Logo represents community, prestige
By Kelsey Nevius
For the first time in 26 years, the University of Findlay has updated its brand and identity in a new logo. To build excitement for its unveiling, which happened at 2 p.m. on Feb. 24, 2016, the University released a video showcasing its previous logos. With the new logo unveiled on Feb. 24, the UF community was feeling a sense of nostalgia from seeing past logos, but also a sense of excitement for the change.
The day after the logo was released, on Feb. 25 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., students, faculty, and staff at the University received free tee shirts bearing the new logo. The Alumni Memorial Union, where the shirts were distributed, was abuzz with talk of the new logo, and social media was spreading the logo like wildfire. The UF community had truly welcomed in a new brand identity and logo.
Students were especially excited to see the new logo on the shirts they would be sporting around the UF campus. But to them, it meant more than free T-shirts. The new design also a created sense of pride in their chosen University.
“I hope it conveys a sense of community and a sense of prestige to people inside and outside the University,” said Mac Williams, sophomore public relations major.
According to UF officials, the logo and brand identity were two thoroughly thought-out additions to the University. Rebecca Butler, vice president for enrollment management and member of the team who worked on the production of the new logo, knows that a lot of work was put into this project.
“The University is so fortunate to have an incredibly talented Marketing and Communications Department and this entire brand identity project has been researched and designed by them,” said Butler.
A lot of people had their hands in the construction of the new logo and brand identity.
Rebecca Jenkins, director of marketing and communications, lead the push for the new project to get underway, and saw it out to its fruition on Feb. 24.
“We have changed so much in the last 10 to 15 years. The brand identity that we have now, the logo that we have now has been in place since we became the University of Findlay in 1990,” said Jenkins. “It’s been 26 years with this current mark that we have, and this place has changed a lot during that time period. It’s time to make our graphic identity and our brand reflect who the University really is.”
The new project’s goal is to help highlight all the things that make Findlay great, said Jenkins. She also believes that this new logo and brand identity will help both current and perspective students know what Findlay is all about.
“When you’re doing a new brand, one of the worst things you could do is to do something that is not authentic, that does not reflect who your organization actually is because it won’t stay, it won’t stick,” said Jenkins. “I believe that this will.”
This decision and introduction of the new logo was one that was also well thought-out according to the marketing and communications team that worked on it. The team went above and beyond to make sure that the new logo represented UF to the best degree where the former logo did not.
“We have been hearing informally for some time that our current academic logo is not flexible enough for all of its uses, and doesn’t represent the strategic direction of UF,” said Butler. “In addition, we did market research earlier this year that echoed these sentiments as well as the need to ensure that we are representing the high academic quality of the institution.”
A lot of time and effort was put into the project, and without help from the UF community and the work put in by the marketing and communications team, it would have never been a reality.
The whole process would not have been possible without the participation of students, faculty, and staff, said Jenkins. Jenkins also stated that over 18 months, they created numerous opportunities for the UF community to become involved in the process, including surveys, workshops, and focus groups. Because of the great influence and participation from the community, Jenkins believes that the new logo will stand the test of time.
But, even with all of the excitement of the reveal of the new logo, the UF community and the marketing and communication team still know where the University’s real treasures lie.
“This logo is an enhanced brand identity, and that’s wonderful,” said Butler. “But it’s the faculty, staff and students that make up the essence of UF- it is people that cause students to enroll and stay here, and that’s what makes Findlay a special place.”