100 Use of Campus Property and Facilities Scheduling
Approved by Board of Trustees
Effective Date: June 12, 2018
Responsible Division: President
Responsible Office: Office of the University Counsel
Responsible Officer: University Counsel
This policy provides a uniform basis upon which Middle Tennessee State University (MTSU or University) can regulate and facilitate the use of campus property and/or facilities. This policy is intended to operate consistent with MTSU’s purpose and mission, through the implementation of reasonable content and viewpoint neutral regulations. This policy shall be implemented and construed so as to ensure no undue disruption of that mission; preserve and promote the fundamental right to free speech of MTSU students; promote an educational atmosphere on campus; prevent commercial exploitation of students; preserve residential tranquility; and prevent use of campus property and/or facilities contrary to federal, state, or local law or the rules and policies of MTSU.
In establishing this policy, MTSU recognizes the importance to the educational process and environment for persons affiliated with MTSU, including officially recognized student organizations and other groups, to have reasonable access to and use of MTSU’s educational facilities to hear various views. Simultaneously, MTSU also makes clear that its campus property and facilities are not open public forums, but are instead intended solely for use consistent with the advancement and orderly administration of its educational mission for the benefit of its students, staff, and affiliated entities. As such, MTSU does not ordinarily make its buildings or other facilities available to outside individuals or outside groups. Exceptions may be made only if the proposed use is consistent with this policy and MTSU’s mission.
This policy applies to proposed uses of property and/or facilities owned by and/or leased to MTSU for non-official reasons. The application procedures required by this policy do not apply to:
A. Spontaneous use of outdoor campus spaces by students and student organizations for speech or distribution of literature, subject to the limitations set forth in Section IV.B.2.c. and IX.A. below.
B. Use of perimeter sidewalks adjoining public streets. A map depicting the perimeter sidewalks adjoining public streets is provided on the Event Coordination Forms website. These facilities may be used for lawful activities by all persons and/or entities provided that the flow of vehicular or pedestrian traffic is not impeded.
C. Use of property and/or facilities by MTSU for official institutional, administrative, and/or normal educational purposes, including University academic activities, official University events and other official MTSU functions (such as meetings, academic needs, conferences, events).
D. Property that is not owned by or leased to MTSU.
E. Events that are mandated by MTSU pursuant to contract.
For the purposes of this policy, potential users and uses of University property fall into the following general categories, which are defined as follows:
A. Affiliated Entities. An officially registered student, student group, or student organization.
B. Affiliated Individuals. Persons officially connected with MTSU including students, faculty, and staff.
C. Non-affiliated Entities. Any person, group, or organization that is not an “Affiliated Entity” or “Affiliated Individual.”
D. Non-affiliated Individual. Any person who is not an “Affiliated Individual.”
E. Non-University/External Events. Programs and activities organized by any "Non-affiliated Entity or Individual".
F. Student. A person who is currently registered for a credit course, non-credit course, or program at MTSU, including any such person during any period which follows the end of an academic period which the student has completed until the last day for registration for the next succeeding regular academic period.
G. University Academic Activities. Activities directly related to the instructional mission of MTSU. Examples include MTSU academic credit bearing classes and course related events resulting from academic course work.
H. University Sponsored Events. Activities directly related to the life of the campus community beyond the classroom. Examples include athletics, recreation, student programming activities, and academic camps/conferences/workshops. There are two (2) sub-categories of such events.
1. Official University Events. Programs that are scheduled or sponsored by faculty, staff, administrative offices, and departments that are planned primarily for members of the MTSU community. Affiliated entities, affiliated individuals, guests, non-affiliated entities, non-affiliated individuals, and students may attend these programs.
2. Student Events. Programs, activities, and services that are scheduled or sponsored by student clubs or organizations that are officially recognized by MTSU and planned primarily for members of the campus community. It is recognized that affiliated entities, affiliated individuals, guests, non-affiliated entities, non-affiliated individuals, and students may attend these programs.
