Culture and traditions
The Fireball is the official symbol of McMaster Engineering. It historically comes from the coat of arms from Hamilton College. The McMaster Faculty of Engineering emerged from Hamilton College and was founded in 1958 and adopted the red fireball as it’s symbol in 1960. It is used by both students and the faculty academic excellence and faculty pride. On a symbolic level the fireball represents that energy runs through all disciplines of science and engineering.
The McMaster Redsuits are the awesome group of students that volunteer as Engineering Representatives during Welcome Week. They promote engineering spirit in our community. You can also see them volunteering at MES events throughout the year and handing out crackers at exam time. If you’re interested in being involved with the Redsuits, Tryouts usually happen in February.
A Charity fundraiser in support of the Hamilton Ronald McDonald House. This event occurs annually on March 14th (3.14 = pi, if you didn’t pick up on that). We raise money by providing the opportunity for people to pie notable people in the community.
MES Canada Day
We’re not around on campus on July 1st to celebrate Canada Day, so we thought it would be better to bring Canada Day to us. Hosted in January, we try to celebrate all of the most amazing parts of Canada and bring them to our Engineering Community. Some highlights include a Pancake breakfast and mini curling!
Academic Flush is a bi-weekly board game café run by the MES Culture Committee. Snacks are provided to everyone, and all in the faculty of Engineering are welcomed, especially first years. Giving attendees a chance to relax and de-stress every other week. Stop by for a chance to play some of our Mac Eng Custom board games or a game of Euchre.
Other MacEng Traditions
Engineering frosh controllers aka a super hype group of student leaders that spread Mac Eng pride. They make up the bulk of the MES Volunteer force.
Our beloved Faculty Mascots, aka SP & WP!
Super Plumber & Wonder Plumber
We’re the type of people who say jokes that only we get, and more importantly, only we enjoy. Pi Day is the antithesis of this, because we have to needlessly explain to anyone who doesn’t immediately get that 3/14 is pi. We also enjoy the slapstick comedy of pieing someone in the face and raising money for a good cause. Pi Day is a charity event in support of the Hamilton Ronald McDonald House, which is located right across from our McMaster Campus.
Academic Flush was originally a bi-weekly kegger where “Academic Flush” used to be served. Academic Flush originally consisted of 2 packets of Tang Orange Juice Sugar Dust, 750 mL of vodka, and the remaining space was topped up with water. This used to be served in the Flush toilet. Nowadays, only the name of the event remains the same, with a slightly altered purpose. Snacking food is provided to everyone, and all in the faculty of Engineering are welcomed, especially first years. This event has kept its original spirit, of giving people a chance to relax and de-stress every other week.
We believe that engineers are called plummers because of the deep rooted military past… Allow us to elaborate. Most engineering in the day was done by military engineers (cheap labour, right?). Now, have you ever wondered why they used Plum bobs and everything they built was ‘just plum.’ Well, this is because the general at the time, Gen. (and noted Professor) Plum invented said engineering instrument and damn did it work good. This is also why engineers are purple, the colour of the Plum.
Hence, this is why engineers have forever been blessed with the moniker, PLUMMERS!!
We frequently prank other engineering schools, refer to the Pranksters Code! Examples include stealing the grease pole, Conestoga Nut, Painting Guelph cannon, and the Godiva Horse!
Who are we, Godiva’s Hymn, Ode to SP, and Ode to WP are just a few of our favourite cheers at MacEng! Refer to Eng Cheer Book for more examples.
Santa Claus Parade
Mac Eng takes this opportunity to engage with the Hamilton community by teaming up with our car teams to put together a group to walk in the Santa Claus Parade. Spreading cheer and candy canes to our Hamilton community.
Old Person Campfire
We invite notable Mac Eng Student leaders to come back and share their stories about Mac Eng over some s’mores. Letting them pass on their memories of Mac Eng and let them inspire the people currently here to make their own lasting memories to talk about.
As Engineers we have a bit of a rep for being loud and obnoxious, so we try and give back to the community by doing a cleanup in the Westdale area as many students and families live there. Usually once or twice and year and frequently good to coincide with right after homecoming!
McMaster Engineering Oath
We are the willing
Led by the unknowing
Doing the impossible
For the ungrateful
And we have been doing so much
With so little
For so long
That we are now qualified
To do anything with nothing
Santa Hog is when crazy engineers come out of hiding on the last Friday of classes in first term to bring cheer and joy to the panicking, exam-bound engineers at Mac. They make rounds to many engineering classes, bringing silly songs and a short break from class, while raising money for the Women’s Interval House. Additionally, 2 graduating engineers (usually Redsuits) are picked to be Santa & Mrs. Claus to lead in the caroling.
The West End is a little pub down Emerson St. that is frequented by engineering students. Upon graduation, after getting their Iron Rings and attending Kipling Formal, newly graduated McMaster Engineers will head to this little pub and carve their initials using their Iron Ring into the back wooden table.
MES Canada Day
We’re not around on campus on July 1st to celebrate Canada Day, so we thought it would be better to bring Canada Day to us. Hosted in January, we try to celebrate all of the most amazing parts of Canada and bring them forward to the general public. Some notable highlights include a pancake breakfast, mini curling, and a colouring contest. This is celebrated specifically on January 23rd because 1/23 and to mark the anniversary of the song book coming to light marking a good change in our McMaster Engineering Culture.
An important engineering tradition across Canada is the patches used to decorate coveralls (Redsuits if you're at Mac). Patches are frequently commemorative of events. Very commonly traded between different engineering schools.