Notre Dame cheerleading selects first female leprechaun mascot


Tyler James
South Bend Tribune

A woman has not served as Notre Dame’s leprechaun since it became the school’s official mascot in 1965.

That will change later this year. On Tuesday, Notre Dame’s cheerleading program announced Lynnette Wukie, who will be a junior in the fall, will serve as one of its three leprechauns for the 2019-20 school year.

In a video with her application, Wukie said, “Who says the Fighting Irish can’t fight like a girl?”

Wukie, who is majoring in film, television and theatre at Notre Dame, was a captain on her cheerleading and dance teams at Midview High School in Grafton, Ohio.

Senior-to-be Samuel Jackson and junior-to-be Conal Fagan will join Wukie as the three leprechauns next school year.

Together Jackson and Wukie will become the second and third African American leprechauns in school history. Mike Brown, a 2001 graduate, became the first African American leprechaun in 1999.

Fagan, a native of Derry, Northern Ireland, will be entering his second year as one of Notre Dame’s leprechauns. He became the first native Irishman to be given the role.

Notre Dame’s leprechauns represent the university at various games — including football, men’s and women’s basketball, volleyball, men’s and women’s soccer and hockey — and other events across campus and in the community.

Lynnette Wukie will become the first woman to serve as Notre Dame’s leprechaun next school year.