I. University Related Events. Match the same criteria as a University sponsored event, but also include a charge for registration and/or admission.
J. University Co-sponsored Events. Academic programs, conferences, and/or meetings involving two (2) entities: a MTSU school, academic department, administrative unit, or student organization and an outside organization such as a professional association in which MTSU holds membership or maintains a relationship that directly benefits the MTSU community.
IV. Access to Campus
In carrying out its mission, MTSU desires to ensure that space is readily available for University activities and functions as well as the functions and activities of its affiliated entities and individuals. In certain, more limited circumstances, MTSU also desires to allow non-affiliated entities and individuals to use certain portions of its property and/or facilities.
A. Identification of property/facilities available for use. A listing of all available MTSU properties and/or facilities, including a designation of entities and/or individuals eligible to request use of those properties and/or facilities, is provided on the Event Coordination Forms website. This list also includes the type of events that are suitable for the property (i.e., concerts, athletic events, theatrical presentations, etc.) and any conditions required to obtain permission to use the properties and/or facilities. Any property/facility not specifically identified as available for use on the Event Coordination Forms website is specifically unavailable for use other than for normal administrative or educational purposes.
After consultation with the appropriate responsible office, the MTSU Event Coordination Department is authorized to make changes to this listing.
B. Use of MTSU property and facilities. The use of MTSU property and facilities is limited by the type and location of the property and the status of the proposed user. Access is generally reserved for University and affiliated individuals/entities. The campus, facilities, and property of MTSU are restricted to use by MTSU, MTSU administration for official functions, affiliated individuals/entities, and invited or sponsored guests of MTSU, except as specifically provided by this policy or when part or all of MTSU campus, buildings, or facilities are open to the general public for a designated time and purpose.
1. Use of property by MTSU for MTSU functions. The application procedures required by this policy do not apply to use of properties and/or facilities by MTSU for official institutional, administrative, and/or normal educational purposes, including University academic activities, official University events, and other official MTSU functions (such as meetings, academic needs, conferences, events). Depending on the type of event, the cost procedures set forth in Section VII. may apply. When assigning space, MTSU functions shall take precedence and have priority over all other proposed uses. Although individuals or entities seeking to use space under this paragraph are not required to follow the formal application procedures set forth in this policy, the University entity responsible for scheduling of any particular space may implement certain scheduling procedures to ensure that the space is effectively reserved.
2. Use of property by Affiliated Individuals/Entities:
a. Indoor space. Available indoor space may be reserved by affiliated individuals and entities pursuant to the procedures set forth herein. Reservations of space by affiliated entities/individuals shall have priority over all uses by non-affiliated entities/individuals.
b. Regular membership meetings. Affiliated entities/individuals may submit an application to use MTSU property and/or facilities for its regular membership meetings only if the meetings are limited to members of the organization. Affiliated entities/individuals also may request authorization for the repeated use of the particular campus facility or space to conduct such meetings subject to the provisions of Section IV.B.2.e. below.
c. Outdoor space. Except as set forth below, affiliated entities/individuals may gather and use the generally accessible, open, outdoor areas of campus as traditional public forums for free speech and distribution of literature. (Note: outdoor areas designated as "unrestricted" on the Event Coordination Forms website are generally accessible or open for spontaneous student use). Such use of space is on a space available basis and no application is required pursuant to this policy. Even if not required, affiliated entities/individuals who wish to reserve space may do so pursuant to the procedures set forth herein. Affiliated entities/individuals that choose to reserve space pursuant to this policy shall have priority over all uses by non-affiliated entities/individuals.
(1) Any use of generally accessible, open, outdoor areas of campus by an affiliated entity/individual without an approved application may be terminated if:
• The space has been reserved for use by another group;
• The affiliated entity/individual violates any of the applicable General Conditions for Use of Property, as set forth in Section VI. below;
• The use causes a material and substantial disruption to the learning environment;
• The use impedes pedestrian or vehicular traffic; or
• The event involves twenty-five (25) or more participants, including participants and audience.
