The Western Logo

The term “logo” refers to the graphic element and set of words shown here.

Western’s logo has three parts:

  1. The graphic element, which is the stylized representation of Mount Baker and the waves of Bellingham Bay.
  2. The wordmark, which is the name of the university.
  3. The institutional tagline, "MAKE WAVES." This is our rallying cry, meant to inspire students, alumni, donors, and faculty to make their mark on the world.

The University Marks are registered trademarks and cannot be altered in any way. This includes separating out and using any graphic elements of the logo on their own or in combination with other graphic elements.

Logo Use

Please review the following guidelines carefully before adding the logo to your project. After you have read through these guidelines, you can download the logo for use in print or on the web.

General Guidelines

The "stacked" Western logo, with the MAKE WAVES. lockup, is the institutional logo. Departments are encouraged to transition to this logo during updates of pages/platforms or reprints of projects to increase legibility.

Materials for internal and external audiences must use the lockup logo. Place the logo on the front page of all official print and electronic communication materials.

If the MAKE WAVES. lockup has appeared on the project's front page and subsequent uses of the logo are necessary, designers may choose to use the logo without the lockup. You may contact Creative Services for approval and to obtain an alternative version of the logo if you feel this use is appropriate for your project and Creative Services approve this use.

If you have any questions about logo usage, including when and where you should use the Western logo, reach out to Creative Services.

Size and Space Requirements

Minimum size for the Western logo (any variation) is 1.25 inches, or 90 pixels, wide.

There may be situations where the Western logo will need to appear smaller than this (i.e. lapel pins, pens, pencils, CD spine labels, etc.). Please consult with University Marketing if you have questions.

Space Requirements

The clear space around the Western logo ensures the integrity and impact of the mark. This clear space should be equal to half the height of the capital “W” in Western.




No other graphic element should touch, overlap or be combined with the Western logo.

These rules also apply to the horizontal version of the logo.

Use Outside of the University

University Marketing must provide written consent for non-University logo use. All external entities must obtain this consent, including those in partnership with on-campus units.


The logo is not required for communication that is strictly internal. This includes communication between faculty, staff and students. For example, email about classes, memoranda, draft paper, and meeting notes do not need the logo. University Marketing must approve any other exceptions for logo use.


There are two variants for the Western logo–one for full color and one for greyscale.

Full Color




Social Media

There are two approved versions of the logo for social media. Western's main accounts are to use the institutional logo. Other units who choose to maintain their own social media platforms are to use the "stacked" Western logo with a white background, as to differentiate sub-accounts from main accounts.

For more information and guidance on using social media on behalf of Western, read the social media guide.

Logo for Main Accounts


Logo for Sub Accounts



The horizontal version of the logo is for space-restricted applications, such as pens, where the wordmark of the regular logo is too small to read.

Use of the horizontal logo is by approval only, through University Marketing.

Logo Usage Don'ts

Please observe the following "don'ts" when applying the brand to your marketing or communications.


Don't change the logo colors.


Don't distort the logo.


Don't add drop shadows, bevels, or other effects.


Don't change the positioning or size relationship of the logo.


Don't change the stroke width of the line rule.


Don't change the orientation of the logo.


The following brand identity constructions are for outward-facing offices and units ONLY, and must be developed and approved by University Marketing prior to use.

Campus Units

Western's offices and units, such as colleges and departments, have been authorized to use a unique identity mark construction (see below example using a fictitious department) to enable them to use Western's logo in their own brand identity.


Western Washington University Identity Mark for an Example Campus Unit - Includes components for the Name of Department and the Western Logo

Department Identity Marks Now Available

If you need to update your old identity mark (sub-logo), reach out to University Marketing - we have built identity marks for all colleges and departments, and can provide new identity marks in a variety of formats.

Institutes and Centers

Western's institutes and centers have been authorized to use a unique identity mark cosntruction (see below example using a fictitious institute) to enable them to use a version of Western's logo in their own brand identity.


Western Washington University Identity Mark for an Example Institute - Includes Components for an Illustrative Mark, the Name of the Institute/Center, and the Western "Stacked" Logo

In this example, the blue dot to the left of the institute title is a placeholder for an illustrative mark that helps define the identity of the institute or center. See examples below.


Salish Sea Institute Brand Identity mark
Morse Leadership Institute Brand Identity Mark

Other University Marks

The Western logo is often used with other official and affiliated university marks. All marks are trademarked and enforced through the State Office of Trademark Licensing. See Athletics and Associated  Students for examples.