Branding and Identity Standards

The HU Brand

Official NMHU logoNew Mexico Highlands University’s brand is a statement of who we are as a community. Therefore, our brand starts with each of us and speaks to our passion, our stories and our success. By consistently presenting our brand, we reinforce the positive reputation and outcome of our collective work.

Adhering to a consistent set of identity standards is critical to the enhancement of New Mexico Highlands University’s image and reputation. A strong brand identity will encourage local, regional and national public recognition, which in turn builds loyalty when executed uniformly over time.  Each year, New Mexico Highlands produces scores of brochures, posters, letters, catalogs and other printed and electronic materials meeting a broad variety of institutional requirements. Design and editorial unity will enable these publications to have a cumulative positive impact for the university. The objective is not to make every publication look the same, but rather to give each common elements clearly marking it as part of the New Mexico Highlands system.

This guide to branding standards establishes unity—and thus the effectiveness—of New Mexico Highlands printed and electronic communications. The standards set forth in this guide also will make the work of staff and vendors easier, more cost effective and more efficient by ensuring consistency.

The standards, adopted by the NMHU Board of Regents on February 3, 2017, apply to written material and graphics intended for the many constituencies of the university and are for use by graphic designers and writers creating these materials. The Office of University Relations can answer questions about these identity standards and is also available to provide design and planning consultations regarding specific projects in accordance with these guidelines. Units and departments may use older, in-stock printed materials for six months from the adoption date of this policy, however, any new printed materials must conform to the new policy.

The Highlands Family

During the spring of 2016, a newly formed branding committee conducted surveys of current and prospective students, faculty and staff, and the alumni and community. One theme clearly rose to prominence among each of New Mexico Highlands’ constituencies: family.

Brand Principles

Our principles honor New Mexico Highlands’ history, tradition and perspectives. The brand principles articulate our beliefs and community values and convey to each of our audiences why we do what we do:

  • Passion
  • Support
  • Belonging
  • Loyalty
  • Acceptance

As a member of the New Mexico Highlands family, we are here to celebrate each other’s victories, support each other through difficulties, and respect each other’s individual contributions to our community.

How Should Brand Principles Be Used?

  • As the foundation of talking points
  • As a core visual theme expressed through graphic style (image, color, typography)
  • Infused thematically throughout editorial copy

Our Core Values

The university’s core values are at the heart of the Highlands experience and provide the foundation of our brand:

  • Excellence
  • Diversity
  • Accessibility
  • Responsiveness

Logo and Usage

The New Mexico Highlands logo must be used on all university publications, whether in print or electronic form. Officially recognized Highlands University departments, programs, institutes and staff are authorized to use the logo to represent the university.

New Mexico Highlands uses two official logos: a name mark and a bold “H” logo. When the logo does not appear on the front cover of a print publication, it should be used on the back cover or in another highly prominent location.

New Mexico Highlands University’s logos have been specially drawn, and the letter and word spacing as well as line weights and lengths carefully determined. Therefore, the logo may not be altered or distorted in any way and must always be in the styles shown. Elements of the logo may not be separated and used individually. For maximum clarity and visibility, care should be taken to ensure the logo is always readable and other images, colors or design elements do not visually interfere. The logo must appear in its entirety and may not be combined graphically with another emblem or symbol. Logo files for the electronic documents may not be used in print documents or vice-versa, as the resolution is impaired. Type or other graphic images appearing on the same surface as the logo must be at least a half an inch away from the logo and may not be superimposed over the logo. The logo may run reversed over a photo or subtle design as long as the background does not interfere with legibility. On any printed or electronic document, the logo may not be smaller than 1.25” high. Exceptions such as printing the logo on certain merchandise such as pens, key chains etc. must have prior approval from the Office of University Relations. No official university logo or variation may be used by any student group or organization or external organization without prior approval from the Office of University Relations.

Embroidered items using the New Mexico Highlands logo, thread should be the equivalent of Robison-Anton Super Brite® Polyester #122: 5731

Special Event Logos

From time to time, for significant events (ie. College Night), the university may use a special event logo. Any such logo must be approved by the Office of University Relations.

Unit and Departmental Logos

The Name Mark logo allows for the addition of units or departments pursuant to the terms of this policy. No university unit or departments may create a separate logo without the permission of the Office of University Relations. Student groups and organizations are exempt from this policy.

Name Mark

The height of the name mark equals the height of the “H”.

The name mark is all caps, Avenir,
New Mexico = Avenir Light
Highlands = Avenir Black
University = Avenir Light

The space between the “H” and the name mark is equal to the height of the serif. The space between the “H” and the rule below is equal to the height of the serif, doubled; as is the height between the rule and the college or department beneath.

