ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. — Northeast High School is home to the Vikings, but Vikings aren’t just guys.
“There’s a saying at our school, once a Viking always a Viking. But without that equal representation, how is that," asked Northeast swimming coach James Christie.
Christie was updating the school’s record board, but when adding the Viking logo, he realized it wouldn’t make sense without a corresponding one for the girls.
So he commissioned his artist child Zaed to go to work.
“When I made the logo, I didn’t really think how it was going to be everywhere," said Zaed, who actually goes to Seminole High School.
Zaed modeled the logo after the Northeast High School swimming great Megan Romano, who still holds seven records on the board.
All the girls' sports teams are using the Lady Viking and it’s everywhere at school.
“I remember when I saw it, I was just so happy and I was jumping for joy because it’s just so important," said swim team member Keegan Jefferis.
“We wanted our girls to feel like they were just as recognized in sports and that is so important given what’s happening with the NCAA basketball tournament and women not receiving the same attention as the men. We don’t ever want our kids to feel like that," said assistant swim coach Bernadette Langiotti.
The new logo is on uniforms and school walls and it's also at the entrance and in the library.
“I really loved the idea of having a female Viking head because it's a really good representation of our strength and female leadership," said swim team member Tayah Thackrey.