Board of Trustees

Policy: Naming of Facilities and Erecting Plaques, Monuments, Major Markers, and Artwork

Policy Name:
Naming of Facilities and Erecting Plaques, Monuments,
Major Markers and Artwork

Approval Authority: Board of Trustees
Responsible Executive: Vice President for Advancement
Responsible Offices: Office of Institutional Advancement, Clemson University Foundation
and University Facilities

Originally Issued: July 14, 2006
Amended: July 19, 2008
Amended: February 11, 2010
Amended: February 2, 2012 

  1. Policy Statement
    • Provides guidelines on naming facilities, buildings, and other areas of University properties and on requests to erect plaques, monuments, major markers, and artwork. Establishes a process of reviewing naming proposals and requests to erect plaques, monuments, major markers, and artwork and to make recommendations to the Board of Trustees.
  2. Reason for Guidelines
    • To establish and maintain standard procedures for consideration of naming opportunities that reflect the University’s values and have the potential to affect Clemson University’s public image. To establish a consultation process to provide the benefit of the collective institutional memory and a broad campus perspective with regard to naming activities. To ensure conformity with University design standards and the master plan.
  3. Distribution
    • Once each academic year, preferably early in the fall semester, the Executive Secretary to the Board of Trustees will distribute a copy of the policy and other guidelines for the UACNLF to all heads of academic, administrative, and athletic units.
  4. Who Should Read Policy
    All members of the Clemson University community.
  5. Related Documents
    Long Range Master Plan (www.clemson.edu/masterplan)
    Design Principles, Guidelines and Standards
    Exterior and Interior Signage Standards
  6. Contacts
    Office of Institutional Advancement
    University Advisory Committee on Naming Land and Facilities
    Campus Planning Services
  7. Policy
  1. Naming of Facilities and Buildings
    1. Policy Administration: For administration of this policy, the final decision on naming all University lands and facilities rests with the Board of Trustees. The University Advisory Committee on Naming Land and Facilities (UACNLF) is advisory and reports, through the President of the University and the Executive Secretary to the Board of Trustees, to the Board. The Committee advises the Board on naming all University lands and facilities, including individual parts therein (e.g., spaces or structures inside buildings; specific pieces of land and streets and roads).
    2. University Advisory Committee on Naming Land and Facilities: The President of the University appoints the members of the UACNLF with representation as follows:
      1. The Committee is comprised of nine (9) members as follows:
        1. five (5) of whom are tenured senior faculty members (at the full professor level) who have served at the University no less than ten (10) years;
        2. two (2) of whom are staff persons who have served at the University no less than ten (10) years
        3. one of whom is the Director of Development; and
        4. one of whom is a Clemson student.

