The Gong is a recent tradition. Mandated by a meeting of the members, and purchased in 2006, The Gong is the symbol of the Carleton Student Engineering Society. The Gong opens all of our important events, and is brought in travel form to conferences as a symbol of our spirit and pride. The Gong has never been stolen (in either large or travel size) by a rival school...until the year 2012 at ESSCO AGM 2012 when Conestoga stole the mini-Gong.
The current President is the only member that is allowed to touch the Gong or beat the Gong. The Gong must remain in the Gong-dom at all times when not in use and must be visible for all the members to see.
The NUT, was officially adopted as Conestoga Engineering Society’s conference mascot on March 15th, 2012. It was unveiled, not yet coated, at its’ first conference, ESSCO AGM, on June 15 , 2012 held at Queen’s University in Kingston.
The NUT came to us already having a hard life. It began its’ existence securing a large gas turbine to the ground It was discarded after its life cycle had been completed. Connor Olsen, at that time VPI, obtained The NUT (legally). The design worked into The NUT was decided on by the 2011-2012 CES council. They decided that “CONESTOGA ENGINEERING SOCIETY” would be milled into the face and ‘pockets’ would be milled out the back to make The NUT lighter. Although the ‘pockets’ perfectly fit shot glasses, no one admits to planning that. John Wisenberg a fourth year MSE student and member of CES, and Sean Mance, the current shop supervisor, were responsible for the machining of the nut.
The NUT has strong meaning to the beginnings of the society. Many early members had attended post-secondary education elsewhere and had been rejected, and hence found a home in Conestoga, much like The NUT. Though it reminds us of engineers limitations, both in our knowledge and the equipment we work with, The NUT also likens to the Iron Ring which we receive at the completion of our program. The NUT is a large fastener that is only useful when paired with an equally large bolt, much like our theoretical education must be paired with application that our MSE program so famously does. It’s big, it’s beautiful, it’s shiny... it’s us!
University of Waterloo
The Tool is a sixty-inch triple chrome-plated adjustable pipe wrench, forged by the Ridge Tool Company of Elyria, OH, USA. It is the only known fully chromed pipe wrench of its type in the world, and is the mascot of the University of Waterloo Engineering Society. Its history goes back to the early days of the University.
In the late 1960s, the Engineering Society had no official mascot. Being barely 10 year old, the Society decided to begin the process of selecting and acquiring an object that would become the Society’s official mascot and icon – something to represent the immense pride and spirit that Waterloo Engineering had.
Several ideas were discussed, but the two most popular ideas for a mascot were a pipe wrench (a symbol of the “Plummer and Proud of It” attitude championed by Ken Loach, Chemical ’71), and a sword. Through a public vote in meetings of both Society “A” and Society “B”, it was determined that the wrench would be the mascot, and it would be big.
Jim Pike, Society “A” President at the time, then began the search for the new mascot, and while on a co-op work term, found a suitable choice: the Ridge Tool Company’s straight pipe wrench model No. 60. However, at a cost of $350, it was unattainable for the young Engineering Society.
Jim decided to send a letter to the Ridge Tool Company and explain what they wanted to do, what the wrench would mean to the society, and if they would donate one. The company’s response was an overwhelming “yes” with only two conditions: that it would be known as “The Ridgid Tool”, and that it would retain its original orange colours out of respect for the Ridge Tool Company.
The Tool was chromed within a few hours of Pike picking it up from the supplier in the summer of 1968, although he admits that he “should have had a Chemical Engineer along to explain what happens to orange paint in a chrome dip.” As for the name “The Ridgid Tool”, he won’t say what exactly happened, except that it did get lots of mileage and notoriety before the official name change.
With The Tool coming to the University of Waterloo, it was determined that a group of dedicated students was needed to protect it and thus, the Action Committee was formed. It was their duty to be the official guardians of the Tool in public and in private. Over time, these students came to be known as Tool Bearers, and the Action Committee was dissolved. There are no publicly known details about the Tool Bearers today, except that whenever the Tool is around, they are as well, silently guarding it in their black and gold uniform.
In the entire history of the Tool, there have been few instances where it has been stolen by another school. The last time was in January of 1982, after the Welcome Back Stag. The Tool was being driven back in a convoy of vehicles after the Stag when the lead Tool Bearer made an unexpected stop by himself before reaching their destination. It was then that Engineering students from U of T attacked him and stole the Tool. After two months of negotiations between the schools, it was finally returned on March 4th, 1982, just before the Iron Ring Ceremony, encased in a 45-gallon drum of concrete. The tireless Tool Bearers worked non-stop to free the Tool from the concrete, and succeeded, only to find that “U of T” had been engraved into it.
Since 1982, however, no school or outside group has touched the Tool, emphasizing the dedication of the modern Tool Bearers to its protection and safe-keeping.
On October 5th, 1968, the Tool made its first official public appearance, at an Engineering Semi-Formal dance. From that point forward, it has been at every major event of the Engineering Society. Nowadays, the Tool is still the popular, albeit controversial, mascot of the Engineering Society. It shows up to any event where high spirit and pride is shown, ever guarded by the silent and unknown Tool Bearers.
Sporting a new layer of chrome, the Tool celebrated its 40th birthday (having been forged in 1967) on June 15, 2007, marking 40 years of spirit, pride and faith in Engineering at the University of Waterloo and the Waterloo Engineering Society. In Jim Pike’s words, “It’s big, it’s beautiful, it’s chromed… It’s us!”
McMaster Engineering students do not worship (with respect to engineering pride) any idols beyond the Fireball, or MES Flame. The Fireball is a very old symbol of McMaster University, and is now a protected symbol of the Engineering Faculty. The MES Flame is the logo of the Engineering Society.