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Meet Ace, Your NOVA Nighthawk!

Meet Ace, Your NOVA Nighthawk!

Dr. Scott Ralls, president of NOVA, reveals that our NOVA Nighthawk has a name.

"I'm excited to announce that our NOVA Nighthawk will be known as Ace,” said President Scott Ralls. "Ace evokes many positive meanings, such as a person who excels or the highest score on an exam, and we believe the name fits our mascot perfectly.”

In early September 2016, everyone in the region was invited to rate their favorite names on a scale of one to five. Suggested names included Midnight, Maverick, Lightning and Major. Write-ins were also allowed.

More than 4,400 people voted and when the responses were tallied, Ace came out on top. Next, a mascot suit will be created so Ace can attend athletic games and other events. Ace is expected to make appearances around NOVA starting in the spring 2017 semester.

Since Ace is a recent hatchling, not quite ready to meet the public, NOVA's Office of Marketing, Web and Creative Services answered some questions on Ace's behalf.

1. How does it feel to be the NOVA mascot?

I'm thrilled to be the NOVA mascot and honored to be the face of this wonderful academic institution that encourages everyone to spread their wings. Every year, NOVA welcomes more than 75,000 students through its doors and provides opportunities for each and everyone – including funny birds like me. I can't wait to cheer on the Nighthawks and be part of the community.

2. Do you love the College? Why?

I love how the College embraces everyone. Diversity is celebrated at NOVA, even a mascot like me covered in feathers feels comfortable soaring around NOVA campuses.

3. What are your favorite things to do in your spare time when you are not on mascot duty?

Tweeting is my favorite pastime, so I always follow NOVA's Twitter feed (@NOVAcommcollege) and NOVA President Scott Ralls (@NOVA_Prez) for the latest college news. I also enjoy roosting with my friends at Barnes & Noble bookstores and campus cafes and flying to all the campuses.

4. Where are some places that students can catch you this spring?

Like everyone at NOVA, I have a busy nest, but I feel it's important to make time for fun. I will swoop into as many NOVA events as my schedule allows to show my Nighthawk pride. Events like basketball games and campus activities like the Spring Fling. Flying from campus-to-campus takes a lot of time, but as I become a stronger flyer I should be able to attend more events.

5. What are some of your favorite foods, drinks, hobbies?

Foods: As a growing bird, I eat many small meals throughout the day. I love gummy worms, but only after I've eaten healthier foods like fruit, seeds and real worms (which aren't as appetizing as gummies).

Drinks: Since I recently hatched, water is my drink of choice. I'm looking forward to trying other things when I'm older. I've heard grape soda is tasty!

Hobbies: My favorite hobby is cheering for all NOVA athletic teams. Go Nighthawks! I also enjoy outdoor activities including flying, of course.

6. Is there anything else that you would like to share?

I was born to be your mascot. I am fierce, strong and determined to bring the fighting spirit to all NOVA events. I look forward to meeting as many people as possible, so please come out to see me. One big advantage of being the NOVA Nighthawk mascot is that I get to call six campuses home. How many mascots can say that?

To learn more about your NOVA Nighthawk, go to www.nvcc.edu/mascot.