Cleveland State University Unveils New (Fine) Logo, Penn State-Esque Branding


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Cleveland State University today debuted its new logo and branding, taking notes from its 60-year history in the city with a nod toward the future and some inspiration from State College, PA.

Once almost entirely a commuter school, CSU has grown both in student enrollment and physical footprint in recent decades. It's graduated more than 140,000 students since its founding in 1964, is embarking on a $650-million campus renovation plan, and is likely eager to put a new stamp on Dr. Laura Bloomberg's tenure as president after the two previous university leaders were summarily dispatched by the board.

The logo, below, "celebrates our heritage, gives a nod to this strong and supportive community and quite literally outlines our position as an anchor institution in beautiful downtown Cleveland," according to a CSU release.

As for the branding, get ready to hear and see a whole lot of "We Are Cleveland State University."

That's the end result of work by the marketing department and a process that involved reaching out to the CSU community.

The school talked to "alumni, our scholars, community partners, students and alumni to tell us what you saw in Cleveland State University," Bloomberg said in a video roll-out. "As we did this, we heard about what you really value in our mission, why you choose to be on this campus in this city."

Yes, it's not original, as anyone who knows anyone who's gone to Penn State will tell you
: "We Are Penn State" is a chant, and an organic one at that, that's been used for decades by fans and become woven into the whole PSU identity.

(Allow us to dream, for a second, if this catches on, of an NCAA tournament matchup between the two with competing "We Are" chants being hurtled across the court. The CSU women's team certainly might make that a reality.)

"Great brands tell a story and Cleveland State University has an amazing story to tell," the school said in an announcement. "It’s a story about inspiring and innovative students, faculty, staff and alumni. It’s a story about determination and success, in our classrooms, laboratories, studios, theaters, and on our athletic fields and courts. It’s a story about the lives and communities we transform. It’s a story about Cleveland."

The new brand "unifies a comprehensive brand strategy with recruitment, communications materials, storytelling and a new institutional logo that speaks to our role as a modern, urban beacon institution. It captures who we are and who we aspire to be."

Expect new ads and videos through the year.

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