Departments, units or centers may be added to the name mark logo. The college or department is all caps, Avenir Black. The height of the college or department is determined by it’s length. The type is not to be stretched to fit the length (width) of the logo + name mark.

The rule and name of the college or department are the exact width of the complete logo with name mark.

The name mark is flush left and right, it is not to be ragged either to the right or left.

The name logo with name mark may be used in the Pantone 268C, black, or white on a colored ground.

Bold “H” logo

Official NMHU logoThe logo, bold “H,” is to be used within the double ruled box, with HIGHLANDS UNIVERSITY in all caps below. Both the “H” and the name are contained within the double-ruled box. Department of unit names may not be added to the bold “H” logo.

A standalone “H” may be used alone as a design element or in the pattern only as supplied to the designer by University Relations. The standalone “H” may not be used in place of an official logo.

Reduction of the logo/mark is allowed down to 2” in width.

Reduction of the logo is allowed down to 1” in width.

Neither logo should be stretched either height or width for any reason. The logo and/or mark may only be scaled in uniform proportion.

University Seal

The University Seal is an approved New Mexico Highlands logo but for extremely limited use. It is intended only for official university documents such as diplomas and transcripts and other materials related to the President’s Office and the Board of Regents. It may not be used in conjunction with any other university logo.

All New Mexico Highlands logos are available in two color (Pantone 268C [purple] and Pantone Warm Gray 4), one color (Pantone 268 C), black and reversed-out versions in a variety of formats from the Office of University Relations.

Color Palette

The primary and preferred color of the New Mexico Highlands University visual identity system is HU purple (Pantone® 268), complimented by white.

The supplemental accent colors displayed here are are intended to represent the NMHU brand principles (passion, support, loyalty, belonging and acceptance); with the overarching theme being family. In addition, these earth-toned colors echo the natural beauty of Las Vegas’ unique mountainous desert landscape.

Supplementary  Color Palette

The supplementary color palette is provided as an aid for print and web communication designs in order to reflect the HU brand in tone and style through consistent use of color. Although the University’s primary identity color is PMS 268 (purple) and should be included in all color materials, effective marketing benefits from a flexible and sophisticated use of color harmony and contrast.

The 8-color palette configuration above further simplifies color choices by selecting a three- or-four-color combination using adjacent color blocks from the example above.

Equivalent color formulas for four-color process printing and digital media are listed alongside the Pantone® color.


All official university publications must use the following font families: Garamond, Avenir and Bickham Script.

Typically, Garamond, a serif font, works best for body copy and headlines. Avenir, a sans-serif font, works best for headlines and should never be used as a font for small, long copy as it is difficult to read. Bickham Script is a special font for invitations and certificates and must never be used for body copy.

Promotional materials used for artistic events on campus (music performances, Ilfeld productions, art exhibitions, etc.) may use a different font for the title of the production to suggest the tone of the event. All explanatory copy on such promotional materials must adhere to New Mexico Highlands’ font guidelines.

  • Avenir Avenir Black Avenir Heavy
  • Garamond, Garamond Semibold
  • Bickham Script


The energy of New Mexico Highlands is reflected in photographs, so care should be taken to ensure a positive visual image is created. People in the photographs should be appropriately dressed, facial expressions must match the mood of the published piece (ie. – no frowns or bored expressions). Photographs must be in focus and may not contain images or logos of another college or university (such as on an article of clothing). Photographs extensively modified with Photoshop filters must not be used, nor should any photograph from an outside source (such as a website) be used without obtaining written reprint permission.

The Office of University Relations maintains a photo library and can arrange to create imagery for specific materials.

Clip Art

Rarely does clip art enhance the look of materials, and may not be used in promotional material for the university.


Email is an official means of communication for New Mexico Highlands. It is important that adequate and consistent contact information be provided by all university employees in their e-mail communications. A consistent visual identity also reduces the possibility of being a victim of phishing or scam emails.

The following guidelines are for all New Mexico Highlands representatives to use in their e-mail signature.

New Mexico Highlands University
Mailing address (optional)
Fax (or approved department or division Web address).

Non-university domains, such as Facebook profiles may not be used in email signatures.

Email Signature Font

For visual consistency in electronic communication, all email signature/footers use 10 pt. Arial.

An email-appropriate logo may be obtained from University Relations and may precede the signature line.


Cindy Quintana | Administrative Assistant

School of Business, Media & Technology

New Mexico Highlands University

Box 9000, Las Vegas, N.M. 87701

505.454.3380 | FAX 505.454.3386

Email backgrounds

Because it can make email text difficult to read and compromises a professional image, background images in emails (jpegs, gifs, etc.) may not be used.

Editorial Style Policy

To maintain a consistent style across university publications, New Mexico Highlands adheres to the Chicago Manual of Style and Merriam-Webster spelling for publications and websites. All university press releases must adhere to Associated Press style.