Name change -- in name only?

Announcement unveils alternate 'brand name' for new university

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It’s official. Sort of.

“Augusta” is back in the name of the city’s new consolidated university.

Sort of.

University officials, along with the head of the community-based “Save the A” campaign, announced with some fanfare Thursday that the merged schools of Augusta State University and Georgia Health Sciences University will heretofore be known as “Georgia Regents University Augusta.”

At least publicly. That will apparently be the name on the letterhead and on merchandise, and perhaps on tongues.

Officially, however, the name will still be Georgia Regents University – which is still the name that will be put forth to the entity that accredits colleges.

It does sound as if Save the A folks still hope to get the official name changed. But for now, we’re told that the Board of Regents won’t revisit the issue.

So, to summarize: It appears as if the official name will remain Georgia Regents University, but that, according to the press release, “Georgia Regents University Augusta will be the brand name used in the official logo and in marketing
efforts of Augusta’s new consolidated university.”

We’ll just have to see how the community feels about it, but Save the A officials – who have been fighting to get Augusta into the name – say they are pleased and satisfied. Bottom line: It appears to be the best we can do for now.

As long as we’re honest and open about it: This is not a “name change.” As one Save the A official put it, it’s a “name brand change.” Whether Augustans care about the difference remains to be seen.

For now, we heartily commend Gov. Nathan Deal for encouraging a compromise in the bitter months-long battle over the name, and perhaps influencing the university system to listen to Augusta. The brouhaha technically doesn’t involve the governor. But he recently met with the Save the A campaign folks, and speaking Tuesday night in Augusta the governor encouraged the community and the Board of Regents to arrive at an amicable solution.

Even the governor’s mild intervention might have been a dam-breaker, and we appreciate his willingness to help broker a compromise. It also marked an important – and desperately needed – message to Augusta that our pleas were heard in Atlanta.

Augustans have felt saddled with “Georgia Regents University,” as a name that essentially says nothing and has no brand recognition or relevance to Augusta. Early reviews Thursday at augustachronicle.com and Facebook were hardly any kinder to “Georgia Regents University Augusta.”

And it was unclear whether the bulk of the news media would be reporting the fact that the official name Georgia Regents University is going to remain. The name “Georgia Regents University Augusta” is but the “brand name.”

But it remains that the Save the A committee of local businessmen – the ones who managed to get us this far – obviously felt this was the best we could do at this point.

You do have to wonder: If this is going to be what everyone calls the university, why won’t the Board of Regents be asked to make it official?

If we’re supposed to buy the brand, why can’t they?

Comments (12) Add comment
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Riverman1
83981
Points
Riverman1 10/26/12 - 06:38 am
3
0
Official and Unoffical Names

Interesting point that the official name was not changed. I thank the Save the A folks for what they tried, but this is somewhat disappointing. If Azziz, in contrast to his earlier statements, now says he has the power to do such things such as declare what the school(s) can be called, why not simply let them be called ASU and GHSU?

This declaration that the schools can be called something other than the official name also opens the door for the media and public to call the schools what they want. Plus, products could be produced using the names we choose…meaning ASU and GHSU.

Azziz's intent and the net effect of this is also being overlooked. There will now by a GRU-Augusta, GRU-Athens, GRU-Savannah, GRU-Columbus. It’s a watering down of the importance of Augusta’s role. It will also affect allocations in the future. How can GRU-Augusta receive so much more than GRU-Athens will begin to be heard often.

Mavis Black
42
Points
Mavis Black 10/26/12 - 07:03 am
3
0
Don't you get tired of being

Don't you get tired of being treated like a idiot

soapy_725
43678
Points
soapy_725 10/26/12 - 07:27 am
0
0
Mavis
Unpublished

The citizens of the CSRA are conditioned to be treated a idiots, sheep for the shearing, peasants to be raped and blundered. Their rural, religious background has taught them to TRUST those in authority. RESPECT those in authority. Because those in authority are subject to GOD for their behavior. Times have changed, but the evil flawed intent of mankind has not. We must be wise as an owl and remember like and elephant. KICK THE BUMS OUT!!!!!!

seenitB4
87251
Points
seenitB4 10/26/12 - 08:47 am
3
0
Kinda Sorta Maybe

They kinda changed it....like you are sorta pregnant...now we will call it what we dang well please.......
What a mess.......Deal ya could have done better ...

harley_52
23337
Points
harley_52 10/26/12 - 08:54 am
3
0
So...

....the citizens who pay the salaries of the elected and appointed officials and who pay ALL the costs of running these institutions get screwed again. And for his "mild intervention" in helping them get screwed again the ACES "heartily commend(s) Gov. Nathan Deal" who apparently did nothing more than encourage a compromise without additional guidance as to what that compromise might entail. We apparently remain in legal peril from the "regents" lawsuit and forced to live with a name that nobody likes.

Who's on first?

harley_52
23337
Points
harley_52 10/26/12 - 09:05 am
3
1
It's Pretty Remarkable....

...isn't it, that all this time, money, and effort has gone into something as seemingly simple as coming up with a name for the combined organizations of MCG and ASU? It makes me wonder how on earth these people ever solve the big problems, let alone the little ones. Look at all the wasted time, money, and effort and the results all of it has achieved. A name nobody likes, a pending lawsuit we'll most likely lose, and hundreds of thousands of upset taxpayers and alumni.

Disgusting.

Fiat_Lux
15424
Points
Fiat_Lux 10/26/12 - 09:33 am
2
1
And for a vision nobody shares

You're right on target Harley, per usual. These are stupid, arrogant people who believe their position and wealth insulates them from the opinions and outrage of "the great unwashed".

Marie Antoinette and other notable idiots also have operated with the same unfortunate mind-set. Nothing good ever comes of ignoring people's heartfelt protests, especially when they begin objecting respectfully and with reasoned, rational arguments. Public figures blow that kind of response off at their peril.

seenitB4
87251
Points
seenitB4 10/26/12 - 09:46 am
1
1
jcmurray2
18
Points
jcmurray2 10/26/12 - 12:08 pm
2
0
Thanks

Thank you Chronicle for telling the truth on this issue.

prov227
3157
Points
prov227 10/26/12 - 12:24 pm
4
1
We should be thankful ...

We should be thankful that the BOR didn't decide to change the name of our city. This was a salve to our wound, not a compromise.

Benjamin Paine
233
Points
Benjamin Paine 10/26/12 - 10:26 pm
4
0
Trivial by comparison

The consolidation of these institutions is the bigger issue that everyone seems to forget. I find it interesting that people are so willing to buy the promises of future investment and growth from the same group of individuals whose judgment bestowed upon these institutions this awful name and even worse "brand name", wasted more money on a naming survey they ignored then they spent on exploring the feasibility and impacts of the consolidations (all four of them combined) and appear completely devoid of reality when in comes to understanding the costs and benefits that are likely to accrue from ASU/GHSU, GRU, or GRUA or whatever they eventually decide to name (or brand) this mess.

The political powers, both at a state and local level, the chancellor and the board of regents show no indication that they have even a basic understanding of higher education. Conjuring an image similar to Nero fiddling as Rome burned (albeit historically inaccurate), Azziz is wasting his energy on naming as GHSU faces the real challenges of merging with a undergraduate commuter access institution under a mandate to become a top 50 comprehensive research university while experiencing significant budget reductions.

If it weren't so sad because of the significant impact this mess will have on our community and the thousands of employees of these institutions and their families, the level of ineptitude shown over the past year would be comical. The citizens of our state, our community and these individuals deserve better leadership.

ARC fan
187
Points
ARC fan 10/26/12 - 05:05 pm
4
1
I feel betrayed watching the

I feel betrayed watching the leaders of the "Save the A" smiling and posing with Azziz and proclaiming "compromise", etc etc. I wish I had known earlier before putting my time and money in this that they had absolutely no backbone. Now it's officially over because the BOR will simply say that they listened to us and we agreed with this decision. Nick Evans may agree but 95% of the rest of us do not.

Riverman1
83981
Points
Riverman1 10/26/12 - 05:54 pm
2
0
Another Idea

We should put behind the ASU name in very small letters, GRU. Sort of like a company name has Inc. or something behind it.

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