Intro to Writing
A clear, consistent writing style across all publications strengthens our reputation and image. All University of North Dakota communications should portray our determined students and open, welcoming culture. The ability to express our story in a voice that represents UND is imperative to our brand and what we represent.
The following provides instructions on how to write in UND’s voice and tone for all digital, printed and visual materials. Adherence to these standards will create and maintain a clearly defined brand and identity.
The brand personality is a set of characteristics that make up who we are as UND.
We are hardworking and diligent. We persevere when faced with challenges and believe in actually doing, not just talking about doing.
We are strong-willed and passionate. We embrace our UND community and celebrate our achievements as a team.
We are genuine, welcoming and supportive of all students and cultures. We help those with a desire to learn and make a positive impact.
We are down-to-earth and realistic in how we go about our business. We are reliable and determined to make an impact on our community, state and the world.
We are challengers, unafraid to question how things are done. When we see a problem, we fix it with smart thinking and decisive action.
We were founded on a bold vision and a resiliency that defined all odds, characteristics which remain in all of us to this day. We are independent and tough, able to overcome any obstacle.
Tone of voice
The UND tone of voice guides how we sound and speak to consistently convey our personality. It’s the language we use, the sound of our words and how we construct our communications.
We are always intentional and direct. We use clear and concise language backed by concrete examples, credible endorsements and statistics to prove our impact. We never mince words or use “fluffy” language to communicate an unrealistic and overly rosy picture.
We are always engaging and supportive. Our sense of humor and support for one another shines through even in the most difficult of times. We never pander or speak down to anyone.
We are always open and honest. We say what we do and we do what we say. We use personal stories and students, faculty and staff to communicate the UND experience. We never mislead or pretend to be something we are not.
We are fun and motivated by the opportunity to make a difference. We embrace the success of each other and are proud to share our accomplishments with the world. We exude optimism and empower our students by emphasizing the opportunities we provide. We are never dull, distant or boastful.
How to use the tagline Leaders in Action
When using UND’s tagline, Leaders in Action, follow the basic guidelines below.
When referring to the Leaders in Action tagline itself:
- Capitalize the "L" in leaders and the "A" in action. Keep the "i" lowercase.
- Keep the tagline in regular typeface (i.e. no bold, italics, underline or quotes around it).
- Example: UND’s new tagline, Leaders in Action, has been a great addition to the University.
- Do not use as an individual hashtag, instead use leaders in action in message text and use #UNDproud (lowercase “p”).
When not referring to the specific tagline:
- Avoid, if possible. Try to find other ways to get the same point across.
- Example: “John Doe is a leader in the classroom.”
- Example: “John Doe makes an impact in the classroom.”
- Both of these are on brand and have the same meaning without inserting the tagline.
- If you do use it, lowercase the entire phrase.
- Keep the words in regular typeface.
- Example: John Doe truly is a leader in action.
- Example: UND’s leaders in action are impacting the world in medicine, business and aerospace.
Great brands build strong bonds with their audiences by being consistent. They are instantly recognizable and immediately stand for something. They speak a common language, despite communicating with very different people from very different places.
The brand book contains guidance on how to communicate with different UND stakeholders and what they care about. To request the complete brand book document, contact identity@UND.edu.