The answer is there

University's new name must not abandon 'Augusta'

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It’s been the name most consistently mentioned. Out of some 1,200 proposals, through round after round of deliberation and market study and debate, it’s the one name that has percolated through it all to the top.

The University of Augusta.

We urge the state Board of Regents to approve that next month as the new name for the soon-to-be-combined Augusta State University and Georgia Health Sciences University.

It is among three names recommended by a committee overseeing the merger. The others are Georgia Regents University and Georgia Arts and Sciences University.

Let’s look at that.

Georgia Regents University might appeal to any regrettable narcissistic tendencies on the state Board of Regents, but in truth the name says next to nothing and is as dynamic as a flat tire.

Georgia Arts and Sciences University has significantly more appeal, but notably more syllables as well. Oddly enough, it has the potential for sports fans of the current Augusta State University to continue chanting “ASU!” at games. But it also invites opponents to shorten the name to the unflattering GAS.

Nor does the name help pinpoint the campus on the map.

In contrast, there is absolutely no downside to the more popular University of Augusta – and a ton of upside.

First, of course, it identifies the location.

Second, it’s less of a sea change, and provides less of a learning curve, from the current Augusta State University.

Third, there’s a certain sameness in calling so many of the state’s universities “Georgia” this or that. Frankly, it dilutes and even trivializes the brand.

Most importantly, “The University of Augusta” would capitalize on this city’s international name recognition that is owing to the Masters tournament – arguably the most prestigious sporting event in the world.

How many states, or companies for that matter, have such a positive and widespread brand recognition just fall into their laps like that?

And as we’ve suggested previously, students, alumni and fans could improve upon that brand recognition by emphasizing the “The” in the name – proudly calling it “The University of Augusta,” or shorten it to “The Augusta University,” as do students and alums of “The” Ohio State University.

In addition to the brand recognition and geographic orientation the name brings, “The University of Augusta” carries with it a simple elegance, an erudition that an institution of higher learning should aspire to.

Some have suggested the name bespeaks a “local” university. That might be so in the case of some municipalities, but not for the home of the Masters. It is a name that transcends state lines and country borders.

We would also simply let the Board of Regents know that folks around these parts feel very strongly about keeping “Augusta” in the name. It would feel close to an insult to many to leave it out, and would feed the perception that some in the state would like to diminish the prestige of the state’s second-largest city.

Moreover, one would hope that Augusta’s quick and enthusiastic embrace of the merger – not all communities have been as obliging – would count for something.

The practical reality is, this community and officials from both universities have gone through an exhaustive process of proposing, mulling and culling potential names. The one name that has survived the entire duration of this thorough and meticulous procedure is The University of Augusta.

It’s compact, informative, and evokes a name that, thanks to the Masters, has become synonymous around the world with excellence and prestige.

You can’t buy that kind of reputation. All you can do is try to live up to it.

Especially when it’s handed to you.

Comments (17) Add comment
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Riverman1
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Riverman1 07/19/12 - 02:21 am
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Sums It Up Beautifully

You summed up beautifully all aspects of the renaming. University of Augusta. Was there ever a doubt?

Craig Spinks
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Craig Spinks 07/19/12 - 03:01 am
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Well-

said.

carcraft
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carcraft 07/19/12 - 04:35 am
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2
I still like the James Brown

I still like the James Brown College of Good Knowledge, because we rock and roll and got that soul!

faithson
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faithson 07/19/12 - 08:13 am
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best of the three

My wife and I graduated from 'Augusta College', we like 'University of Augusta' as the name of our Alma Mater. Hope the Regents do too.

Jane18
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Jane18 07/19/12 - 08:21 am
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James Brown College of Good Knowledge

Carcraft, that name is just too, too, cute(and funny)!

onlysane1left
222
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onlysane1left 07/19/12 - 09:25 am
1
4
Who really cares? Why is this

Who really cares? Why is this such a big deal to have story after story written about it?

onlysane1left
222
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onlysane1left 07/19/12 - 09:25 am
0
1
Who really cares? Why is this

Who really cares? Why is this such a big deal to have story after story written about it?

Riverman1
90449
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Riverman1 07/19/12 - 11:30 am
3
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Whole Thing Was Funny

I found it funny as a tourist trying to get into the Augusta National to “just walk around a little and get a few pics” seeing how angry some people got over this naming thing. When we would point out the obvious that it had to be Augusta, they would say we were provincial and all other matter of things. We had to become Georgia this and that, Southeast, National or something to dissociate the schools from Augusta. I’ve never seen so many new commenters join and so many vehement comments on a simple subject.

Buckmode
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Buckmode 07/19/12 - 11:41 am
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5
What's in a name?

"International brand recognition"? I'd be willing to bet money that if you asked 100 people outside the South where Augusta is, 90 of them would say "It's the capital of Maine!"

Willow Bailey
20603
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Willow Bailey 07/19/12 - 12:52 pm
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1
Whatever the name, the school

Whatever the name, the school is the future for DT.

Carleton Duvall
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Carleton Duvall 07/19/12 - 04:32 pm
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1
Augusta- Buckmode

I moved to Rhode Island in 1970. When I told people I was from Augusta they knew exactly where I was from and that was 42 years ago

justthefacts
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justthefacts 07/19/12 - 08:13 pm
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4
Wish I knew Buckmode

Easy money.....

Georgialina
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Georgialina 07/19/12 - 09:30 pm
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Good Point Buckmode

I have to agree with Buckmode. In past years I travelled a lot and when I said I was from Augusta GA, most of the time the next question was "Is that near Atlanta" If I just said Augusta without Georgia, I got a ton of blanks stares. I would usually follow that stare with "Home of the Masters" to which most people would then say "Oh, oh yeah" Anywhere other than the true South has a hard time realizing Aw-gusta is as big as we know it is.

KSL
140145
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KSL 07/19/12 - 10:08 pm
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Those same people probably

Those same people probably were not familiar with the name of the medical university of the Georgia regents system.

KSL
140145
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KSL 07/19/12 - 10:42 pm
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If the school gains prestige,

If the school gains prestige, the name recognition will follow, whatever it is. At that point, I would think all living in the Augusta area would be proud to have Augusta in the name. something else to be known for besides the Masters.

KSL
140145
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KSL 07/19/12 - 10:45 pm
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I should have said, "as the

I should have said, "as the school gains national and international."

itsanotherday1
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itsanotherday1 07/19/12 - 11:03 pm
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Buckmode and Georgialina; my

Buckmode and Georgialina; my experience has been exactly the opposite. We have or had offices all over the country, and I visited all of them at one time or another in my 30 years of work. Without fail, when people found out where I was from the next question was "can you get me tickets". Augusta is the second most recognizable place in the state, probably first in some countries.

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