Student Activities - Campus Event Tips
Tips & Guidelines for Holding Events on Campus
Below are some helpful guidelines and resources for holding an event on campus. The aim of this document is to give you resources to host a awesome well attended event that meets your outcomes. Ideally you would start your planning no later than a month and a half to a month from the date you plan on holding the event. This much time is usually required to get everything organized, purchased, reserved, marketed for, etc. Although for very large events on campus a year in advance is not too early.
Event Planning tips
Event Type: Decide what kind of event you will have
What do you want people to experience
Are they learning something
Is this just social
Could anything be drawn from the experience to make it more memorable
Who are you inviting
If it is everyone; find a specific group and make a special invite to them (e.g. sophomore guys, Math majors, ladies in Burrit, etc.)
Where on campus will it be held?
Classroom, Outside, Whitlock, Ladue, Conference room, your room, residence hall lounge, Black room
Who do you need to reserve the room through; Records office (664.7025), Student Development (664.7121)
Have you contacted Campus Safety about the reservation.
Do you need audio/visual help or other technical support? Who services this area on campus?
What else is happening at that time on campus
Does this conflict with another major event on campus?
How many people will attend?
10, 25, 50, 100, 400 - these are some natural breaking points for how your event will be handled, thought about and prepared for.
Will food be served?
Will Sodexho be involved; who is paying for commuters and those off the meal plan? Are employees and families invited - how are they paying?
Does the Pizza delivery person know where to go
Will decorations or “extras” be needed?
What will highlight or accentuate the experience to help draw out the outcome?
Will there be gifts/favors handed out?
Will there be printed materials?
What is your budget?
where are you getting dollars from?
Is there someone on campus that makes sense to partner with?
Okay once you have a plan how do you let people know?
You will want to advertise in at least three different ways although the more the better.
Papyrus - write an article about your event (or have someone write an article about your event)
Put your event on the GC calendar - events.greenville.edu (link to your Facebook group event page to acccess trending feature). Rubric for Events.greenville.edu
Create a Facebook Event page and invite the world
Do a special invite to a specific group(s) or demographic of students or employees
Invite Faculty and staff!
Posters around campus - make sure to get them stamped in Student Development and abide by the posting policy (page 59 in the Student handbook)
Put up advertisements on the Digital Signage (TV screens) on campus - need to be 1920x1080 format. Use this powerpoint template for easy setup and use this form to submit your information. Other information about Digital Signage can be found here.
Suggested Event Planning Timeline
Note: Not all items on this list are required for every event. Please keep in mind that events often have specialized needs and this checklist was created only to help in the planning process to ensure a successful event. Please alter the timeline to fit your events individualized needs.
Six Months to One Year in Advance
____ Determine the goal of your event and select the appropriate format for your message
____ Outline a budget estimate and seek appropriate approval
____ Select the date, after review of calendars for key participants, the College, and community
____ Negotiate and sign Venue Contract
____ Complete Talent/Artist/Speaker contracts
____ Discuss roles and responsibilities with other supporting units
____ If requesting the president's participation, contact the President's Office
____ Select and reserve a venue, and obtain agreement in writing
____ Select guest list categories and begin master guest list
____ If dignitaries are to be invited, notify the Campus Activities for assistance
____ Choose a theme
____ Develop a rain plan (if scheduled for an outdoor venue)
____ Select a caterer and hold initial meeting to discuss event
____ Reserve hotel accommodations, if needed
____ Outline décor needs
____ Choose and order favors/give away items
____ Select and order any plaques, awards, etc.
____ Reserve rental equipment needed from external vendors
____ Confirm event speakers, including a master of ceremonies
____ Write copy and design save the date mailing
____ Plan audio/visual presentations and hire necessary audio visual support
____ Develop plan for publicity with your communications director or Marketing Department
____ Discuss parking/transportation needs with Greenville College Business office
____ Develop plan for any online components
Three to Six Months In Advance
____ Write copy and design printed invitations, seek approval before printing
____ Finalize and get approval for guest list
____ Confirm program speaking order, adhering to protocol
____ Determine how invitations will be mailed (through your unit or other entity?)
____ Mail save the date notifications (3-4 months before event)
____ Check in with program participants and
____ Offer suggestions for their remarks
____ Request bio information and photograph/headshot for publicity
____ Confirm event entertainment, and obtain agreement in writing
____ Confirm event menu with caterer
____ Select and meet with a florist
____ Develop security plan with Campus Safety or at least give them courtesy of the event
____ Request/hire a photographer through the Marketing Department or other entity
____ Develop a layout of your venue and determine where specific activities will take place
____ Confirm support staffing
____ Request volunteer staffing
____ Continue to update website with event details as needed
Two Months in Advance
____ Submit work order to Facilities Management for set up/logistical needs/materials
____ Complete guest list with addresses and prepare for mailing
____ Send out invitations 4-6 weeks before the event
____ Finalize décor
____ Make hotel accommodations and transportation plans for out-of-town guests/dignitaries
____ Create signage needed for event (banners, directional, etc)
____ Finalize program and send to printer for production
____ Create menu cards if needed
____ Contact the Counseling office for assistance with accommodations for ADA requirements
____ Prepare draft of printed program
Two to Four Weeks in Advance
____ Track RSVPs as they come back to you
____ Prepare registration packets
____ Continue event publicity
____ Send detailed instructional packet to presenters, including directions, parking info, etc.
____ Finalize arrangements with all vendors, including A/V, catering, material suppliers
____ Write speeches and introductions; seek approval
____ Giveaways should be received and prepped for distribution
____ Create table numbers
____ Create seating diagrams of room
____ Visit venue for walk through
____ Receive printed program, pull at least 2 for your file
____ Develop master timeline for event day(s)
One Week in Advance
____ Contact “No Replies” on the RSVP list to avoid unexpected attendees
____ Print guest list in alphabetical order and also by table number for easy reference (when needed)
____ Create name tags, place cards, and seating chart
____ Provide detailed advance packet to hosts with VIP backgrounds and other pertinent info
____ Collect plaques, awards and other presentation materials
____ Finalize remarks and create master script book for podium (tabbed for each speaker)
____ Send electronic version of script to each presenter for final review
____ Confirm security arrangements with Campus Safety
____ Create table numbers (if need be)
____ Create seating diagrams of room
____ Develop master timeline for event day(s)
____ Send final instructions to volunteers
____ Review responsibilities with event support staff
____ Confirm guest count with catering
____ Prepare event box with needed supplies including two copies of contracts
____ Arrive at least 2 hours early
____ Wear comfortable shoes!
____ Bring final copies of all planning documents for reference including contracts
____ Bring vendor forms for entertainment payment
____ Bring script book for podium
____ Greet volunteers and brief them on their responsibilities
____ Examine venue to ensure all details have been covered
____ Set up venue with signage, favors, awards, etc.
____ Perform sound, video and lighting checks
____ Set up registration table at least 60 minutes before event start time
Following the Event
____ Collect all needed invoices and process for payment
____ Make deposits if money was received
____ Send thank you notes to, talent, VIPs, ventors, participants, volunteers and staffers
____ Hold event review to examine successes and points for improvement with key people
____ Conduct survey of attendees to gauge success
____ Make list of notations for the next event
____ Pull tearsheets and media clips for your file
____ Complete file with documents of record
____ Book facility for repeat event