      2. The University President will designate the Chair of the Committee from among the faculty or staff members. The Chair of the Committee will designate the Secretary who is responsible for maintain “records”. The term of appointment for faculty and staff members, including the position of Chair, shall be four (4) years, with the possibility of reappointment. The Clemson student representative shall serve a term of one year with the possibility of reappointment.
      3. Ex-officio, or non-voting, members of the Committee include the following: the Executive Secretary to the Board of Trustees and the University Historian.
      4. Upon appointment of new committee members, the President will provide the Board with names of the committee members.
    3. Definition of Facilities: The term “facilities” shall include, but not be limited to, any University building, structure, room, classroom or space within a facility, plaza, open space, thoroughfare, landscaped area, or other physical improvements or natural features of the University campus or other property under the administrative control of the University.
    4. Discussions with Potential Donors: Discussions with potential donors regarding naming opportunities should be conducted only by Development Officers. No discussions shall occur without prior consultation with the appropriate academic and/or administrative units.
    5. Records: The Secretary to the UACNLF shall maintain an official list of all requests and approved proposals for namings.
    6. Renaming: The naming of a building or facility is effective for the useful life of the building or facility so long as it is used for the purpose for which it was used at the time of the gift. At the end of the useful life of the building or facility and/or the cessation of the use in effect at the time of the gift, Clemson University may rename the building or facility. In the event of a renaming under these circumstances, appropriate recognition of earlier donors and honorees shall be included in or adjacent to the replacement or redeveloped building or facility. The same policy applies to spaces named inside or outside of university facilities. Under extraordinary circumstances when the continued use of the name would compromise the public trust and reflect adversely upon the University, Clemson University reserves the right to rename the building or facility.
    7. Procedures: Naming Opportunities (with donor identified or not) are to be evaluated by the University Advisory Committee on Naming Land and Facilities (UACNLF). The UACNLF will consider each naming opportunity in careful deliberations and act on each in a timely manner.
      • Any interested party associated with the University may submit a naming opportunity.
      • To be considered by the UACNLF, the naming opportunity must be endorsed by the Vice President and/or Athletic Director whose area is involved and/or impacted.
      • Action (approval or disapproval) by the UACNLF of the naming opportunity will be forwarded in writing with the appropriate supporting information to the President for his/her endorsement.
      • The President shall transmit the naming opportunity and all related materials, along with his/her opinion on such, to the Executive Secretary of the Board of Trustees for presentation to the Institutional Advancement Committee of the Board of Trustees
  1. Naming Donations (with Personal, Corporate, or Foundation Donations): Proposals for naming of major academic buildings and other facilities may be made in connection with significant personal, corporate, or foundation donations to the University to honor University colleagues, respected alumni or others. Such proposals must be made in consultation with the Vice President of Advancement or designee. These gifts are designed to be spent in full for the purposes as agreed to by the University and the benefactor. A new building or facility (or major renovation of an existing facility) or room, laboratory, or other section of a building may be named by a donor who contributes significantly toward the project expenses. The size, design, and wording of plaques, signs or markers that acknowledge benefactor contributions and express University appreciation shall conform to the University’s graphic design standards and master plan.
    1. New Facility: Typically, a gift representing 25% of the total university commitment of costs as established by the Campus Planning Services office is required for a new facility to be named for or by a donor.
    2. Areas Within a Facility (classrooms, laboratories, reading rooms, offices, etc.): Typically, 25% of the estimated costs of the specific area being named or given or market value as recommended by Development is required for areas within a facility to be named or given. In order for Development to secure efficient and timely gifts, a list of areas within a facility will be submitted annually through UACNLF for pre-approval by the Institutional Advancement Committee of the Board of Trustees.
    3. Renovation of Existing Facility: Typically, a gift representing 25% of the total university commitment of renovation costs as established by the Campus Planning Services office is required for an existing facility to be named for or by a donor.
    4. Existing Facility (Not Requiring Renovations): Same gift guidelines as above for a New Facility. However, for facilities that are more than five (5) years old, the minimum naming level will be determined on a case-by-case basis.
  2. Naming without Donations: Recommendations not associated with a donation for a naming in honor of living or deceased faculty, alumni, staff, Board of Trustees members or community, state or national leaders shall be considered on a case-by-case basis only when supported by extraordinary justification for the naming. A proposal may be made on the earlier of the following: (1) two years after retirement or other separation from the University or from elected or appointed office; or (2) two years after the person’s death, if the person had not yet retired or otherwise separated from the University.

    Proposals must outline the standards which guided the naming request and shall include careful reflection upon the achievements of the individual. All such naming proposals must be made in consultation with the Vice President of Advancement. No commitment for naming shall be made prior to approval by the Board of Trustees.

    Proposed honorees shall have achieved distinction in one or more of the following ways:
    1. While serving the University in an academic capacity, the individual has demonstrated high scholarly distinction and has earned a national or international reputation and has helped the University to grow in reputation.
    2. While serving the University in an administrative capacity, the individual has rendered distinguished service which warrants recognition of the individual’s exceptional contributions to the welfare of the University.
    3. The individual has contributed in truly exceptional ways to the public good or to the welfare of the institution or achieved such unique distinction as to warrant recognition.
    1. Naming Guidelines:
      The UACNLF will follow the policy guidelines below, approved by the Board of Trustees on February 2, 2012 in arriving at recommendations for or against proposals to name University lands and facilities.
      1. Residence Halls will be named for Trustees of the University. When naming a residence hall after a living (current and emeriti) Trustee, the “25% rule” will apply (a minimum of twenty-five percent (25%) of the building cost would be required as a donation toward naming the facility for a living Trustee.) A deceased Trustee may be honored without the “25% rule” applying.
      2. Academic buildings will be named for those individuals and organizations who have served the University in an academic capacity.
      3. Buildings used for non-academic activities will be named for persons and organizations who have provided significant service to the University, preferably in the employ of Clemson in that activity to which the building is devoted.
      4. Streets and roads will be named for persons with long and eminent service to Clemson, whether they are faculty or staff
      5. All other proposed uses of names shall be at the discretion of the UACNLF.
      6. Specific financial gifts may be accepted for facilities in each of the above categories. Provided current gift guidelines are met, facilities in the above categories may be named for any donor or person designated by the donor. . The actual name, as it is to appear on the building, and the full proposal will come before the UACNLF before it is submitted to the Board of Trustees.
      7. Except in unusual cases and upon approval of the Trustees, only one (1) building, land or facility, shall be named for a single individual or organization.

