Santa Clara University

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SCU Editorial Style Guide



The Society of Jesus, the religious order to which Jesuits belong. Set off by commas in a sentence. DO NOT use both Fr. and S.J.

  • President Michael Engh, S.J., attended a meeting.
  • Fr. Michael Engh attended the meeting.
    On second reference, use the person's last name only:
  • Engh spoke first at the meeting.
    For very formal occasions use both Reverend and S.J.
  • This proclamation hereby honors Reverend Michael Engh, S.J.




Capitalize in religious references, lowercase to mean a period of rest.

  • All Jewish holy days and the Jewish Sabbath start at sunset before the day marked on most calendars.
  • The weekly holy day, the equivalent of the Christian sabbath, is Friday.
Catholics and Orthodox recognize seven: the Eucharist (often called Communion), baptism, confirmation, penance (now often called the sacrament of reconciliation), matrimony, holy orders, and the sacrament of anointing the sick (formerly extreme unction).
    Lowercase adjectives used with a sacrament:
    • holy Eucharist
Do not capitalize in general usage.

If used with a name, abbreviate to St., including for locations:

  • St. Ignatius of Loyola
  • the city of St. Louis
Do not use the feminine Ste. (except for names of certain locations).
San José State University

Accent preferred by university officials; SJSU acceptable on second reference. Athletic teams are the Spartans. See U.C. system, CSU system.

San Jose, San José
Accent is preferred by San Jose officials but not necessary in most usages.
Santa Clara University

Use on first reference. SCU, Santa Clara, or the University acceptable on second reference. Don't use Santa Clara on first reference. See University.

Also capitalize Lucifer, but lowercase devil.
But the Savior.
Santa Clara Community Action Program (SCCAP) on first reference (acronym introduced in parenthesis on first reference). SCCAP on second reference.
School of Education and Counseling Psychology
School of Engineering
Use engineering school on second reference.
School of Law

Use Santa Clara University School of Law on first reference; lowercase law school or school when used alone or on second reference.

Law school is acceptable on first reference in SCU's law publications.

Schott Stadium
Houses the baseball program. Use Stephen Schott Stadium on first reference.
Science Resource Center
Scriptures, the

Use Santa Clara University on first reference. SCU or the University is acceptable on second reference. See University.


Lowercase spring, fall, summer, winter:

  • fall 1985

Also lowercase derivatives like springtime, unless part of a formal name:

  • The spring 2010 issue of Santa Clara Magazine.

Lowercase when referring to academic terms.

Second Vatican Council
Vatican II or the council is acceptable on second reference.
Lowercase when referring to the class year designation.
Abbreviate only with full names. Capitalize, no comma between the name and the suffix.
  • Joseph P. Kennedy Sr.
series commas, serial commas

See punctuation.

set up, setup
Set up is a verb that denotes the act of putting something together. Setup is the noun that represents the result or arrangement of what you have put together.
  • We set up tables and chairs for the event.


  • The setup looked great in Bronco colors.
Silicon Valley

The word valley is capitalized when part of the proper name but lowercased in all second references. See valley.


Capitalize when used before the names of nuns and when referring to a specific order or congregation.

  • Jane Doe, RSCJ (which stands for Religious Sacre Coeur de Jesu)
  • Sister Jane Doe
    DO NOT use both Sister and RSCJ.
    DO NOT abbreviate Sister.
    DO NOT use Sister on its own on second reference--instead, use the person's last name.
Lowercase when referring to the class year designation. Note spelling.

SCU mascot is the Bronco. All references to sports teams use the plural possessive:

  • women's soccer
  • men's basketball

Teams can be referred to as the Broncos on second reference, but avoid overuse. For specific sports writing guidelines, please see the AP Stylebook.


One word (n. and adj.) to describe a new business venture.

state abbreviations

Use the following abbreviations for states when used in conjunction with city names (Santa Clara, Calif.) in text.

ZIP code abbreviations--in parentheses--are to be used only with full mailing addresses that include a ZIP code.

  • Ala. (AL)
  • Ariz. (AZ)
  • Ark. (AR)
  • Calif. (CA)
  • Colo. (CO)
  • Conn. (CT)
  • Del. (DE)
  • Fla. (FL)
  • Ga. (GA)
  • Ill. (IL)
  • Ind. (IN)
  • Kan. (KS)
  • Ky. (KY)
  • La. (LA)
  • Md. (MD)
  • Mass. (MA)
  • Mich. (MI)
  • Minn. (MN)
  • Miss. (MS)
  • Mo. (MO)
  • Mont. (MT)
  • N.D. (ND)
  • Neb. (NE)
  • Nev. (NV)
  • N.H. (NH)
  • N.J. (NJ)
  • N.M. (NM)
  • N.Y. (NY)
  • N.C. (NC)
  • Okla. (OK)
  • Ore. (OR)
  • Pa. (PA)
  • R.I. (RI )
  • S.C. (SC)
  • S.D. (SD)
  • Tenn. (TN)
  • Vt. (VT)
  • Va. (VA)
  • Wash. (WA)
  • W.Va. (WV)
  • Wis. (WI)
  • Wyo. (WY)
    Eight states are not abbreviated in text. (Postal code in parentheses.)
  • Alaska (AK)
  • Hawaii (HI)
  • Idaho (ID)
  • Iowa (IA)
  • Maine (ME)
  • Ohio (OH)
  • Texas (TX)
  • Utah (UT)
    Washington, D.C., is never abbreviated. District of Columbia or D.C is acceptable in text on second reference. Note comma after D.C. in full usage.
state names

See AP stylebook for questions of usage. Use full state names, not abbreviations, when no city is mentioned. Otherwise, use full city name and state abbreviation:

  • Thousand Oaks, Calif.

Only use two-letter ZIP code abbreviations (CA) on envelopes or for return addresses. In the Class Notes section of Santa Clara Magazine, California is the default.

Stations of the Cross
street names

See entries for addresses, El Camino Real, The Alameda.

Student Life
Acceptable on second reference for Office of Student Life.

Capitalize only the first letter of the first word in article subheads. Do not use a period at the end of a subhead.

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