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Find tips and answers to your frequently asked questions on our brand below.

Name Change

Q: When did the name change take effect?

A: October 6, 2015 was the official launch date for the Weill Cornell Medicine brand.  On that day, we introduced the Weill Cornell Medicine visual identity to the Board of Overseers and the internal community. Any communications moving forward should use the Weill Cornell Medicine brand name.

Q: Why did the name change from Weill Cornell Medical College to Weill Cornell Medicine?

A: Weill Cornell Medicine is the new umbrella name for the entire organization.  Weill Cornell Medicine is not a legal entity, but rather a new “brand name.” We created a new brand name to better encompass the three pillars of our mission--patient care and research in addition to education.

Q: Why “Weill Cornell Medicine”?

A: We felt that “Weill Cornell” on its own needed further definition for people outside our community to understand what we do and more readily recognize us as a comprehensive medical institution.  We chose terminology that more closely aligns with other well-known peer organizations, such as Johns Hopkins Medicine, Stanford Medicine, Duke Medicine, and Penn Medicine. 

Q: Why did we need to change the name?

A: We have grown significantly over the last several years with the expansion of our physician base.  A community survey showed that public perception of Weill Cornell Medical College is, logically, as an educational institution first and foremost.  We want people to know that we offer the full breadth of learning, clinical care, and medical research --from bench to bedside.

Q: What are the institutional priorities as represented by this new name?

A: The intent of introducing Weill Cornell Medicine was to better align public perception with what we actually do every day.  As part of the rebranding exercise, we conducted extensive research and found that the general public associated Weill Cornell Medical College mostly with education. As we continue to recruit eminent research faculty and expand our patient care footprint throughout Manhattan and other boroughs, we want people to recognize us for these important areas of activity as well.  Including “Medicine” in our name allows us to remain a top-tier institution as the highly competitive healthcare environment evolves.

Q: Are we still an academic medical institution?

A: Yes, the name change did not alter our status as an academic center.  Our faculty continues to hold the same titles as before, and they continue to practice at NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital and other affiliated institutions.

Q: Was this in response to the increase in competition for patient dollars in New York City?

A: New York City is unique in the number of academic medical centers located here. That has always been the case, but the landscape IS changing with the advent of new healthcare legislation. We know that patients have many healthcare provider choices, and we believe that the name Weill Cornell Medicine will make it easier for them to understand the full breadth of what we do.

Q: Do you have examples of this type of change at other schools?

A: Yes, the University of Pennsylvania Medical School rebranded their medical activities several years ago under the name Penn Medicine. Penn Medicine is among the top academic medical centers in the country. Other examples include Duke Medicine, Stanford Medicine and Johns Hopkins Medicine.

Q: Are the names Medical College and Graduate School names going away?

A: No, Weill Cornell Medical College and Weill Cornell Graduate School of Medical Sciences remain the names of our schools, which also continue to be known as the Joan and Sanford I. Weill Medical College and Weill Cornell Graduate School of Medical Sciences. Cornell University remains the official legal entity and corporation name of our University. You also continue to see these names on paychecks and other legal documents. In addition, we use it to refer to matters related to education at the Medical College and Graduate School.

Q: How does this change affect the students? Have you had any feedback from students regarding the name change?

A: We conducted focus groups with students from both the medical and graduate schools, and their comments played an important role in the re-branding.  As part of the Weill Cornell Medicine launch, we held information sessions with student leaders and student groups to reassure them that this in no way affects the education they receive.

Q: Did anything else change, like the relationship with Cornell University or NewYork-Presbyterian?

A: Our relationships with partners such as Cornell University, NewYork-Presbyterian, The Hospital for Special Surgery, Sloan Kettering Institute, and Rockefeller University remain important to us. Our collaboration with them is seen as a unique and distinctive element of our brand.  Therefore, we continue to work with them in the same, if not enhanced, manner.

Q: How do I edit the slide master?

A: Elements on the slide master have been intentionally designed to preserve the integrity of the brand. Please do not adjust the position, appearance or size of the elements on this page. To edit the presentation title, click View Slide Master and select the first slide. Click on the text box in the lower right-hand corner and edit the text to match the presentation’s title.

Implementation

Q: Will the signage outside of the buildings change?

A: Yes, building signage has been updating progressively to reflect the new brand.

Q: What do I need to do about my unit’s website?

