UW-Superior | The Link Center
The Center for Community Engaged Learning at the University of Wisconsin-Superior (UWS) serves a multifaceted role for both the University as well as the Twin Ports and northern Wisconsin region. Because of this, it’s pivotal that the department be represented in a concise and accessible way to maximize the Center’s impact.
That’s where we entered the picture. The previous Center’s name (Center for Community Engaged Learning) was a mouthful. Feedback from students, faculty and community members let us know that the role of the Center wasn’t very well understood. So, in an effort to streamline an understanding of the Center’s mission, we developed a framework to visibly showcase the Center’s purpose succinctly. The repositioning also creates a strong connection the the University that could be easily understood by all viewers.
Transitioning the Center to be represented in a shorthand format as The Link Center establishes the Center’s function in a concise, yet descriptive manner. The use of “Link” efficiently frames what the center aims to do, while providing openness for the Center’s staff and partners to elaborate on the what and how behind the Center’s initiatives.
The Link Center preforms a lot of functions. As we worked through the repositioning of this department, we thought it would be helpful to viewers to distill the Center’s functions within a simple, easy to understand tagline. Hence “Listen. Connect. Innovate” was born. Careful thought went into each word choice so we could fully – but still concisely – represent the Center.
Listen. Connect. Innovate reinforces the Center’s mission and strengthens the audience’s memory of the center’s connective power.
Listen | understand community needs
The Center first listens to understand the community’s significant assets and greatest needs. The information is used to align campus resources and provide our community partners with campus expertise.
Connect | develop beneficial connections
By leveraging its strength as an anchor in the institution, the Center creates and sustains opportunities for meaningful engagement with the Twin Ports community to further develop reciprocal relationships — locally and regionally.
Innovate | create assistance initiatives
Next, the Center uses campus expertise and resources to bring ideas to life through programs and services that bring people together to solve issues that have significant impact in peoples’ lives.
The LINK wordmark was design to have a strong feel to exude confidence in the Center. Careful consideration was given to construct the repositioned sub-brand in a way that contrasts, as well as compliments, the UWS logo. The was done to ensure the Center is seen as a department within the University and not a separate entity.
- Stability: The width of the font was intentionally selected to act as a foundation for the Center’s condensed name.
- Rounded Edges: Final consideration for a slightly rounded typeface highlights the approachable nature of the Center.
- Connecting “N”: The “N” in the LINK is created by using two arrow shapes that interlock to make a connection. This element can be extended and used as a recognizable tool for the Center’s new positioning.
- Forward Thinking: The line width and style of the typeface is a tech-forward font. Its use hints towards progress and innovation.
The “N” in LINK was created in a way that makes it dynamic when telling the story of the Center positioning. As you can see in the animated example below. We illustrate the outward arrows that converge at the the Center to create connection. The combination of community outreach and inward connection are what makes the LINK unique.
In the visual use of the Center’s new positioning, The Link Center brand is highlighted but does not overshadow the primary UWS logo and brand elements. The LINK wordmark was created to be used primarily internally, while the UWS logo with ‘The Link Center’ below was developed for external-facing use. This way, materials to the outside community see the strength of the University overall brand to bring recognization and credibility to The Link Center.
If your large organization needs help communicating one of its departments, all the while staying within your company’s overall brand framework, let us know. These are the kind of design puzzles we love to solve!
Additionally, click here to learn more about the University Wisconsin-Superior’s Link Center.