Frequently Asked Questions

Who needs a license?

Any business/organization or individuals who request to use the University's trademarks or verbiage on any product must have a license before producing or selling the product. Internal organizations such as University departments and student organizations must also order products from businesses with a license. The UVA Bookstore is a licensed vendor.

How do I obtain a license?

The University of Virginia partners with Fermata Partners to administer our licensing program. All requests to become a UVA licensee must go through Fermata Partners. Please contact Fermata Partners at:

Fermata Partners
1440 Dutch Valley Place: Suite 101, Atlanta, GA 30324
Phone: (404) 994-1944
Email: tellmemore@fermatapartners.com
Website: www.fermatacollege.com

What is a trademark?

The US Patent & Trademark Office defines a trademark as, "a word, phrase, symbol or design, or a combination of words, phrases, symbols or designs, that identifies and distinguishes the source of the goods of one party from those of others."

What is a trademark license?

A trademark license is a written legal agreement between the owner of the trademark (licensor) and a manufacturer or vendor (licensee). The licensor grants permission to the licensee to use the licensor's trademark(s) on a product(s). This license must be requested and approved before the licensee may use the marks.

Why have a licensing program?

The University of Virginia licensing program exists in order to protect the name and marks of the University, while maintaining the image of the University through licensing agreements that allow the use of the marks on acceptable merchandise. We also protect the commercial value of products bearing the University's name and image.

What if my item is a publication or brochure on which I wish to use the University's trademarks?

The trademarks of the University may not be used on advertising, media publications, brochures or miscellaneous print material without permission from the University. Please contact Carol Keese (434-924-1400), Deputy Chief of Marketing in the University Office of Communications, for any questions before printing.

What products are not licensed?

Weapons/firearms, tobacco products, alcoholic beverages or lingerie products are not appropriate items for licensing. All products are considered and subject to approval by the Office of Licensing and Trademark.

It has been determined by the University that the following products will NOT normally be licensed:

Alcoholic beverages and statements promoting the use of the alcoholic beverages
Bathroom articles (toilet seats, toilet paper, etc.)
Sexually suggestive statements or articles
Statements infringing other schools
Political, sexist, racist, religious products and/or statements
Items of poor quality in relation to the proposed sale price
Products bearing the name or likeness of or otherwise promoting a current University student-athlete
Any item not meeting minimum standards of quality and good taste or having abnormal product liability possibilities (athletic equipment, food stuff, products that due to content are unusually short-lived) as determined by the Licensing Director.

Are student Contracted Independent Organizations (CIOs) or campus departments required to obtain permission to use the University names/marks/logos on items used as giveaways, fundraisers or for internal use (shirts for staff, plaques, etc.)?

Yes, in order for the University to maintain its image, licensed vendor must be used and the product approved by the Licensing and Trademark office. Visit the Student Groups/On-Grounds Department page.

Can public or private schools use any of the University's marks on uniforms, buildings, stadiums or booster club use?

While we appreciate the support for our image and brand, our policy does not allow for our marks to be used by any other business or educational institution. This policy is in place to allow only the University of Virginia to assume responsibility for the production and protection of the logos and marks.

Are any sales exempt from royalties?

Licensed vendors do not pay royalties on products that are sold to a campus department or to an official student group for internal use not for resale. These licensed vendors must have an Internal (Non-Retail) license. If you have questions, please contact the Licensing and Trademark office.

How does the artwork approval process work?

After completing the licensing process through Fermata Partners, the licensed vendor will receive information to submit artwork through CAMPUS - Fermata's online portal. This site facilitates the artwork approval process. If you need additional assistance, please contact the University's Licensing and Trademark Office. All artwork must be approved before production begins.

How can I tell if a product is officially-licensed?

Look for the genuine college product hologram label or hang tag. This label confirms that the University of Virginia and Fermata Partners have approved the merchandise for sale. For more information, visit the Look for the Label page on this site.