A: In conjunction with the launch of the new brand, the ITS Web Communications team developed a comprehensive plan to proactively convert WCMC websites to the new brand. This plan is also moving all institutional websites to our institutional content management system, Drupal. If you manage a departmental, division, or other institutional website that was built or hosted by ITS Web Communications, communications were sent to all site owners regarding the timeline for each specific sites and next steps. If you have any questions about the website conversion, contact Dan Dickinson at dwd2001@med.cornell.edu.

Q: What is happening to the Physician Organization? What name do they now use?

A: The Physician Organization falls under the umbrella of Weill Cornell Medicine but is not changing.  In advertising and collateral materials, the PO is using Weill Cornell Medicine alone as an easy and simple name for patients to recognize.  This name also appears on building signage for easy wayfinding. The Physician Organization name will continue to be used internally and with outside suppliers so that billing relationships do not have to change.

Q: Who paid for this?

A: Each unit—such as a department or division--is generally responsible for their own budget and any necessary changes.  Because new branding was rolled out over time, there was flexibility in planning costs.  For changes to departmental and other websites, ITS is implementing a phased approach to reduce institutional costs for all website re-branding. 

Q: How do I refer to my department?

A: Department names did not change.  However, the new branding takes a patient perspective with simplified language to facilitate wayfinding and memorization. When communicating with patients in writing, we suggest dropping the words “Department of.” For example, the Department of Dermatology would be referred to as “Weill Cornell Medicine, Dermatology” or “Dermatology at Weill Cornell Medicine”.

Q: Do I have to change my business cards?

A: Eventually, everyone will have business cards with the Weill Cornell Medicine branding.  We encourage you to use up your cards and other stationery with the old design and replace them when you need new ones.  The goal is to have a consistent look to all our materials as soon as possible. You can order new business cards from  duplicating@med.cornell.edu or (212) 746-0935.

Q: Why didn’t the name change on my paycheck?

A: You may see the new Weill Cornell Medicine logo on your paychecks, but since Weill Cornell Medical College remains our official name, your paychecks will continue to be paid out of the Weill Cornell Medical College account.

Q: What do I use as an abbreviation for Weill Cornell Medicine?

A: Because this is a new brand and we want people to remember it, we encourage using the full name “Weill Cornell Medicine” in all instances.  We know that people internally have a tendency to say “Weill Cornell”, but we discourage using that abbreviation, especially in written communication.   We would like to create the habit of saying “Weill Cornell Medicine” so that it becomes natural, and we want to build equity in the new name with all internal and external audiences.  Where space is particularly limited, such as Social Media icons, we recommend using “WCM” as the letter abbreviation for Weill Cornell Medicine.

Q: What do I do about my email signature?

A: We have recommended a format for email signatures as part of our Brand Guidelines.  Consistency is extremely important in creating equity in a new brand, and we are all participating in building that equity each time we send an email.  For an easy way to create your email signature, click here.

Q: Should I change the name on my grants?

A: No, you should keep your current grants in the name approved by the funding organization.  Any future grants should also use the name approved by the funder.  Since Weill Cornell Medicine is a name encompassing the entire organization, individual entities under the umbrella do not change status.

Q: Designer Tip: Tracking

A: Tracking (the space between letters) should be set to zero.

Q: Designer Tip: Leading

A: Leading (the space between lines of text) should be tight for headlines, and standard for body text.

Q: Designer Tip: Align Left

A: We always align left and consider dramatic shifts in scale and asymmetry key aspects of our overall visual identity.

Q: General Tip: Font

A: 1898 Sans is available on every computer institution-wide for employee usage at Weill Cornell Medicine. The font package can also be downloaded on the brand center. The font was custom-designed for our brand, which means we own the rights to use and share it with our partners and vendors as needed.

Q: Image Tip: Gray

A: Cool Gray 6 and Cool Gray 8 can also be used in print applications.

Q: Image Tip: Logo

A: Use the all-white logo on a dark background. The all-black logo can be used on a lighter background.

Q: Can I change the name "Care. Discover. Teach"?

A: Only use “Care. Discover. Teach.”  in that order.  Neither the order of the words nor the colors should be changed.

Q: Where should I place "Care. Discover. Teach."?

A: Always use “Care. Discover. Teach.”  adjacent to Weill Cornell Medicine, either in words or with the logo.

Q: How should I refer to the institution in academic presentations or conferences?

A: Whenever possible, you should use the new Weill Cornell Medicine branding and logo, but use your existing title (for example: Professor of Medicine, Weill Cornell Medical College).  Marketing has also provided branded PowerPoint templates to make your presentations easier to produce. 

