Why SMUG?

social media university global

So how do you choose what to name a new institution of higher learning?

  • Stanford University was named after a former California governor’s son, who had died of typhoid fever at age 15.
  • Yale University, which was founded to train ministers and was called Collegiate School, was eventually named after benefactor Elihu Yale.
  • Harvard University likewise was named after an early benefactor.

When choosing a name for a new on-line University providing social media education, I didn’t have any benefactors to consider. (Not that I’d be above selling the naming rights!) Social Media University, Global was the first name that popped into my head. But I did a little brainstorming and identified some other options, including:

  1. Social Media University – Technical (SMUT)
  2. Social Network Institute of Practical Education (SNIPE)
  3. Public Relations Institute for Social Media (PRISM)

The first one’s an obvious non-starter, and though the second reflects the hands-on nature of the proposed curriculum, somehow the acronym doesn’t quite fit. And while social media definitely have public relations applications, the third name’s focus on PR is too narrow.

friendmap.jpg

SMUG seems to fit because the curriculum will be covering social media in all its varieties, from blogs to social networking sites to microblogging to YouTube and everything in between. And seeing as I’ve made friends in Facebook from across the U.S. and as far away as Singapore, Egypt, Australia, Norway, Panama and Thailand (and that it is a world-wide web), the “Global” part isn’t an overstatement, either.

I’m open to other suggestions: it’s not like I’ve printed a bunch of letterhead or put a lot of work into the school logo. And considering that SMUG was established about 15 hours ago, we don’t have an entrenched history to overcome. Renaming wouldn’t be a problem.

But meanwhile, if anyone has an artistic bent and would like to design an official SMUG seal, I’d love to see what you can do. I’m thinking something like an old English crest or a round seal would be neat, with the following text elements and suitable graphics:

Social Media University — Global   *   SMUG   *   Established 2008

Whoever designs the winning logo gets a 50 percent tuition discount.  Then again, 50 percent of free is…

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Author: Lee Aase

Married father of six and grandfather of seven, and the Chancellor of SMUG - Social Media University, Global. By day I'm the Director of the Mayo Clinic Social Media Network. Whatever I say here is my personal opinion, and doesn't reflect the positions of my employer.

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