Southgate Mural Receives “Relentless” Makeover

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You can’t miss it.

The Panther mural that for more than 20 years has adorned the south wall of Southgate Apartments’ Building M has received a much-needed facelift.

A companion to Florida Tech’s landmark mural in Downtown Melbourne and created by the same artist, Christopher Maslow, “Relentless” stands three stories high and, like the downtown mural, depicts a Panther plunging through space, sky, land and sea—a nod to the many areas in which the university conducts its groundbreaking research.

“We needed a change and some color,” said Jace Petrowski, president of the Student Government Association (SGA), which commissioned the piece. “So, when we decided to paint over and update the wall, we couldn’t have been more fortunate to have found Chris to give our mascot a fresh, new look!”

Completed Feb. 6 after four weeks of intense artistry, the new mural pays homage to Florida Tech’s roots through a series of 15 student body-selected “Easter eggs” hidden within its strokes.

Can you find them all? Let us help. 

(Helpful Hint: Click the gridded image above, then the “Expand the image” icon in the top right corner for a closer look!)

“1958” | 1-D

When it all began. Jerome P. Keuper founded Brevard Engineering College, now Florida Tech, the same year the U.S. space program was established.

“2020” | 1-A

The year of the mural’s completion.

Rowing Shell | D-6

Honoring men’s crew. The program is one of the university’s longest-standing and most-winning athletics programs.

Falcon Heavy Rocket | 3-B

Honoring the university’s space roots. Don’t forget to look up when you visit, as you can still see rocket launches from Kennedy Space Center on campus.

Atomic Toilet | 2-E

A Florida Tech landmark. A small structure near Crawford Tower, the “toilet” sits above an underground facility that, in the 1970s, was used to conduct experiments aimed at using radioactive cobalt-60 to purify sewage water. What is down there now is up to your imagination.

Joy and Gordon Patterson Botanical Garden Sign | 2-D

Campus’s most serene setting. Dedicated to Gordon and Joy Patterson, both School of Arts and Communication faculty, Patterson Botanical Garden is 15 acres of lush vegetation, natural water features and trails.

Radiation Inc. Logo | 5-A

Local roots. In 1950, electronics and space industry pioneers Homer Denius and George Shaw founded Radiation Inc. Denius and Shaw, whose names you may recognize as university buildings, were some of Florida Tech’s earliest supporters. After just 17 years, their company had grown to 5,000 employees and was acquired by Harris Corp., now L3Harris Technologies Inc., and it is still one of Florida Tech’s greatest corporate supporters.

SGA Logo | 7-E

The impetus for this mural. SGA acts as a liaison between the student body and the faculty, staff and administration by presenting programs, projects and activities that reflect consensus priorities of the student body—like this mural!

Dr. McCay Portrait | 1-C

Our leader. Florida Tech’s fifth president, T. Dwayne McCay supported the mural’s creation from the beginning. Fun fact: McCay is a member of both the National Academy of Inventors and the Florida Inventors Hall of Fame!

Old School House | 2-D

A reminder how far we’ve come. To educate children in the area, in 1883, Melbourne’s pioneering families created the small school house that now sits at the entrance to Patterson Botanical Garden.

Clock Tower | 1-B

A meaningful gift. During the ’70s and ’80s, Florida Tech was a leader in granting graduate fellowships to Chinese students. So, in 1981, Taiwanese officials presented the intricately embellished Chao Tsu-Yu Chinese clock to the university as a gift.

Melbourne Mammoth | 1-E

Florida Tech’s fossil. The remains of a Columbian mammoth were discovered on campus in the 1920s. Today, part of the gigantic creature’s 10,000-year-old molar is on display in Evans Library.

Quail Eggs | 1-B

The subject of perhaps the zaniest tale in university lore. In fall 1972, Keuper decided to launch a quail hatchery on campus. By early December, FIT Farms Inc. housed 300 quails that were “laying like mad.” However, marketing the eggs proved difficult, and by 1974, Keuper had decided to close the hatchery.

Tree Face | 5-E (hidden)

A mysterious marker. One day, no one is quite sure when, a happy little face just showed up on a tree trunk, and it has become a cheerful campus treasure. Its image in the mural is hidden behind the electrical box in this photo, but you’ll find the real thing outside Evans Library, facing the covered bridge.

Oyster | 7-E

Representative of one of Florida Tech’s biggest research endeavors: cleaning up the Indian River Lagoon. Since oysters act as living filters, removing impurities from the water naturally, efficiently and constantly, Florida Tech, Brevard County and Brevard Zoo have created the Living Shoreline project to restore oyster beds in the lagoon.

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