Q: What should be my phone greeting?

A: You should answer the phone and record your voice-mail to cite your name, title and Weill Cornell Medicine, since this is the official name of the organization we want people to recognize.

Q: Can I create my own logo?

A: All master brand and entity logos are created by Marketing. For consistency of design, all units must employ the lock-ups and downloads on the brand website. Since they follow strict design patterns, logos should not be altered in any way.  If you have a question on which logo or format to use click here or contact brand@med.cornell.edu.

Q: Can I develop a visual to go along with my logo?

A: No, the only visual associated with Weill Cornell Medicine logos should be the seal.  Because we do not want to compete with this emblem of our connection to Cornell, no other visuals can be associated with the brand.

Q: Can I add more information to my current logo?

A: A logo has the single purpose of identifying the brand and serving as an element of easy recognition.  As the simple visual is repeated and recognized over time, it creates a sense of familiarity and trust.  It can also be an aid in wayfinding.  With this limited purpose in mind, a logo cannot be expected to serve as a billboard or any other form of communication.  If you need to communicate additional messages, the Marketing team can assist in finding another solution.

Q: Wondering when to use the medical school name?

A: Use Weill Cornell Medical College when referring specifically to matters related to education at the medical school or in conjunction with academic titles (Professor, Assistant Professor, etc.).

Q: How to refer to the Graduate School?

A: Use Weill Cornell Graduate School of Medical Sciences when referring specifically to students, courses, functions or titles of the graduate school.  The reference to the Sloan Kettering Institute is not needed when writing or speaking about the graduate school.

Q: Need to abbreviate Weill Cornell Medicine?

A: Try to use the full name Weill Cornell Medicine as often as possible to help build brand awareness.  However, if you are writing a document or paragraph with many references to the brand, you can substitute “the institution” or “the organization” for the full name, once it has been established.   Informally, or if space is very limited (such as in social media), you can use the initials WCM.  Try to avoid Weill Cornell, as that is part of the old branding.

Q: Going to an academic conference?

A: Use the PowerPoint templates with the white or grey background.  If you are citing your academic title (Professor, Associate Professor, etc.), you can put Weill Cornell Medical College after it on the front cover, but use the Weill Cornell Medicine branded footers embedded in the templates.

Q: How often should I check the Brand Center for updates?

A: The marketing team will upload new materials at the beginning of each new quarter.

Q: Does Marketing need to approve all promotional materials?

A: Please submit proofs of promotional materials to brand@med.cornell.edu

Q: If I’m working with a graphic designer, what materials should I provide?

A: Please send designers a link to visit the Brand Center, where they can download brand materials such as our logos, custom font and brand guidelines.

Q: How much color/text is too much?

A: Use bold, bright colors selectively. The colors in the presentation should compliment and highlight the content, not distract the audience.

Keep the amount of text on your page to a minimum. The text sizes have been set for optimum readability in a variety of presentation settings. Long blocks of small text decreases readability and may reduce the clarity and impact of the message.

Titles

Q: Will the Dean and other academic titles change?

A: No, all academic titles will remain unchanged. The Dean’s title will continue to read:

Stephen and Suzanne Weiss Dean
Weill Cornell Medical College
Provost for Medical Affairs
Cornell University

Q: Is my faculty appointment changed under the new brand?

A: No, your appointment and title did not change. You are still part of Weill Cornell Medical College, but you are also part of the larger entity Weill Cornell Medicine.

Q: Am I still a faculty member of Weill Cornell Medical College and/or Weill Cornell Graduate School of Medical Sciences?

A: Yes, the schools under the Weill Cornell Medicine umbrella stayed the same.

Q: What will be printed on student’s diplomas? Cornell University? Weill Cornell Medical College? Weill Cornell Medicine?

A: Student diplomas will remain unchanged.  They will continue to be conferred by Cornell University.

Q: When will we need to change everything over to the new logo?

A: We realize that changing our logo everywhere will not happen overnight.  We expect the changeover to roll out over the course of several months.  Our goal will be to have everything converted by the beginning of calendar year 2017.

Q: Does everyone need to change?

A: The key to building a strong brand is consistency. We hope that everyone sees the benefits of the new branding with its all-embracing name and stronger, more prominent design. We hope everyone will want to help build equity for Weill Cornell Medicine. Only the staff can make the brand a reality.

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