Overview Anchor


Jack the Bulldog is Georgetown University’s official mascot – a well-known figure who is a beloved presence at Georgetown sporting events and campus activities.

The class of 1964 brought the first Jack the Bulldog to campus in 1962. According to popular legend, the puppy refused to answer to the name that students gave him (Hoya) and only responded to “Jack.”

Back to Top
Requests for Jack Anchor

Requests for Jack

On Nov. 30, 2023, Georgetown announced that a new mascot will arrive on campus in January 2024. Jack is still in training, and will slowly start making appearances on campus throughout the spring semester.

To request that Jack make an appearance at your event, submit the form here.

Jack the Bulldog is perched on a rock looking at the camera.

Back to Top
Jack Crew Anchor

Jack Crew

The Jack Crew is responsible for walking Jack during the day and evening and for escorting him to various events on campus. Students are asked to apply to become members of the Jack Crew before walking Jack.

To become a member, students should have experience with animals, be comfortable facilitating a variety of interpersonal interactions and be able to show evidence of school spirit. Students will also be asked to learn basic information about Jack and the history of dogs at Georgetown and show that they are comfortable handling dogs.

Back to Top
Vital Statistics Anchor

Vital Statistics


Name: Jack the Bulldog

Official Papered Name: Serchell’s John P. Carroll

Birthday: July 28, 2023

Arrival at Georgetown: January 2024

Birthplace: Hanford, California

Weight: 43 lbs

Color: Red with white markings

Lineage/Any Relation to Former Jacks: No relation

Favorite pastimes: Skateboarding, looking for admirers, chasing dragonflies, playing with other dogs

Favorite food: Cantaloupe, meat of any kind

Favorite hangouts: Anywhere with sun, preferably laying belly up

Back to Top
A History of Dogs at Georgetown Anchor

A History of Dogs at Georgetown

Though the nickname for its sports teams (and students in general) is “the Hoyas,” Georgetown adopted the English bulldog as its mascot in 1962. A group of students had lobbied for the move, arguing that Georgetown athletes were, like bulldogs, “tenacious.” A student committee purchased a two-year-old bulldog which they had hoped to name “Hoya.” However, the dog stubbornly refused (as bulldogs do) to respond to anything but his given name, “Jack.” The dog won, and students began to call him “Jack” – beginning a tradition that continues today.

Over time, the tradition of a permanent, on-campus mascot was replaced by a student in a bulldog suit. However, seniors in the class of 1999 began a “Bring Jack Back” campaign and succeeded in welcoming a new Jack to campus in March of 1999. Unfortunately, this Jack (now “the elder”) had to retire in 2003 when his caretaker, Hoya alum Scott Pilarz S.J., became president of the University of Scranton.

Jack Sr. was born on May 3, 2003. He arrived at Georgetown on July 19 of the same year. While Jack Sr.’s official mascot duties ended in 2012, he continued to live on campus, spending his days resting in the lobby of the Jesuit Residence and evenings at his apartment in New South (which he shared with Rev. Christopher Steck, S.J., associate professor in the Department of Theology).

In April of 2012, the Georgetown community welcomed Jack, Jr. (J.J.) to Georgetown as mascot-in-training. When the mascot lifestyle proved too hectic and exciting for J.J., he returned to a home environment with a loving family, and retired from mascot duties.

The next “Jack the Bulldog” arrived in October 2013, a generous gift from champion bulldog breeder and Hoya parent, Janice Hochstetler. While on the Hilltop, Jack impressed students, parents and Hoyas fans alike with his impressive skateboarding skills. Jack lived in a university townhouse with his caretaker McKenzie Stough (C’13), who worked in Georgetown’s Office of Communications. Jack retired in summer 2019.

The next Jack arrived on the Hilltop in the fall of 2019. Jack enjoyed making appearances at Georgetown Athletics events, especially basketball games at Capital One Arena. He also loved meeting new people, and always loved saying hello to prospective students on campus tours. On the weekends, Jack loved to run around off-leash on Healy and Copley Lawns. Most of all, he loved being with his Jack Crew.

The most recent Jack the Bulldog arrived at Georgetown in January 2024. While Jack is still in training, he will slowly start making appearances on campus throughout the spring semester. Jack resides with his caretaker Cory Peterson, the Associate Vice President for Community Engagement and Local Government Affairs.

A version of this story by former archivist Jon Reynolds (C’65), who passed away in 2000, ran in a 1983 issue of Georgetown Magazine.

Back to Top
Jack and the Jesuits Anchor

Jack and the Jesuits


Would the spirituality of another religious community better suit Jack?

Some other religious communities are better known for their devotion to animals than the Jesuits. The Franciscans, for example, have a tradition of blessing animals on the feast day of their founder, and some communities of monks have made raising dogs part of their monastic labor.

God’s Creatures
But Jesuit spirituality has its own tradition of valuing God’s creatures. At the end of his Spiritual Exercises, St. Ignatius of Loyola, founder of the Jesuits, asks the retreat participant to look with wonder at all of God’s creatures. Ignatius asked them to find in themselves the labor of God’s spirit – thus the Jesuit motto of “finding God in all things.”

The Jesuit poet Gerard Manley Hopkins, S.J., captured well this idea of finding God in the good things of the world with his poem “Pied Beauty,” which includes these lines:

“Glory be to God for dappled things -– For skies of couple-colour as a brinded cow; For rose-moles all in stipple upon trout that swim; Fresh-fire coal chestnut-falls; finches’ wings; Landscape plotted and pieced – fold, fallow, and plough; And all trades, their gear and tackle and trim. …

… All things counter, original, spare, strange; Whatever is fickle, freckled (who knows how?) With swift, slow; sweet, sour; addazzle, dim; He fathers-forth whose beauty is past change: Praise him.”

Jesuit spirituality encourages people to ponder and experience a God who works personally and directly in their lives – a God who labors in big and small events, in the people and things of their daily existence.

Element of Mystery
How God works in our world always has an element of mystery to it, and so one cannot know for sure exactly how or where God is laboring in any creature.

The most that can be said about Jack the Bulldog is that he has made a real contribution to the well-being of student life at Georgetown. As one of the many cherished traditions at Georgetown, Jack helps draw Hoyas together and foster a sense of community among them. Perhaps in that small contribution by Jack to life on Hilltop, one can see a fragment of God’s labor of love.

One doesn’t have to be a Franciscan to love a dog like Jack.

Back to Top