Office of Public Affairs and Advocacy

Sacramento State Identity Style Guide

The Sacramento State Identity Guide represents an opportunity to communicate and reinforce Sacramento State’s values in the community and to the general public. The look and feel of all materials and publications affect how the University’s image is conveyed and perceived. The campus identity package was designed to:

  • Help increase and reinforce public awareness by creating a consistent, unified image that can be easily recognized and identified as Sacramento State throughout the community
  • Assist departments, units, vendors and designers in maintaining consistent and precise production of the campus marks and graphics
  • Create one cohesive look and effective visual style among all departments and across all applications

View the Sacramento State Identity Style Guide (pdf)

University Name

The University has settled on a common naming system, and the designs for the identity package are based on that system. The number of name variations has been limited to avoid causing confusion.

Formal Name

The formal name of the University is California State University, Sacramento. This name should always include the comma, and should not include other elements such as a dash or the word “at.” An exception would be the stacked version of the department logotype, where the break is implied.

University Nickname

The secondary nickname for the University is “Sac State” – a name that has been long used with affection by students, alumni and the local community. It should be used on material intended for an audience that is highly familiar with and close to the University, such as alumni.

Logos and Wordmarks

The University’s signature is composed of the Sacramento State logo (symbol and wordmark) and tagline. This signature represents the University as a whole—it’s goals, image, ideas, personality and values. This signature should be applied to all university-related documents that do not call for use of the formal seal and should be displayed as a prominent element.

The Symbol

Sacramento State Primary Signature

The first element you’ll notice is the torch or “S” contained within the shield. The curves of the flame combined above the solid stance of the torch handle is the defining feature of the Sacramento State logo system. It is inspired by the quality of learning, diversity, unity, strength and leadership that a torch has long symbolized. Other elements of the logo include a shield (official, government representation), an arch (reminiscent of the Guy West Bridge) and curved waves (river, geographical reference). Only the “S” or flame can be used as a separate graphic element.

The Wordmark

The wordmark is typeset in the font Trajan Bold. Its all-caps typography evokes strength, while the thin serifs of the font are friendly and welcoming.

The Tagline - Redefine the Possible

The tagline communicates the University’s promise to its students and community. It should always be accompanied by the logo. The primary signature locked with the tagline should be used whenever possible, especially in advertising and promotional materials.

Official Seal

To ensure compliance and proper use the Sacramento State Official Seal, all units planning to use it must obtain written and advance approval by contacting the Office of University Marketing at (916) 278-4381 or universitymarketing@csus.edu. Please allow an approval time of five working days so that printing and other deadlines can be met.

Sacramento State Marks

The Sacramento State marks are the primary graphic elements of the Sacramento State identity program. 

All materials using the Sacramento State logo must be approved by the Office of University Marketing. Reproduction-quality versions of the logo or official seal are available at or by contacting the Office of University Marketing at (916) 278-2140. Please allow three working days for all requests for logos or the official seal.

Color Palettes

Consistent use of the Sacramento State color system contributes to a cohesive and unified look of the Sacramento State identity across all relevant media. The secondary dark and light palettes are available on page 26 of the Sacramento State Identity Style Guide (pdf)

Fonts

To maintain visual consistency across all University publications and materials, please use the University typeface system whenever possible. The typeface system consists of the following:

  • Trajan
  • Myriad

The fonts web page has examples of both fonts. If these fonts are not available, the typeface Garamond should be used. These fonts are available for purchase online at linotype.com, veer.com, fonts.com or at store.adobe.com/type.

Letterhead and Business Cards

Order letterhead and envelopes with the Reprographics letterhead order form, and business card with the Reprographics business card order form or call (916) 278-6198. 

Graphic Elements

You’ll notice in the primary logo is the flame or “double S” contained within the shield.  The double S can be used as a graphic element as a screen, gradient, tone on tone, as a transparent overlay, etc. Partial use of the icon is acceptable. It cannot however, be stretched or manipulated; it must maintain its proportional shape. Below are only some examples of its use.

Sacramento State - Flame

Sacramento State - Flame on colored background

Misuse of Sacramento State Logo

Shown here are examples of improper uses of the Sacramento State logo. Always use the approved artwork and always follow these guidelines when using it. If you are unsure, please call the Office of University Marketing at (916) 278-4381 for guidance.

Sacramento State Logo - improper uses