Guidelines and Policies for Registered Student Organizations
Table of Contents
- Section I. Introduction
- Section II. Privileges and Benefits of Recognition
- Section III. Criteria for Recognition
- Section IV. Inclusivity, Non-Discrimination and Hazing Statements
- Section V. Maintaining Recognition
- Section VI. Non-Compliance with Registration Requirements or Violation of University Policies
- Section VII. New Organization Registration Process
- Section VIII. Writing Your Own Constitution
- Section IX. HatterSync
- Section X. Event Registration
- Section XI. Cultural Credit
- Section XII. Advertising Policy
- Section XIII. Social Media Policy
- Section XIV. Food and Sale Policy
- Section XV. Funding through S.A.F.A.C.
- Section XVI. Policy on Political Candidates and Election-Year Campaigns
- Use of Stetson University Facilities for Political Candidates or Campaigns
- Debates on Campus
- Other Campus Participation by Political Candidates
- Campus Appearances by Persons Holding Political Office or Representing Political Issues
- Disclaimers and Publicity
- University Publications and Websites
- Registration of Student Organizations for Individual Candidates
- Voter Education and Issue Advocacy
- Individual Faculty, Staff, and Student Involvement in Political Activities
- Campaign Access to Campus Housing
Student organizations are at the heart of the Stetson University experience. The university seeks to enrich the development of the whole person by providing leadership opportunities as a means of engaging students on campus and in the local and global communities. Student organizations contribute to the diversity and range of activities and perspectives on campus by offering students the opportunity to join together in social, cultural, political and/or special interest groups. It is through these student organizations that students have the opportunity to build lifelong connections with the larger world and embody Stetson University's commitment to personal growth, intellectual development and global citizenship.
Stetson University's registration process for student organizations on campus provides specific guidelines under which student organizations may function. The goal of the registration process, established and maintained by Student Development and Campus Vibrancy, is to add stability to student organizations and enhance communication between organizations and the university. The registration process also spells out the responsibilities of student organizations and the consequences for groups that choose not to function in accordance with these guidelines. As a registered entity, student organizations receive a variety of benefits and privileges, including the ability to reserve university facilities, promote their organization on campus, and gain access to programming support and leadership training from the Office of Student Development and Campus Vibrancy.
Student organizations are "recognized" by the university. However, the activities undertaken by a student organization are not sponsored or approved by the university. Registration does not create a contractual relationship, a property right or a legal expectancy between the university and the student organization. The university encourages student organizations to become registered student organizations so that students can better understand the university's expectations regarding responsible co-curricular activity, and take advantage of the many programs and services offered to enhance their Stetson University experience.
Student organizations must register with the Office of Student Development and Campus Vibrancy. Non-registered student organizations or groups may not use any of Stetson University's services outlined in this manual. The following privileges are available upon official recognition, provided the student organization is in good standing (see Sections V and VI).
- Ability to reserve space on-campus at no cost.
- Ability to reserve free sound and lighting equipment through Stetson Work-Study Audio Technician (SWAT).
- Ability to reserve tables and banner space at no cost (when available).
- Ability to publicize on-campus, including with Stetson Today, the digital billboards and designated areas on campus.
- Eligibility to apply for S.A.F.A.C. funding through the Student Government Association (SGA).
- Ability to participate in Fall and Spring Organization Fairs.
- Ability to participate in Greenfeather, Homecoming, and other university-sponsored events.
- Access to other resources provided by the university departments and offices.
Once registered, organizations also have access to many benefits:
- Access to HatterSync (the online student organization center where registered student organizations can recruit new members, communicate with their members, connect with other registered student organizations and plan events). See Section IX for more details.
- A free email address and website.
- A seat on the SGA Senate.
- Assistance from the the Office of Student Development and Campus Vibrancy staff with program planning and leadership skill development. Org officers are encouraged to improve leadership skills by attending workshops and other opportunities provided by the Office of Student Development and Campus Vibrancy.
To be approved as a registered student organization, a student organization must meet the criteria listed below. Registration approval is discretionary, and the Office of Student Development and Campus Vibrancy reserves the right to determine if the student organization meets the criteria listed in Section II, and if the approval is in the best interest of the university.
- Must have a minimum of three members currently enrolled as Stetson University students. Must provide student names, phone numbers and campus e-mail addresses on HatterSync. It is the registered student organization's responsibility to maintain the required number of currently enrolled students listed as members.
- Must have a full-time faculty/staff advisor currently employed by Stetson University and provide advisor's name, mailing address, e-mail address and phone number on HatterSync.
- Must provide an official organization profile on HatterSync. Officers of a registered student organizations have a responsibility to see that the organizational contact information submitted is accurate and up-to-date at all times (see Section V).
- The mission must reflect the mission and values of the university.
- If applicable, the organization must list the affiliate or national organization it is associated with in its HatterSync profile and constitution.
- The services and programs offered by the organization must directly relate to the organization mission.
- The mission, services, and activities of the organization should be different from any other fully-recognized student organization.
- Must agree to the Stetson University Code of Community Standards
- The registered student organization must affirm in its constitution and on its HatterSync profile that it will not violate Stetson University's Inclusivity, Non-Discrimination and Hazing Statements. See below for more details.
- The registered student organization must have a constitution in accordance with the Office of Student Development and Campus Vibrancy requirements (see Section VI and Appendix for a sample constitution).
- The registered student organization must have mission statement.
- The registered student organization must disclose any affiliate or parent organization.
- The registered student organization, its officers and its members must not violate university policies and procedures as well as applicable federal, state, and local laws. Such policies and laws include, but are not limited to, the following:
- The registered student organization, its officers and its members shall abide by and be subject to the university's Code of Community Standards including the university's Inclusivity, Non-Discrimination and Hazing Statements (see Section IV).
- The registered student organization, its officers and its members shall not conduct commercial activities that contribute, either directly or indirectly, to the private financial benefit of any individual or organization other than the organization itself or Stetson University. Officers, faculty/staff advisors and members are prohibited from using organization their position within the organization to benefit any private commercial enterprise, organization or individual other than the organization itself or Stetson University.
- The registered student organization, its officers and its members shall agree to abide by Stetson University trademark guidelines set by University Marketing and Social Media Policy (see Section XIII).
- The organization, its officers and its members shall adhere to all university, Student Government Association (SGA) Student Activity Fee Allocation Committee (S.A.F.A.C.) financial guidelines.
- Officers certify that the information provided on the application form is accurate and up-to-date at all times.
- Officers must authorize the Office of Student Development and Campus Vibrancy to disclose to the campus community organizational information contained in the application, including organizational contact information, constitution, and the organization type.
All registered student organizations must abide by the university's Inclusivity, Non-Discrimination and Hazing Statements listed below.
Our organization recognizes its role and responsibilities as a member of an engaged and inclusive university community.
It is the policy of Stetson University not to discriminate on the basis of sex, disability, race, age, religion, color, national or ethnic origin, ancestry, marital status, veteran status, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, genetic information, physical characteristics, or any other category protected by federal, state, or local law in its educational programs, admissions policies, financial aid, employment, or other school- administered programs. The policy is enforced by Stetson University and, where applicable, federal laws such as Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, and the Age Discrimination Act of 1975. The university is an equal opportunity educational institution.
Stetson University values the equality of all people, recognizing its responsibility to protect human dignity and promote positive personal growth, hazing is strictly prohibited by any member of the university community. Stetson University defines hazing as an act that threatens the mental, physical, academic health, or safety of a student through actions or situations that endanger, embarrass, harass, demean or ridicule any person regardless of locations, intent or consent of participants.
Organizations must be in good standing with the Office of Student Development and Campus Vibrancy and meet certain requirements to maintain recognition as a registered student organization.
- At least one member of each registered student organization is required to attend the Leaders' Summit (or any equivalent one-time training as revised by the Office of Student Development and Campus Vibrancy) in the fall semester.