(2) Affiliated entities/individuals are required to submit an application pursuant to this policy for the following uses of outdoor space:
• Large Events. Any use of outdoor space that will involve twenty-five (25) or more participants, including expected participants and audience;
• An event where food will be served, provided, or distributed by the user;
• An event that will involve the use of particular equipment (e.g., tables, stages, etc.) or utilities (e.g., water, electricity, etc.); or
• Events involving amplified sound.
d. Activities involving non-members. Access to or use of campus property or facilities by affiliated entities and individuals for an event other than a regular meeting of its membership that will either include an invited non-affiliated guest speaker and/or be open to persons outside group membership will be considered a use by a sponsored non-affiliated entity as set forth below.
e. Repeated or Intermittent Events. Affiliated entities/individuals may request permission for the repeated or intermittent use of a particular campus facility or space to conduct regular meetings using campus property and/or facilities without requiring repeated application and approval for each occurrence of the event only if the meetings are limited to members of the organization. Approval for repeated or intermittent use of any property or facility pursuant to this policy may not exceed one (1) semester in length and may only be renewed or repeated after review to determine that such use does not conflict with a University need, or another request for access/use of the facility/space by another eligible person/entity. For purposes of this paragraph, the Summer term shall count as one (1) semester beginning on the first day of the May Summer term and ending on the last day of the June/July Summer term.
A listing of all property and/or facilities that are eligible for repeated or intermittent use is provided on the Event Coordination Forms website.
3. Use of property by Sponsored Non-affiliated Entities/Individuals. Affiliated entities/individuals may, subject to the provisions below, sponsor non-affiliated entities/individuals to use MTSU property or facilities. Uses by sponsored non-affiliated entities shall take priority over uses by non-sponsored, non-affiliated entities.
a. Sponsor’s Responsibilities. In the event that a non-affiliated entity or individual is permitted use of MTSU property and/or facilities, in conjunction with a University-affiliated group, the sponsoring individual/group will be held responsible for ensuring that: (1) the non-affiliated entity/individual complies with the terms of this policy, other MTSU policies, and all local, state, and federal laws; (2) any and all costs or fees associated with the event are paid; and (3) in all advertising or reporting of the event or meeting, the name and/or mark of MTSU is used only to indicate location and in no way implies sponsorship or endorsement of the activity or the individual's/group's objectives or candidacy. In addition, the sponsor is responsible for all communication including reservation and event arrangements with the venue scheduling staff and must be present at and actively participate in the event.
b. Enforcement. Any violation of the above could result in the canceling of any scheduled use and the right of the individual/group to schedule future use. In such cases, the manager of each facility will be responsible for enforcing all facilities use policies, ensuring that an appropriate investigation takes place into any alleged violations, determining if a violation has occurred, and making a recommendation to the appropriate University official, as designated below:
(1) Vice President for Student Affairs for events sponsored by students and/or student organizations;
(2) Provost for events sponsored by faculty;
(3) Assistant Vice President for Human Resource Services for events sponsored by classified employees; or
(4) Appropriate Division Head for events sponsored by administrative employees.
c. Activities of Affiliated Entity/Individual that Involve Non-members. Access to or use of campus property and/or facilities by affiliated entities/individuals for an event other than a regular meeting of its membership that will either include an invited guest speaker and/or be open to persons outside group membership must be made through the procedures set forth in this policy and subject to the following provisions:
(1) A separate application must be submitted for each event under this paragraph (i.e., no recurring events);
(2) The sponsoring individual or entity will be responsible for the conduct of both the non-affiliated speaker and non-affiliated guests at the event as well as compliance with all laws, MTSU policies, and rules; and
(3) The application for such access or use of campus property and/or facilities must clearly set forth the identities of both the affiliated entity/individual that is sponsoring/filing the application as well as the non-affiliated entity being sponsored.
