3.23 Naming Colleges and Universities

Board Policies
Chapter 3 - Educational Policies

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Part 1. Identification with Minnesota State Colleges and Universities
All colleges and universities must clearly and prominently identify the institution as a part of Minnesota State Colleges and Universities in campus entrance signage, publications, advertising and marketing materials, website, letterhead, and other forms of communication intended for external audiences. Identification must be in accordance with system procedures.

Part 2. Name Change

Subpart A. Request for name change
If a college or university requests a change to its official name, or if a new institution is created through merger or other means, the college or university president shall forward the proposed name to the chancellor for recommendation to the Board of Trustees. The board shall establish a name after receiving a recommendation from the chancellor.

A college or university seeking to change its name, or a new institution seeking to create a name, shall clearly state the rationale for the name change or new name. The college or university shall consult with key stakeholders within the campus or campuses and the surrounding communities. The rationale for the name change and the results of the market research and consultation must be presented to the chancellor at the time the request is made.

Subpart B. Name requirements
The proposed name may reflect the mission of the institution and should enhance the image of the college or university and Minnesota State.

The proposed name must not reflect the name of any individual, corporation, or other non governmental entity.

Each accredited college and university may have only one name, regardless of the number of individual campuses that make up the college and university. 

The proposed name change must include "Minnesota" and/or "State," a descriptor (college or university), an identifier name (e.g., a community, city, region, or descriptor of location), and the optional reflection of mission (e.g., community or technical).  If "Minnesota State" is not in the name, the college or university's official logo must include a system affiliation identifier, as outlined in System Procedure 3.23.1, and be used at all times.

Subpart C. Name change not required
This policy does not direct any institution to change its name.

Subpart D. Policy amendment
Approval of a name change by the board under this policy constitutes an amendment of Board Policy 1A.11 to reflect the approved name, with no further action of the board required.

Related Documents:

Policy History:

Date of Adoption: 10/18/94
Date of Implementation: 10/18/94
Date of Last Review: 11/18/20

Date & Subject of Amendments:

11/18/20 – Updated the language in Part 2, Subpart B regarding the inclusion of an identifier name and the system affiliation identifier. Applied the new writing and formatting styles.

9/21/16 - Amended Part 2, Subpart A to eliminate the requirement that colleges and universities conduct market research when considering a name change. Amended Subpart B to offer naming convention guidance consistent with brand standards adopted by the board on June 21, 2016. Additional wording and formatting changes throughout for consistency and clarity.

Additional HISTORY