When you write, type or tweet the University of Connecticut’s shorthand name, it should always look like this: UConn. See that? Capital “U,” capital “C,” and the rest lowercase.
If you think I am wrong or crazy (or both for caring about something as minuscule as this), take a look at our school’s branding guidelines.
“Please note that when used in cases other than the wordmark, the word UConn should simply be written as ‘UConn’ not ‘UCONN’. Likewise, the words UConn Health should simply be written as ‘UConn Health’ not ‘UCONN Health’ or ‘UCONN HEALTH’,” the guidelines state.
This can be confusing, as the UConn logo looks like its in all capital letters, but it’s just the logo, and done to keep things consistent to make it more aesthetically pleasing. So why is UConn spelled the way that is when it’s not in the logo?
It’s simple: UConn is not an acronym.
To clarify, acronyms shorten a phrase, and are usually all capitalized. The NBA, MLB and NFL are all perfect examples. Each letter in those acronyms stands for something. The individual letters of UConn don’t stand for anything.
The term “UConn” is just shortening “University of Connecticut” to something that rolls off the tongue. “UConn” is a pretty great shorthand name, so good that the school switched and adopted the “UConn” brand full-time in place of the “University of Connecticut” a few years ago.
“UConn” is spelled incorrectly pretty much all the time. Social media sees the wrong version of “UConn” on an hourly basis. Even ESPN, who is based out of Connecticut, gets it wrong routinely. That’s pretty bad. This happens because so many people, willingly or unwillingly, use an all-capitalized version of UConn all too frequently.
Fortunately, it’s an easy fix. If you’re reading this column, you’re already on the right track to writing “UConn” and not any other incorrect version. That’s a great start. Obviously not everyone will read this, but the more this movement can spread, the better. Once you realize “UConn” is not all capitalized, your skin will crawl when you see it all in caps. I can promise you that. So just don’t do it anymore! Not to mention, the wrong capitalization of “UConn” reflects poorly on current students and alumni. It’s not a great look if we can’t even type out our own school’s name correctly.
Because of this, it’s on students, faculty and alumni to get this right. Seeing “UConn” in all capital letters (or any other spelling, for that matter) is painful for me to see. It’s not the end of the world, but it’s certainly embarrassing. Whether you like UConn or not, it’s the brand. We might as well spell it right.