Symbolic of its relentless effort to put students first, the Upper Iowa University community celebrated “Education Built for Life” as part of the University’s official unveiling of a new brand and logos Thursday. Over 400 people attended the Logo Launch Party at UIU’s Fayette Campus, and countless faculty, staff and students from UIU’s 25 U.S. centers, as well as education locations in Malaysia and Hong Kong, joined alumni and other friends in viewing the festivities on Facebook Live.
A university logo built for distinction
While welcoming everyone to the celebration, UIU Vice President for External Affairs Andrew Wenthe explained the rebranding effort began in October 2015 when the Board of Trustees identified the need to enhance how UIU communicates its identity. After a thorough search, the University implemented the help of Geile/Leon Marketing Communications based in St. Louis, Mo., in redefining its brand and logo. Faculty, staff, students, alumni, the Board of Trustees, and many others were also actively engaged as numerous taglines and logos were proposed and tested before deciding on the “Education Built for Life” brand and new University logo.
“The new brand and logo are both symbolic of our relentless effort to put students first and the high-quality education we provide every day that positively impacts student success and changes lives,” Wenthe later said. “This brand highlights the learning experiences and flexibility that make UIU unique in a way that allows us to better tell the great success stories of the entire Peacock family.”
He noted that the sweeping, crossing pattern of the University’s new logo is a modern graphic meant to represent UIU’s strong heritage and its commitment to ensuring that the evolving needs for accessible education and lifelong learning are readily available to all students. The design also characterizes the spirit of interconnection UIU brings to its students both nationally and across the globe.
“The most immediate recognition of this emblem is the depiction and portrayal of our mascot,” Wenthe commented following the presentation. “Bringing the peacock full circle and making it an integral part of the university-wide branding of UIU, gives the mark full ownership to UIU as a higher education identity that truly stands apart from others.”
The Peacock Shield
During Thursday’s event, Brock Wissmiller, assistant athletic director for external affairs, explained that the discussion about updating the Peacock logo had been going on for a few years, and the time was finally right with the University-wide rebranding effort.
The UIU Athletic Department began seeking proposals in October 2016 to create its new logo, and Torch Creative, a design studio based in Dallas, Texas, was soon selected. The Athletic Department also assembled a working committee of faculty, staff, coaches, student athletes and alumni to review the designs and provide feedback to the firm. The logo was finalized in February 2017.
“The goal of the new Peacock head was to provide a new identity that strengthened its appearance,” said Wissmiller. “By using more modernized lines in the Peacock itself, a sleek and more energetic visual was created for representation. Additionally, the altering of the head feathers helped to generate more of a forward direction of movement for the Peacocks. The inclusion of a shield helps symbolize the strength that the Peacocks exemplify both on and off the field, as well as the pride in the history of Upper Iowa and all of those that have come before.”
The Athletics Department will now begin to phase out the old logo. The first visual changes will be seen on digital platforms such as social media, websites and television and web broadcasts. All apparel and uniforms ordered in the future will feature the new logo, while other physical location changes at athletic facilities will be addressed over the coming years and as finances permit.
Prior to closing the Logo Launch presentation, both of the speakers expressed the University’s profound appreciation toward the design and marketing firms, Board of Trustees, faculty, staff, students, alumni, and many others who provided feedback during the entire rebranding process.
The video showcased during the Logo Launch Party unveiling Upper Iowa University’s new “Education Built for Life” brand and logos can be viewed at uiu.edu/about/logo.html.