4. Use of Property by Non-affiliated Entities/Individuals. MTSU has opened the property and/or facilities designated on the Event Coordination Forms website for application for use or access by a non-affiliated entity/Individual without sponsorship from an affiliated entity/individual. As indicated on the Event Coordination Forms website, the Student Union Commons is available during regular business hours for use by a non-sponsored, non-affiliated entity without payment of a rental or lease fee. To facilitate adequate availability for other affiliated and non-affiliated users (including spontaneous student use required by T.C.A. § 49-7-2401 et seq.), non-sponsored/non-affiliated users can reserve the Student Union Commons for no more than four (4) hours in any calendar week without payment of a rental or lease fee and reservations for such uses by non-sponsored/non-affiliated users will not be confirmed until 14 calendar days prior to the event.
All other facilities designated as available for non-sponsored, non-affiliated entities on the Event Coordination Forms website are available to such entities only by rental or lease. Use by non-sponsored, non-affiliated entities shall have the lowest priority. Non-sponsored/non-affiliated users and entities can rent facilities up to four (4) times per semester.
C. Facilities designated as restricted. Certain properties and/or facilities on MTSU’s campus may be made available for use under this policy on a restricted basis when certain restrictions are necessary to protect the health, safety, and welfare of the campus community and property. For instance, a science lab may be made available for an event by an MTSU science department, but due to the nature of the lab and its contents, may be inappropriate for use by an entity or individual without the necessary scientific training.
D. Applicability of Rules and Regulations. All persons on the campus of MTSU shall be subject to all rules and regulations of MTSU that are applicable to the conduct of students on campus and to all applicable federal and state laws and regulations. In addition, all persons who operate motor vehicles shall be subject to MTSU rules, regulations, policies, and procedures on traffic and parking, which can be located on MTSU Parking Services website and Policy 775 Traffic, Parking, and Safety Enforcement. MTSU shall have the right to terminate the use of campus property and/or facilities by any group, organization, or individual, that violates any provision of MTSU policy, local, state, or federal law or regulation.
E. Access pursuant to T.C.A. § 8-50-1001. Access to and use of facilities consistent with the requirements of T.C.A. § 8-50-1001 are permitted. Meetings or gatherings conducted pursuant to this section are subject to the application procedure set forth in this policy for the sole purpose of ensuring that administrative, educational, and/or workplace functions are not interrupted.
F. Identification. All persons on the campus of MTSU shall provide adequate identification to appropriate officials and security personnel of MTSU upon request. Personnel and students of MTSU who refuse to provide such identification may be subject to disciplinary action. Other persons who refuse to provide such identification shall be requested to leave the campus, and if they refuse, may be subject to lawful removal and prosecution.
V. Application and Permitting Process
Application for access to/use of MTSU properties and/or facilities where required shall be through the application process set forth below:
A. Where to Make Request. Individuals and/or entities seeking to access/use MTSU property and/or facilities shall complete an application. Applications may be obtained from, and all completed applications shall be submitted to:
MTSU Event Coordination Department
1403 East Main Street (Parking Services Building)
Murfreesboro, TN 37132
The Event Coordination Department will route the application to the appropriate responsible office for the requested venue. A list of the responsible offices for all available MTSU properties and/or facilities is provided on the Event Coordination Forms website.
In the event that a request to use space is made to the responsible office instead of Event Coordination, the responsible office shall immediately inform Event Coordination of the request. The responsible office may proceed to process the request per the terms of this policy.
B. Timeframe for Scheduling Requests. Generally, all applications for use of space must be submitted in writing at least five (5) working days in advance of the proposed use. Notwithstanding the above, applications for the following uses of space must be submitted at least twenty (20) working days prior to the proposed use.
1. MTSU-funded speakers. To allow necessary time for approvals of space and funding, as well as to have checks prepared for payment of the speaker, all applications for events involving an outside speaker that involve the payment of a total fee and/or expenses to the speaker in excess of five hundred dollars ($500.00) from MTSU funds.
