Florida State University
Office of Trademark Licensing

Recognized Student Organizations

Trademark Licensing Guidelines

Effective January 1, 2021

Student Organization Names

  • Recognized Student Organization should include the word “club” or similar identifier in the name of the organization. Identifiers include but are not limited to: Club, Society, Association, Sorority, Fraternity, Council, Institute, Group, Committee, Students, Students For…, Campus Ministry, Ambassadors, Recruiters, Fellowships, Community, Greek Letters, and/or Chapter.
  • Recognized Student Organization names cannot imply the RSO is endorsed by the University or otherwise affiliated with the University.
  • Recognized Student Organizations may include the words “at Florida State University” along with or as part of their organization’s name. Acceptable alternatives include “at Florida State” or “at FSU.” This designation may not appear larger than the rest of the Recognized Student Organization name.

Recognized Student Organizations Logos

  • Recognized Student Organizations may create their own graphic logo but may not incorporate any additional Florida State University trademarks or references into the logo (including athletic font).
  • The organization name must be included with this graphic. If the text “at Florida State University,” “at FSU,” or “at Florida State” is also incorporated, it may not appear larger than the organization name.
  • If the RSO elects to create its own logo, it must be approved by the Division of Student Affairs and Office of Trademark Licensing through NoleCentral.

Recognized Student Organization (RSO) Product/Merchandise Designs

  • Designs should center around the RSO and/or event that is being promoted.
    • Do not make it appear that your group is a department or official entity of the university or that you represent a specific college or Florida State University as a whole. Student groups cannot be the retailing arm of a college or department.
  • The official RSO name or acronym (which registered in NoleCentral) must be on the product; the official RSO name/acronym should be equal to, if not larger than, university verbiage/marks on the design.
  • RSO's may use the stacked FSU logo, the interlocking FS, the spear, spearhead, and font system with approval from the Office of Trademark Licensing.
  • RSO's may not use any other Florida State University logos, including the Seminole head, tribal pattern, university seal, or vintage logos.
  • Recognized Student Organizations may use design graphics that reflect the Florida State campus, including statues, but the design may not alter the statue or incorporate the student organization logo into the graphic or verbiage to reflect the purpose of the student organization.
  • Symbols that represent the organization may not surround any Florida State University design graphic, verbiage, or FSU logo or be overlaid, placed inside, or intersect with the graphic, verbiage or FSU logo.
  • No patterns or designs may be placed inside Florida State marks.
  • Recognized Student Organizations may use Florida State University related verbiage, such as “Fear the Spear”, “Unconquered”, “Seminoles”, portions of the fight song, alma mater and cheers, but that verbiage cannot be altered to reflect the name or purpose of the RSO. This verbiage should be separate from the organization name.
  • No patterns or designs may be placed inside Florida State University logos. Florida State University logos must be independent of any other graphic element.
  • No representation of any Native American image or identity should be used as a part of an RSO mark or design. This imagery includes, but is not limited to, headdresses, tomahawks, caricatures, and objects being impaled on spears.

Ordering Merchandise

Any product bearing University trademarks must be purchased only from those manufacturers licensed to produce merchandise bearing University marks. Using an officially licensed company to manufacture a product ensures that brand guidelines are met, the company has provided appropriate product liability insurance, and has fulfilled contractual requirements to protect Florida State University and its intellectual property.

Florida State University's licensing program has more than 350 manufacturers licensed to produce a variety of products, many of which focus on servicing internal groups and departments on campus. For a complete list of vendors, including recommendations for your organization, please visit our Licensed Vendor list here.

Use of Third-Party Marks

Use of trademarks or other intellectual property owned by a third party must be approved by that entity in writing and submitted to the Licensing Office along with the desired artwork.

Unauthorized Use

Please note that any use of University marks that does not comply with the University's licensing and approval requirements is unauthorized and may violate Federal and/or state laws. The University reserves the right to take appropriate action when confronted with unauthorized use of its marks.