SARASOTA, Fla. (August 2, 2017) – Eckerd College, New College of Florida, Ringling College of Art and Design, State College of Florida Manatee-Sarasota, University of South Florida Sarasota-Manatee and The Ringling/FSU share a common vision of building an educational network that amplifies and expands learning opportunities for their collective 18,000-plus students. A new Memorandum of Agreement and name change formally establishes the roles and responsibilities for the Cross College Alliance. A new website http://crosscollegealliance.org/ creates a place to share collaborations. The Ringling/FSU Executive Director Steven High said, “We have created a framework for a sustainable organization.”
The new name “Cross College Alliance” with the tagline “Rethinking Education. Together.” highlights the organization’s central tenets of collaboration and connectivity, while the logo underscores the dynamic possibilities among the unique but complementary programs, services, and philosophies. Donal O’Shea, president of New College, said, “The Cross College Alliance is a network of higher educational institutions working together to benefit students and the community. The new visual identity reflects the Alliance as the connective tissue in the greater Sarasota-Manatee community.”
Our foundation partnership includes the Charles and Margery Barancik Foundation, Community Foundation of Sarasota County, Gulf Coast Community Foundation, and the Manatee Community Foundation. The partnership supported the new brand 2 development. “They recognized the importance of effectively telling our collective story to attract talented students, faculty and staff and investors to our community,” said SCF President Carol Probstfeld.
The new name was chosen after several months of research that involved students and community members from each institution. Surveys identified phrases and words that resonated most strongly with constituents. The final step brought in students from the Ringling Collaboratory and Design Center to create a logo and brand that reflects the name and mission. Ringling College President Larry Thompson said “having Ringling students and faculty involved in the development of our brand demonstrates the talent potential each one of our institutions can share with the Alliance”. The new name, tagline and formal partnership will help position the Alliance for grant support as it develops innovative projects and new educational opportunities.
Dr. Terry Osborn, Interim regional chancellor, USF Sarasota-Manatee, stated, “By collectively branding our partnership, we are able to develop a reputation for this community as a destination for higher education. As a research-active university and proud member of the USF System, we are pleased to join a world-renowned art and design college, an honors college, a community-responsive state college, a private liberal arts college and a top quality arts museum in working together with a common goal of establishing this region as an ideal place to live, to work, and to visit. Our community is fast becoming a choice destination for those who are passionate about education.”
Eckerd College President Don Eastman remarked “we’ve committed ourselves to identifying opportunities that maximize benefits to students and acting collectively on them. ” The Alliance initiatives work to:
- Bring students together, through collaborative programs and services that are made available to all students, including our lifelong learners.
- Encourage faculty and staff members to work together to promote shared research and increased access to knowledge.
- Attract industry to the region and increase opportunities for graduates and community and keep talent here.
- Work better together. While each institution has its priorities and strengths, they share many of the same opportunities and tackle many of the same challenges.