2. Large Events in Restricted Areas. Applicants requesting use of a space designated as restricted on the Event Coordination Forms website, to hold an event for more than two hundred fifty (250) attendees.
If the applicant also wishes to obtain ancillary services from the University (e.g., equipment, tables, food services, etc.), use amplified sound, or serve alcohol, appropriate requests should be included with the application. Any deadlines set forth in policies relating to the above must also be met.
A blank application form may be obtained from the Event Coordination Department.
A responsible office may establish a scheduling calendar prohibiting reservations for a particular facility or group of facilities until a certain date. (For example, a responsible office may decline to accept reservations more than ninety  days in advance of the event). Occasional special events of significant positive impact to the University may require consideration of an exception to the normal scheduling calendar. If a specific event of special importance to the University (e.g., keynote speaker, conference host proposal, etc.), requires approval in advance of the standard calendar for accepting normal reservations, the event sponsor must seek preliminary approval from their own Vice President/Provost. If preliminary approval is granted by their own Vice President/Provost, then the approving Vice President/Provost will bring the request forward to the entire Vice President/Provost group for final approval, assuming space is available.
C. Disposition of Application. Within seventy-two (72) hours after receiving any request for use of MTSU property and/or facilities, the responsible office shall notify the applicant that the application has been either:
2. Disapproved, and the reasons for the disapproval; or
3. Conditionally approved provided that the applicant fulfills specified conditions. Once the conditions have been fulfilled, a notice of final approval will be provided.
Notices of approval/disapproval will be made available at the responsible office and/or Event Coordination. It shall be the responsibility of the applicant to obtain notice of the approval/disapproval of any application submitted pursuant to this policy. As a courtesy, however, once a decision to approve/disapprove an application has been made, the responsible office will attempt to notify the applicant of the decision through the means indicated on the application.
A notice of approval shall state the time and location in which the activity is allowed. A notice of disapproval of the proposed use shall also state the grounds for disapproval.
D. Written agreement required. In all cases where an application for access to or use of MTSU properties and/or facilities is approved, such use will be subject to the execution of an appropriate written agreement regarding the conditions applicable to the approved access/use, which shall include, but not be limited to, the terms and conditions set forth in this policy.
E. Considerations. Any denial of a request to access/use MTSU properties and/or facilities shall be based solely on factors related to reasonable regulations in light of MTSU’s mission and the nature of the property and/or facilities requested. Decisions to approve/disapprove any application shall be rendered in a content/viewpoint neutral manner. The responsible office shall consider and may deny an application based on the following criteria:
1. The application was untimely;
2. The property and/or facilities have been previously reserved by another group, organization, or individual with equal or higher priority;
3. The proposed use is in excess of the frequency of use limitations set forth herein;
4. The applicant or sponsor of the activity has not provided accurate or complete information required on the application for registration;
5. The applicant or sponsor of the activity has been found responsible for violation of MTSU policy during a previously registered use of campus property and/or facilities;
6. The applicant has previously violated any conditions or assurances specified in a previous registration application;
7. The property and/or facility requested has not been designated as available for use for the time/date;
8. The anticipated size or attendance for the event will exceed building/fire codes, established safety standards, and/or the attendance or other limitations for the property and/or facilities requested;
9. The activity conflicts with existing contractual obligations of MTSU;
10. The activity presents a clear and present danger for physical harm, coercion, intimidation, or other invasion of lawful rights of MTSU’s officials, faculty members, or students; the damage, destruction, or seizure and subversion of MTSU’s buildings or other property; or for other campus disorder of a violent or destructive nature. In determining the existence of a clear and present danger, the responsible office shall consider all relevant factors;
11. A determination that the requested use would be contrary to local, state, or federal law, regulation, or the policies or regulations of MTSU.
F. Appeal of Denial of Application. If an applicant is dissatisfied with the decision of the responsible office to deny his/her/its request for use of space, the applicant may appeal that decision to the President of the University or designee.