- At least two officers of each registered student organization are required to attend the Officer Transition training (or any equivalent one-time training as revised by the Office of Student Development and Campus Vibrancy) in the Spring semester.
- Each registered student organization is required to fully update their officers' information and profile on HatterSync (as often as they change with a once-a-semester-minimum).
- All registered student organization events must be registered through HatterSync (see Section VIII on Event Registration).
- This only excludes regular meetings.
- Three active members are necessary to maintain recognition. It is the registered student organization's responsibility to maintain the required number of currently enrolled students listed as members.
- The registered student organization must abide by the university's Inclusivity, Non-Discrimination and Hazing Statements (see Section IV).
Good standing is determined by the university based on a registered student organization's compliance with the requirements of Sections III, IV, and V. Compliance will be reviewed following a referral of the registered student organization, its officers, members or potential members for violation of the university's Code of Community Standards (this includes the university statements on Inclusion, Non-Discrimination and Hazing listed in Section IV). Compliance with registration requirements set forth in Sections III, IV, and V are also subject to periodic review by the Office of Student Development and Campus Vibrancy.
- Any registered student organization alleged to not be in good standing will be notified in writing and may be provided an opportunity for the registered student organization's president and other officers to attend an investigative hearing. Registered student organization officers may also request to meet with a representative to discuss the alleged violation. Should a registered student organization be found to not be in good standing, the registered student organization will be notified of sanctions, imposed by the the Office of Student Development and Campus Vibrancy and/or the Office of Community Standards, in writing. The following sanctions may be imposed:
- Student organization is placed on probation with full privileges.
- Student organization is placed on probation with restricted privileges.
- Student organization's registration is suspended without privileges.
- Student organization's registration is revoked.
- Student organization officers are referred to the Office of Community Standards based on charges of violation of the Code of Community Standards.
- Other sanctions deemed appropriate by the university and the Office of Community Standards.
- Prior to any sanctioning, the registered student organization's president and other officers may be provided an opportunity to attend an investigative hearing. This will be determined by the Office of Community Standards.
- The registered student organization will be notified in writing if there is a finding that it is not in good standing. The registered student organization shall also be informed in writing of sanctions, if any, to be imposed by the the Office of Student Development and Campus Vibrancy and/or the Office of Community Standards.
The new organization process has been transferred to the Student Governent Association. For more information, please contact the SGA at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Using your own constitution instead of the standard constitution (see Appendix) is great way to make your organization highly personalized. Sometimes, certain parent organizations require local or chapter organizations to create a constitution that aligns with the national standards. Either way, this process can be very beneficial and rewarding for an organization's members, but will lengthen the approval process to approximately two months. Student Development and Campus Vibrancy is happy to aid you in writing your own constitution, and ask that you please follow the guidelines below, triple checking for work for errors and typos. Once it is completed, make an appointment with Student Development and Campus Vibrancy to begin the review process.
- The name of the organization.
- A mission or purpose statement.
- Description of rights for Stetson University student members and non-student members.
- Following information about officer elections:
- When during the year will they will occur.
- All of the voting procedures.
- How much notice will be given before voting to time, location, candidates?
- What percentage of votes will be needed (specify votes of those present at voting OR votes of entire organization)?
- Officer removal procedures.
- Officer duties.
- Advisor specifications:
- How an advisor will be chosen.
- Advisor's duties.
- Amending the constitution procedures.
- Stetson University Inclusivity Statement - see Section IV above.
- Stetson University Non-Discrimination Statement - see Section IV above.
- Stetson University Hazing Statement: - see Section IV above.
- The statement "Organization shall comply with all federal, state, local, and university laws, policies and procedures."
- The statement "Organization recognizes its role and responsibilities as a member of an engaged and inclusive university community."
- Reference to which officer will be responsible for S.A.F.A.C.
- Role and duties of SGA senator representative for organization.
- How an advisor would be removed.
- If the registered student organization will reference Robert's Rules of Order (or similar system) for conducting meetings.
- How many students will constitute quorum (what is required to conduct official business).
- Information about dues.
- Any faculty, staff or off-campus persons as voting members or officers.
- Any discriminatory language.
HatterSync creates an online Stetson University community that helps students, departments, and registered student organizations improve communication, information sharing, collaboration, and reporting with an online tool students want to use. Here, you can manage your organization's profile; upload important documents such as constitutions or by-laws; contact fellow members easily through discussion boards; create events by filling out event requests; share your calendar with the university or through social media sites; post and approve budgets for the coming year; or create polls to engage members. HatterSync is Student Organization Central.
- How to Register:
- Go to HatterSync.
- Complete your profile.
- Join a Stetson University student organization or make your own! (see Section V).
- All members of a registered student organization must be registered.
- If there are any questions or concerns about using HatterSync, please contact the Office of Student Development and Campus Vibrancy at email@example.com.
A student organization must be registered as an registered student organization to hold events on and off campus. Before an event can be hosted on or off campus, the Office of Student Development and Campus Vibrancy must approve the event at least two weeks in advance. All events, with the exception of regular meetings, must be registered. An event is defined as a gathering a reasonable, third-party observer would associate with your organization.
To register an event, please follow the following steps:
- If the event will be held on campus, reserve a room.
- Fill out an Event Request:
- Log on to HatterSync
- Click "Events" on the dashboard of your organization's portal.
- Click on the "Create an Event" button.
- Complete the form
- The individual who submits the form will receive confirmation or denial of your event.
- If you have any questions about the status of your event or are in need of planning assistance, please contact Destiny Lyals at firstname.lastname@example.org.
This section includes the following: Terms and Conditions, in which the person affirms that the form is filled out at least two weeks in advance and already has reserved the room for the event; the benefit and mission of the event; including any possible challenges.
Stetson Work-Study Audio Technicians (SWAT) is a group of students hired by the Office of Student Development and Campus Vibrancy to assist student organizations and clubs with the technical needs of their events. Such needs include:
- Sound (small to large sound systems available)
- Stage (only to be used in the Rinker Field House)
SWAT requires that students put in requests 14 business days in advance in order to guarantee staffing and to work out all technical details for an event. SWAT services are free to all student organizations and clubs.
|Event Type||Equipment Request||Setup Time Needed|
|Stetson Room presentation||All equipment is already present unless a special request is made||Less than 30 minutes|
|LBC Auditorium presentation||All equipment is already present unless a special request is made||Less than 30 minutes|
|Movie Night in LBC||All equipment is already present||Less than 30 minutes|
|Movie Night in Residence Hall||Projector, projection screen, small sound system||Less than 30 minutes|
|Movie Night outside or in large outside venue||Projector, projection screen, medium sound system||Less than one hour|
|Professional guest in Rinker Field House||Stage and large sound system||Two to three hours, depending on number of guests|
|Professional guest in Lee Chapel||Medium sound system - most other equipment is already present||Less than one hour|
|Band outside or inside||Medium or large sound system||Two to three hours, depending on number of guests|
|DJ outside or inside||Medium sound system||Less than one hour|
|Background music inside||Small sound system||Less than 30 minutes|
|Background music outside||Medium sound system||Less than one hour|
Organizations who wish to hold movie nights but do not own either the copyrights or the educational rights to the film are only allowed to hold their events in one of the residence halls.
If a DJ's services are being used, they must bring their own sound equipment. SWAT will not provide sound equipment for a DJ or those acting in that capacity.
If there is a last minute change, we cannot guarantee that set-up will be on-time for you event to start as planned.
Fundraising can be a great way to raise money for your organization for future events or for a charity of your choosing. Listed below are a few questions to keep in mind when planning to fundraise:
- How do you plan on fundraising?
- Will you be collecting donations or charging a set fee?
- How will you be collecting the funds, by check, cash or credit?
- Who will be responsible for collecting funds during the event?
- Where will the money be kept during the event? Be sure to have a safe place to keep the money during and after the event.
- Make sure to go over all the details with your advisor and keep them informed to better prepare for the event.
