Fighting Hawks selected as new nickname for the University of North Dakota


Peter Johnson

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Fighting Hawks selected as new nickname for the University of North Dakota

The University of North Dakota has announced that Fighting Hawks will be the University’s new nickname. The results of the nickname runoff vote, held online November 12-16 for eligible voters, were tallied and provided to UND by Qualtrics, the third-party voting platform management firm that conducted the voting process. Final results of the vote were:

Total votes: 27,378

Fighting Hawks: 15,670 votes (57.24 percent)Roughriders: 11,708 votes (42.76 percent)

As noted in the voting guidelines previously issued by the University, any name receiving over 50 percent of the runoff vote would be determined to be the University’s new nickname.

Said UND President Robert Kelley, “We are pleased to be able to announce the selection of a new nickname — Fighting Hawks — and bring this process, in which so many people have participated, to a successful conclusion. We especially appreciate the two nickname committees who worked so hard during this past year to make this a transparent, inclusive process that led to a short list of potential nicknames. Now, the voters have spoken, and they have told us that Fighting Hawks should be that new nickname. This is an appropriate choice, as Fighting Hawks symbolizes the competitive spirit of our athletes, the perseverance of the North Dakota spirit, and the continual ascendancy of the University and the state.”

The nickname vote was launched following a year-long effort by the UND Nickname Process Recommendation Task Force, and, subsequently, the UND Nickname Committee. The groups were charged with developing a process for nickname selection, and then with developing a short list of potential nicknames for a vote. They facilitated broad public input along the way, including an online survey, a series of regional town hall meetings, and a 30-day nickname suggestion period.

Next Steps

Now that UND’s new nickname has been selected, the University will begin the process of developing, selecting and implementing a visual identity to accompany the name.

The university will soon issue a Request for Proposal (RFP) inviting professional marketing firms to submit proposals for development of a graphic identity, including a logo and style guidelines, to accompany the new nickname. The selected vendor will work with UND stakeholders to develop potential graphic identities.

In the meantime, the University has adopted transitional guidelines for using the new nickname.

Contact: Peter JohnsonExecutive Associate Vice President for University RelationsDivision of University & Public AffairsUniversity of North Dakota701.777.4317 work701.740.5398

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