The Hans Bethe House crest makes reference to the character and contributions of the beloved Cornell professor after whom the House is named, to the university of which the House is a proud part, and to the progenitors of the residential college tradition.
The crest is comprised of a light blue shield with a dark blue band or chief across the top. The body of the shield sports an open book on which are inscribed the three much-admired qualities of Professor Bethe to which House members aspire - intellect, integrity and humility. The presence of the book links the House crest with that of the University, on which is incorporated a volume displaying Ezra Cornell's founding dictum of any person any study. The dark blue chief surrounds an emblem in white, repeated three times, that is part stylized star and part the international sign of the atom. The emblem fuses two key elements of Professor Bethe's Nobel Prize-winning work on the nuclear reactions that produce the energy in stars. The crest's colors combine those of the two English universities that founded the residential college system.