Stetson University also has a few policies for certain types of fundraisers like poker tournaments, bake sales or raffles that may be considered gambling according to Florida state law. Below are a few types of fundraisers that require special considerations:
- Poker Tournaments
- Organizations hosting a poker tournament must provide a prize that is not cash, even if there is a buy-in fee or donation.
- Bake Sales or Selling of Food
- Homemade bake sales and candy are allowed on campus and may be sold in front of the CUB. However, selling full meals or food that compete with Chartwell's - homemade or from an outside vendor - in front of the CUB is strictly prohibited as it violates the university's Chartwell's contract. If you would like to consider selling food, please contact Don Stanwick at email@example.com.
- Raffles are legal at Stetson University because we are a Non-For-Profit, but there are rules and regulations required by the State of Florida (for more information please refer to this document).
- Outside Vendors
- An outside vendor may come and sell items as long as they are giving a percentage of their proceeds or a set fee to the student organization. Be aware that the student organization must also complete a contracting form (see Contracting section).
- Social Auctions
- All Social Auctions must be registered through HatterSync and approved through the Office of Student Governance and Organizations. The Assistant Director has the right to request a meeting with the event coordinator for an organization regarding this event to ensure proper diligence and risk management.
- Participants must sign a liability waiver prior to the event. Individuals who are bidding on an activity must sign a waiver once payment is made. These waivers need to be returned, signed, to Hun in the CUB the day following the event. Individuals who are not 18 years or older must obtain guardian permission to participate in the vent as a bidder or facilitator of an activity. NOTE: All participants have the right to withdraw from the process at any point. Should a bidder withdraw before the activity or services are rendered, a refund will be issued in full.
- We recommend advisors attend this program to ensure the compliance with the aforementioned concerns.
Liability waivers are necessary for events that may present risk or injury to the participants. For example, events that involve:
- Sports-related activities
- Manual labor
- Food eating contests
- Water fights
- Events with animals
- Events with paint
- Use inflatables
- Use sumo suits
- Or where participants may in any way potentially harm to themselves or others. Participants will need to sign a liability waiver for events listed above.
Once you have filled out the "Event Registration" form and your event is approved, you will be sent the Stetson University Risk Acknowledgement and Liability Waiver. You will need to make the appropriate number of copies and have each participant sign the waiver before the event/trip. Participants under the age of 18 need to have their parent's signature. Please make sure you either bring a copy of the forms for emergency contact purposes, or leave with someone at the university who you can readily contact. Return all the signed copies within 24 hours of the event (or Monday if over the weekend) to the HUB in the CUB.
Stetson University students can sign the General Liability Waiver for most on-campus, low-risk events, once during their entire time at the university. In exchange for signing the waiver, students will get a sticker on their Stetson University ID to prove that they signed the waiver. In order to help us out and make your planning for future events easier, we ask that you inform students who signed the waiver to come to the HUB in the CUB and get their sticker after you have turned in the signed form to us. Students who already have a sticker on their student ID do not need to sign another waiver. In other words, it is the student's responsibility to come and get their sticker from the Hub in the CUB.
If your event will include an outside vendor, speaker, entertainer or organization, please fill out the "Contracting" section of the Event Registration form. As the representative from your organization, you will act as the liaison between Stetson University and the outside agent, but cannot sign any contract. Stetson University creates its own contracts and terms and conditions, and asks that if an outside agent provides their own contract, that you refer them to one of the contracts below. Please keep in mind that when planning an event that will involve the contract process can take up to 4 weeks, so the sooner you contact the Office of Student Development and Campus Vibrancy, the better. If an individual is being paid for his/her services, please submit your event registration at least 4 weeks in advance.
There are three types of contracts:
- Lecturer/Guest Speaker/Consultant Contract
- Single person speaking and/or lecturer (non-entertainment) type services
- Short-term low risk activity; no need for Certificate of Insurance
- Needed documents:
- Rider or additional documents if provided
- Entertainment/Artist Contract
- Company or Single person providing entertainment services: musicians, magicians, hypnotists, etc.
- Needed documents:
- Rider or additional documents
- Certificate of Insurance or TULIP if unavailable
- Student Activity Equipment Contract
- Companies that supply and operate equipment activities (ex: inflatables, mechanical bulls, etc.).
- Needed documents:
- Rider or additional documents
- Certificate of Insurance or TULIP if unavailable
Have the agent fill out the highlighted portions of the specific contract you need and e-mail the completed and signed (by the company/agent/performer) contract to firstname.lastname@example.org or fax it to 386-822-7392.
Tips for Contracting
- When including costs or Fees associated with the event (if any) ask for an all-inclusive price so you are not responsible for arranging transportation or lodging
- Do not guarantee a price or confirm an event is happening until a contract is done. Until then you are "tentatively planning".
- Do not sign any contracts! Be clear with the agent that you are the representative coordinating the event, not approving the event.
- We strongly recommend that you check back with your advisor and negotiate on price if the contract amount is over $300.
- The Office of Student Development and Campus Vibrancy works with agents all the time and we are happy to help you if this is your first time!
Events with alcohol and off-campus events hosted by student organizations are required to be registered with and approved by the Office of Student Development and Campus Vibrancy. An event is defined as a gathering a reasonable, third-party observer would associate with your organization. Before this section can be approved, you need to have attended the Alcohol and Off-Campus Events Host Training. Please contact the Office of Student Development and Campus Vibrancy at email@example.com for more information.
The following guidelines must be met in order for an event with alcohol to be approved and apply to on campus and off-campus functions:
- Organizations wishing to have an event with alcohol must attend Events with Alcohol Training sponsored by the Office of Student Governance and Organizations.
- The sale of alcoholic beverages by the sponsoring organization is prohibited.
- No alcoholic beverages may be purchased through the organization treasury nor may the purchasing of alcohol for members or guests be undertaken or coordinated by any member in the name of, or on behalf of, the organization.
- Entrance: All events at which alcoholic beverages are served/consumed must have at least two (2) active members and/or one (1) executive member from the sponsoring organization present at the venue's entrance and sober throughout the entire event.
- Identification: All persons shall have their identification and age checked at the entrance to the event. All persons under the age of 21 will not be allowed to purchase or consume alcohol at the event. Every organization must have a system for determining which guests are of legal age. It is strongly recommended that the event security monitors the age and identification verification.
- Security: All events at which alcoholic beverages are served/consumed must have at least one (1) certified security guard/Public Safety Officer, who is in no way affiliated with the sponsoring organization. More security guards may be required for large social events.
- Sober Monitors: At least 10% of the sponsoring organizations' active membership present must be sober at the event and monitor the safety of all guests. A list of sober monitors and their birth dates or Student IDs must be submitted and finalized at least two weeksone (14) business days prior to the event.
- Duration: Events at which alcoholic beverages are served/consumed may not last longer than five (5) hours. Events longer than five (5) hours must be approved.
- Containers: There shall be no alcohol served by use of a common container. Therefore, kegs, party balls, and punches containing hard liquor are prohibited.
- Safe Environment: The location of the event must be clean and free of potential hazards.
- Crisis Management Plan: The sponsoring organization must have a crisis management plan prepared and rehearsed prior to the event and on file with the Office of Student Governance and Organizations. This plan must be submitted with the event registration. Contact information for local emergency services, local police, university, and alumni advisors should be posted in visible areas throughout the venue.
- Transportation: Safe transportation (i.e. buses, sober drivers, taxis) must be provided for every organization sponsored social for members and guests.
- Alternate Beverages and Snacks: Snack food and non-alcoholic beverages must be available at the event.
- Enclosed Area: If the sponsoring organization is permitted to conduct a social event in an on-campus residential area, alcoholic beverages must be served and consumed within an enclosed area of the building. All events taking place in a residential area must get approval from the Residential Living and Learning Office as well as the Office of Student Governance and Organizations.
The following guidelines must be met (in addition to the General Guidelines for all Social Events with Alcohol) in order for the social event to be approved.
