Branding Success in San Diego

Feb 22, 2019  |  By Cristina Lee  |  

Individuals seeking to expand their educational and professional opportunities but don’t have a high school diploma to propel them further, can turn to Career Online High School (COHS), an accredited national program that enables students to earn their high school diplomas while gaining real-world career skills. It was Civilian’s job to develop the branding framework for the locally branded Career Online High School, which San Diego County Library named Library High School.

Library High School is a free educational program funded by the San Diego County Library and the California State Library. Operated by the library services company, Gale/Cengage and Smart Horizons Career Online High School, this program allows individuals to graduate with a nationally recognized diploma and a quality education, all from the comfort of a computer.

Four tonal consideration categories Civilian felt was necessary to keep in mind during the design period include the following:

  • Open/Inviting: “We’re still here for you” mentality
  • Accessible/Easy: Ability to self-pace in order to adapt to all types of lifestyles
  • Trustworthy: Anonymity factor to insure confidence and security
  • Self-empowering: Access to a diploma and a successful education


The mark that Civilian created for Library High School includes an open and inviting design that marries the San Diego County Library’s color palette while allowing the mark to stand as its own identifiable entity. The abstract graphic element of an educational abacus tool also functions as a diploma tassel to emphasize the academic success individuals can achieve from completing this program. Giving the mark a modern and clean design helps to entice the viewer in an easy and accessible way.

Including bold graphic elements, color overlays, simplistic icons, and student imagery gives Library High School an overall encouraging feel. Library High School now has the ability to have a unified and recognizable brand that reflects the dedication seen in the educators and students involved in the program.

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