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Paws, everyone’s favorite mascot, kicks off world tour with dynamic show on Northeastern’s Boston campus

The university’s mascot will travel across the Northeastern’s global campuses for pop up events, produced with local student organizations.

Paws striking a pose at the Paws World Tour event.
Paws wore fans’ favorite glittery black jumpsuit when he announced the Paws World Tour at a surprise concert on the Boston campus Wednesday night. Photo by Matthew Modoono/Northeastern University

For more than 20 years Paws — Northeastern’s lovable canine mascot — has been putting smiles on the faces of students on the Boston campus.

Now he is taking his infectious and mischievous personality across the university’s global campuses.

The announcement of the Paws World Tour was made Wednesday night before a large and loud gathering of hundreds of students, faculty and staff on the Snell Library Quad on the Boston campus.

In a glittery jumpsuit and a pink feather boa, Paws announced the tour during a surprise concert. Throughout the spring semester, he will be bringing his trademark “paws-itivity” and excitement to the university’s campuses in Oakland, London, Seattle, Vancouver and Portland, Maine, on the first leg of his world tour. 

Standing in the line for some Paws merchandise, Madison Cerda, a second-year nursing major in the Bouvé College of Health Sciences, said she is a big fan of Northeastern’s mascot.

“He lifts the school’s spirit to such a high level that everyone else is trying to match … it is so hard to do,” she said. “But that means that we are so above the baseline of all the other schools.”

Paws’ appearance Wednesday put a smile on everyone’s face.

“Many people were laughing, and they were so cheered up, and they got energized randomly,” said Darshan Gohil, a Northeastern student pursuing a master’s degree in information systems.

To launch his tour, Paws invited five talented student organizations to team up and throw a surprise show on the Boston campus — the mascot’s homebase. The showcase included diverse and exciting dance and singing performances by The Northeastern Bhangra Team, Northeastern University Unisons A Cappella, Stepping On Another Level (SOAL), Irish Dance Club of Northeastern University and NU Aaroh.

At Paws’ request, Kelsey Hanle, a senior from the College of Engineering, hosted the show. An experienced emcee, Hanle previously hosted the president’s convocation ceremony in September and the annual Joy and Light holiday showcase in December. 

Before the start of the show, Paws mingled with students gathering in the quad, joking and posing for photos. He wore fans’ favorite glittery black jumpsuit that sparkled in the afternoon sunlight and a pink feather boa.

Gohil was happy, he said, to be able to finally experience in person Northeastern events that he used to see on Instagram and TikTok.  


Paws can’t wait to see everyone for his world tour debut! Snell Quad at 5 pm, Wednesday March 13th.

♬ original sound – Northeastern

Paws opened the show with a bang — fog columns went off in the background and framed him as he joyously and energetic danced alone on stage. As Hanle joined him on stage, she wore a matching pink boa as well.

“Taylor Swift has got some competition,” Hanle said announcing the Paws World Tour.

The Northeastern Bhangra Team performed traditional Punjabi dance to a modern Punjabi song. The vibrant, fast-paced performance stirred up the crowd and set the tone for the rest of the show.

The Northeastern University Unisons A Cappella group performed “Sanctify” by Years & Years and Stepping On Another Level contributed a step dance.

Donnell Wendon, a senior computer science and philosophy major, said he saw the Paws event live on TikTok and rushed out to the quad to see him.

“The show was a nice surprise,” he said.

Wendon said jokingly that he feels “at home” when he sees Paws around the campus.

The opening chords of the Dropkick Murphys’ song, “I’m Shipping Up to Boston,” made more people stop in their tracks in the quad and watch the performance of the Irish Dance Club of Northeastern University.

Gabrielle Shyllon, a first-year criminal justice and psychology student, and Matthew O’Connor, a first-year psychology major, watched one of their friends, an Irish step dancer, perform. 

O’Connor said the surprise show was something different and cool to watch. He was also happy to get a poster of Paws.

“I have a little bit of a crush on him,” O’Connor said.

“He is a character,” Shyllon said. 

The show concluded with an acoustic number from NU Aaroh, an organization that aims to bring music lovers together with a focus on the different types of Indian music.

The event also featured free Paws-branded merchandise such as stickers, posters, a special edition of the Paws newspaper that included a Northeastern Global News story about the mascot and some candy and cookies.

While waiting in line for the merchandise, Daunte Pean, a fourth-year mechanical engineering student, said he loves seeing Paws at the sports games and around the campus.

“It brings a lot more school spirit,” he said. “I love the school’s spirit.”

The university introduced Paws as its mascot in fall 2003. He began working at sports games in the 2004 winter season. 

Since 2022, Paws has become a thriving TikTok star, with millions of views for his most popular videos. 

The next stops on the Paws World Tour are coming up with an appearance at PawsHacks on the Oakland campus on March 15 and a cornhole competition hosted by Paws on the London campus on March 19 with additional tour dates across the global university system to be released throughout the spring semester. 

Follow the Paws World Tour on Instagram and TikTok as he makes his way across the Northeastern global university system.