Third-Party Licensed Vendor
All events with alcohol must be done through a third-party vendor. A Third Party Licensed Vendor Function is considered to be an event in which the use of alcohol is monitored and distributed by a professional agency independent of the sponsoring organization. This type of event may take place on or off campus. There shall be no alcohol served by use of a common container unless monitored by the professional agency, which is required to use a cash bar system (by the cup). Therefore, kegs, party balls, and punches containing hard liquor are prohibited.
Third Party Vendors information must be provided to the Office of Student Governance and Organizations. To view current vendors and to find out how to apply for a vendor to be added to the list, please visit theVendors page.
Bring-Your-Own-Beverage events are not sanctioned by the University and are prohibited by the policies of the institution. Student organizations that participate in Bring-Your-Own-Beverage events will be held accountable through the Office of Community Standards.
Off-campus events hosted by student organizations are required to be registered with and approved by the Office of Student Development and Campus Vibrancy. An event is defined as a gathering a reasonable, third-party observer would associate with your organization. Before this section can be approved, you need to have attended the Alcohol and Off-Campus Events Host Training. Please contact the Office of Student Development and Campus Vibrancy at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
- Off-Campus Events
- Any off-campus event must be approved by the Office of Student Development and Campus Vibrancy and requires the following information:
- Event venue information
- A guest list with contact information of each participant
- Transportation service information (if applicable)
- For out-of-town events (not in the city of DeLand), travel waivers will be created and must be distributed and signed by each attendee before departure for the event. Waivers must be returned to the HUB in the CUB 24 hours prior to the event taking place, including weekend events.
- Any off-campus event must be approved by the Office of Student Development and Campus Vibrancy and requires the following information:
Public Safety may be required for events that fit any of the following:
- Are open to the public
- Expect large crowds or attendance
- Involve large concerts/shows/rock bands
- Result in heavy traffic and/or parking
- May result in possible attendee conflict or protests
- Display or use of very valuable items
- Involve a celebrity presence
- May cause serious injury or property damage
- Include use of tools/power tools, equipment, fire/open flame/fireworks/pyrotechnics or building materials that could be hazardous or cause significant injury (if approved)
- Overnight activities (if approved)
- Dance parties/ Pool parties (if approved)
- Events with alcohol (if approved)
- Unlocking/Locking of doors at late night events
To contact Public Safety please email email@example.com.
Fraternity and Sorority Rituals
To ensure Public Safety complies with the "No Walk Thru" request during rituals it is the responsibility of the organization representative to call Public Safety at (386) 822-7300 at the start of the event, every hour during the event, and finally at the conclusion of the event.
There are several items that may be requested from Facilities Management on campus. Some may have an associated charge, while others may be free for student users. The items are reserved on a first-come, first-serve basis. If the Stetson University equipment is not available, the items will be obtained from local vendors who may have a higher rental rate.
Here is a break-down of services offered by Facilities and associated costs (updated spring 2013):
|Round 5' Tables||50||$5 each|
|Banquet 8' Tables||50||$5 each|
|Small Banquet 6' Tables||10||$4 each|
|Plastic Folding Chairs||600||$0.50 each|
|Pipe and Drape||$10 per 10-foot section|
|30' High Top Tables||10||$5 each|
|Gym Floor Cover (half court)||n/a||$50.00|
|Gym Floor Cover (full court)||n/a||$100.00|
|Edmunds Stage||Contact for estimate|
|Hollis Stage||Contact for estimate|
|Trash Can||n/a||No charge|
|Recycling Bins||n/a||No charge|
Labor charges will apply for setup and breakdown occurring after hours or on weekends. Additional charges may also apply for unusually large events requiring additional help.
For items that do not have a set cost, contact Amy Ammon at firstname.lastname@example.org for pricing details.
Stetson University allows outside food to be on campus, but there are few exceptions. The university also offers a wide variety of catering options. Contact Rebecca Williams at email@example.com or 386-822-8783 for requests and pricing information. The following locations do not allow any food:
- Lynn Business Center
- Elizabeth Hall
- duPont-Ball Library
While the following locations only allow Stetson University catering:
- Carlton Union Building
Also, if you would like to plan an event in the Commons, Hat Rack or Coffee Shop please contact Don Stanwick at firstname.lastname@example.org. His approval is required in order to host an event in these locations. Events outside of business hours will require the presence of a hired Public Safety officer during the event. Registered student organizations and their members are also responsible for clean-up.
We ask that if the preparation of food is taking place at the event, you make sure that the area remains clean throughout the preparation and any and all food particles are removed after preparation is complete. After serving the food, make sure that all trash has been cleaned up, including food that may have fallen on the floor. If you have hired catering to serve your event, help them clean up the remaining food, and they will take care of the linens and any serving trays that were left out.
Please see the Food Policy in Section XIV for more information.
Do you think your event has significant intellectual or cultural value which will further the educational goals of a department on campus? If so, you may want to request that your event qualify for cultural credit. A faculty sponsor is required to support the request, and not all cultural credit requests will be approved. There are two ways to apply for cultural credit:
- Print a copy of the Request Event to Qualify for Cultural Credit form.
- Complete the form.
- Have a faculty sponsor sign the form before submitting it for approval.
- Bring the form to the College of Arts and Sciences' dean's office, located in Elizabeth Hall.
- If your request is approved, the dean's office will add it to the Stetson University Calendar of Events.
- You will be responsible for obtaining an ID scanner. To do so you must contact the dean's office of the College of Arts and Sciences (ext. 7515, Elizabeth Hall room 108, email@example.com) during regular office hours (Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.) on the day of the event; for weekend events, please obtain the scanner number on the Friday before the event. The scanner will then be checked out from the duPoint-Ball Library at the Circulation Desk. Faculty, staff or designated students may pick up the scanners.
- You are responsible for returning the scanner to the library the same day as the event during the library's hours of operation. For weekend events, scanners must be returned by 9 a.m. the following Monday. If a student fails to return a scanner, a hold will be placed on their account for the replacement cost ($250).
- Fill out the Request for Cultural Credit Event form on HatterSync.
- The electronic form does not have a space for a faculty sponsor's signature. However, the form will be sent to them to verify via an electronic signature. Make sure that you have contacted them and received approval before submitting the form.
- See steps five through seven above.
Note: In order to show a film on campus, an organization must either show only a 30-second clip, buy the rights to the movie (which is very expensive) or qualify for cultural credit. This is mandated by federal copyright laws. In order for such an event to qualify for cultural credit, it must have an analytical discussion hosted by a faculty or staff member following the showing of the film.
Thinking about posting flyers, banners, or announcements around campus? Make sure you read and follow Stetson University's advertising policy ahead of time to understand what and where advertisements can go around campus. All advertisements that do not prescribe to these minimum requirements will be removed.
- General Statement
- All advertisements are to contain:
- The name of the registered student organization that is hosting the event
- Contact person or group information for the advertised event
- Advertisements may not contain any of the following:
- References to Alcohol
- References to Drugs
- Racial or Discriminatory Language
- Graphics or Language of a Derogatory Sexual Nature
- All advertisements are to contain:
- Paper Flyers
- Individual flyers posted in and around the Carlton Union Building need to have prior approval as well as comply with the Steton University Posting Policy. All copies of the flyers intended to be posted in and around the CUB must be submitted to the Hub in the CUB. If the flyers are approved, all copies wil be stamped. Once the flyers have been approved, it is up to the organization to post the stamped flyers in the six designated areas around the CUB. Flyers are allowed to be posted for a maximum of two weeks. Flyers or announcements, other than banners, are limited to a maximum dimension of (20"x25") and must be removed within (24) hours after the two weeks has ended. If the organization does not remove their advertisements, Hub in the CUB will remove them. Advertisments that have not been approved by Hub in the CUB prior to being posted will be removed. Distributions of flyers or announcements through the Stetson University Post Office are to be used for academic or departmental uses in accordance with the Student Government Association standards.
- No items can be posted outside of the designated billboards (no columns or on the walls) or in/on trees. Please see below for approved posing locations.
