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Skidmore College

Introducing (Doctor) Skids

by Peter MacDonald

Braedon Quinlan ’24 has been keeping a secret. Since last year, he has been Skids Scribner, Skidmore’s Thoroughbred mascot. He’s also applying to med school, has decorated Skidmore service, and has achieved an impressive research portfolio. Looking back on his time here, he found a way to do it all while still being himself, an accomplishment that is just “so Skidmore.” 

Finding Skidmore 

Braedon arrived at Skidmore knowing he wanted to go to medical school – he's known it since he was in grade school.  

As an admitted student, he talked multiple times on the phone with Health and Human Physiological Sciences Professor T.H. Reynolds about the major and the pre-med track. Those friendly conversations and an April 30 visit to campus (the day is etched in his memory) sealed the deal for the Arlington, Massachusetts, native. He was thrilled to be a Thoroughbred. 

Braedon would go on to major in biology and minor in chemistry, statistics, and the Periclean Honors Forum. He has spent countless hours in Professor of Biology Bernie Possidente’s circadian rhythm laboratory. He was also a peer health educator, chemistry tutor, and an EMT with Skidmore’s Emergency Medical Services team and later with the Town of Moreau’s Emergency Squad. 

This upcoming post-grad year, he will gain experience working with Kuchnir Dermatology in the Boston area while tackling med school applications. His goal is to be a pediatrician specializing in trauma or intensive care.  

Skids at Big Green Scream

Braedon as Skids at the Big Green Scream

Choosing Skidmore and joining a community 

But Braedon’s Skidmore story is much more than just checking the right med school boxes. “I went to a competitive high school, and of course, I was looking for a strong science program,” he says. When he laid eyes on Skidmore for the first time, “I loved it. People here are really nice. I knew I wanted to be part of this community.” 

He landed an Admissions tour guide position his first semester. “I’m outgoing, and it seemed fun. I was right, and I love it,” he says. "During my time here, I’ve had the opportunity to impact thousands of prospective students and families through tours, virtual info sessions, open houses, and more!”

His favorite admissions question? "I love sharing Skidmore trivia like the fact the dining hall makes over 1,000 chocolate chip cookies a day." 

The former high school volleyball player and theater performer also wanted to make an impact on student life, so he applied to be Skids, Skidmore's beloved mascot. Unfortunately, it was 2020 and the pandemic had put Skids in hibernation, so it didn’t work out … at first. 

In summer 2023, the Office of Communications and Marketing’s social media team came calling for a volunteer to be Skids for the first-year move-in day. “I’m your guy,” said Braedon. “I’ve been wanting to do this for four years.”  

Scrubs and Skids both, at the same time? Yes, you can if you’re a do-it-all Skidkid and you love making people smile! 

Braedon estimates that in one year he has donned the Skids costume more than two dozen times. Appearances have included the Big Green Scream, Pack the Rink, several Admissions open houses, and dozens of videos. 

One of his favorite memories — “a great moment” — is sidling up to President Marc C. Conner at Lovefest and giving him a rose and a huge hug. It was a classic Braedon move and one only Skids could unashamedly . 

Skids with President Conner

President Conner and Skids welcoming new students to Skidmore

The secret to being Skids 

So, what’s it like to be Skids? How do you do it?  

“I just go,” Braedon said.

It’s kind of off the wall, but it’s fun. I enjoy making people happy and I often see an immediate reaction which gives me more energy. On the flip side, the costume isn’t always easy to wear. It gets pretty hot in there. You’ve got to be altruistic to do this.”  

Braedon, who used YouTube to beef up his dance moves, also helped re-establish respect for mascot rules at Skidmore. Some things will always remain a secret, but as he will soon pass the tail onto another, please know:  

Always keep the magic: No talking, always wear a uniform, and don’t reveal your identity.  

Always give 110%: Skids is all about team spirit and positivity.  

Always respect that it’s a real job: It’s hard work to spread this much joy. Be nice to mascots!  

As he prepares for post-Skidmore life, Braedon held auditions to fill his and Skids’ big shoes.  

At the tryouts, Braedon kicked things off: “It’s great to be Skids if you like entertaining. And, if you’re shy, it’s a bonus that no one knows who you are. You can be unabashedly you.”  

And while the next Skids performer must remain a secret (see Rule No. 1 above), we can affirm that the talent is Braedon approved.  

To “Doctor Skids,” aka Braedon Quinlan, and every other member of the Class of 2024 who found a way to pursue all their passions, making the most of their four years at Skidmore – congratulations.  

No doubt, there will be more laughs and neighs to come — both here at Skidmore and wherever Braedon goes!