    2. Erecting Plaques, Monuments, and Major Markers
      1. Policy Administration: The University Advisory Committee on Naming Land and Facilities, in consultation with the office of Campus Planning Services, is responsible to review all requests for plaques, monuments, and major markers for the main campus proper.
      2. Design Standards: Any proposals for new plaques, monuments, or major markers must conform to university policy and design standards related to campus signage and graphics and the master plan maintained by the office of Campus Planning Services.
      3. Definitions: A plaque is a permanent significant fixture affixed to a base, indoor or outdoor building surface or other object. Monuments or memorials can be either permanent pieces of public outdoor art, sculpture, likenesses, landscape enhancements, or other civic improvements whose primary purpose is to honor a person, group, event or other significant contribution to the university. Some examples are a plaque, tree, bust, sculpture, likeness, statuary or fountain, a landscape feature such as a garden or grove, or a building or similar architectural feature. Major markers include signage requested by university units which departs from the established university signage standards.
      4. Commemorative Trees, Shrubs, or Other Plantings, and Objects: Memorial or honorific gifts of trees, shrubs or other plantings in most cases cannot be signified by individual plaques or markers. All gifts must be processed through the Clemson University Foundation. More information on the university’s Commemorative and Memorial Tree Program is available by contacting the office of Campus Planning Services.
      5. Miscellaneous, Smaller Items: Bricks, benches, and similar items consuming little, if any, square footage may carry donor or honorary names with the approval of the appropriate Dean or Director. All external designs and namings of this nature shall be reviewed and approved by the Campus Planning Services office to assure compliance with the University’s design standards and master plan.
      6. Records: The Secretary to the University Advisory Committee on Naming Land and Facilities shall maintain an official list of all requests and approved proposals for plaques, monuments, and major markers.
    3. Artwork and Portraits
      Recommendation to the Institutional Advancement Committee of the BOT is to have Campus Planning take over this section.
      1. Student Proposals for Outdoor Sculptures: Each specific proposal from a student to use an area at the University to install outdoor sculptures shall be presented to the Campus Planning Services office. This office has final approval of the site of the sculpture.
      2. Works of Art by Students: Contributions of works of art (temporary or permanent) by students of the University must be approved by the Campus Planning Services office.
      3. Gifts of Art Work
        1. Commissioning of an Artist: Gifts of art work to the campus that involves commissioning of an artist for a work which is not in existence at the time of proposing the gift shall be handled according to procedures established in Section 1 Part H. One artist may be proposed by the donating group; at least two others will be proposed by the Committee. The University Advisory Committee on Naming Land and Facilities shall review and approve the names of the artists submitted and shall seek the assistance of the Lee Hall Art Gallery to issue a request-for-proposal to the three artists selected as finalists. The donating group shall be prepared to pay a nominal fee to the artists for their preparation of a Marquette of the proposed gift. The choice of the Marquette, hence the choice of the artist, shall be made by a selection committee composed of the following: one person selected by the donating person or group, one person selected by the Committee, a representative of the campus unit housing the work, the Director of the Lee Hall Art Gallery which is the caretaker of the artistic piece, and a representative of Campus Planning Services office. The decision of the selection committee is final.
        2. Donor Gift of Commissioned Artwork: If an outstanding artist is commissioned by a donor who wishes to donate the artwork to the University, the donor must consult with the director of the Clemson University Foundation. In these instances, the director of the Foundation shall also consult with the University Advisory Committee on Naming Land and Facilities and the director of the Lee Hall Art Gallery. Donors will be asked to provide curating costs required for maintenance and repairs.
        3. Donor’s Outright Gift of Artwork: If a donor wishes to donate an outright gift of artwork to the University, the donor must consult with the director of the Clemson University Foundation who in turn shall consult with the director of the Lee Hall Art Gallery.
      4. Portraits
        1. Portraits without a donation should be submitted to the appropriate Dean, Vice President or Athletic Director for approval.
        2. Portraits with a donation and a naming request for a facility submitted to the UACNLF must have the approval of the appropriate Vice President, Athletic Director or other responsible individual
    4. Exceptions to Section I – Naming of Facilities and Buildings
      A University facility or land, or part thereof, may only be named, without action by the UACNLF, by the Board of Trustees.

Editor's Note
Naming of Facilities and Erecting Plaques, Monuments, Major Markers and Artwork