- Flyer Posting Locations
- Flyers or announcements may be posted at any time on the catalog boards in any of the following buildings:
- Carlton Union Building (six locations)
- Hollis Center
- Flagler Hall stairwells
- Elizabeth Hall
- Sage Hall
- Sampson Hall
- Presser Hall
- Davis Hall
- No flyer or announcement may be attached to any following, including but not limited to:
- Walls (interior or exterior)
- Street signs
- Flyers or announcements may be posted at any time on the catalog boards in any of the following buildings:
- Additional Posting Locations
- Additional areas on the DeLand campus may require special permission or have extra requirements before a flyer may be posted. Please refer to these locations below, and if you have any questions, feel free to contact the Office of Student Development and Campus Vibrancy.
- Residential Life Halls and Apartments
- Electronic flyers are preferred. Please email your flyer to Residential Living and Learning (firstname.lastname@example.org); the flyer will then be sent out through the building list-serves for everyone to see.
- Lynn Business Center
- All postings of information must get approval by the Dean's Office in LBC. After approval, flyers or announcements can only be placed on the large catalog boards in the halls that are not being utilized by departments within the School of Business Administration.
- Flyers or announcements cannot be displayed on the catalog boards outside of classrooms or faculty offices.
- Flyers or announcements cannot be secured with staples on catalog boards. Please use tacks to secure any information.
- Flyers or announcements cannot be taped to walls, elevators or the railings in the School of Business Administration.
- Flyers, table toppers, or stickers on cups should be approved by Don Stanwick at email@example.com.
- All flyers or announcements should be left with Karen Blekicki at firstname.lastname@example.org. Flyers or announcements for political advertisements, including for individuals running in campus elections, are not permitted unless an organization is sponsoring a program that will include cultural credit.
- For a full description of the library's posting policy, please refer to the library's Policies page.
- Allen Hall
- All posters are required to go through Lisa Guenther at email@example.com. She will also place them on boards in the building, including the one by the front door on the inside. To post in the auditorium, organizations are required to contact the Cooperative Collegiate Fellowship.
- Digital Billboards
- Student organizations, faculty, and staff may post advertisements digitally on the three televisions located in the Coffee Shop and Commons. The university urges its community to focus on environmental responsibility and would like offer an alternative option to posting paper flyers around campus. Forms need to be submitted at least three business days for the advertisement to appear on the digital billboards, and there is a maximum posting period of one week. You may reserve your space on the digital billboards by filling out the CUB Digital Billboard form on HatterSync.
- Please send us your ad the following format:
- PowerPoint (PPTX) file in 16:9 (width:height) format
- Your ad should be sent to us in Microsoft PowerPoint 2007 or higher (PPTX) format.
- Your ad should be sized at 16:9. To size your ad, click the Design tab on the ribbon, then click Page Setup. Set the width to 16 and the height to 9.
- Fonts should be no smaller than 30 pt.
- Use only one of the following fonts: Arial, Calibri or Times New Roman.
- For readability, avoid cursive or script-type fonts.
- Do not use copyrighted images without attribution.
- Make sure images that are used are not stretched or warped.
- Your slides should look clean and organized.
- Digital Billboard also accepts Video!
- Videos should be sent in one of the following file formats: MPG, MPEG or FLV.
- YouTube video format is best
- Video must be 60 seconds or less
- Video can have sound, but we cannot guarantee it will be heard.
- Music will work well, but people speaking may be difficult to hear.
- PowerPoint (PPTX) file in 16:9 (width:height) format
- Banners, Sidewalk Chalk and CUB Porch Tabling
- Banner, sidewalk chalk, and CUB porch tabling space may be reserved through the Hub in the CUB on the second floor of the Carlton Union Building or through the Banner Space, Sidewalk Chalk and CUB Porch Tabling Reservations form on HatterSync.
- Reservations must be made two weeks in advance.
- There are many available locations on campus, which can be found on the reservation form; however, space is available on a "first-come, first-served" basis. All of these advertising methods have a (1) week period; special permission may be obtained through the Office of Student Development and Campus Vibrancy for periods longer than one week. If you have any questions or concerns, please contact the Office of Student Development and Campus Vibrancy.
- There is a limited space of eight tables at the CUB, eight banner spaces in the CUB arches and one in the Quad.
- Check-in at the Hub in the Cub for banners and tables.
- Table reservations are from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
- Each organization/department is responsible for raising and removing their banner on time as well as checking out your table from the Hub in the CUB and returning it.
- Under no circumstances may any type of adhesive be used to make sidewalk chalk adhere to the sidewalks. This includes, but is not limited to hairspray, glue, etc. No chalking in vertical surfaces is allowed.
- Post your event on the Stetson University Calendar of Events or place an announcement.
- Advertise in the Reporter - Contact the Reporter staff at firstname.lastname@example.org to either purchase an advertisement or enter a featured article into the paper.
- Items with small wooden stakes can under special circumstances be approved by the Office of Student Development and Campus Vibrancy and Facilities Management. Requests should be made through the Office of Student Development and Campus Vibrancy at email@example.com. Items placed in the ground are limited to a 48-hour window. Items placed in trees are limited to a (1) week reservation.
- For inclusive purposes, please add the following statement to you marketing materials: "Please email (insert your organization email here) or call (insert your phone number here) if you anticipate any barriers to your access, participation, transportation to, or inclusion in this event."
Stetson University's social media policies are designed to provide information about the use of social media in an official capacity by departments, offices, programs, organizations and the individuals representing them. These policies apply to all Stetson University faculty, staff and students who engage in social media for Stetson University-related purposes and are formulated to help account holders develop an effective social media presence.
Social media is defined as forms of electronic communication through which users create online communities to share information, ideas and personal messages. Social media uses web-based and mobile technology and allows users to transform their communications into interactive experiences.
Examples includes, but are not limited to, networks and sites such as: Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, Flickr, Tumblr and other online media accessible to both internal and external audiences. The different social media sites/tools are known as platforms. For example, Twitter is a microblogging platform, Facebook is a social networking platform, and YouTube is a video sharing platform.
- A dean, vice president, director, department head or other appropriate supervisor must approve, in writing to Stetson University Web Services, the creation of any social media account for a department, program or initiative, and must designate the person(s) authorized to create, use and oversee the account. Student organizations must have approval, in writing, from the organization's managing campus department to Web Services.
- The person who will manage the day-to-day communications on the site must update the site on a regular basis and be available to monitor and respond to inquiries from the site. The person should be familiar with the social media site being used, or they should be willing to educate themselves by establishing an individual account and actively using it.
- When possible, a non-personal Stetson University email address is preferred and should be used to create a Stetson University social media site, so that account oversight can easily be transferred should the initial site creator no longer be able to maintain the site for any reason.
- All accounts must have co-administrators, or a primary administrator and a back-up administrator in case of emergency. The account's authorized administrators must maintain the security of account passwords and identification. These individuals are responsible for the use of the accounts and actions that take place using the account. A student should not be named as the primary administrator unless the account is at the student level, i.e., if it is for a student organization. In cases where no backup administrator is available, Stetson University Web Services can fill that role.
- Web Services maintains a master list of university social media sites, their administrators and administrators' contact information. Anyone creating a new social media account should provide Web Services or a Web Services granted designee with information about the account, including contact information for the individual(s) authorized to create, operate, monitor and edit accounts.
- Web Services should have administrative access to all official university administrative-office social media sites. Primary posting responsibilities remain with the original department, and Web Services will not change/edit/remove posts except in case of a flagrant violation of official posting guidelines or in an emergency situation.
- All Stetson University-related social media must conform to university brand standards.
- Whenever possible, Stetson University, StetsonU, or SU should be listed prior to the name of the college/school, department, organization or program. Refrain from using just "Stetson University" or "Stetson," as users may assume the site speaks for the entire university or the hat company.
- An example of a university site name is "StetsonU Web Services." University accounts should not carry the name of the person overseeing the account.
