(Est. 1789) “The University of North Carolina is a multi-campus university dedicated to serving our state and its people through world-class teaching, research and scholarship, and outreach and service. The oldest public university in the nation, UNC traces its roots to the state’s 1776 constitution, which held that “All useful Learning shall be duly encouraged and promoted in one or more Universities.” Today, nearly 225,000 students are enrolled on 16 university campuses across the state and at the NC School of Science and Mathematics, the country’s first public, residential high school for gifted students.”
Ologie (Columbus, OH)
The old logo wasn’t bad but it wasn’t particularly attractive either. Its main problem, though, was that it looked like yet another one of the 17 university logos, easily confusing as an individual institution rather than the overarching system. The new logo, aside from including the word “System”, looks more like an organization operating at the state level. Obviously, including the shape of the state of North Carolina does that but I think a great decision for this logo was to NOT use the usual university iconography of torches, books, suns, and crests. The execution of the logo, using 17 vector points to draw the state is smart and relevant. The shape of the state of North Carolina isn’t the coolest or most conducive to become a logo — leave that to Texas — but they have made the best of it and as neatly as possible have placed the “N☆C” monogram in there, which follows the design found on the state’s flag. The typography, all in Gotham, is not very inspiring but serviceable. On the extra long wordmark version it seems the designer looked at the amount of letters and was, like, “Fuck it, I'm not kerning that” or at least gave up when he/she got to “SYSTEM”. Overall, though, this is strong, functional, and clearly establishes this as the parent organization to these myriad schools, while also establishing that not everything is about University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, the most famous of the group and the one most people associate when hearing University of North Carolina or the UNC acronym.
Thanks to Evan Leadem for the tip.