1. The appeal shall be in writing and shall be submitted to the Office of the University Counsel within twenty-four (24) business hours after the issuance of the denial. If the written appeal is not received within twenty-four (24) business hours, the responsible office’s denial decision is final.
2. The appealing applicant must explain why they feel that the denial was inappropriate under the standards set forth in this policy. The President or designee shall determine whether the application for use of space should have been granted pursuant to the criteria set forth in this policy.
3. The applicant will be informed in writing of the outcome of the appeal within twenty-four (24) business hours after receipt. If additional time is needed to resolve the appeal, the President or designee, shall inform the applicant of the need for the extension. The decision by the President or designee will be MTSU’s final decision on the application.
VI. General Conditions for Use of Property or Facilities
The following conditions, which seek to preserve MTSU’s mission and take into account the nature of its facilities and/or property, shall govern activities conducted pursuant to approved applications for access to or use of campus property and/or facilities. These conditions shall be enforced uniformly to all uses of campus property and/or facilities in a content and viewpoint neutral manner. MTSU shall have the right to terminate the use of campus facilities and/or property by any group, organization, or individual that violates any provision of this policy, other MTSU policy, local, state, or federal law or regulation.
A. At the conclusion of any use of property and/or facilities (including personal property), the property and/or facilities must be returned or relinquished to the University in the same condition as when they were provided. Any user of University property and/or facilities that fails to do so will be responsible for all expenses incurred by the University to remedy the condition of the University property and/or facilities.
B. Events involving minors shall comply with Policy 101 Minors Participating in University-Sponsored Programs or Programs Using University Facilities.
C. Users of MTSU properties and/or facilities shall comply with the limitations as to the number of persons that may attend in accordance with appropriate building and fire codes and safety standards applicable to particular property and/or facilities at issue. These limitations are specified for each property on the Event Coordination Forms website.
D. Possession or use of the following items is prohibited:
1. Weapons (see MTSU Policy 705 Weapons on Campus), simulated weapons, or improvised weapons as determined by law enforcement officers in their professional judgment;
2. Open flames, torches, fireworks, explosive devices, incendiary devices;
3. Artificial noise making devices (unless consistent with the sound amplification policy);
4. Laser pointers; and
5. Masks with the intent to intimidate others from exercising civil rights (T.C.A. § 39-17-309).
E. Notwithstanding the prohibition stated in VI.D., users wishing to use such items for educational, artistic, or ceremonial purposes shall submit a written request to the responsible office at least 48 hours in advance of the proposed use. The requested items may not be used absent approval.
F. Users of MTSU properties and/or facilities shall comply with state and federal law and all MTSU regulations, policies, or rules for the conduct of assemblies, meetings, and demonstrations.
G. MTSU student events, as defined above, must comply with all guidelines set forth by Policy 560 Student Organization Registration and Recognition and Policy 540 Student Conduct.
H. Use of the requested property and/or facilities shall be limited to the declared purpose in the application for use of or access to campus property and/or facilities.
I. MTSU may deny the use of its property and/or facilities to any applicant who has an outstanding debt to MTSU.
J. Sound amplification equipment may be used only when prior approval has been requested and granted by the responsible office, taking into account MTSU’s mission and the nature of the property and/or facilities requested, location, time of day, etc. A copy of MTSU’s sound amplification guidelines can be obtained here.
K. Users of facilities and/or property and/or their sponsor(s) are responsible for all activities associated with the event.
L. Users of facilities and/or property and/or their sponsors are responsible for planning and implementing measures that provide accessibility for people with disabilities in the physical layout of the event and in the information shared by event coordinators and presenters.
M. Users of property and/or facilities and/or their sponsor(s) are responsible for all fees and costs assessed by MTSU for the event as set forth in Section VII. Fees and Costs.
