- All Student Organizations and University Departments must submit their reservation(s) via the 25Live website. https://25live.collegenet.com/georgiasouthern/
- All Non-University Groups must submit their reservation online through the Union website under the Off-Campus Reservations tab.
- All reservation requests should be made at least seventy-two (72) hours in advance, unless a special set-up is required.
- Last Minute Policy: Student organizations and University departments are permitted to make last minute reservation requests for space in the Russell Union or Williams Center if the requested space is not already reserved. Last minute reservation request is defined as a room reservation request made by a representative or processed by the Russell Union office on the same day as the actual reservation or after 3:00 p.m. for the following day. Non-university affiliated organizations are not eligible to make last minute reservation requests. For further information regarding this policy please view the Facility Operations Manual.
- Organizations will be responsible for adhering to all policies regarding security, conduct, and damages as per the Facility Use Manual. A copy is available at the online at Facility Operations Manual (Russell Union & Williams Center)
- Attendance at events will be limited to the posted room capacity.
- The sponsoring organization will be held liable for damages to the facility and its equipment.
- The sponsoring organization will be responsible for all costs associated with security. Security is billed though GSU UPD for events. The number of security personnel required will be determined by the type of event and the expected number of participants. This will be determined by the Assistant Director of Facilities and UPD.
- All Student Organization events must have advisor approval (48 hours in advance) via 25Live prior to the event in order for the Reservations Office to further process their event.
- Space assignments are confirmed on a first come first serve basis within the established priority scheduling deadlines. The Facilities and Event Services Coordinator attempts to honor customer preferences but reserves the right to make judgments regarding the most appropriate space for an event.
- If event is approved, confirmations are sent via email to the event contact after request is processed. If the event is not approved, the event contact will be emailed with reasons and more information.
- No event should be announced until the Russell Union Facilities and Event Services Office has provided written confirmation. For events requiring a special set up, the event contact must meet with the Facilities and Event Services Coordinator no less than two weeks prior to the event, earlier if possible. Reservations are subject to cancellation if this meeting does not occur. The event contact must contact the Facilities and Event Services Office office to schedule this meeting.
- Fundraising Forms should be submitted to the Office of Student Activities and approved one week prior to the event date.
- Clubs and organizations with reservations who do not plan to use a meeting room should cancel their reservation at least seventy-two (72) hours in advance of their meeting. Failure to cancel a room reservation may jeopardize future use of the Russell Union for the remainder of the semester as well as incur a cancellation fee.
- The Russell Union reserves the right to make any necessary changes in room locations as needed for the efficient operations of the facility. All efforts will be made to give sufficient notice of change.
- All organizations are required to return the room to its original condition before departing. The space should be free and clear of all trash and debris. If the Event Services staff removes decorations and/or provides additional cleaning, a minimum charge of $25 will be assessed.
- Any decorations should be approved, in advance, by the Facilities and Event Services Office staff. No tape, staples,tacks, nails, pins or hooks may be used to secure materials to walls, windows, ceilings, columns, doors, doorframes, staging, curtains or draperies or other surfaces. No glitter or confetti may be used in any facilities. Open-flame candles are not allowed, unless it is approved for use through the submission of an open flame request.
- All solicitation activities, whether commercial, non-commercial, student fund raising or philanthropic, not protected by the First Amendment, should be cleared through the regular University process for such activities.
- Property belonging to the building such as photographs, furniture, works of art, plants or any other equipment may not be taken or moved from one part of the building to the other.
- The authorized use of Russell Union Student Center facilities is subject to University regulations and Federal, State and local laws.
- Failure to comply with the Russell Union Student Center policies may result in the cancellations of future reservations.
- Malicious or unwarranted damages or destruction of University property is strictly prohibited. Such damage will result in a mandatory fee assessment.
Russell Union Advertising Policy
- Bulletin Boards The bulletin boards in the Russell Union Student Center are intended for use by registered & active student organizations and University departments to promote events and activities. They are not to be used for commercial advertising. Flyers to be placed on these boards must be turned into the Russell Union Information Desk for approval. Information Desk Assistants are responsible for placing them on the bulletin boards. Flyers must include ‘Georgia Southern University’ or the logo, the sponsoring organization’s name, event date, and time. Flyers will remain up for two weeks unless your event date occurs before the two week deadline. In this event, your flyer will come down at the end of your event’s date. If you wish for your flyer to remain posted for longer than two weeks, it must be re-approved at the end of the two week period. Any flyer on a bulletin board which does not have the approval stamp will be removed.
