Initiate a project

Working within a detailed project management process is central to our joint success – especially considering the volume of projects MarCom completes in a fiscal year. For example, in FY22-23 we worked on nearly 500 parent projects encompassing around 1,500 tasks.

To help projects go smoothly, here are four important ways you can help us better help you. 

1. Plan ahead

When you take time with your MarCom team lead to map out most of your communications and marketing needs for the academic year – well before it begins – we can better prepare to set aside the time and staff resources necessary to do your work. Please note our minimum lead times (below) and keep in mind that reviewing and correcting proofs may add to the overall timeline as well.

If you’re unsure who the MarCom team lead is for your unit, please email

2. Gather pertinent information

Make sure you've gathered all of the information (photos, writing, background information, quantities, CFOP numbers, etc.) our team will need to work on your project. 

3. Submit a brief

Generally, before a brief is submitted, units or departments will discuss upcoming needs with their MarCom team lead so they can put a plan and budget in place for fulfilling those needs.

  • Project brief – Required for most marketing deliverables, this electronic form is designed to simply capture the details needed for requested deliverables. You will fill out the form then submit to the MarCom team to initiate a project request. Your team lead can help answer questions about the form, review the request once submitted, suggest any changes, and oversee the project through completion. 
  • Purpose brief – Valuable for thinking more broadly about the strategy behind an upcoming need, this form will be completed together with a team lead if they determine the need would be best served by a purpose brief (rather than a project brief). The purpose brief covers marketing, messaging, creative, and brand strategy.

4. Help us keep your project moving

With the appropriate lead time, our team is able to work quickly. You can help that process move along by planning an efficient approval process and being quick to respond when we have questions.

Video project requests are handled separately due to the amount of time, resources, and scheduling required. If you have an idea for a video, your first step is to share it with your MarCom team lead.

Adequate lead time for your projects is key

Please allow at least:

  • 5 weeks (minimum) for non-stock merchandise requests (to accommodate supply chain/shipment delays) 
  • 3 weeks (minimum) for any deliverables that are not merchandise or wearables 

More lead time is required for projects that call for data research, creative strategy, and video. Check with your team lead.

Templates for DIY projects

We’ve created a collection of templates that make it easy for you to create certain items yourself while maintaining brand guidelines. You can find approved templates for business cards, email signatures, PowerPoint slides, Zoom backgrounds, and more in this Box folder.

Project FAQs

What if I don’t quite have all the details needed to fill out the project brief?

Unfortunately, we aren’t able to start a project without all of the information requested on the project brief. Incomplete briefs will be returned for more information. 

Who should submit the project brief?

The best person to submit your project and serve as the primary contact is either the person in your unit who most often works with your MarCom team lead or the person who is closest to the project and can help our team keep it moving. We aren't equipped to work with student workers or interns, so please don't ask them to submit project briefs or directly contact your MarCom team lead with requests.

How long does it take MarCom to complete an average project?

Our team works quickly, doing everything we can to meet the due date you’ve included in the project brief. The exact amount of time, however, depends on the complexity of your project, the number of MarCom team members it requires, the efficiency of the approvals process in your unit, and the number of other projects we’re already working on for units across the College. 

How should existing copy and photos be shared with MarCom?

Any supporting files needed for your project (copy, photos, example files, etc.) should be uploaded via the project brief (or provided to the team lead). If you have copy to include, please provide a Word document. In most cases, MarCom will provide necessary photos, but if you have a specific photo you wish to include, it should be high resolution and in JPG, PNG, or TIF format.

Please do not create your own designs. MarCom will create professional designs for you.

Will we be able to review the project before it's produced?

Yes. When your request is complete, your MarCom team lead will provide a proof to the contact for the project. It will be that person's responsibility to collect all approvals in a timely manner and return the proof with or without changes to MarCom. A second proof will be generated if changes or corrections are requested. 

Multiple rounds of proof reviews and requested changes generally delay the original delivery date. When there are extended and/or delayed reviews, members of our team often need to turn their attention to new projects in the queue to keep those on schedule.

How do units pay for project expenses?

Your unit or department is required to provide a CFOP for any costs incurred during the completion of a project. This includes printing costs, production fees, etc. The project brief includes a place to enter the CFOP.