Policies & Permissions

Questions? Contact the ID Standards team for more information.

General Information

Approved Vendors

All printing and production of materials that use U-M registered trademarks must be done by a licensed vendor. This applies to both U-M departments and student groups.

Campus Wayfinding Guide

AEC (Architecture, Engineering & Construction) has created a guide with campus wayfinding and signage guidelines. This PDF is chock-full of useful information on signage for building interiors and exteriors, auxiliary facilities, highway guides, trail markers and much more.

Email Signatures

Every email program is a little different. In general, to add the U-M logo to your email signature you will want to insert a link to an uploaded image. If you’re using Gmail, use the “Insert Image” button under the settings option for signature. If you want to use your unit’s logo signature instead, you should contact your unit IT or marketing department for that link. NOTE: the image must be uploaded to a server to display correctly. If you need assistance, ask your IT professional. A signature-sized university logo is available here: umich.edu/assets/email-logo.png.

Endorsements & Recruiting

External companies may identify the university as a client and describe in factual terms the product or service provided. But they are not permitted to use the Block M or any other university logo without prior permission from the ID Standards team. Nor can the U-M logo, the Block M or other U-M registered trademarks be used in recruiting materials by external companies.

University units. Similarly, individual university units may not provide testimonial quotes about a product or service received from a vendor.

University employees. If you want to provide a testimonial for a product or service in your personal capacity, you must take care that your statement is not mistaken as a university endorsement. This means that you must make it clear that you are speaking only on your own behalf. If you include your university title, you must also include the following language: “Title provided for identification purposes only. The views and opinions expressed are those of the individual only and do not necessarily reflect the positions of the University of Michigan.”

Film Office

Planning to film on campus? U-M’s Film Office can help with planning, site selection, and much more. Our campus offers a wide range of exterior and interior settings, including the world-famous Law Quad and the beautiful Matthaei Botanical Gardens. Visit the U-M Film Office website for information on guidelines and fees, and to download forms, or umfilmoffice@umich.edu or phone 734-763-5800.

Licensing & Royalties

It is standard U-M policy that any item that is resold to the general public is royalty bearing. The only items that are exempt from royalties are those that are provided to staff at no cost or given away to the public. If the university’s name/marks are utilized on a product that is being resold, then royalties are due. If the product is being distributed at no cost and does not include any commercial sponsors or endorsements, then the royalty fee will be waived. Note: These are general guidelines and each case is reviewed for royalty exemption at the time the internal request is submitted to the Trademark Licensing office. Contact licensing@umich.edu for more information.

Licensed vendors. All commercial products need to be licensed through our partner, IMG College Licensing. Read more on the IMG website at https://clc.com/home/get-licensed/.

Logo Use on Buildings

The University of Michigan’s physical facilities utilize the official U-M logo and Block M in construction materials as an indicator of an official U-M building. The use of standalone U-M logos/Block Ms by parties external to the U-M could cause confusion, and should be avoided.

The U-M prohibits the use of both the official logo and the Block M from permanent and semi-permanent installation as a standalone mark on physical buildings by U-M partners and sponsors. “Permanent and semi-permanent” can include masonry, steel, glass, plexi and any other material that resembles or is created from similar materials used in the construction of the building.

Partners and sponsors can communicate their affiliation with the University of Michigan through the use of standard and traditional signage typically present at building entrances, both at ground level and affixed to a building.In these instances, the physical assets must be of an impermanent type that can be removed.

It must also be made clear that U-M is the partnering organization rather than the lead organization. Acceptable language such as “The official partner of University of Michigan Athletics” should follow the lead partner/sponsor logo. This line may be set in a smaller typeface. Read more on the AEC website .

Political Campaigns

The use of U-M registered trademarks in political campaigns is prohibited. This PDF contains more information about university policy. If you have questions, contact the Office of the Vice President and Secretary of the University.

“Victors” Recordings

“The Victors,” U-M’s fight song, is in the public domain and may be freely played. If you want to use the Michigan Marching Band’s recording of the song, however, you’ll need to get permission and proper clearances. For more information, email the Marching Band.

