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Columbia College redesigned its logo and now students and alumni are complaining that the new logo is overly simple and stupid.
It’s a scenario I know well. You see, I work at the Gap. Last year, Gap attempted to redefine itself as a brand and so, after shuffling the upper management around, corporate decided to create a new logo to reflect all the changes. I’m sure you remember the rest.
After a week-long firestorm of complaints – both online and to me, in the store as I rang up jeans – Gap reverted back to the familiar white text inside the navy box. The Gap North America president, Marka Hansen, issued a statement saying she didn’t realize how much people loved the old logo and that Gap should asked for input before changing it.
Perhaps Columbia College could learn from Gap’s mistakes. Like Gap, the school’s logo redesign was an effort to rebrand and make itself look for elite to gain a competitive edge.
In this case, Columbia College ditched the old logo which depicted Rogers Gate, named for Joseph Kirtley Rogers, the college president who kept the school open during the Civil War. This logo has only been used since the mid-90s. Since the change, a woman named Jen Chavez has created an online petition to change the logo back to Rogers Gate.
The new logo that has been causing all the ruckus shows the words Columbia College in plain type, with two C’s around it. On the petition, Chavez writes that “In conversations with current students and fellow alumni, the “CC” has been compared to hoop earrings, MasterCard, a business – not a school, a child’s drawing, and many more insulting comparisons.” She writes that the new logo does not represent the Columbia College well or the education she received there.
Other people have said that the “CC” makes Columbia College look more like a community college or an online university and less of a “brick-and-mortar” college.
Meanwhile, Michael Kateman, executive director for development, alumni and public relations for the college, defends the new logo and its embrace of the recognizable “CC” for Columbia College.
Then again, Gap defended its new logo for a whole week before changing it back.
What do you think of Columbia College’s new logo? Will you be signing the petition to get Rogers Gate back?
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