N. All groups, organizations, and individuals, by applying for registration of an activity and by subsequent use after approval by MTSU, agree to indemnify MTSU and hold it harmless from any and all liabilities arising out of such use of the property and/or facilities of MTSU, including, but not limited to, personal injury, property damage, court costs, and attorney’s fees. In addition, in certain situations as set forth in Section VIII. Insurance and Bonds, certain users may be required to provide additional bonds and insurance.
O. All persons operating motor vehicles in conjunction with an approved use/access of campus property and/or facilities shall be subject to MTSU rules, regulations, policies, and procedures regarding traffic and parking. The MTSU rules, regulations, policies, and procedures can be obtained from the Parking Services website and Policy 775 Traffic, Parking, and Safety Enforcement.
P. The hours in which facilities are generally available are listed on the Event Coordination Forms website. These hours may vary during holidays, breaks and periods of University closure. In addition, notwithstanding the hours set forth on the Event Coordination Forms website, students, student organizations, and non-affiliated individuals/entities using the Student Union Commons, as set forth in Section IV.B.4. above, are not permitted to reserve space for use during University holidays, final exam weeks, and Connection Point dates.
Q. Starting with Fall semester opening weekend through the first two weeks of class, no events will be approved that conflict with Connection Point events. All events that occur during this period must be approved by the Assistant Vice President for Student Affairs or designee. Student organization events or meetings taking place on study days or during final examination periods will not be approved, unless they are academically related (i.e., study halls, presentations, recitals, etc.) and approved by the Assistant Vice President of Student Affairs or designee.
R. Except as provided in Section IX.G. Camping, access to, or use of, campus properties and/or facilities shall not be permitted overnight.
S. All persons on MTSU’s campus, in conjunction with an approved application for use/access, shall provide adequate identification upon request to appropriate officials and security personnel of MTSU. Persons or groups who refuse to provide such identification or who attempt to conceal their identity or falsify identification may be subject to immediate removal from campus, disciplinary action, or other appropriate measures. In appropriate circumstances, such persons may become subject to arrest and/or prosecution.
T. Fronting is prohibited. Fronting is defined as permitting a non-University individual or organization to use University facilities, property and/or services under the guise that the activity is a University sponsored or University co-sponsored event in order to avoid fees. Fronting is prohibited by University policy. Anyone wanting to schedule MTSU property and/or facilities must follow the instructions and guidelines (as outlined by the MTSU Event Coordination Department) to request usage, follow the solicitation and fundraising guidelines, and pay all fees as outlined by University policy.
U. All persons shall be subject to all MTSU, Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation, and Environmental Protection Agency rules and regulations related to environmental protection, including illicit spills covered by MTSU’s MS4 stormwater permit. Questions related to these rules and regulations can be directed to MTSU’s environmental engineer in Environmental Health and Safety Services.
VII. Fees and Costs
MTSU will assess certain fees or charges for specific costs and/or services provided to campus users (i.e., maintenance, janitorial, utilities, and/or security). These fees will be assessed as set forth below. All fees and costs shall be assessed to all similar uses on a content/viewpoint neutral basis.
In addition, for properties that are available for rent/lease, facility use fees will be established by the facility/venue manager, in association with the appropriate Department Chairperson, Dean, or Director. Facility use fees are based on the type of space, the length of usage, and the competitive market rates for comparable square footage.
Notwithstanding any fee obligations designated below, the evening and weekend charge at the Foundation House shall apply to all users.
All fees and rates shall be presented for approval to the MTSU Vice President Council and will be reviewed and adjusted annually prior to the start of the fiscal year.
A. Fee Definitions and Amounts. The following fees, defined below, may be assessed to users of MTSU property and/or facilities.
1. Support Services Fees. Any cost that is incurred as a direct result of the event occupying the facility. These fees include, but are not limited to, additional set-ups, security, custodial, food services, building attendant, technical attendant, and production services. The amounts of these fees (flat rates and/or hourly rates) are set forth on the Event Coordination Forms website.
2. Facility Use Fee. A room occupancy fee (i.e., rental or lease rate). The amount of these fees are set forth on the Event Coordination Forms website.
