We started right after finals and it took us about 6 weeks to get everything in competition shape. To see Aubie win his 9th National Championship really made sleepless nights and paint stained clothes worth it.
by Catherine Abernathy
Last modified: 02/11/2016