Visual Identity and Messaging

The college's Communication Standards and Policies cover any message or product representing Buffalo State College that is directed at an internal or external audience. These policies present a common set of guidelines for various types of communication to both internal and external audiences: brochures and advertisements, reports and letters, websites and new media help ensure that Buffalo State presents itself in an accurate, clear, and consistent manner. 

Standards and Policies

Communication standards and policies help all college offices, departments, programs, and vendors apply appropriate identifying elements and language to a wide variety of materials. All departments at Buffalo State College must follow the institution’s communication standards to maintain a strong, consistent visual identity and messaging.

Visual Identity Program

Organizations throughout the world use visual identity programs for instant recognition. Effective visual identity is not conspicuous but covers everything affiliated with an organization. The Visual Identity Program pertains to all Buffalo State official communications, including web and new media, print publications, stationery, media and public relations, advertising and marketing, internal communication, and merchandising. All printed materials, websites, and marketing initiatives must be cohesive and closely integrated with the college’s brand to present a clear, consistent image for the institution.

A wide variety of audiences—from faculty, staff, and students to members of the media and the general public—view communication materials from Buffalo State College every day. Without consistent messaging or a clear visual link to Buffalo State, public audiences might be unsure which units and programs are connected to the college. A visual identity program is a group effort; everyone must participate to make it work.

Buffalo State College logos, typography, and color palettes combine to create a distinct visual identity for the institution and explains how to use Buffalo State’s logo, typography, and colors for a consistent look that strengthens the image of the college. Buffalo State’s editorial style guide helps the college standardize and unify its written communications.

Referring to Buffalo State

The official name of the institution is Buffalo State College.

“Buffalo State College” should be used in running text on first reference in most situations, including internal documents and communication (official memos and forms, Daily Bulletin messages, web pages and email intended for current students, faculty, and staff, etc.), and external communication with audiences already familiar with the institution (1300 Elmwood, alumni e-newsletters, invitations, fundraising materials, etc.). On subsequent reference, “Buffalo State,” “the college,” or “the institution” may be used.

Writing produced for an external audience that may not be familiar with Buffalo State’s affiliation with the State University of New York system should use “SUNY Buffalo State College” on first reference in running text. Examples include official press releases, recruitment and admissions materials, journal articles and other publications, employment advertisements, and grant proposals. If it is necessary to spell out “SUNY” in these situations, “Buffalo State College, State University of New York” is also acceptable on first reference. On subsequent reference, “Buffalo State,” “the college,” or “the institution” may be used.

The abbreviation “BSC” should not be used in running text. “Buff State” is also discouraged in running text but may be permissible for social media, marketing content, external news headlines, or broadcast news coverage.

Please do not refer to the institution as: 
• Buffalo State University
• SUNY Buffalo State
• the university
• or any similar variation

Legal Name

The official legal name of the institution, used by New York State and the State Education Department, is State University of New York College at Buffalo or State University College at Buffalo. This acknowledges our status as one of SUNY’s 13 university colleges and is found on Buffalo State’s official seal. The legal name often appears on documents and forms produced for or with the State of New York, for example, student application materials, state budget forms, and diplomas. While this name is accurate, it should be reserved for official state documents and forms and should not be used in any other capacity.

Contact Us

For complete details on working to fulfill your program’s communication goals and objectives or for brand strategy guidelines, please contact the Marketing and Communications Office, Cleveland Hall 307, at or (716) 878-4201.