Naming Process

Reports & Data

2022 Survey Results

Thanks to all who have participated so far in the naming process at MUW by providing suggestions through the naming email address (, in listening sessions, by taking the survey conducted by MUW and the Love Communication Group, and/or by participating in their focus groups. Your participation has generated excellent ideas and important information as the Task Force continues its research towards recommending a name or names for final consideration. In our ongoing effort to be transparent about the process, the Task Force will post periodic updates on the MUW website until its work has been completed.

Over 4300 people completed the survey. The survey results linked here are divided into five segments: Alumni, MUW Faculty & Staff, MUW Students, Prospective Students, and Community. The number of participants in each category is provided on the cover of each segmented report. As individuals were able to choose more than one category, such as alumni who are also MUW employees, the total number when adding the categories is greater than the total number of survey participants.

The greatest participation was from alumni, and the lowest participation was from prospective students (high school and community college students). Although the survey did not generate the distribution of participants we hoped for, particularly with prospective students, we value the input those who participated have given. We will continue our research to get a more balanced view of all our constituencies. The survey also provided an opportunity for open participation in the process, for eliciting suggestions for possible names from those who participated, and for gathering information about some characteristics people value in when selecting a name. Not surprisingly, the focus group results aligned with the findings of the survey.

You may review the survey results for all five segments below:

All links go to .pdf documents

You may also continue to provide input into the process through the dedicated email address,

Naming Task Force

Amanda Clay Powers, Co-Chair
Dean, Fant Memorial Library

Dr. Tom Richardson, Co-Chair
Former Provost and Dean, Professor and Eudora Welty Chair

Dr. Brian Anderson,
Dean, College of Arts & Sciences

Dr. Marty Brock,
Dean, College of Business & Professional Studies

Dr. David Brooking,
Executive Director, Enrollment Management

Dr. Marty Hatton,
Dean, School of Education

Dr. Brandy Larmon,
Dean, College of Nursing & Health Sciences

Dr. Dee A. Larson,
Chair, Department of Business; Coordinator, Graduate Studies in Business; & Professor of Marketing and Management

Jenny Katool,
Foundation President

Dr. Holly Krogh,
Faculty Senate President

Rachael Damms,
Staff Council President

Samuel Garrie,
Student Government Association President

Karen Clay,
University General Counsel

Anika Perkins,
Executive Director of University Relations

Andrea Stevens,
Executive Director of Alumni & Development

Heather Stone,
Alumni Association President

Dr. Kim Whitehead,
Associate Vice President for Academic Affairs; Director, Ina E. Gordy Honors College; Interim Director, Student Success Center

Frequently Asked Questions

General Questions

How much will a rebrand cost?

We are gathering information and will respond as soon as we can, but we don’t have a final answer yet. We have looked at the benefits and costs of a potential rebrand. We are confident that any costs for the rebrand will be minor when compared to the potential benefits. Past data proves the name is impacting enrollment in a negative way; 54% of the budget comes from tuition.

Do you have a name picked out already?

No. Many names have been provided by many people, but we are continuing to gather more information through listening sessions, focus groups, and surveys. We want to consider all naming options, themes, and ideas. We need more input and are excited to work with everyone. This is a fluid process. We thank everyone for their patience.

We have tried this in the past and it failed. What is different this time?

Enrollment and financial stability are key to our strategic plan and our success. We feel at this time there is more support than in the past and the business necessity for change is clearer. Also, the desire to become more inclusive is higher than ever before. 

What names are being considered?

Names for universities are limited. Generally, there are academic mission names, geographical names, and historical names. The names we are hearing in large part are tied to our state, region, alumni, and founders.

What is the timeline on this?

This depends on the information we receive and how quickly the committee can work through the many options and considerations. However, it is possible that this will be reviewed during the 2024 legislative session.

Will the mascot and colors be changing?

No, Ody Owl will remain a part of our rich traditions and we will keep our current colors.

How will this impact diplomas and transcripts for those currently at the institution?

We are still working through the options for that, but it is our intention to provide as much flexibility as we can.

Will this impact our mission?

No. We are determined to maintain and support our current mission. We will continue to honor our history and status as the first state-supported college for women in the United States.

Survey Questions

Is the survey meant to be a vote for the name of the University?

No. The survey is meant to get feedback on the names already suggested through the Naming Task Force’s Listening Sessions, emails, and in-person suggestions. We are still in the process of gathering name suggestions using the survey.

Why do I have to answer all the questions in the survey?

The survey was designed to get feedback on the geographic and historical names that have been suggested through the listening sessions, emails, and in person, as well as to find additional names to be researched and vetted by the Naming Task Force.  The survey is designed to evaluate all the names that have come through that process, so we ask for your input on all the names.  We place a high value on your opinion, and we hope you will complete the survey and note your feedback in the section provided for alternate names and other responses. 

Love Communications, the market research firm that designed the survey with the Naming Task Force, will be randomly selecting individuals to participate in focus groups from those who have indicated they would like to continue to help in this important process. 

Only the data from completed surveys will be used. The data from the survey will be compiled into a report by Love Communications, the market research firm who designed the survey in conjunction with the Naming Task Force.  This report will be posted on, and it will be used by the Naming Task Force and Love Communications to develop questions for the focus groups.  Volunteering for a focus group at the end of the survey will add you to the database that Love Communications will use to select participants.

Where did the names come from that are on the survey?

The names on the survey came directly from the Naming Task Force’s Open Listening Sessions, emails, and in-person suggestions from students, alumni, faculty, staff, and the community.  Each name suggested was vetted by the Naming Task Force, and the names on the survey came from that process.  The Naming Task Force hopes to gather additional names for consideration through participation in the survey.