Our Name: How we refer to ourselves

University of Nevada, Reno School of Medicine

When an abbreviation is necessary


The Short Story

When it comes to launching a new brand, consistency is key – consistency in design, text and in our name. If we expect external audiences, including the media and the general public, to refer to us correctly, we must do so internally, as well. Whenever possible, we refer to ourselves by our full name – University of Nevada, Reno School of Medicine. When an abbreviation is needed, we refer to ourselves as UNR Med.

In writing, the first reference should always be our full name, followed by the abbreviation in parentheses – e.g., University of Nevada, Reno School of Medicine (UNR Med). After this instance, the abbreviation can be used on its own when necessary. Second and subsequent references also can be School of Medicine in instances when no other schools of medicine are referenced.

Some More Detail and Examples

Here is some more background on our name and abbreviation, rules of thumb and answers to frequently asked questions:

In Writing

We refer to ourselves by our full name whenever possible, especially in formal situations and documents. In writing, after the first instance if an abbreviated version of the name is required, we refer to ourselves as UNR Med. We should never assume our audiences already knows us, so it is important to always use our full name in the first instance. Here is an example of how to introduce the abbreviation in writing:

The University of Nevada, Reno School of Medicine (UNR Med) recently rebranded itself. At the event, faculty and staff also welcomed the new first-year medical students to UNR Med.

In Conversation

It is best to always use the school's full name in conversation with external audiences and people who are not intimately familiar with the University of Nevada, Reno School of Medicine. However, acronyms and "nicknames" are often used as an internal shorthand – a way for us all to refer to ourselves without using our full name. Our new internal shorthand is "UNR Med," and this is how we can refer to ourselves in internal meetings and informal internal communications when the full name is too cumbersome.

Why UNR Med?

Using a single, consistent shorthand—UNR Med—when an abbreviated version of our name is required will help reinforce our new name – University of Nevada, Reno School of Medicine. Because our new name is so close to our old name, using the acronym will help the change take hold internally and externally over time. Just as our full name does, this acronym also aligns us with our parent university, the University of Nevada, Reno.

Why Does It Matter?

Acronyms, nicknames and shorthand references often build up organically, and if organizations aren't careful, these nicknames can end up causing confusion externally. Referring to ourselves consistently will, over time, cause those who are less familiar with us (e.g., the media and the general public) to also refer to us consistently by our correct name. Our name—in its full and abbreviated forms—reinforces who we are and where we are headquartered, which will help the general public become more aware of us over time. Ultimately, it helps us control our message and how we're represented to the world.

Incorrect Name Usage

UNR School of Medicine
UNR Medicine
UNR Medical School
University of Nevada School of Medicine
School of Medicine
Medical School

University of Nevada, Reno

This is the official name of the University and should be used in full, including the comma.

University of Nevada, Las Vegas

Include comma. UNLV is acceptable for second reference.

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