April 9, 20240

Embracing Change: A Reflection on College Spark’s Brand Evolution

By Thai Craig

As the Communications Officer at College Spark, I’ve had the privilege of witnessing and participating in our foundation’s transformative journey over the past 12 months. It’s been a process filled with introspection, collaboration, and a deep commitment to our core values of belonging, racial justice, and collaboration. Today, I’m thrilled to share our story of redefining our brand to better reflect who we are and what we stand for.

Our journey began with a simple yet profound question: How is College Spark perceived within the education landscape? To find the answer, we embarked on a series of stakeholder interviews, engaging with educators, community leaders, and grantees. Their insights provided us with a clear understanding of our strengths, weaknesses, and the impact we aspire to make.

Armed with this knowledge, we set out to redefine our brand from the inside out. At the heart of our endeavor lies the concept of belonging—an unwavering belief that everyone deserves a voice and a sense of belonging within the education system. This principle became the guiding light for our brand essence, shaping every aspect of our messaging and identity.

“College Spark's journey towards redefining our brand has been more than just a visual makeover. It's been a deliberate, introspective process—one rooted in our values and driven by our vision for a more just and equitable education system.”
Thai Craig

We distilled our aspirations into a compelling brand story that speaks to our mission and the change we seek to ignite in the education landscape. We identified four key brand attributes—transformation, collaboration, opportunity, and equity—that serve as the foundation of our messaging, embodying the values we hold dear.

Our brand personality—bold, synergistic, hopeful, and steady—captures the spirit of our foundation and the energy we bring to our work each day. It reflects our unwavering commitment to our vision and our determination to drive meaningful change in the world of education.

Central to our brand evolution is our updated visual identity. Where once there was a single spark in our logo, now there are four sparks moving in harmony—a symbolic representation of the power of collaboration. We’ve moved away from the notion that any one organization can go it alone, embracing the reality that progress requires collective action.

In addition to our logo, we’ve revamped our color palette and typography to better align with our brand values. While the former colors included a bright orange and forest green, we’ve retained the orange to bring continuity from our previous palette, infusing our brand with energy and light. We’ve added light and dark blues, warm yet solid colors that symbolize trustworthiness and stability.

Another significant change is in our typography. While the old logo used all capital letters, which conveyed a more formal and authoritative tone, the new one features lowercase letters. This change enhances our brand’s approachability and friendliness, inviting our audience to engage with us on a more personal level.

As the Communications Officer, I’ve had the honor of working alongside our dedicated team to bring our brand vision to life. Together, we’ve crafted a narrative that resonates with our stakeholders, inspires action, and fosters a sense of belonging within our community.

In the words of our Chief Executive Officer, Dr. Warren Brown, “No organization exists in a vacuum. We recognize that meaningful progress requires collective action. By updating our logo to feature four sparks, we are embracing the reality that we are stronger together. Each spark represents a partner, a stakeholder, a community member—united in our shared commitment to equity in education.”

Indeed, College Spark’s journey towards redefining our brand has been more than just a visual makeover. It’s been a deliberate, introspective process—one rooted in our values and driven by our vision for a more just and equitable education system. As we continue to evolve and grow, our brand will serve as a beacon, guiding our efforts and inspiring others to join us in igniting change.

Join the conversation!

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *