Alvernia University Academic Mark

The Alvernia University academic mark is designed to reflect the university's Franciscan roots with its commitment to knowledge, excellence and service to the underserved and its motivation to be a leader of new ideas and programs.


The mark references the strong tradition of a Catholic liberal arts education and supports the mission of the Bernardine Sisters of the Third Order of St. Francis with a commitment to the Franciscan intellectual tradition, Gospel-centered values and service to others in the local and global community. 


The mark also reaffirms Alvernia's longstanding commitment to helping students develop their innate talents, discover their passions and lead successful lives with deep meaning and purpose.


All these elements create the mark and together shape its visual meaning, just as we shape our students through the Alvernia Advantage to transform them into ethical leaders with moral courage.

Academic Mark: Mission, Knowledge, Innovation

Compass Academic Mark Element
The Compass
Our Franciscan charism guides us to infuse curriculum and university life with a sense of justice and advocacy for all.

The priorities of exploration and growth provide the foundation for a strong future and career by giving the Alvernia student a comprehensive education, moral courage and real-world experiences.

The compass represents Search, our pursuit of the liberal arts tradition of rigorous, open inquiry into the Enduring Questions that shape the human experience.
Tau Academic Mark Element
The Tau
The Tau, positioned at the center of the academic mark, represents the commitment at the heart of Alvernia.

As the smallest letter of the Greek alphabet, it is a clear reminder of our mission to serve the underserved and to give back to the community as St. Francis did in his ministry.

As a Franciscan institution, we provide a transformational education for our students that includes solidarity through service, moral and ethical leadership as well as a spirit of inclusivity that welcomes all.
Open Book Academic Mark Element
The Open Book
At the beginning of Francis’ call to ministry, seeking to know God’s will for his life, he opened the book of the Gospels three times. Each time he received a similar message: to follow and imitate Christ by living the Gospel.

The opening of the book represents God’s message to Francis, a timeless message that we share with our students who seek their calling and direction through the academic curriculum of the university and the influence of the Franciscan tradition that will shape their future.

The open book in our mark signifies knowledge and learning, the foundation of Alvernia’s mission, freely shared, open-ended, a lifelong pursuit.
Shield Academic Mark Element
The Arch
The arch in the mark highlights Francis Hall, the historic founding building of the university. The arch also has special symbolic meaning in Gothic architecture.

The arch calls us to raise our eyes upward, to be inspired and have our paths illuminated by that which is greater than ourselves.

The arch, as the foundation of this mark, reminds us that, through the practice of humility, we are here to seek our purpose and place in the world.