Saturday, November 28, 2015

Temple U. in search of the smallest owl

Temple University's Facebook page has an impromptu competition underway to find the smallest owl.

Temple U. in search of the smallest owl

In this March 20, 2009, file photo, the Temple Owl mascot dances on the court during a first-round men´s NCAA college basketball tournament game in Miami. (Photo/Lynne Sladky, File)
In this March 20, 2009, file photo, the Temple Owl mascot dances on the court during a first-round men's NCAA college basketball tournament game in Miami. (Photo/Lynne Sladky, File)

You never know what you’re going to find on a university Facebook page.

On Monday, Temple University spokeswoman Eryn Jelesiewicz posted a picture of a tiny, black rubber owl that she received from her sister, touting it as “the smallest owl ever.” An owl, of course, is Temple’s mascot.

“They gave it to me because I work at Temple and I went to Temple,” Jelesiewicz said.

Eighty-nine people “liked” her owl, but she wasn’t ready for what happened next: Competition.

Someone posted an owl dwarfed by a paper clip. Another placed an owl next to a quarter.

Then it got really deep: A microscopic owl from a section of kidney shown in the New England Journal of Medicine.

But it wasn’t over yet.

Researchers at Rice University, which also has an owl for a mascot, found owl shapes in hydrogen atoms on a graphene substrate.

Whatever that is.

But the one that got the most “likes” was a tiny owl that the poster said appears on a $1 bill. Get out your magnifying glass and check it out.

You can see them all on Temple’s facebook page at

It’s not the first time that creativity in the public relations office played out on Facebook. A few months ago, someone in the office took a picture of the manholes on campus, graced with a “T” for Temple.

That got hundreds of likes, said chief spokesman Ray Betzner.

“You never know what’s going to get people to interact,” Jelesiewicz said.

Well, yes, we do.

Tiny owls and Temple-branded manholes.

The little things in life that make us smile.

Contact Susan Snyder at 215-854-4693 or or follow on Twitter @ssnyderinq

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CampusInq provides higher education news about colleges and universities throughout the Philadelphia region and beyond. Look here for breaking news stories, features and newsy nuggets that might or might not appear in the print version of the Inquirer.

Susan Snyder
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