McGill is known for fostering success stories in academia and athletics alike and, proof that birds of a feather flock together, Marty the Martlet is no exception. Marty is just like most McGill students: He juggles the rigour of school with having fun and a full-time job—one that isdesigned to entertain us loyal McGill sports fans. But Marty wasn’t always a silly goose; he used to chicken out every time he was in the spotlight.
“Believe it or not, I was really shy when I was a wee hatchling,” Marty said. “I couldn’t fly as well as the other birds, I wasn’t as smart, and I’d be teased about that.”
Salvation for Marty came through dance. He began shaking his feathers and listening to musicals at which point he heard the song “Dancing Through Life.”
“That beat just got me grooving and made me smile, it’s a pretty ‘wicked’ song,” Marty said.
Since 2005, Marty has been on a mission to spread the song’s message and make people stop worrying about school. Though his dance moves might be strange, crowds flock to see him.
“I love seeing people excited when I show up,” Marty said. “I get bombarded to take pictures and dance with them. I love seeing people laugh at my silliness, [….] even [McGill Principal] Suzanne [Fortier] says I have great dance moves!”
While the prancing around is certainly fun, Marty trains hard to be there. Despite his cuddly exterior, he works his tail off to stay in shape.
“I have to hit the gym often to really keep my muscles tight and my cardio up, or else I can’t dance and cheer,” Marty said. “No one wants a soft Marty.”
When he’s not putting in reps at the gym or dancing around campus, Marty is grinding out his school work at McLennan.
“I’m a busy bird with big dreams,” Marty said. “I’m keeping my GPA in the 3.6 to 4.0 range.”
Marty somehow also finds the time for other endeavours and the occasional chick flick.
“I’m actually collecting research and drafting my first book!” Marty said. “But of course when I’m not sticking my beak in books and research, I’m in front of the TV watching Netflix.”
Marty certainly sets an admirable example for all high achieving McGill students. On one wing, he’s known for having fun and letting loose, but on the other, he pushes himself to soar to new academic heights. In this respect, Marty’s advice to McGill first-year hatchlings could also benefit upper-years.
“Come out and support your [McGill] teams!” Marty says. “The games are so fun and you get so much McGill swag. Also, take risks with your classes. You’ll never know when that random elective you pick will become your favourite class!”
Indeed, sometimes the best ideas can come from just winging it. For everyone at McGill, you need to leap from your nest if you want to fly, and don’t be afraid to ruffle some feathers along the way.