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What does The Consortium shield and logo mean?

The shield embodies all the elements of The Consortium — its mission and its members, as well as an enduring homage to higher education.

One of the key images representing The Consortium, which you can see in the photo at the top of this post, isn’t one you see very often. It is The Consortium’s shield, and it differs slightly from The Consortium’s logo, which you see to the left in the body of this post.

The shield is proudly displayed over the front doors of The Consortium’s headquarters in Chesterfield, Mo.

consortium-logoConsortium CEO Peter Aranda told us he started working on creating a new visual identity for The Consortium shortly after his arrival in 2003. He wasn’t fond of the old logo, a stylized “shooting star” he thought looked more like a “falling star.”

In the shield, he wanted something that expressed permanence and history.

“I wanted to design something that was more enduring,” Peter said. “I felt like we have a lot in common with universities, which have shields.”

He wanted something that acknowledged the various component parts of The Consortium — students, alumni, corporate partners and member schools. The elements of the shield include:

  • The Latin text for “Unity, Scholarship, Diversity, Inclusion,” which embody The Consortium’s mission.
  • The founding year of The Consortium, 1966.
  • Three stars representing the founding member schools, which had the vision to jump into this work 50 years ago: Washington University in St. Louis; Indiana University-Bloomington; and the University of Wisconsin-Madison.
  • The green “book of knowledge,” spread open.
  • The eternal flame, which includes four “tongues” that we interpret to represent the schools, companies, students and alumni.

In contrast to the official shield, a stylized version serves as The Consortium’s everyday logo, which you find on business cards, our website, our printed materials and our letterhead. Eagle Club members (mostly alumni who donate $15,000 to the organization) also get an embroidered version of the shield to wear with their business attire.

Peter notes that the circle in the logo represents The Consortium staff.

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