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On the Spot

Daniel Formanowicz - Professor and associate chair of the Department of Biology and carrier of the new mace

Professor Daniel Formanowicz with the UT Arlington mace

Spotted: 3:44 p.m. Aug. 22 in the Texas Hall lobby before the MavsMeet New Student Convocation

How were you selected to carry the mace?

The mace is generally carried at University events by the current chair of the Faculty Senate. He wasn’t available, and I’m the most recent past chair. I carried the old mace at University events for two years.

Is the new one heavy?

Actually, it’s much lighter and longer than the old mace. The old wooden mace, in particular, is very top heavy.

What do you think of the new design?

Since the new one was created from glass and metal, it’s a much brighter, more elegant symbol of the University. David Keens has created a beautiful piece that I think represents the increasingly dynamic, creative and innovative nature of the UT Arlington experience.

What is the academic significance of the mace?

Maces were originally weapons that were used during the Middle Ages—usually with nasty spikes or knobs on them—but have evolved into symbols of authority used during official ceremonies by academic institutions and, in some cases, by governments.

Do you worry about tripping and breaking it?

This is the first time the new mace has been used at a University event. Am I worried about breaking it? Yes, particularly since David spent 15 minutes telling me how fragile it is while showing me—quite precisely, I would add—how to carry it. Everyone around me, including President Spaniolo and Provost Bobbitt, was telling me how glad they were they didn’t have to carry it.

How is the mace stored?

It has a wooden case specifically designed and built to house it when not in use.

What makes a good mace bearer?

Steady hands and gait? I’m not sure. Steady nerves as well, perhaps, since the new mace is 4 feet long and almost entirely made of glass.


See more of the UT Arlington mace in the story 'UT Arlington's new mace'.

— Jim Patterson

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