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BE Brand Resources

Brand Matters

The College of Built Environments style guide provides a framework and context for your visual and content communications. When your department creates copy or visuals for print or the web, think about which pillar your subject matter represents. See brand examples.

The UW brand represents the university and the College of Built Environments unshakable optimism and determination. In the built environments, it’s the drive to break down the barriers through community, design, public space, convening, and collaboration that separates us from what is and what can be. It’s our spirit to change how our communities and cities are planned, designed, built and maintained, and try the seemingly impossible. It’s – design build, locally based studios, research, travel, community analysis, thoughtful planning and building, and all the values we represent – the actions we take to create a better world.

Think of the “on-brand” statement as an elevator pitch that sets the stage for sharing your stories of being boundless, whether you’re creating a fact sheet, drafting speaking points or writing web copy.

With countless universities touting their appeal to students, what sets UW’s College of Built Environments apart from the crowd? We believe it’s the infinite opportunities available to our students, particularly the ways we take the learning process beyond the classroom. With access to an extensive network of top faculty, researchers, peers, alumni and the community, CBE students contribute to real-world projects, work with industry leaders and professionals, apply theory, test ideas, and form lasting connections with the community. They’re doing more than reading and talking about positive changes; they’re the catalyst making change happen.

Sample copy focused on the student experience:

Example: Each year, students from the Department of Landscape Architecture enroll in a studio class with two main goals in mind—to participate in a design/build process that integrates thinking and making and to develop a space that provides an amenity for a community in need. For the students of the 2016 design/build course, an additional opportunity was added—to serve our country’s service men and women.

At Seattle’s VA Hospital, the nurses, doctors, social workers, psychologists and aids provide care to more than 100,000 retired military personnel annually. But in the midst of the medical speak, surgery, and physical therapy, there was no space to practice mental healing. That is until landscape architecture students from the UW College of Built Environments spent one quarter designing and one quarter building a healing garden, a place for people to reflect, find peace, be silent, relax, and leave behind the exhausting life of war.

Upon completion of the garden, students defined their feelings about this project—proud, humbled, connected, happy, strong, honored, fearless, and caring. Proving, learning and design/build aren’t just about sketches and production.

Example: In the United States students get excited for their first day at school. Then the appeal wears off. But for girls in Afghanistan who feel that same elated feeling of excitement of meeting new friends, admiring their teacher, and discovering their love for learning, they also feel fear.

The challenge for architecture students in Elizabeth Golden’s studio course was to design a school that eliminated that feeling of fear. Partnering with Seattle-based Miller-Hull Partnership, the students developed concepts for Ayni Education International, a group that builds schools in the Balkh Province of Afghanistan.

The students were challenged with understanding the situation as it stands in Afghanistan, and understanding the issues surrounding women’s education in Afghanistan and all the implications of that,” said Golden. “The school has to be responsive to the culture and has to be situated within the broader context of that culture, which is very complicated.”
The students also had to factor in issues of the local economy and the relative scarcity of building materials. Wood, for instance, is extremely hard to come by locally, and steel and concrete would need to be shipped in. Even access to electricity cannot be assumed.
“I’ve never seen students work so hard on a project,” Golden said.

As the outcomes of our disciplines matter to everyone and as a part of one of the world’s preeminent public research universities, advancing social equity and changing lives is integral to who we are. Through civic partnerships, service-learning opportunities and much more, students, faculty, staff, alumni and our partners play active roles in the local and global community. We’re dedicated to leading the dialogue as promoters of positive change, innovation and strategic design for the future of the built environments. At our core, we believe in human potential and our role in unleashing it.

Example: Construction is more than building. It starts and ends with safety. And safety is Associate Professor Ken-Yu Lin’s expertise. Completing projects like Developing Fall Protection Training Materials for Non-English Speaking and Illiterate Construction Workers and iSave, a Construction Site Safety Audit iPad application.

Transferring research findings into useable tools and furthering industry best-practices is one way the UW Department of Construction Management is serving the construction community.


Proven impact
As one of the world’s most productive research universities, we have an unparalleled track record when it comes to research impact and excellence. For decades, our students and faculty have collaborated to turn ideas into life-changing realities, from designing ways to track our green spaces, testing technology that makes buildings use energy more efficiently, to understanding the housing market, and imagining more inclusive communities. In all we do as planners, advocates, designers, builders, problem solvers, developers and collaborators, we strive to make an impact on the communities where we live and work, whether it’s by touching one life or millions.
Sample copy focused on proven impact:

Seattle is a global hub for sustainable design, community building, and innovation, and much of that spirit and mindset is reflected in the College of Built Environments. As an international epicenter for turning ideas into actions, we’re participating in the launch of dozens of ideas, projects, and initiatives and across a wide range of fields the built environments interacts with locally, nationally, and internationally. Our shared ethos of innovation unites us as a college, a university and as a community.
Sample copy with a focus on innovation mindset:

Brand Resources

Here you’ll find a collection of resources to help you get your message out.

Instructions, documentation, and overview for working with Convio projects
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UW Marketing has provided a detailed website with many example of the brand and resources to help you put those elements to the best use for your project. Here are some useful pages:

  • Personality & Tone – Get your message across with verve
  • Branded Templates – Word, PowerPoint, poster, nametag, signage, and stationery templates
  • Pride Points – How awesome are we? Let us count the ways
  • Word List – not sure how to refer to something? Check here
  • Chinese Style Guide – Some helpful tips and resources for communications in Chinese (Simplified and Traditional)