MATTOON, Ill. (WCIA) — A hot-selling book at Lake Land College in Mattoon isn’t a textbook, but a children’s book about the school’s mascot.
The campus bookstore can’t print enough of them. Appropriately titled “High Fives for Laker Louie,” it’s all about the school’s mascot, Duck Louie, meeting students and faculty across campus.
The book’s author, Lisa Shurmard-Shelton, is also the Student Life Director. She was inspired to make it about Lake Land College after reading other mascot-centered books to her own children, Zach and Roxy.
“From reading books to my own children, I knew that I wanted it to be interactive. And that’s why it’s ‘High Fives for Laker Louie,’ because I wanted the vision to be where the children were actually kind of getting up and interacting with the high-five, with the mascot,” Shurmard-Shelton said.
Years later, a co-worker connected her with campus newspaper illustrator, Brett Sawyer, who took her script and ideas and brought it to life. The final product was an interactive and illustrative book that shows Laker Louie going around to several students on campus and offering his help.
“He offers up a wing to help [the nursing students] out, but they tell him they can only practice on humans. He goes to our cosmetology department and offers to do a haircut with them, but they don’t cut feathers. They only cut human hair. But at any rate, at the end of the day, they always give a high-five to Louie,” Shurmard-Shelton said.
She said the entire experience has been rewarding.
“I obviously love Lake Land College. I love Laker Louie. But to be able to put it all together in a way that provides money toward scholarships, that can reach a young population of students who are hopefully future Lakers, it’s just been a joy.”
All proceeds of the book go directly toward funding scholarships through the Lake Land College Foundation.