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Students Secure Funding for Co-Branding Efforts Between Idaho State and Historic Downtown Pocatello

June 28, 2021

Students Secure Funding for Co-Branding Efforts Between Idaho State and Historic Downtown Pocatello

Students in the Honors program course, “Orange You Creative” have successfully secured funding from three donors to sponsor a variety of Idaho State branded art and active experiences to be featured in the Historic Downtown Pocatello.

Two years ago, College of Business Management Professor, Dr. Jeff Street launched the Honors Program course in an effort to bring together the Idaho State University and Pocatello communities and “spread the Bengal pride.” Now in its second round, the course combined the creative minds of 16 talented Honors Program students to come up with five new ideas which Lookout Credit Union, the Southeast Idaho Council of Governments, Inc. (SICOG) and Historic Downtown Pocatello have all agreed to sponsor.

Totaling about $15,000 the project will include the addition of a 12-foot-tall wrought iron structure reminiscent of the famous Swanson Arch on campus. Once completed, the arch design will be placed in Leadership Pocatello Park on Main Street.

The second piece will feature a ghost sign of the vintage Benny on the City Boxing Club removable mural wall on Main Street. The third project will feature a permanent active experience in downtown where visitors can search to find the Idaho State spirit mark throughout the downtown area. This activity would utilize the app that is currently used by Historic Downtown. The activity would include eight location stops.

The plans also include a granite bench installed in Simplot Park during future remodeling. The bench design will feature three column supports and an illuminated fourth column reminiscent of the Red Hill pillars on campus.

The team is also planning a Pawprint Community Event taking place during Welcome Back Orange and Black in the fall. The event will feature themed t-shirts and removable mural paintings featuring pawprints by students to be placed on the City Boxing Club building wall. 

These additions to Historic Downtown Pocatello are planned to be completed by the Welcome Back Orange and Black event in August with the last project, the Swanson Arch design finishing up in Spring 2022.

Street said that bringing Bengal pride to the city also had an underlying strategy of economic importance, “A ‘consumer’ of the university, either student or academic staff, becomes in most cases, a ‘consumer’ of the city in which the university is located,” Street said that because of this, the harmony between the city and university’s branding is important to stimulate economic growth in the university’s home town. “[This was] the underlying driver for the course. Simply stated, more students and staff will shop and play in Historic Downtown if it is familiar and inviting to them.”

In its first year, students in the Orange You Creative course added 130 lamp post pennants that were hung down Main Street as well as 15 Idaho State spirit mark neon signs for business windows.

In coming up with their ideas, students considered and researched factors such as developing positive relationships between universities and host towns, economic opportunity and developing a sense of community. They were also tasked with touring the campus and downtown communities and assessing feasibility through legality, and cost and time evaluations.