Dolphin Pond Returns To Campus

What once was a classic background for photos, a popular hang-out spot for many students and an overall SLU staple—a pond with seven ceramic dolphins—is now the Interdisciplinary Science and Engineering (ISE) Building. 

     These beloved dolphins were promised a return, and three years later, that promise is set to be fulfilled.

     “I remember taking a picture near it for SLU 101, like every group did, and I watched one group stand in it to take a picture,” senior Ayeza Syed said. 

     “I also remember watching a video where the Muslim Students’ Association did a scavenger hunt and people swam in the pond.”

     After 26 years on campus, the dolphins went for a swim in 2018 to make space for the new science building on campus. Toward the end of 2021, construction for a new Dolphin Pond began. 

    “It was a landmark of the campus. Often we would reference ‘meeting up at the Dolphin Pond,’” alumnus Mustafaa Mahmood said. “It was very nice to walk by on the way to class.”

    The upcoming pond’s location is near Grand Hall, making it viewable to both the SLU community and the public. Part of the prominence of this structure is due to its sheer size; the old pond stretched 120 feet long and the new one is expected to be 96 feet in length. 

    “I just came to school one day and there was a bunch of construction in that area and then [the Dolphin Pond] was gone,” Syed said.

   “I always like throwing pennies into fountains and making wishes, so that was always there freshman year whenever I wanted to do it.”

    As the dolphins have been kept in a warehouse and had no on-campus presence the past three years, to many freshmen, the concept has sparked some questions.

    “I was confused because I had never heard of the previous Dolphin Pond, so I thought it was a bit random,” freshman Saima Farook said. 

    “Since I had no idea, I thought they were bringing real dolphins, so I got excited. But then someone told me about the previous pond.”

    For many alumni, this pond brings back fond memories, but to present students, it is an opportunity to make new ones.

   “I didn’t really get why they specifically wanted dolphins because I thought they would do something related to our mascot, the Billiken. But, overall, I think it would be a pretty-looking fountain in a central part of SLU,” Farook said. 

   Overall, the SLU community is excited about the scenery these sculptures will provide. 

    “Honestly, I like [the new location] more because it is in a more central part of campus and I would walk past it more often than I did before,” Syed said.