University Visual Identity

The university's visual identity reinforces its reputation and messages by conveying a sense of prestige, excellence and authority and its status as the state's flagship institution.


Word Marks and Symbols
All print and e-communications from the university should prominently display the university logo. It consists of a word mark—a text-only treatment of the university name—and a symbol—the illustration of a globe that incorporates the color and design of the Maryland state flag. Informal and formal seals that combine the globe and university name are also available.

Primary Marks

The logo is available in a variety of layout and file formats for use in commercial printing, desktop publishing, electronic presentations and Internet communications. The logo should be reproduced only from digital files provided by the Office of University Creative or the Office of Web and New Media Strategies. They cannot be redrawn, reproportioned, embellished or modified.

Primary Logo
This the preferred setup. The symbol should not be reproduced smaller than 3/8" or 32 pixels in height.

M Marks

Secondary Logo
This configuration is an alternative to the primary logo in formats where a vertical or centered design is preferred.

Primary Word Marks

Informal Seal
This adaptation of the symbol and university name may be substituted for the signature when space is limited. The informal seal is used with unit identities. It should not be reduced below 5/8" or 73 pixels.

Secondary Word Marks

Formal Seal
The formal seal has been created to distinguish the University of Maryland from governmental and public agencies that use the Maryland state seal. The formal seal is reserved for ceremonies, presidential communications, diplomas and certificates.
Secondary Marks

Word Mark Only
The word mark can be used without the symbol when designing with one or two colors. It can also be displayed on publications covers, T-shirts and other collateral where the symbol would clash with other design elements.

Secondary Marks

This is the preferred style for Fear the Turtle materials:

Secondary Marks

Special Circumstances
These logos may be used only under special, specific circumstances with the permission of the Office of University Creative.
Secondary Marks

Unit Identity
The proliferation of wildly disparate logos across campus represents a threat to our visual identity. By insisting on consistent application of our marks, we can ensure a professional brand for the university.

A complementary system of unit identification has been designed for every college, school, department and major center on campus. These designs should be used in all communication materials, inclusive of websites, publications, letterhead and business cards and e-marketing materials.

Examples of Unit-level Hierarchy

Secondary Marks

Existing marks that don't meet the standards will be replaced by approved marks by June 30, 2015. The Office of Marketing and Communications will schedule brand assistance sessions with every college, school and division to develop transition plans and identify specific situations that may require further evaluation.

Incorrect Usage
The following are incorrect ways to use the logo. DO NOT:

Secondary Marks

University marks may not be used in conjunction with the name or marks of any other entity without the prior written permission of University Marketing and Communications and that entity. If permission is granted to use both the university mark and another party's mark, the marks must be distinct and separate from one another and neither mark may dominate the other in order to protect the integrity of both.

No university mark may be used in any manner that suggests or implies university endorsement of products, services, political parties or views, or religious organizations or beliefs.

No one other than the university may claim copyright or trademark rights in or seek to register any design that uses university marks.

The university will not approve the use of its marks in connection with alcoholic beverages, inherently dangerous products (firearms, explosives), illegal drugs, tobacco, gambling, sexually suggestive products or language, or any health-related product.

The primary mark should appear prominently on all university communications in a size appropriate to the overall piece.

In addition, the logo/wordmark should be placed on the back of all communications and it is required when using a publication as a self-mailer. The logo and address block must be placed in the upper left-hand corner on the mailing address side.

Secondary MarksSecondary Marks

The university produces a dozen outstanding magazines and dozens of printed newsletters annually, yet there is no consistency in their design. A consistent visual element to these periodicals will improve overall brand awareness.

The covers of all UMD-produced magazines and printed newsletters must include a footer created by the Office of Marketing and Communications. It is available for individual units’ discretion in red, white, gold and black and can be downloaded here. Do not alter the height of the footer or the type in it, but the footer’s width can be altered to accommodate the size of the periodical. Center the footer on the bottom of the cover.


The logo should be displayed in all public advertisements promoting university-sponsored programs and events. Care should be taken to leave adequate blank space surrounding the logo. For advertisements in publications that are printed on newsprint, a special version of the symbol has been prepared. Secondary Marks


University letterhead is to be used by all departments, institutes, centers, colleges and schools for all official university communications. The logo, unit and sub-unit names appear at the top left as shown. Postal and electronic addresses, telephone and fax numbers are placed at the top right. Suggested letter format is described in the body of the sample.

There are some instances when personalization of stationery is appropriate. Such cases include correspondence by the president, vice presidents, deans, directors, department heads, distinguished university professors, holders of endowed chairs and others authorized by unit heads. A line of personalization appearing under the unit name is acceptable in such cases. Since smaller quantities of personalized letterhead are more costly to produce than standard departmental stationery, discretion by unit heads is to be encouraged.

University Human Resources has specifications for employment ads in The Washington Post, The (Baltimore) Sun and The Chronicle of Higher Education that present the university and its identity in a consistent format.

Secondary Marks

Mailing Labels
Set the top margin at 13⁄4" and the left margin at 1"

Business Cards
Two styles of business cards have been designed, and either may be used. The single column format is designed to accommodate longer names, multiple phone numbers or long e-mail addresses.

Additional Stationery Items
Name tags, certificates, pocket folders, invitations, note cards and other items may be ordered from university Printing Services in compliance with our branding standards.


Strategic use of color creates a powerful visual impact and is an immediate signal of quality. The University of Maryland's core colors are red, gold, white and black. Taken from the state flag, these colors reflect our role as Maryland's flagship university. The university encourages use of the four colors in the identity program whenever possible.


RGB (red, green, blue) colors are used for screen applications: web, email, video; they represent the values of the three types of pixels that make up all colors in a screen or monitor. The value of each of the pixels can range from 0 to 255.

CMYK colors are used for print applications; they represent the four inks used to create all colors for printing: cyan, magenta, yellow and black. K, for black, means "key" color and is added to the other three to produce rich shadows and contrast. Otherwise, CMY together produces a dark grayish brown. The values of each of the ink densities can range from 0 to 100%.

PMS (Pantone Matching System) colors are used for specialty print applications—T-shirts, banners, tchotchkes, etc.—especially when printing large blocks of solid color. Using one or two PMS colors instead of CMYK can also reduce printing cost (depending on the project). The UMD logo in full color uses three PMS colors to print.

Grayscale Symbol
When reproducing the symbol in one color, the color can be screened to the designated values to maintain differentiation.

Black and White Symbol
Specialized reproduction of the mark is needed when using the symbol with screen-printing, enameling, etching, blind-embossing, foil stamping, etc. Areas of the symbol need to be distinct to maintain the integrity of the design.


The logo is attractive against light-colored backgrounds; on dark backgrounds, use the word mark in white. When designing with only one or two colors, use the word mark without the symbol. The word mark can be set in any color.


The official typeface of the university is Adobe Bembo, a serif book type that combines traditional forms with contemporary styling. The official sans-serif typeface is Univers, which conveys a modern, clean aesthetic and pairs nicely with Bembo.

Email for access to UMD Adobe fonts (Bembo and Univers).

These are not required for correspondence and other desktop documents.


Recommended Text Sizes

Alternate Typefaces
If Bembo is not available, please substitute one of the following:
Adobe Garamond

If Univers is not available, please substitute one of the following:


The University of Maryland uses high-quality photography, with crisp, vivid color, excellent composition and memorable images that showcase the beauty of the campus, the variety of academic opportunities and resources, its classical architecture, the diversity of its students and faculty, campus life, sports and the arts.


University communications professionals are welcome to access the Office of University Creative's vast archives.