Planning Guide

Step by Step Planning Guide for Student Events

(Faculty and staff should check with the Office of Event and Conference Services)

STEP 1: Consider Your Budget

Do you know how much to estimate for each aspect of your event?

If you are unsure, meet with staff at the Student Activities Office in the Stephen Robert '62 Campus Center for help estimating the costs for your event.
You may also find this Event Budget Worksheet helpful in planning your event.

STEP 2: Choose Your Date(s) Carefully
Do your dates conflict with a major University event such as Family Weekend or Commencement, for example?
Have you checked the Academic Calendar?
Check our list of annual University events, the University Events Calendar, and the Academic Calendar.

STEP 3: Reserve Your Campus Space
Check space availability to see if the date you have chosen for your event is possible. Reserve classrooms, meeting rooms and green spaces using the University Scheduling Office’s online request form.

If you are usure what space will meet your needs, review the Scheduling Office’s online space directory  or contact the Scheduling Office for advice and suggestions.
*Keep accessibility issues in mind. Please utilize the SEAS Events Logo found on that page.

STEP 4: Outfit Your Meeting Space
Tables, chairs, custodial cleaning and other equipment for your meeting/event space(s) are ordered through our Facilities Management Event Support.   The advisors in the Student Activities Office will be happy to provide advice to support you in the event planning efforts.

The deadline for submitting a finalized event support request is 10 days prior to your event.  Please provide additional time to work with Event Support staff in creating a quote that works for your event.

To initiate the process, please complete the Event Equipment Form and email it to Staff from SAO will work with you to update and finalize your estimate. (If you have any trouble downloading the spreadsheet, you may access the link from this page.)

Once your estimate is ready to be submitted as a finalized request, please have a financial signatory for your group visit the Student Activities Office to approve the expense.  Our student group financial staff will be able to finalize and process the event support request.  

STEP 5: Register your Event
If you are expecting more than 100 people and/or planning to serve alcohol, your event must be registered with the Student Activities Office.
Fill out an Event Registration Form and meet with the SAO as soon as possible. The Event Registration Form is now online in BearSyncNavigate to your group, click on Events and then Create an Event. 

A new event registration form must be submitted for every event including annual events. Events from previous years are kept on record in BearSync for the SAO.  

*NOTE: If you are bringing a controversial or VIP person to campus, you will need to fill out a Dignitary Notification Form.

STEP 6: Review your Event Management Plan
There are different requirements from the Student Activities Office for each type of event.
Review the Student Event Management Plan template that pertains to the type of event you are planning. Editable templates are available on our Event Planning page.
Fill in the relevant information and submit this with your event registration.

STEP 7: Arrange Your Audio-Visual Needs (Must be ordered 10 Business Days before your event!)
Request an LCD projector, a microphone or other audio-visual needs using the Media Technology Services online media request form.
Remember that even if media equipment exists in a room, it does not mean that it will be available and unlocked for your event.
If you are planning to use equipment that is already installed in a classroom, have a PowerPoint presentation or video to show or have a speaker that will require a microphone you will need to place an order with Media Technology Services.

STEP 8: Order Food & Beverage (Must be ordered 10 Business Days before your event!)
Order food and beverage with Brown Catering by calling them at 401-863-7812.
Please remember that food or beverage served in any campus space must be provided by either Brown Catering or an approved Brown vendor. For more information, please see the Brown First policy website.

STEP 9: Advertise Your Event – 

Student Groups have 100% responsibly for advertising or marketing their events.  If you are partnering with outside organizations, please be clear that outside groups must receive expressed written permission from Brown to advertise events on Brown's campus.  Please work with your SAO advisor for assistance with this process.

Free Ways to Advertise:

Register your event with the University Event Calendar (Note: posting on the Event Calendar is required in order to take advantage of the Promotional Screens or Morning Mail).

Take advantage of LCD Promotional Screens across campus.

Advertise in the Brown Morning Mail (some restrictions apply).

Become a part of Featured Events at Brown (Distributed every Monday to subscribers, including local and regional editors and reporters, Featured

Events is a great way to publicize your on-campus happenings. See link for subscription information and submission guidelines).

Post Your Event on BearSync by clicking Create an Event under the Events tab on your groups page.

STEP 10: Still Need Assistance? 

Contact the Student Activities Office who can help connect you with the right folks on campus to answer your questions.