From the Nominator
On May 1 2019, the University of California teamed up with Michelle Obama’s Reach Higher Initiative to host College Signing Day, a national celebration of students choosing to pursue higher education. Roughly 10,000 California high school and transfer students from areas with low college-going rates attended a star-studded celebration at UCLA’s Pauley Pavilion that was live-streamed around the country. UC’s Marketing and Communications team created a visual identity that incorporated aspects of both UC and Reach Higher’s brands to create a look and feel for the event that was bold, bright, and energetic. The Pavilion’s concourse area was adorned with UC/CSD branded materials and environmental signage—a multimedia video installation, and two large Instagram friendly backdrops for photos. CSD & UC campus banners lined the concourse perimeter leading to a Firstgen student area and UC paparazzi walkway. Free collateral, consisting of UC, Firstgen and CSD badges, stickers and UC pennants, was given away at tables throughout the concourse. Large illustrations of student characters covered many of the pavilion’s windows. These illustrations were also incorporated into the environmental signage and free items students received as they entered the pavilion, with each student receiving a CSD designed backpack containing a notebook, toothbrush, and T-shirt as mementos of the day.
From the Judges
We thought this was an all-around terrific event, with branding to match. The graphics are great, and the characters are really wonderful, and it is no surprise that Reach Higher wants to use the visual identity they created going forward. While the star power was certainly impressive, our judges were most impressed by the fact that they were used for this purpose—to highlight the importance and attainability of a college education. As one judge said, “Totally flawless, and the impact and reach couldn’t possibly be measured.”