The process behind using UVM’s trademark symbol

The “V-cat” logo has been on the club football team’s helmets since before head coach Jeff Porter began coaching in 2011. In order to be allowed to use the logo on their helmets, the team had to go through an approval process when they were founded in 2007, just like any other University club or organization.

Krista Balogh, associate director of athletics at UVM, said the process to get approved to use the University trademark or logo is “fairly simple.” Balogh said she has been the University’s licensing coordinator for all trademarks for four months. She handles requests from every group or organization that wants to use UVM’s trademark or logo, she said.

“I am currently educating campus on our licensing policy and procedures which have been in place for many years,” Balogh said.

A trademark is a phrase or name that the University owns, according to the University’s trademark policy. In UVM’s case, it owns three: UVM, Catamounts and the University of Vermont, according to the policy.  A logo is artwork connected to the University that the school owns, such as the “V-cat” or the official University seal. Anyone who wants to use the logo or trademark must submit a form, which will either be approved or denied by Balogh, according to the UVM licensing program website.

“You have to submit the signed form with the artwork for approval and I get back to folks within a day or two,” Balogh said.

It is not an issue for a club to get approved to use the logo, Balogh said.  Once the approval form is sent in, it takes one to two days to get approved and, if it is a week day, it could be approved that same day, she said. Any groups or organizations that get approved to use the trademark or logo will pay a 4 percent licensing fee, according to the approval request form.

Aside from student clubs and organizations, campus departments and retail outlets can also apply for approval to use the trademark and logo through the licensing program, Balogh said. The University has parternered with the Licensing Resource Group since July of 2003, which was recently purchased by Learfield Licensing, according to Balogh. Learfield manages licensing for over 560 colleges and universities, according to the UVM licensing program website.

For all these schools and other organizations, Learfield provides royalty collection, accounting services, legal assistance and anti-counterfeiting services, according to the website.

“I take much of my direction from [Learfield] -— they speciaize in collegiate licensing and have a wealth of experience and knowledge in the field,” Balogh said.  “We have been very happy with the partnership throughout the years.”

Balogh said she is currently in the process of working with Leon Lifschutz, the club sports coordinator at UVM, to create a logo specific to club sports  on campus.

“This is going to be a process that I am not rushing – it is interesting to get to know different units and clubs and work through their brands when applicable,” Balogh said.