Board of Trustees approves updated university seal that honors Catholic, Jesuit tradition and Indigenous nations

Following a thoughtful review and design process led by a committee of subject matter experts from across the university, the Marquette Board of Trustees has approved an updated version of the Marquette University seal.

Formed by President Michael R. Lovell in early 2020, the university seal committee aimed to update the university seal to reflect Marquette’s history, tradition and Catholic, Jesuit mission, and more accurately depict the role of the Indigenous nations that guided Father Marquette on his journey. Milwaukee-based Oneida artist Kristelle M. Ulrich contributed to the creative design of the updated university seal.

“University seals are important symbols meant to celebrate an institution’s founding, heritage and purpose, and these often complex histories deserve thoughtful, reverential illustrations of our pasts,” President Lovell says. “As we have been called to reflect on our own symbols, it became clear that Marquette University needs a seal that aligns with our mission, vision and guiding values and reaffirms our Statement on Human Dignity and Diversity. We likewise sought to create a seal with a sense of history, purpose, pride, and healing that supports the efforts of institutional change, progress, and reconciliation. The updated university seal is a beautiful reflection of who we are and what we stand for.”

“The new seal has emerged after months of listening and conversation. We think it grounds the university in the tradition of St. Ignatius and also recognizes how Father Jacques Marquette was helped by Native Americans on his journeys in the Midwest,” says Rev. Greg O’Meara, S.J., rector of the Marquette Jesuit Community. “It helps us remember that all journeys in our lives rely on the help of companions. It is thus a fitting metaphor for the educational mission of Marquette University.”

“Seeing the progress that the Office of Marketing and Communication, in conjunction with Kristelle Ulrich, has made on Marquette’s seal really inspired me when I first saw it last week,” says Alex Liberato, a 2021 alumnus and former leader of the Native American Student Association. “The narrative style’s connection to our Indigenous history, along with the classic Jesuit imagery, tells a story of a combined but independent history of our Indigenous nations and the Jesuit travelers.”

It is important to recognize that the university seal differs from the university logo and athletics monogram. Marquette’s official seal is used on approved official and presidential documents and events. In addition, the seal is embedded into high-profile spots on campus, including on an outdoor archway and in several buildings.

Chaired by Rana Altenburg, associate vice president of public affairs, the seal committee included members representing:

  • Marquette’s Jesuit community
  • Native American community members (as represented by Marquette University’s Council on Native American Affairs)
  • Faculty from the Department of History, the Department of English, the College of Business Administration and the Law School
  • Native American undergraduate and graduate student body
  • Office of Institutional Diversity and Inclusion
  • Office of the President
  • University Advancement
  • University Relations

Read more about the updated Marquette University seal.

A set of Frequently Asked Questions is available online.

The university is developing a phased process for updating the seal on items and in locations across campus over time. Please notify University Relations at if you notice an old version of the seal that needs to be updated.