Years of Jesuit tradition and institutional heritage shape Loyola’s brand
Though Loyola’s new brand was officially unveiled at the ceremony in September, the early fruits of this effort started emerging in August—making waves within the Loyola community and beyond.
The University’s new undergraduate viewbook came first. Flipping through the pages reveals a mesmerizing aesthetic employing overlapping, merging images and messages. Words blend, medieval fonts underlie modern versions, arrows draw the eye to Internet addresses, statistics, snippets of information. There are Venn diagrams, word clouds. Everything in the book conveys interconnectedness—there are no separate elements here, a fitting concept for a university dedicated to crafting the complete person.
The response, says Camille, has been overwhelmingly positive. “Prospective students are saying it’s unique and distinctive,” he says, “but they are also saying ‘This is Loyola.’”
People across the nation came to understand what this means when the viewbook was showcased at the University and College Designers Association Conference, held in Seattle in October. The book won first place in two categories of the association’s annual national design competition.
ASPIRATION, NOT ACHIEVEMENT
The same branding concepts contained in the viewbook are now visible worldwide as well—through the new Loyola.edu Web site, which went live during the convocation. “It’s a transformation of Loyola’s Web presence,” says Camille. The new site was a necessary part of Loyola University Maryland’s branding makeover. He explains that the Web site is oriented to attract prospective undergraduate and graduate students, faculty, and employees; help support advancement and philanthropic initiatives; and to welcome external communities such as parents, media, and high school counselors and coaches.
Speaking at the Convocation, Fr. Linnane addressed an attentive audience. “Loyola University Maryland is an aspiration, not an achievement,” he says, and this rings true for the University’s brand, as well. Higgins says new elements of the branding effort will be rolling out on a monthly basis—from billboards to publications, advertisements, and materials for Greyhound athletics, the Sellinger School of Business and Management, the new School of Education, Loyola College (the school of arts and sciences), and the Clinical Centers—and they will all change and grow with the University’s needs.
“You’ll be seeing a lot more of Loyola around town, more of Loyola online,” she says. “We’re constantly going to evolve.”
BUILDING A BRAND
“The designation change and the new brand are important steps,” says Camille, “but these steps are not what will make Loyola University Maryland the leading Catholic comprehensive university in the country. That will come from the education we offer, our excellent faculty, the students, and all the things that go on in the classrooms, in the library, in the residence halls, and on the playing fields. This brand is about taking what we know to be true and good about Loyola and using that as a foundation for the future.”
What is already good about Loyola is on display as the convocation draws to a close. In the crowd are the familiar faces of alumni, as well as new members of Loyola’s ever-growing family, gathered to celebrate a new name and brand for the University. Yet even as all in attendance rise to sing the Alma Mater Anthem—for the first time in years— it is clear much about Loyola has not changed.
Time will thy ranks disperse,
Seas may us part,
Still will your sons and daughters
Loyola! In our hearts.
Same tone, same voice.