Use of the Howard University trademarks must be consistent with the Howard University Identity Guidelines. Consistent use is important for the legal protection of the marks and to promote a consistent brand message. Only authorized licensed vendors may produce consumer products, including promotional items (giveaway items) that include university trademarks.
The university graphic identity standards must be followed as it relates to colleges, schools, institutes, centers, departments, offices, or other university organizations. Student organizations formally recognized by the Office of Student Affairs can use select University and athletic marks in conjunction with the organization name and design of promotional products. Club sports teams recognized by University Athletics are authorized to use select Howard University Athletic marks in conjunction with team names, uniform designs and the creation of promotional products. For more information on trademark guidelines, click here.
- Use of Howard and Athletic marks for merchandise and promotional items must be approved by the Office of Auxiliary Enterprises.
- Product restrictions: University marks are prohibited for use on tobacco products, alcoholic beverages, sexually explicit graphics or descriptions and in conjunction with other third-party trademarks unless authorized by the Office of Auxiliary Enterprises.
Tips for Purchasing Howard University Merchandise
- All officially licensed merchandise should display the officially licensed collegiate product hologram somewhere on the product or hangtag.
- The merchandise should depict the Howard University logos and marks in a tasteful and appropriate manner. If it is distasteful or inappropriate, the merchandise is unlikely to have been licensed by the University.
- The tag on the garment should be intact. A torn or missing tag is evidence of a second-hand garment, one that probably would not meet the stringent quality standards in place by the University.
- All merchandise should bear the name of the manufacturer somewhere on the product, either in the form of a hangtag, a neck label, or screen-printed directly on the garment.
- All merchandise should have the appropriate trademark designation (i.e., ®, TM) next to a specific name or design. Trademark infringement violates state and federal laws, including criminal laws. Penalties vary depending on the extent of the violation but can include confiscation of the product and equipment used to make it, fines, and even jail time for more serious violation. Confiscated product is eventually destroyed or donated to charitable organizations.
Submit Art Approval Request
If you have your design ready and product and vendor selected, have your University approved licensee submit art for approval through Brand Manager. When requesting permission for approval of non-university marks and logos, complete the Art Approval Request Form, indicating how the product will be used and provide the artwork/design.
The artwork approval portal is temporarily not open to new artwork. We are in the process of developing defined standards for future artwork submittals. We apologize for any convenience. Standards will be provided soon. Licensees may continue to submit artwork for approval through Brand Manager 360.
Once submitted, our office, in coordination with University Marketing, will review and provide one of the following decisions:
- Approved with Changes (minor edits to your artwork is needed)