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Licensing Policies

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General Guidelines for Use

University departments, schools, and registered student organizations can use the official Vanderbilt University logo on products and services. For more information, please visit the Graphic Standards website at vanderbilt.edu/graphicstandards. Please note, it is not permissible to create logos for your group or organization. The only approved logos are those found on the Graphic Standards website. For athletics, student recreation and organizations, and athletic related events, the official athletic mark can be found at vanderbilt.edu/publicaffairs/cs/graphicstandards/athletics/

Vanderbilt University marks should be used within the following guidelines:

  • The logos should not be altered in any fashion.
  • The logos should have the proper trademark symbols (®, ™).
  • When referring to the University on products and services, please use the following wordmarks: Vanderbilt, Vanderbilt University, Vanderbilt Commodores, and Commodores. In some cases, "Vandy" is permissable.
  • The logos should not be used in association with a private business or used in a manner that might associate or imply endorsements by the University with an outside business or product without proper authorization from the University.
  • Employees may not use the University's names or its logos in any manner, which suggest or imply University support or endorsement of any movement, a candidate for public office, or an activity or program not officially sponsored by the University.

Unacceptable Products/Services

  • Vanderbilt University will not approve the use of its name or marks to promote the following products: tobacco, controlled substances, sexually oriented products, alcohol, religious products, bathroom articles, or games of chance.
  • The University will not approve the use of its name or marks with: text or graphics that are judged to be sexually suggestive, denigrating language by any group including another college or university, items that infringe on the marks of other trademark owners on products or services, or endorsement of political candidates.
  • The University will not license products that: do not meet minimum standards of quality and/or taste, are judged to be dangerous or carry high product liability risks.

Merchandise Use

University departments, medical center, schools and student organizations who would like to place orders for apparel (e.g., t-shirts, polos, hats) and gift items (e.g., mugs, key chains), must use vendors licensed by Vanderbilt University through our licensing agency - Collegiate Licensing Company (CLC). For more information about CLC, please visit www.clc.com.

Please complete the following two steps when ordering apparel and gift items:

1.  Complete the Merchandise Request form.

  • This form should be the first step in your process of obtaining products.
  • We recommend that you complete this form four weeks before the desired date to allow for necessary approvals,  vendor production, and shipment.
  • Indicate on the form whether the merchandise WIll Not Be Sold, Will Be Given in Exchange for a Suggested Donation, Will Be Sold for a Specific Dollar Amount.
  • Provide details about your order.  For example, if the order is a reorder, where will you sell the item, how you will offer the item, how many you want to order, etc.
  • The Trademark Licensing Office will review the information provided on the Merchandise Request form and reply to you and the licensed vendor. 
  • Items that "Will Not Be Sold" or given in exchange for a "Suggested Donation" are tax exempt. Items sold for a "Specific Dollar Amount" must include Tennessee State Sales Tax. For more information visit www.vanderbilt.edu/licensing/merchandise.php

2.  Use a Licensed Vanderbilt vendor to design and place your order.

  • The licensed  vendor is required to submit your design online through CLC's art approval system. The Trademark Licensing Office will work with your vendor to make sure your design meets the university's graphic standards.
  • Once the design is approved by the Trademark Licensing Office, production can begin.
  • Please note that the Trademark Licensing Office is approving the use of university logos and designs only. Third party logos and graphics must be approved separately by the Trademark Owner.

Web/Print Uses

Web Use
Vanderbilt logos used on official University Web sites such as University departments, approved student groups, and schools, are permitted as long as the logos are used correctly. All University requests for the use of the official University logo should be made to Beth Fox, Director of Web Communications at beth.fox@vanderbilt.edu. Web sites not affiliated with the University require authorization from the Office of Trademark Licensing.

Print Use
When University marks are used in publications (e.g., brochures, pamphlets, newsletters), which are distributed on or off campus, designs will need to be approved by the Office of Creative Services. Please send your requests to Judy Orr, Assistant Vice Chancellor  of Creative Services at judy.orr@vanderbilt.edu.