- Material published on any university social media outlet may be subject to policies outlined in Stetson University policies and documents, including, but not limited to, the Stetson University Web Policy, student handbooks and any other applicable policy or document of the university. In general, anything that would be deemed a violation of policies in a face-to-face or telephone communication would likely be considered a violation of policies if it took place within social media.
- In the event of an emergency situation on campus, all Stetson University social media sites must defer to the university's authorized emergency communication social media channels (StetsonU Facebook and StetsonU Twitter), and should refer site followers and questioners to those official pages instead of attempting to provide information about the situation.
- Users should always follow the law and be aware that HIPAA (Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act, which protects personal health information), FERPA (Family Education Rights and Privacy Act, which protects the rights of students), NCAA (National Collegiate Athletic Association, regarding student athletics) and other confidentiality rules all apply in social media. Users who violate laws may be subject to disciplinary actions according to regular Stetson University disciplinary processes.
- Sites should be maintained and updated regularly. Stetson University Web Services will notify the administrators of an inactive site after a period of six months of inactivity. If a site remains inactive for more than nine months, Stetson University Web Services will initiate action to disable the site, unless a specific exemption is granted by Web Services.
- Content should further the Stetson University's mission.
- Content should be posted with the understanding that it may be redistributed through the Internet and other media channels and may be viewed by the general public. If deleted or modified, older versions may continue to exist online. Share only information that is appropriate for the public.
- Information contained within a personal email, regardless of the sender, may not be intended for public consumption and should be reviewed before posting within social media.
- Do not post content that is racist, sexist, abusive, profane, violent, obscene, or spam; contains falsehoods; is off-topic or repetitive; or that libels, incites, threatens or makes ad hominem attacks on Stetson University students, employees, guests and/or other individuals. Do not post anything that shows (or may be perceived to show) someone getting hurt, attacked or humiliated; that might be considered demeaning to a particular group of individuals; that depicts activity that is (or may be perceived to be) illegal, such as drug use; or that could otherwise show Stetson University in a negative light.
- Because of Stetson University's nonprofit status, the support or endorsement of individual candidates or parties in political campaigns is prohibited, as is the endorsement of commercial products or services.
- Site administrators should not post under their own name on accounts they oversee. For example, Jane Doe, administrator for StetsonU on Facebook, should not appear as a commenter herself on the page, but instead should appear as StetsonU. This both maintains the privacy of individuals who are speaking as the university, and preserves and maintains the consistency of the university's brand voice. Exceptions to this rule include emergencies, and uses by public figures such as university president Dr. Wendy B. Libby, deans, recruiters and athletics coaches. In the case of public figures, professional social media accounts should be maintained separately from personal social media accounts.
- On sites that allow the use of disclaimers, users must include posting guidelines such as those on the Stetson University Facebook page. Additionally, Stetson University has established a User Content Disclaimer (see below) that may aid users in setting ground rules for interactions on official Stetson University social media sites. The statement establishes standards by which site administrators may encourage community participation while preserving the right to remove content that violates the provider's terms of service, applicable laws and Stetson University policies. This disclaimer is available for use for all university social media sites.
- See Stetson University's Social Media Guidelines and the Communications' social media website for additional information and tips on when and how to use various social media platforms.
The following statement may be used to support Stetson University's official institutional social media pages, and is available for use by any official representative on university-related social media sites:
Stetson University welcomes contributions from the community on its official social media pages. User-generated content on Stetson University social media pages does not necessarily reflect the views or opinions of Stetson University and such content is not screened or approved by Stetson University before it is posted.
Stetson University reserves the right - but assumes no obligation - to remove any content that is deemed inappropriate by the standards set by each third-party provider, as well as content that is unlawful, racist, sexist, abusive, profane, violent, obscene, or spam; contains falsehoods; is off- topic or repetitive; or that libels, incites, threatens or makes ad hominem attacks on Stetson University students, employees, guests, or other individuals. Stetson University also does not permit messages promoting commercial, political or other ventures or efforts. Visitors must respect the intellectual property rights of other individuals and organizations. Removal of any content by Stetson University can be without warning or notification. Content is not monitored or moderated on a continual basis, but may be removed for the reasons stated here at any time. Anyone wishing to report inappropriate content may email firstname.lastname@example.org for review.
Stetson University appreciates the contributions of all members of its online community and encourages open discussion and the exchange of ideas in a way that adds value to all users.
The purpose of the Food and Sale Policy is to ensure that all food being offered to Stetson University students, faculty or staff, as well as, the public meet all State and University requirements with regard to the preparation, handling, and distribution process.
Any student organization hosting an event for Stetson University students, staff or faculty, as well as, the general public that will offer food or beverages for consumption, whether prepared on-campus or off- campus, must adhere to the guidelines set forth in the Food and Sale Policy.
This policy meets the guidelines set forth by the FDA Food Code.
If a violation of the Food and Sale Policy occurs, a meeting with the Associate Director of Student Involvement, along with other appropriate Stetson University personnel and Students will be convened to discuss the violation and if necessary impose suitable consequences for the student organization found to be in violation.
The following definitions are excerpts from the Florida FDA Food Code:
- "Equipment" means an article that is used in the operation of a food establishment such as a freezer, grinder, hood, ice maker, meat block, mixer, oven, reach-in refrigerator, scale, sink, slicer, stove, table, temperature measuring device for ambient air, vending machine, ware washing machine.
- "Food" means a raw, cooked, or processed edible substance, ice, beverage, or ingredient used or intended for use or for sale in whole or in part for human consumption, or chewing gum.
- "Food-contact surface" means a surface or equipment or a utensil with which food normally comes into contact.
- "Hazard" means a biological, chemical, or physical property that may cause an unacceptable consumer health risk.
- "Potentially hazardous foods" means a food that is natural or synthetic and that requires temperature control because it is in a form capable of supporting:
- The rapid and progressive growth of infectious or toxigenic microorganisms
- The growth and toxin production of Clostridium botulinum; or
- In raw egg shells, the growth of Salmonella Enteritidis
- "Single-Use Articles" means utensils and bulk food containers designed and constructed to be used once and discarded.
- "Utensil" means a food-contact implement or container used in the storage, preparation, transportation, dispensing, sale, or service of food that is multiuse, single-service, or single-use, used in contact with food.
- "Warewashing" means the cleaning and sanitizing of utensils and food-contact surfaces of equipment.
- Hand Washing & Health Safety:
- All person(s) participating in the preparation of "Food" MUST wash their hands for a period of at least 20 seconds using hot, soapy water prior to handling food.
- (When to wash hands: Including but not limited to, after using the restroom, after handling money, between changing food preparation jobs, after eating, drinking, coughing, sneezing, use of tobacco products, and between handling raw foods and ready to eat foods.)
- Person(s) who have the following symptoms are NOT allowed to prepare or serve food:
- Sore Throat with fever
- Persistent Sneezing or Coughing
- Runny Nose
- Lesions containing pus which are located on the hands, wrists, arms or an exposed body part.
- Gloves & Hair Restraints:
- Any person(s) preparing or serving "Food" is required to wear gloves (latex or vinyl). Gloves are for single use only and MUST be discarded when preparer or server handles different food types.
- Any person(s) preparing or serving "Food" must wear an approved cap or hair net while in the presence of food.
- Cross Contamination:
- "Utensils" used to prepare "Food" should not be used for tasting purposes.
- DO NOT taste food with the preparation utensil. "Food" tasting should only be done with a single-use utensil. The utensil is to be discarded after tasting.
- Every food dish that is served is to have its own serving utensil (spoons, forks, tongs, ladles, etc…) that is to be used only for that specific food item.
- When serving beverages, specific people should only pour the drinks from their containers and into the cups. If ice is used for the drinks then an ice scoop, either metal or plastic, must be used to transfer the ice from its bin into the cups.
- "Utensils" used to prepare "Food" should not be used for tasting purposes.
