Pharos Academy

Bold in the Bronx

Institutional identity and web development for the K-12 public charter school in the Bronx, New York, that draws on the extraordinary, forward-thinking vision the school executes.





New York
United States



A brand that resonates with students and faculty

The Commence designers collaborated closely on the project with founding principal Travis Brown and the team of directors at the the school to realize an identity that inspires and encourages exploration across the school.

A Guiding Light

Pharos Academy is unapologetically committed to educating Bronx kids. Casting a huge beacon of light and achievement in one of the lowest-performing school districts in New York City. The Commence designers developed a graphic toolkit of core elements that give the school a high degree of creative flexibility and recognition.

A monogram and a lighthouse

The primary mark is built from a combination of monogram “P” and “A” as well as a lighthouse. The name Pharos is derived from the name of the ancient Lighthouse of Alexandria, one of the seven wonders of the anceint world.

“The identity draws on Pharos Academy’s values to create a modern design system that reinforces the school’s bold, intellectually curious positioning.”


School crests built for a crew

Pharos Academy Charter School believes in the power of team, or CREW as they call it. Commence Studio designed a set of crests to represent the crew that is the school.

Charter schools have mascots too Let’s go Gulls!

What creature would you most often find near a lighthouse? A seagull no doubt. The team created a flexible set of designs featuring the fierce sea-loving character.

Illustrating Community Culture

To assist and guide how the Pharos Academy staff and students show up and contribute everyday, the team developed a set of illustrations relaying the values of Radical Inclusivity, Collaborative Curiousity, Storytelling, and more.

Showcasing the brand to the web

After establishing the brand identity for Pharos Academy, the team moved forward onto the web design, strategy and development phase of the project.

Adding a touch of customization and a more personalized process


Getting people where they need to go quickly

Our studio worked to create a fully customized framework and design components for the Pharos Academy website. The goal was to create an easily navigated digital funnel for prospective staff members, students and their families.


For the Bronx

Pharos Academy encourages the unique pathways of individuals and the design studio built the website to match that sentiment through visual storytelling and interactive pages.

“Unconventional layouts bring a refreshing look to the educational institute’s website without compromising usability, legibility, and professionalism.”


School merchandise design

The merchandise designs were inspired by sports branding and streetwear to give a “It’s cool to stay in school” subliminal message to students and staff.

Brand systems for the halls

Banner designs showcase the school’s brand an evoke a sense of pride and familiarity for students passing them in halls each day.