The University identity system has two levels of logos under the main University logo: unit and department.


Unit Logos

Unit logos are a way of branding individual units within the University. University units include approved schools, centers, institutes, foundations, vice chancellor units, vice provost units and direct reports to the chancellor or provost. Any group meeting one of these criteria is eligible to receive a unit logo, which must be created by UNC Creative. Unit logos can replace the main University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill logo on printed and online materials; it is not necessary to use both logos.

Department Logos

Department logos are a way of branding individual groups within a University unit. Any group within a unit, such as a department, office, division or program, is eligible to receive a department logo. The decision on how to allocate department logos is made at the unit level and requires approval by the respective dean, vice chancellor or vice provost. All department logos must be created by UNC Creative. Department logos can replace the main University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill logo on printed and online materials; it is not necessary to use both logos.






All groups allocated a unit logo or department logo have access to horizontal and vertical versions of their respective logo. This provides flexibility of use in print and online materials. All logos adhere to a specific naming convention that eliminates extraneous words in a consistent manner across the University. For example, the text in the logo for “Office of University Communications” becomes “University Communications.”

In order to ensure consistency across the University, all words must be spelled out completely and must not be abbreviated. Non-alphanumeric characters, such as ampersands (&) and at symbols (@), may not be used.

When using a unit or department logo, the University’s full name, “The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill,” must appear elsewhere on the design. This applies to all printed and digital materials, with the exception of licensed merchandise and promotional products. Unit and department logos can replace the main University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill logo on all materials; it is not necessary to use both logos.

Clear Space Requirements

To ensure the integrity and visual impact of the logo, the appropriate “clear space” must be maintained on all sides. Specifically, where “x” is equal to the height of the Old Well icon, there must be a minimum of 1/2 the distance “x” between the outside edge of the logo and any other page element, including the edge of the page. The vertical line dividing “UNC” and the unit or department name may fall inside the clear space.


Size Requirements

The logo must be resized proportionally and in its entirety; therefore, measurements for all elements in the logo are relative to each other.

When PMS® 542 or black is used in printing of the logo, the minimum height of the Old Well in the logo is 0.25 inches. When the logo appears as a white knockout on a color, the minimum height of the Old Well in the logo is 0.3125 inches. If a 4-color process build is used to print the logo, the minimum height of the Old Well in the logo is 0.3125 inches.

Color Options

The University logo comes in four different colors: Carolina Blue and black, Carolina Blue, black and white.

Color and Logo Restrictions

  • Do not change any colors of the logo.
  • Do not screen any of the logo colors.
  • Do not print the logo in black over a dark background.
  • Do not print the reversed (white) logo onto a light or white background.
  • Do not place the logo over a heavily patterned background.


Improper Logo Treatment

  • Do not configure the elements into a different logo.
  • Do not crop or remove any part of the logo.
  • Do not distort the logo.
  • Do not tilt the logo in any direction.
  • Do not add any shadows, effects or other elements to the logo.
  • Do not alter the proportions of the logo.
  • Do not attach a program-level identification to the logo or attempt to create your own unit or department logo.
  • Do not duplicate any part of the logo to create a pattern.
  • Do not recreate the type or substitute another typeface.
  • Do not surround logo with other competing shapes.



A sub-brand is more than a logo. It is a complete identity system for an individual unit or department that fits within the main University brand, but has its own key design elements for a consistent and unique visual style. Any approved University unit or department may create a sub-brand. Effective sub-brands often include elements such as color, patterns, typography and overall aesthetic. Creating a sub-brand is a way to customize communications and marketing efforts for both internal and external audiences, while also leaning on the parent UNC-Chapel Hill brand for external recognition.

Creating a brand guide that defines the elements within a sub-brand and provides usage guidelines is the best way to implement and maintain an identity system. Sub-brands can contain some or all of the following elements:

Color Palette

While Carolina Blue should be the main color of any department brand, choosing a secondary color palette can convey a mood and style that is specific to the area that is being represented. In this example, vibrant colors were chosen to evoke a friendly and approachable feeling.



Groups on campus do not always have access to custom photographs or illustrations. Creating a custom pattern is a way to add visual interest to a design, and it can be used in a variety of ways. In this example, patterns were created from various geometric shapes to mimic the architecture on campus.



Although using University fonts is encouraged, it is not required. The fonts selected will greatly affect the overall feel of marketing and communications pieces. In this example, sans serif fonts were chosen for headline and body copy to again achieve that friendly feel. A more stylized serif font was chosen as an accent for instances that need a bit of extra flair.


Other Elements

A sub-brand can be created out of a variety of elements, although those listed above are the most common. Other examples are photography styles, custom illustrations and icon sets.

Branded Design Examples

A sub-brand can, and should, apply to all of the materials created by a particular unit. Folders, newsletters, greeting cards, fact sheets, flyers and social media graphics can incorporate the branding elements and create consistency across marketing and communications pieces. A sub-brand saves time in the long run because it provides a common starting point every time a new piece is designed.

Below are some examples of items created for a sub-brand utilizing elements established in a brand guide.



To request a new logo or high-resolution artwork for an existing approved unit or department logo, contact UNC Creative.