Today, we announced that an agreement had been reached with the organizers of the ‘Save the A’ campaign regarding the inclusion of ‘Augusta’ in the name of our new consolidated university.
This agreement will honor the concerns expressed by some members of our community while ensuring that we also respect the USG Board of Regents’ decision of a few months ago, and properly represent the statewide role of the new university.
A significant effort on all parts… a truly Solomonic decision.
So what is the difference between a brand name and a legal name?
One you see… everywhere… on logos, apparel, marketing materials, and the like. The other one you rarely see outside regulatory and legal circles.
The brand name appears in our sports teams’ logo, and on our letterhead. It’s the moniker that appears on apparel sold in our bookstores, everything from t-shirts to shorts to water bottles (along with ‘Jaguar Nation’, by the way). It’s the name you will see broadly.
The “Georgia Institute of Technology” is known to the world as “GA Tech.” The “United States Military Academy” is “West Point.” Our own current marketing efforts refer to “GHS Medical Associates” rather than “Physicians Practice Group.” We say “Sewanee” rather than “The University of the South,” and does “Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University” sound more familiar than “Virginia Tech?”
And the use of a brand name, logo and look, once chosen, as well as any variations, are tightly managed and regulated … to ensure uniformity and that all merchandise, letterhead, and the like carry it.
And no, we don’t know whether it should be GRU Augusta or Georgia Regents University Augusta that we use in our logo and brand. We probably will use both, depending on space and place.
What we know is that the word “Augusta” will be included.
Why is it important to do this?
Because moving forward we will need to use any and all means to highlight the value and relevance of our university.
Because while the name Georgia Regents University clearly highlights the statewide role and relevance of the new consolidated university, the name Augusta will help us in gaining national and international recognition among many sports, particularly golf, enthusiasts.
Because the great passion of the people in our community for their city should be recognized, and those energies channeled towards embracing and supporting our new consolidated university in a positive manner.
Because there is much hard work yet to be done to ensure that this new statewide university succeeds.
Because it was necessary to find a way to respect the integrity and decision of the USG Board of Regents while ensuring that we move forward in the most productive manner possible.
Because the creation of the logo and brand name is fully within the purview of the university, and managing this identity is critical to our relationships with current and prospective students and alumni, faculty, staff, and the community.
Because, in the end, we were able to find partners who, in a productive and respectful manner, could work with university leadership to identify that critical way forward that would allow for us to ensure the satisfaction of many while maintaining the integrity of the university in its decision-making.
So in a few short weeks we will share the new logo and visual identity… marks, typefaces, colors, and the like… created by branding professionals!
And here is to working together, in Augusta, in Georgia, and beyond, to achieve the success of our new university, the greater good of the state of Georgia, and the prosperity of our community.