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The University of Florida is The Foundation FOR The Gator Nation, not of …

Since we introduced The Gator Nation concept to the University of Florida’s branding efforts back in the summer of 2005 (yes, it is that recent), the UF Alumni Association and others have often confused the themeline (tag Line);  The University of Florida, The Foundation for The Gator Nation.

The most recent issue of the UF alumni magazine uses “of” instead of “for” as a sub-head in one of its stories. Shame on you.

Whether to use “of” or “for” was discussed at length when we were creating the campaign, but in the end  it was an easy call.  The University of Florida is The Foundation for The Gator Nation.  Here’s why:

Of and for are prepositions that are commonly interchanged.  The words of and for are also two of the most commonly used prepositions in the English language. Of and for are used to signify a relationship between objects or subjects.


Of is a preposition that may mean relating to or pertaining to.  It simply signifies a relationship between two objects. An example would be:

• Florida basketball is an important part of  The Gator Nation.

* Tim Tebow is a member of The Gator Nation.


For, on the other hand, signifies a relationship that has developed over a period of time such as days, months, years, decades, centuries. Get it, The Gator Nation is always growing, always changing, always improving.

Thus,  The University of Florida is The Foundation for The Gator Nation because The Gator Nation is not a static thing.  It will always be growing, changing, evolving.

Because consistency is critical in order to create a successful brand, it’s important that everyone at UF be consistent in their use of the phrase, “The University of Florida is The Foundation for The Gator Nation.”

Yeah, I know people ignore the rules of grammar all the time and only brand geeks like myself will care about this one, but the brand statement is For.  If you don’t want to be accused of diminishing the brand and looking stupid . . .  well, you know what I was going to say . . .

Here’s a link to the UF brand guidelines.


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