- Banners Registered and active student organizations or University departments are eligible to hang banners on the upstairs balcony in the Russell Union Student Center. Off-Campus commercial solicitation is not allowed. Banners need to be made of paper, cloth, or plastic and be no more than 3 feet in length and 5 feet wide. Banners must be neat and attractive in appearance. Banners should be free of glitter, as glitter is not allowed in the Russell Union Student Center. Banners must promote events and activities that are open to the Georgia Southern University community and should have information about programs, name of the sponsoring organization or department and have the date and time of the event. Personal messages, commercial advertising, or regular meeting announcements are not allowed. Banners must be turned into the Russell Union Information Desk for approval. Information Desk Assistants are responsible for hanging the banners. Banners hung that have not been approved will be removed. Banners will be removed at closing on the event date and must be picked up from the Information Desk within 48 hours. Any banners not picked up within 48 hours will be disposed of.
- Table Tents: Table tents are allowed for University related events only. They will be allowed on a first come first serve basis. All table tents must be approved by Russell Union Management. Please see the Reservations office if you have any questions.
Distribution of Materials
Free expression is encouraged on the Georgia Southern University campus. Handbills, leaflets, and similar materials available free of charge may be distributed by regularly enrolled students, by members of recognized student organizations, and by University personnel in campus areas designated so long as such distribution does not interfere with or operate to the detriment of the conduct of University affairs or the free flow of traffic.
Note: Interference with the free flow of traffic includes the distribution of handbills, leaflets, and similar materials to any vehicles parked on university property.
Students, faculty, and staff are free to express their views, individually or in organized groups, orally, by sign or exhibit, on any topic, in all parts of the campus. Persons not affiliated with the university are free to express their views orally, by sign or exhibit, on any topic in the Free Speech Area, which must be reserved. These expressions are subject only to rules necessary to preserve equal rights of others and the functions of the University Teaching, research, and other official functions of the University shall have priority in allocating the use of space on campus.
ALL advertising materials must bear the identification of the publishing agency and the name of the sponsoring organization or individual. They should also include informational details of the event such as name, date, time and location. To maintain orderly scheduling of facilities, off-campus organizations and non-students are subject to the limitations noted above and are required to register with the Russell Union Facilities & Event Services before distributing handbills, leaflets, or similar materials distributed by individuals.
The use of a residence hall as a distribution center for any materials is prohibited since the purpose of the residence hall is educational and the residents of a particular hall constitute, in effect, a captive audience.
- Campus Speakers
Georgia Southern University subscribes to the philosophy that an important aspect of the education of the University’s students is the opportunity to listen to speakers representing a wide variety of opinions and beliefs on important public issues. The following policies govern the campus appearances of speakers. These policies are designed to support the educational function of the University, guarantee protection of First Amendment rights to freedom of speech, and ensure that students and student sponsored organizations and speakers are given priority in scheduling and use of the university campus. A speaker’s appearance on campus does not imply an endorsement of his/her views by the University or its students, faculty, or staff.
- Sponsored Speakers
Any recognized student organization may invite speakers to campus. A student organization planning to invite a guest to speak at a regularly scheduled meeting must register with the Reservations Office inside the Russell Union Student Center. Request forms must be submitted no later than forty-eight (48) hours prior to the date and time of the reservation.
- Non-Sponsored Speakers
It is the policy of Georgia Southern to permit the limited use of facilities by the general community in a manner which does not compete with the ongoing programs of the University. Speakers who are not sponsored by a campus organization may request permission to engage in speech activities on campus. Request forms are available in the Reservations Office located inside the Russell Union Student Center. Request forms must be submitted no later than forty-eight (48) hours prior to the date and time of the reservation in order to provide University staff sufficient time to process the request, enter the reservation in the reservations database and notify Public Safety of the anticipated presence of a non-University-affiliated speaker(s) on campus. A request will be approved unless it is determined that the speaker or speech will constitute or create a substantial likelihood of material interference with the normal orderly decisions and processes of the University or with the requirements of appropriate discipline. In the event such a determination is made and a request is denied, the applicant may request a hearing as described below.The University shall assign all non-campus, non-sponsored speakers to the University’s designated Free Speech Zone during the scheduled operating hours of the Russell Union building. Subject to the days and times of operation, the University shall assign speakers for the date and time requested, unless another reservation has already been made for the Free Speech Zone at that date and time. In the event that the space is already reserved, the University will assign the speaker to the Free Speech Zone for an alternate date and/or time of the applicant’s choice. In order to facilitate ease of scheduling and access to facilities for University-affiliated events, reservations for non-sponsored speakers will not be made earlier than fourteen (14) business days in advance of the requested reservation date(s). In addition, no group or individual may reserve the space for more than three (3) consecutive days at a time. If, at the end of a three-day reservation, the space has not been reserved by another group or individual, the same group or individual will be eligible to reserve the space again. Under no conditions will a non-campus, non-sponsored speaker be permitted to sell items or solicit funds on campus. Members of the same group or organization dealing with the same general topic will be considered one speaker for purposes of this Speaker Policy.
