New Logo Marks a New Era in University History

Jim Muyo, SMU News

Samuel Merritt University has unveiled a new logo, seal, and the first of what will be several spirit marks for use on apparel and novelty items.

The University created the new logo to serve as a symbol that communicates and animates SMU’s distinct brand and mission to educate students to become highly skilled and compassionate healthcare professionals who positively transform the experience of care for diverse communities. Each of the logo’s elements were created to reflect on and embrace SMU’s values, vision, and 111-year history.

The University undertook the logo initiative following an assessment of its previous logo in which students, faculty, and staff were asked for their feedback. Participants were shown the logo and then were asked a series of questions. The assessment revealed that most respondents had little affinity for the old logo.

With support of the President’s Cabinet, the University’s Communications Office contacted several design firms and selected Pentagram of Austin, Texas as its creative partner. Pentagram has developed identity systems for universities throughout the U.S., companies such as Warner Bros. and Slack, and organizations like the Library of Congress. Pentagram conducted a series of discussions with University leadership and the Communications team before developing preliminary identity and logo directions.

After narrowing the field and settling on options, the University polled all faculty, staff, students, and alumni for feedback on six design options in August. Following the collection of feedback, final refinements were made and additional feedback sessions were held in September before the final marks were selected.

Items carrying the new logo will soon be available in the SMU Bookstore.

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