Oct. 04, 2012

Geneseo unveils new wordmark





As part of a comprehensive and ongoing effort to improve Geneseo's branding and communications, the college is introducing a new wordmark today that will replace the "wave" logo adopted in 1986.

The new wordmark was developed in partnership with Generation, a branding and communication firm for nonprofits that designed and produced Geneseo's Shaping Lives of Purpose: The Campaign for Geneseo print publication.

Over the past year, Generation collaborated with Geneseo on design and research to produce the new identity with input from a college committee, comprising representation from faculty and staff, the student body and the community. Focus groups were conducted in New York City and on campus with students, alumni and faculty as part of the process.

Tom Sternal, president of Generation, said the team found that people were open and eager to developing a wordmark that captures Geneseo's heightened sense of quality and ever-growing reputation.

"Geneseo represents a fairly unusual institutional character," said Sternal. "It has all of the excellence and intimacy and values that you would typically find in private institutions, but it is accessible and affordable. We wanted something that would come closer to representing the enduring quality and timelessness of Geneseo."

The new Geneseo wordmark will serve as the primary visual branding element in all print, electronic and signage applications.

The wordmark is part of the college's continuing marketing to advance Geneseo and maintain a distinctive identity in the competitive higher education landscape.

"We have created what I believe is a wordmark that better represents our current status as a premier public liberal arts college," said Bill Caren, associate vice president for enrollment.

Caren believes the wordmark evokes such expresssions as classic, traditional, established, confident and bold.

"As such, I believe it will better position us, in the minds of prospective students and other constituents, and with our aspirational peers," he said. "I think it will serve us well as we continue to build our case to be recognized as a worthy counterpart to the best liberal arts colleges in the country, private or public."

Geneseo's new wordmark will be introduced in phases.

Stationery and web pages will be the first applications reflecting the new identity as well as the newly revised student recruitment publications in the Office of Admissions, which are scheduled to be printed in December. The campus community will see the new wordmark gradually replace the "wave" logo in other applications as budgets allow, with physical signage being the last conversion.

"The new wordmark presents a great opportunity to unify the college brand identity, which has become fractured over time with different logos and wordmarks," said Tony Hoppa, assistant vice president for communications.

The Geneseo Knight athletic logo was not included in the redesign and remains unchanged. In instances where the college identity is used with the Knights logo, the new wordmark will be featured.

The college seal, reserved for official college communications, also remains the same.

Implementation and directions for use

As part of the first phase, all departments and personnel are asked to deplete their current stock of stationery with the "wave" logo as a cost-saving measure before ordering new letterhead. A style guide/usage manual providing basic information will be available and posted online in the next several weeks. The guide will ensure a clear and consistent image presentation to the college's audiences and constituencies.

Until then, faculty and staff should direct all questions regarding the use of the wordmark or requests for different file formats — such as tiff, .eps and .jpg — to Creative Director Carole Volpe or Tony Hoppa in the Office of College Communications at (585) 245-5516.

Geneseo's new wordmark may not be substituted for other font treatments, logos or graphics. The primary college color remains unchanged (Pantone Matching System, or PMS, 287 blue.)

Special thanks

A team of 15 members of the Geneseo campus and larger community collaborated with Generation on development of the wordmark. They are:

  • Bill Caren, associate vice president for enrollment
  • Jeff Gutenberg, associate professor of management
  • Debbie Hill, assistant vice president for advancement
  • Tony Hoppa, assistant vice president for communications
  • Harry Howe, professor of accounting and director of the accounting program
  • Fatima Rodriguez Johnson, coordinator of multicultural programs 
  • Amanda Lindley, senior designer
  • Mary Mohan, associate professor of communication
  • Mike Mooney, director of intercollegiate athletics and recreation
  • Cyril Oberlander, director of Milne Library
  • Kris Shay, director of admissions
  • Dennis Showers, Distinguished Service Professor, School of Education
  • Nathan Smith '12, communication major
  • Carole Volpe, creative director
  • Louise Wadsworth, downtown coordinator, Livingston County Development.