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UNC Charlotte Seeks More Mature Image

UNC Charlotte has retained a local ad agency to help it project a more grown-up image. The effort began during the last year, with school officials insisting students, faculty and the media refer to it as UNC Charlotte, rather than UNCC, which has the sound of a community college. Then came a new brick structure to replace the 70's era plastic sign at the campus entrance. "The entrance does look more like the university that we actually are," says Richard McDevitt, director of marketing services for UNC Charlotte. "But it's part of an overall campaign to take that message and be more accurate about what we are and who we are." McDevitt says local marketing firm Tattoo Projects will help the school convince Charlotte residents and businesses that it's more than a commuter school bordering on community college. Having a football team would help, he says. But many people are also in the dark about UNC Charlotte's PhD programs and groundbreaking research coming. McDevitt says ads touting the university's new image will hit the air in March or April.