- Food Preparation & Service Area:
- Surfaces that "Food" comes in contact with should be free of:
- Open seams
- Any other imperfection
- Food Preparation Surfaces are to be cleaned and disinfected before they are used. This is to be done by scrubbing the surfaces an Anti-bacterial Soap before the placement of Food on the preparation surface.
- If serving food outdoors, all food is to be place in/on approved containers (chafing dishes, serving bowls, trays, etc) and must be covered until it is time to be served. Serving containers must be covered anytime there is not a person removing food from the container.
- If using a chafing dish that mandates the use of Sterno®, one to two inches of water must be kept in the bottom of the tray. Water levels need to be checked once every hour to ensure that a fire hazard is not created.
- If serving food that must be chilled, approved containers for Ice Baths must be used. The core temperature of the food needs to be checked every hour to ensure that it has not risen above the approved maximum temperature for "Cold Food". The melting ice water must not come in contact with the food that is being chilled in the container
- Surfaces that "Food" comes in contact with should be free of:
- Keeping & Storing Food:
- All "Hot Food" is to be cooked to a MINIMUM of 165 degrees Fahrenheit and kept at a MINIMUM temperature of 140 degrees Fahrenheit.
- All "Cold Food" is to be kept at a MAXIMUM temperature of 40 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Food that could be potentially hazardous (i.e. Meat, Cheese, and Dairy Products) should be handled appropriately to avoid food related illnesses.
- Food that is not consumed by the event participants should be discarded after the conclusion of the event.
- All potential hazardous food MUST be kept chilled at a temperature of 40 degrees Fahrenheit or below until it is time to cook the "Food".
- Allergen warnings MUST be put on all "Food" containing or that have come in contact with the following:
- Tree nuts (walnuts, pecans, etc.)
- Allergen warnings MUST be put on all "Food" containing or that have come in contact with the following:
Information obtained for this policy was gathered through researching various food policies at other Higher Education Institutions as well as, referencing the State of Florida's Food Safety requirement available in the FDA Food Code.
(Student Activity Fee Allocation Committee)
S.A.F.A.C. is designed to appropriately allocate funding to registered student organizations; therefore, an organization must be in good standing with the Office of Student Development and Campus Vibrancy to receive S.A.F.A.C. funding. As always, funding is on a first-come, first-serve basis assuming all S.A.F.A.C. requirements have been met. Keep in mind that you may not receive all of the funding that you request. All funding requests are reviewed by the Student Government Association, and any further questions may be answered by emailing email@example.com.
Please visit the S.A.F.A.C. website for additional information about the process and when to apply.
Stetson University is a private, independent liberal arts university whose mission is to provide a distinctive education in a creative community where students can develop the qualities of mind and heart that will prepare them to reach their full potential as informed citizens of local communities and the world.
In our undergraduate programs as well as in our professional and graduate degree programs, we encourage the development of informed convictions, independent judgment, and lifelong commitments to learning that are characteristic features of the enlightened citizen. As made clear by the university's first president, John Forbes, this kind of education focuses on the goal of developing in each student "the habit of independent judgment" and the skills of "investigating statements and principles for oneself, and thus for oneself discover their truth or falsity." To provide practice in this kind of decision-making, the university is committed to engaging the ideas of its time, both ideas widely accepted and ideas that are controversial, in all aspects of life.
Stetson University today includes persons from diverse religious, ethnic, cultural, economic, and intellectual backgrounds. In seeking a robust, inclusive community, we have joined together to affirm collectively:
- The centrality of knowledge, examined ideas, and independent judgment in the life of an educated person;
- The inherent dignity, worth, and equality of all persons;
- The importance of community in human life;
- The role of religious and spiritual quests for meaning in human experience;
- The value of diverse persons and differing ideas in an educational community;
- The responsibility we share to work toward social justice;
- The necessity for decisions to be guided by ethics and social responsibility; and
- The obligation of individuals and communities to act as responsible stewards of the natural environment.
These university values and commitments guide our development of a robust educational program for our students and the broader public. As it pursues this mission, the university is regulated in part by Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code, which prohibits the university from participating in or intervening in any political campaign of a candidate for public office.
The Internal Revenue Service has stated that whether an organization is participating or intervening, directly or indirectly, in a political campaign on behalf of or in opposition to any candidate for public office depends on the totality of facts and circumstances of each case.
Following IRS guidance on "Election Year Activities and the Prohibition on Political Campaign Intervention for Section 501(c)(3) Organizations," the guidelines of The American Council on Education (ACE), and after examining policies at other private colleges and universities, Stetson University has developed these guidelines and policies to support its academic program and to foster a campus culture that will be open to a lively exchange of diverse opinion according to accepted standards for civil discussion. While encouraging passionate citizenship in its students, faculty, and staff individually, the university follows these policies to assure that its educational mission will be fulfilled in a neutral and non-partisan manner in regards to political candidacies or election-year campaigns.
Use of university facilities for political candidates or campaigns is subject to university policies. Because tax and political compliance laws impose restrictions, and even prohibitions, on certain political activities at nonprofit tax-exempt institutions, any activities approved for Stetson University's facilities must comply with these legal requirements.
Further, given the university's academic mission and its focus on providing students with opportunities for vigorous discussion of all ideas, it is understood that these events will be respectful of the university commitment to civil debate, will be open to the entire campus, and will offer a reasonable opportunity for questions from the audience, especially students.
- Requests from Faculty to Host Political Events
- If coordinated by a faculty member and approved by the faculty member's Dean, political candidates may be invited in their capacity as candidates to speak at the university's facilities for an educational purpose. The sponsoring faculty member is responsible for insuring that equivalent (i.e., similar times, similar event type, etc…) opportunities to speak at the university are extended to all legally qualified candidates running for a particular public office. If a candidate declines, the faculty member should retain documentation that the invitation was issued and declined. In communications concerning the candidate's attendance, and when the candidate is introduced to speak and finishes speaking, the faculty member or a designee approved by the Dean will explicitly state that Stetson University does not support or oppose the candidate.
- From time to time, a faculty member may also request to use campus facilities to hold a public forum on issues of educational interest. Such forums, if approved by the Dean, must be educational in nature and not expressly advocate the election or defeat of any clearly identified candidate(s) or candidate(s) of a clearly identified party. Outside groups that are invited or allowed to participate must not engage in electioneering or fundraising activities. The responsible faculty member must take steps to ensure that hosting the forum does not reasonably imply that Stetson University or any of its constituent Colleges or Schools has an institutional position on the issue or is associated with the campaign of any specific political candidate.
- Requests by Student Organizations to Host Political Events
- To request hosting a political candidate, a student organization must be formally registered with the university and must have a faculty or approved staff adviser. If sponsored by a registered student organization, political candidates may be invited in their capacity as candidates to speak at university facilities for an educational purpose.
- Appearances on the DeLand or Celebration campuses must first be approved by the Vice President of Campus Life, who will consult with the faculty or staff adviser and the Director of Facilities for DeLand or Associate Vice President for Celebration. The Vice President of Campus Life will be responsible for ensuring that equivalent opportunities to speak are extended to all legally qualified candidates running for a particular public office, and may require that the student organization seeking to host a candidate fulfills this requirement as a condition of hosting the candidate. Appearances by candidates must be organized to support the university's educational purpose. A speech followed by questions or a question and answer session are appropriate formats for an academic setting. Rallies for individual candidates must be approved and set up as outside rentals due to the additional costs and staffing requirements.
- In communications concerning a candidate's appearance on campus, and when the candidate is introduced to speak and finishes speaking, an approved representative of the university or an officer or advisor of the registered student organization will explicitly state that the university does not support or oppose the candidate.
- Request for Rental of Campus Facilities by Outside Political Groups or Campaigns
- Rentals of university space for speeches, rallies, or fund-raisers are subject to the same rules, regulations, policies, procedures, and fees associated with any other contractual rental. No non-standard discounts or privileges may be granted to political campaigns or candidates who rent Stetson University space.
