Today Bob Jones University unveiled a new academic visual identity.
This project started two years ago when president Dr. Stephen Jones requested that BJU’s Creative Services design team take a fresh look at the University’s visual identity and consider options that might better reflect BJU’s institutional mission and core values.
The design team, under the leadership of senior manager David Lovegrove and creative director Will Meadows, built on the essential elements of BJU’s heritage to create the new visual identity.
The process began with a survey of best practices, case studies, and research on university branding, followed by an exploration of BJU’s past visual identities and institutional history.
BJU’s last visual identity, released in January of 1967, served the University for 46 years. At the time, the logotype featured the words BOB JONES in capital letters and University in italics. This logotype emphasized the 1946 announcement that Bob Jones College had become a university.
“Today, that emphasis is no longer necessary,” says Creative Services senior manager David Lovegrove. “We began to find that there were more important messages we wished to communicate in our logo.”
Similarly, the lamp logo, with the lamp of Truth inside the “B” wrapped in a “J,” only hinted that BJU was an educational institution, and even less that it was a biblically focused university.
Building on a rich heritage
The key inspiration for the new logotype was the University’s crest. “Digging into our history, we were struck by how much meaning Dr. Bob Jones Jr. infused into his design of the university crest,” says David Lovegrove. “The cross speaks of Christ and our redemption; the book is the Word of God; the lamp is the Light of Truth.”
These three symbols have consistently reflected the core elements of what BJU is all about and feature prominently in the new logo.
The logo also introduces a new element to represent the unity of the BJU family. In the past, the University represented its unity by placing the University’s initials into the crest. Today, BJU is represented by the Bruin. “The Bruin is a symbol that represents the university family as a whole,” says creative director Will Meadows. “It’s not just an athletic symbol—it represents all of us.”
The design team combined these four elements together into hundreds of variations, which were critiqued by a variety of design and branding professionals from both inside and outside the University.
The new shield will begin being rolled out university-wide over the coming months. Our crest remains unchanged and will continue to be used for official and ceremonial uses.
“These new visuals reflect our collegiate identity, speak to our redemption, the Bible, our pursuit of Truth, and the uniqueness of our university family,” says David Lovegrove. “Following the successful launch of the Bruins identity, we’re excited to now be introducing a unifying visual identity for BJU as a whole.”
To learn more about this new visual identity, visit brand.bju.edu.
Published August 6, 2013