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Western University Name Change A Hot Topic Among Students And Alumni In Canada

01/27/2012 05:17 EST | Updated 01/30/2012 09:14 EST

The University of Western Ontario has ditched its name for a shorter one; The Canadian institution is now called Western University. The name change is the result of a rebranding strategy to help Western go global.

"This is our way of declaring our intention that we are way past a regional school or a national school and we want to be international," the university's president, Amit Chakma, told The Globe & Mail on Thursday.

As Metro News points out, the new name isn't completely unfamiliar. The London-based university – considered one of the oldest in Canada – was originally called "Western University of London Ontario" back in the 1800s.

The school has also revealed a new purple logo that features part of Western's coat of arms instead of a tower. According to Maclean's magazine, the rebranding came with a price tag of $200,000.

The name change has lots of Canadians talking – especially alumni and current students. A video explaining the university's new identity, posted earlier this month, is currently trending on YouTube.

Some viewers are happy with the new name and logo. One person wrote: "This is BRILLIANT,a work of genius - wow!!"

But a number of users are questioning the name change. "Are they moving the school to Vancouver Island? Does it make sense to have "Western" university in the eastern part of the country?" a viewer wrote.

In a message posted with the video, the university claims the name change will only be used for communication and marketing purposes:

"The university's official name remains The University of Western Ontario, and will continue to appear as such on diplomas and official documents. But for communication, marketing and web purposes, Western University – or, at times, simply Western – will be the university's new name."

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