- General Policies
A hearing may be called if it is determined that a speaker or speech will constitute or create a substantial likelihood of material interference with the normal orderly decisions and processes of the University or with the requirements of appropriate discipline. A hearing committee composed of two faculty members appointed by the President, two students appointed by Student Government, and the Vice President of Student Affairs will convene to review the speaker’s application. If a request is denied, the organization or the speaker may appeal to the President of the University, whose decision will be final. A hearing will be called if a speaker or speech advocates a call to action for any of the following:
- The overthrow of any government;
- The willful damage or destruction of property;
- The disruption of the University’s regularly scheduled functions;
- The physical harm, coercion, or intimidation of the University’s faculty, staff or students;
- Other campus disorder of a violent nature.
A speaker will be stopped and escorted off campus by the University Police, if evidence of a call to action to accomplish any of the above becomes manifest during a speech.
Failure to comply with any of these specified procedures will result in immediate removal from campus.
Assembly and Demonstrations
Georgia Southern University reaffirms its commitment to the freedoms of speech, expression, and assembly by establishing this policy. Individuals have the right to assemble, to speak, and to attempt to attract the attention of others, and corresponding rights to hear the speech of others when they choose to listen, and to ignore the speech of others when they choose not to listen.
The rules articulated in this policy apply to all students, faculty, staff, and their registered organizations, as well as all other persons and groups. Due to practical administrative realities, this policy does not apply to University agents and employees when they are acting in the course and scope of their agency or employment.
Students, faculty, and staff are free to express their views, individually or in organized groups, orally, by sign or exhibit, on any topic, in all parts of the campus. Persons not affiliated with the university are free to express their views orally, by sign or exhibit, on any topic in the Free Speech Area. (These expressions are subject only to rules necessary to preserve equal rights of others and the functions of the University Teaching, research, and other official functions of the University shall have priority in allocating the use of space on campus.)
These rules shall govern the conduct of all assemblies and demonstrations on University property or at University sponsored events.
1. Assemblies and demonstrations must be conducted in compliance with these rules and other applicable University policy and must not:
result in a breach of peace or violation of law
negatively impact the security, health, and safety of persons and/or property on campus
interfere with the free and unimpeded flow of pedestrian and vehicular traffic on campus or the entry or exit into University buildings
materially disrupt or interfere with the normal activities of the University
damage or destroy University property
2. No person conducting or participating in an assembly or demonstration on University property or at University sponsored events may advocate the deliberate violation of the law. For the purposes of this section, “advocacy” means preparing the group addressed for imminent action and seeing it to such action, as opposed to the abstract espousal of the moral propriety of a course of action.
3. Students, faculty, staff, and their registered student organizations may assemble and/or demonstrate anywhere on university grounds between the hours of 6:00 a.m. and 11:00 p.m., Monday through Sunday as long as the assembly and/or demonstration adheres to the provisions of Item 1 and a properly submitted Free Speech Area Request Form has been approved.
4. All other persons and groups may assemble and demonstrate in the Free Speech Area within the hours of operation of the Russell Union, as long as the assembly and/or demonstration adheres to the provisions of Item 1 and a properly submitted Free Speech Area Request Form has been approved.
Requests to reserve campus grounds for an assembly and/or demonstration must be made at least forty-eight (48) hours in advance of the activity. This advance notice allows the University the opportunity to avoid the problem of simultaneous and/or competing assemblies or demonstrations and to arrange for adequate security. The online Free Speech Area request form requires the applicant to provide a contact name, address, and phone number.
Facility Operations Manual
Last updated: 9/16/2015