First-Generation Graphic Design Contest

The Student Success Initiatives Unit (a unit of Western’s Division of Enrollment and Student Services) is pleased to announce a First-Generation graphic design contest. The purpose of this contest is to create an identity mark or design that celebrates and supports our first-generation community at Western. First-generation students are defined by Western as students whose parents or guardians have not completed a Bachelor’s (four-year) degree.


Official Rules: 

  • Entries are limited to currently enrolled undergraduate or graduate students at Western. Contestants must be 18 years or older to enter.
  • Individuals may only submit one (1) entry with no more than two (2) variants of the same design (group entries are not permitted).
  • Designs should be produced digitally using a software program and incorporate Western colors and typography.
  • Contestants must be able to provide a high-resolution vector file (e.g., in Adobe Illustrator, Photoshop, or InDesign) with a suggested aspect ratio: 1:1.
  • The logo must be easy to use, handle, resize and manipulate for all reproduction purposes and to be visually appealing on both small and large scales.
  • All submitted work must be the original artwork of the individual entering the contest. 
  • Entries will be acknowledged via the contestant’s Western email within one week of receipt.   
  • Except where prohibited by law, an entry submission into this contest constitutes permission to use the winner’s name, likeness, prize information, and information provided on the entry form for publicity purposes, without further permission or compensation. 


Intellectual Property: 

  • By submitting an entry, you agree to give permission to Western Washington University to use the image, in whole or in part, without limitation for promotional or business purposes. You agree that you will not assert, maintain or consent to others bringing any claim, action, suit or demand of any kind or nature whatsoever against Western Washington University including, but not limited to, those grounded upon the violation of your rights under the U.S. Copyright Act of 1976, or for any other reason in connection with the permitted use of the First-Gen design.
  • With your submission, you affirm this is your own original work, that it has not been copied from others or from previous designs, including your own, and that it does not violate the intellectual property rights of any other person or entity. 
  • Western shall have the right to adapt, edit, modify, or otherwise use the winning submission in part or in its entirety in whatever manner it deems appropriate, and reserves the right not to use the winning entry as described in these contest guidelines. 


Entry Information:

To enter the contest, those that meet eligibility requirements must:  

1. Complete the Entry Form

2. Upload an artist statement (not to exceed a one-page Word document) that addresses the following three questions?

  • How do you feel this graphic design celebrates first-generation students?
  • Why did you choose to participate in this graphic design contest?
  • What went into the design elements that you would want others to know about when seeing the design?

3. Upload your graphic design via a high-resolution vector file (e.g., in Adobe Illustrator, Photoshop, or InDesign) with a suggested aspect ratio: 1:1.

4. Submit your completed Entry Form by Sunday, October 17, 2021, no later than 11:59 pm (PST). Late submissions will not be accepted. 


  • Western is not responsible for lost, late, misdirected, incomplete, illegible, or otherwise unusable entries, including entries that are lost or unusable due to computer, internet, or electronic problems. 
  • Western reserves the right to cancel or modify the contest and award the prize by alternate means if fraud or technical failure is determined at any time, including after the submission window has closed. 
  • Western is not liable, for the purpose of winner and prize notification and delivery, in the event the contest winner has provided incorrect, outdated, or otherwise invalid contact information. 


Selection Criteria: 

  • A committee of first-generation students and employees will review all eligible submissions and use a scoring rubric to evaluate and score the overall design, visual impact, artist statements, and technical guidelines to select a winner.


Winning Prize:  

  • $100 Amazon gift card* 


*Please note that gift cards are considered a monetary award and, as such, are subject to personal income taxation and financial aid eligibility. It is recommended that you contact the Financial Aid Department if you have any questions about the potential impact to your financial aid package.


Campus Announcement: 

  • The award recipient and graphic design will be announced to the campus community during our First-Gen Celebration event scheduled in November and via an announcement in Western Today.