- Approval of rentals will be determined by the Vice President for Business and Chief Financial Officer for the DeLand and Celebration campuses in accordance with the following conditions:
- No political test or affiliation may be required, and all parties and views will be given equal access to rent space;
- Candidates themselves must be present at the event; the university will not rent to events featuring surrogates, and
- Appropriate preparation time must be provided, given requirements of the university's on-going academic mission.
- If approved, these basic guidelines must be followed:
- If facilities are made available to one candidate or political party, the same must be made available to all others on equal terms and conditions, which include any limitations on availability of particular facilities, due to the scheduling of other events, at the time a candidate or party makes a request.
- Announcements and advertisements of the appearance must bear the name of the sponsoring organization and must clearly indicate that Stetson University does not support or oppose candidates for public office and the opinions expressed at the appearance are not those of the university.
- Admission must be open to all members of the Stetson University community. Admission may not be restricted in any way on the basis of the political affiliation or views of attendees.
- Candidate appearances on campus will be limited to the designated speaking/meeting site. Door-to-door campaigning is not permitted, except as explicitly approved by the Vice President for Campus Life for access to registered voters living in campus housing.
- The university may permit the presence of news media personnel during the appearance, but only if media access is permitted in a politically neutral manner. Media coverage and management must be coordinated with the university's director of news and media relations. An appropriate fee for this staff time will be charged to the renting organization.
- If additional assistance is needed or required from university staff in Public Safety, Facilities or Information Technology, or other offices beyond what is normally encompassed in the base rental fee, an appropriate fee for this staffing will be charged.
Stetson University may, at its discretion, provide forums for candidate debates at its facilities. Debates must attempt to include all legally qualified candidates for nomination of a particular party for primary election debates, and all legally qualified candidates for the office for general election debates. If inviting one or more of the candidates is impracticable or does not further an educational goal, an exception can be approved by the College or School Dean. Any exceptions requested will be submitted through the Provost's Office for consideration, review, and recommendation. Requested exceptions should be accompanied with a recommendation for reasonable, objective criteria for determining which candidates to invite. For a general election debate, nomination by a particular political party cannot be used as the sole objective criterion for participation.
On occasion, only one candidate in a contested election accepts a debate invitation or a candidate cancels a debate appearance after agreeing to participate. This can leave the debate with only one participant (often referred to as an "empty chair" debate). If only one candidate accepts an initial invitation or when a candidate fails to appear at the event or backs out shortly before the debate, the debate should be canceled. Any debate on campus should include at least two candidates and must not promote or advance one candidate over another. Any request to proceed with an "empty chair" debate must be approved by the College or School Dean after consultation with the Provost.
When the university hosts a debate, or allows a third party (such as the League of Women Voters) to host, topics will cover a broad range of issues and will be conducted in a neutral, non-partisan manner. Questions presented to the candidates, whether prepared by Stetson University faculty, staff and students or by an independent, non-partisan panel, will provide each candidate with an equivalent opportunity to present his or her view on the issues discussed. A moderator will be selected or approved by the university, and the moderator's role will be limited to ensuring that the debate ground rules are followed. The moderator will refrain from commenting on the candidates' statements in a way that demonstrates approval or disapproval of the candidates' ideas. The moderator also will begin and end with a clear statement that the views presented are those of the candidates and not of Stetson University.
Candidates for political office may appear or speak at Stetson University events in a clear non-candidate capacity. A candidate may choose to attend an event that is open to the public. Stetson University will maintain a nonpartisan atmosphere on the premises and at the event where the candidate is present. The university will clearly indicate the capacity in which the candidate is appearing and will not mention the individual's political candidacy or the upcoming election in the communications (if any) announcing the candidate's attendance at the event. The university will also let the candidate know about these restrictions.
To meet its goal of providing a vigorous, thoughtful exchange of ideas and its mission of preparing students as thoughtful citizens, Stetson University welcomes visits to campus from elected officials as well as persons representing perspectives on political issues of contemporary urgency. The university's pledge to meet standards of neutrality in political campaigns, a requirement under its 501(c)3 status, does not mean that the university will not seek to enliven its academic program with speakers and events that will help students to engage with the issues they face as citizens.
When an event that is political in nature has been approved, the following can serve as a template for the required disclaimer:
This event is sponsored by ___________________________. The use of university facilities for this event does not constitute an endorsement by Stetson University. Stetson University does not endorse these candidates or organizations or any other candidates or organizations in connection with this or any other political campaign or election.
Promotional materials for authorized events are subject to review and approval by Stetson University Marketing.
Approved candidate appearances on campus may be announced in internal communication (announcements, email, etc.). Such communication must include the sponsoring organization and must state clearly that the university does not endorse any political candidates.
Further, no materials may state or imply that the university, any of its colleges or schools, or any institutional official or office endorses a political candidate or political organization or any position of a political candidate or political organization. Subject to this restriction, Stetson University may otherwise publicize the event in any manner it deems appropriate, given its academic mission, and may arrange for coverage by media organizations. The emphasis in all planning for media coverage will be on students and their opportunity to learn and on the university's mission to serve the wider public.
Endorsement or views on a political candidate are not allowed in any Stetson University official publications or any website.
Funds or contributions for political candidates or campaigns may not under any circumstances be solicited in the name of Stetson University, on any of the university's campuses, at a university-sponsored event, or through use of university resources, such as email or mailing lists.
Stetson University will not register student organizations that have as a goal the support of a particular candidate.
IRS guidance for 501(c)(3) entities allows voter education programs, voter registration initiatives, and get- out-the-vote drives as long as they are conducted in a non-partisan manner so as not to favor or oppose one or more candidates.
While 501(c)(3) organizations may take positions on public policy issues, including issues that divide candidates in elections for public office, they must avoid any issue advocacy that "functions as a political campaign intervention" (IRS guidelines). Only the university's president can approve an organizational position on a public policy behalf of the university.
Stetson University encourages active participation of individual faculty, staff, and students in their responsibilities as citizens and voters.
Individuals taking political positions for themselves or groups with which they are associated, but not as representatives of the university or any of its colleges or schools, should clearly indicate, by words and actions, that their positions are not those of the institution and are not being taken in an official capacity on behalf of the institution.
Employees may not participate in campaign activities during their scheduled working hours. Further, they may not use any university letterhead, support services, or other supplies in connection with campaign activities. Any employee who participates in a political campaign is responsible for notifying the campaign that such participation is in his or her individual capacity. The employee should seek, to the extent possible within the law, to minimize any references to his or her position with Stetson University.
Occasional use of private meeting space by faculty whose academic interests include involvement with political groups is permitted so long as the regular university procedures for the rental and use of facilities are followed and so long as such activities are not related in any way, directly or indirectly, to support of or opposition to any and all candidates for elective federal, state, or local public office. No other university resources may be used to conduct the meetings, and any meeting announcements or invitations must make clear that the university does not support or oppose the group's efforts.
Employees working in federally aided programs may in addition be subject to the federal Hatch Political Activities Act. Those persons should consult with the Risk Management Administrator regarding their associated obligations.
University students, faculty, and staff are free to express their individual and collective political views provided they understand and make clear that they are not speaking for or in the name of the Stetson University or any of its colleges, schools, departments, or offices. Material containing the name, insignia or proprietary logos or marks of Stetson University may not be used to support a particular candidate.
Door-to-door campaigning is strictly prohibited in campus housing. Campaign access to common areas of campus housing must be approved in advance by the Vice President of Campus Life.
The law in this area can evolve over time. Questions about whether planned student activities are consistent with the university's obligations should be directed to the Vice President for Campus Life. All other questions on whether planned activities are consistent with the obligations should be addressed directly to the Risk Management Administrator.
Cross References: Use of College of Law Facilities by Outside Groups and Individuals, Conflict of Interest, IRS Revenue Ruling 2007-41, Political Campaign-Related Activities of and at Colleges and Universities, published by the American Council on Education (ACE), Hamline University Political Candidate/Campaign Policy.
Administrative policy adopted by the College of Law on September 28, 2009 and revised and adopted by the DeLand and Celebration campuses on November 15, 2010.