Trademarks and Licensing

The Office of Marketing and Communications manages the proper use of the Rochester Institute of Technology's name, logo and marks to protect the integrity of our identity, brand and reputation.  All employees and students, as well as outside vendors, must work with our division to create branded merchandise with any of RIT marks, name or lock-ups. 

The Office of Marketing and Communications reserves the right to review all marketing materials on a case by case basis to determine if materials met the university brand guidelines. 

Promotional Products

Often known as giveaways or “swag,” promotional products are customized merchandise intended to publicize the university or a specific department, service, event or initiative. They can act as conversation starters and incentivize participation at events that showcase university services. Additionally, these items can commemorate special occasions, such as when presenting an award, acknowledging a milestone or thanking someone with a gift. Promotional items often incorporate components of the university’s visual identity, contact information and other pertinent information, depending on the item’s use and size.

Before ordering a promotional product, please consider the following:

Give yourself plenty of time. It takes longer than most people think to select an item, obtain internal unit and trademark approvals, then purchase, produce and ship the item. Keep in mind, most items are shipped from overseas, which can further delay the order.

Follow university brand standards. You cannot alter brand standards for any reason. This includes adjusting clear space because an imprint area is too small or avoiding added costs with more imprint areas. Items selected should have an imprint area/s large enough to maintain full legibility and meet university brand standards. If you run into an issue when ordering, please reach out to brand@rit.edu for help. 

Choose a quality item. Don’t just buy the lowest-priced version of an item. Be careful of imitations that are cheaply made, which reflect poorly on the university and the program or initiative you’re promoting.  

Think about sustainability. When selecting an item, consider the impact it will have on the environment if the recipient doesn’t find it useful and discards it.

Use a university-licensed vendor. Licensed vendors are vetted by the university and our licensing partner, familiar with brand standards and have access to approved logos and lockups. Additionally, they carry appropriate liability insurance for various products and formally agree to abide by the university’s code of conduct, which requires the company to conduct business in a socially responsible manner—important to the university’s mission. Please review the list of approved promotional vendors

Enforcement

RIT Brand and Licensing, along with the Office of Legal Affairs, rigorously enforces the proper use of our name and marks.  We monitor the marketplace to ensure only officially licensed product is sold.  

Unauthorized Uses 

RIT's name and trademarks may not be used in any way that discriminates or implies discrimination against any persons or groups based on age, ancestry, belief, color, creed, disability, national origin, race, religion, gender, sex, sexual orientation or veteran status, or in any other way that would be a violation of RITs anti-discrimination policies or practices.

Additionally, they are not permitted for use in any manner that suggests or implies RIT's endorsement of other organizations, companies, products, services, political parties or views, or religious organizations or beliefs.

Any use of an organization, business or program name in conjunction with a RIT mark is also subject to approval by RIT Branding and Licensing. 

If you encounter any unauthorized use of the university marks, please contact RIT Brand and Licensing at brand@rit.edu

Information for Vendors

All vendors that work with RIT must hold an official trademark license in order to print merchandise with any RIT marks.  Your company information is provided directly to the university community when they're looking to order promotional goods.  

Any vendor that provides an item carrying RITs trademarks, such as names, seals, uniforms or other identifying visuals, that represents Rochester Institute of Technology, must be a collegiate licensed vendor with RIT and be registered with our current licensing agent, Nexus Licensing. This applies to items that are for internal UB entities as well as those for outside retailers.

Royalty-Bearing Items

All items produced for retail sale, whether in part or whole, are subject to our current royalty rate; no exceptions.

Items produced for internal use, including by student groups, are generally royalty-free. However, there are circumstances in which the royalty fee is applied. Orders placed by any university entity, including student groups, that will be sold at cost or for a profit, including items purchased for personal use, such as apparel for student club members who must pay for the item, whether in part or in whole, will be considered royalty-bearing. 

Single-Order Licenses

Even though branded consumable products require use of a RIT licensed vendor, there are instances when the product is so uncommon and/or infrequently purchased (for example, a customized graduation cake) that a licensed vendor is not available. In these rare cases, a single-order approval will be issued. Please reach out to the brand and licensing group for approval. 

Crafters License 

This license provides the ability of fans and alumni of RIT who are interested in selling handmade merchandise with the RIT marks on them. This is a flat fee and has to be renewed annually.  Contact the brand and licensing group for information on how to apply for this license . 

Fair Labor Association

Coming soon.