Burton Tower Lighting Guidelines

Burton Tower lighting is a venue for the university to promote messages of importance to the campus community. Lighting can be celebratory, or can be used to commemorate or memorialize. In general, the tower is lighted to mark events such as commencement and U-M’s other proud occasions and achievements.

The tower will not be lit for political purposes, personal events (birthdays, weddings, anniversaries, etc.) or for any non-UM purpose.

The Office of the President and the Office of the Vice President for Communications have the final decision-making authority on Burton Tower lighting.
Read more about Burton Tower » »

Alcohol Marketing Standards

The University of Michigan will refuse advertising inconsistent with the fundamental missions of the University, or in conflict with the image the University seeks to project or the well-being of the University community. Examples of advertisements that will not be accepted include:

  • Alcoholic beverages
  • Cannabis products
  • Tobacco products
  • Sex as a product
  • Gambling
  • Paraphernalia associated with illegal drugs
  • Dishonest, deceptive, or illegal advertising.

A full description of the University’s alcohol policy can be found at: http://alcohol-drug-policy.umich.edu/#10

The University Standard Practice Guide related to the alcohol and drug policy can be found at: https://spg.umich.edu/policy/601.29

Policies for Use By:


Use of the U-M marks by alumni is limited. Alumni may not use the Block M on resumes or cover letters. Alumni may also not design their own business cards, but the Alumni Association of the University of Michigan (AAUM) and many of the regional alumni clubs have business card designs available for you to use. Contact the Alumni Association or your local regional club for more information.


Use of the U-M name and/or registered trademarks by businesses, vendors, suppliers and contractors is generally prohibited. Also, please note that the U-M logo, the Block M and other U-M registered trademarks may not be used in recruiting materials by external companies.


The University of Michigan logo, the Block M and the unit logos (“the marks”) are generally reserved for use by U-M units, sponsored student organizations and licensed vendors only. But there are certain exceptions, where individuals not affiliated with the U-M may use the marks; they include:

  • wedding cakes/groom’s cakes
  • cakes for other celebratory events like birthdays
  • gravestones and funeral urns
  • high school graduation announcements and party invitations for students graduating from high school and planning to attend the University of Michigan
  • graduation announcements and party invitations for students graduating from the University of Michigan

Vendors may require a letter stating that the use of the mark was approved by the university. Please contact us at ID Standards@umich.edu to request one.

Other requests are determined on a case-by-case basis. Email the ID Standards team for more information.


Use of U-M marks by individual students is prohibited, with  a few exceptions:

Current students and recent graduates may use the marks on posters or presentations for conferences, as long as the work being presented was conducted at U-M. Students may also order templated, pre-designed business cards produced by U-M Print Copy Mail or any Ann Arbor FedEx/Kinko’s locations. Students may not create their own business cards, nor may they use the logo in their email signatures. 

Students may also not use the marks on resumes, cover letters or custom apparel.

Student Groups

Sponsored student organizations (SSOs) may use the Block M as a standalone graphic and/or the sponsoring unit’s logo. They may also use the U-M’s primary logo.  SSOs may also design their own org logos employing the Michigan Maize and Blue, but not the Block M or any other U-M registered trademark. All use of U-M trademarks need to comply with the logo guidelines on this site. 

SSOs may also not use a capital M in a “slab serif” font (sometimes called a “college font”) or any typeface that resembles the Block M. 

Voluntary student organizations (VSOs) may not use university trademarks or logos, although they may design their own org logos employing  the Michigan Maize and Blue. 

There is an exception for events covered by a University Event Sponsorship Agreement. With this limited sponsorship, a VSO may be granted permission to use university trademarks through their sponsoring unit for official business relating to the event. (Read more on the CCI website.)

For more information, contact the Center for Campus Involvement at 734-763-5900 or uminvolvement@umich.eduor read more about student org policies and copyright and trademarks on the CCI website.

“Ad hoc” student groups. In addition to organizations registered through CCI, some schools and colleges also allow their students to form and join informal groups based within the s/c/u. The policies for these groups are similar to the policy for voluntary student orgs, above.