3. Administrative Fee. A fee for the University event coordinator’s time spent processing/facilitating each request.
B. Events subject to fee assessment. Not all events/activities occurring on/in MTSU property and/or facilities will be subject to a fee. Fees will be assessed in accordance with the following:
|Event Type/Fee Required||Support Services||Facility Use||Administrative|
|University Academic Activities||Yes||No||No|
|Official University Events||Yes||No||No|
A lease agreement will also be required for non-University/external events.
C. Additional Services. In addition, users who require additional services shall use services provided by MTSU or its affiliates, unless written permission is granted in advance. Absent such written permission, outside services are absolutely prohibited. These services include, but are not limited to: production services, custodial services, grounds services, University Police, and parking services. The user will be required to execute a separate agreement applying to this use and shall pay the fees and costs associated with such services. A schedule of fees for certain commonly-used services is provided on the Event Coordination Forms website.
D. Security. Event security shall be provided in a manner consistent with the security staffing requirements of the University Police Department provided that MTSU will not charge security fees based on the content of the speech or the anticipated reaction or opposition of listeners to the content of the speech.
E. Food Service. Food and catering shall be permitted for all event type definitions and is subject to the provisions of Policy 661 Purchasing of Meals and Refreshments for Both on and Off-Campus and Policy 662 Food Service Self Catered or Off-Campus Vendor.
F. Payment of Fees. Unless stated otherwise on the Event Coordination Forms website, the following shall apply to all fee payments under this policy:
1. University Sponsored, Related, and Co-sponsored Events. The MTSU department/organization sponsoring the event/activity will accept responsibility for all applicable fees. A security deposit to ensure fiscal responsibility will be required by the facility manager utilizing these general guidelines.
a. Estimated support services charges under fifty dollars ($50.00) are due at receipt of confirmation to hold reservation and are non-refundable.
b. Estimated support services charges under five hundred dollars ($500.00) require a non-refundable reservation deposit of fifty dollars ($50.00) due at receipt of confirmation to hold reservation.
c. Estimated support services charges more than five hundred dollars ($500.00) require a non-refundable reservation deposit of ten percent (10%) of charges due at receipt of confirmation to hold reservation.
2. Non-University/External Events. A non-refundable ten percent (10%) deposit is required at receipt of confirmation to hold the reservation. All user fees, estimated support services fees, and administrative fees must be paid prior to the beginning of the event.
VIII. Insurance and Bonds
Insurance may be waived for any non-University/external group using a campus property and/or facilities if the use is for a meeting such as a conference, dinner, presentation, speaker, etc., lasting no longer than one (1) day. MTSU reserves the right in its sole discretion to require insurance and/or a performance bond, if it determines there may be a concern for personal or public health or safety. Factors used to determine the requirement of insurance and/or a performance bond include, but are not limited to, the nature and use of particular facilities, the age of event participants, and the anticipated event size or attendance for any use of campus property and/or facilities. If insurance and/or a performance bond will be required, appropriate levels of coverage and minimum limits shall be enumerated pursuant to contract. Proof of compliance with this provision may be required in advance of an event. This provision shall be applied and enforced in a content/viewpoint neutral manner.
IX. Particular Uses
A. Distribution of Literature or Advertising Material.
1. Any literature that is distributed or sold and any advertisement shall comply with all applicable local, state, and federal laws and regulations, as well as the rules and policies of MTSU;
2. No obscene literature or material, as defined by law, shall be distributed on any property owned or used by MTSU;
3. Campus property and/or facilities may not be used for the conduct of commercial activities (including distribution of commercial advertising material) except when engaged in a business relationship, pursuant to a contract, with MTSU and/or when a rental or lease agreement is in place specifically for such temporary purpose;
4. No literature, advertising material, or other printed matter shall be distributed in the following locations:
a. Classrooms, library, or other academic building or facilities;
b. Administrative and employee offices and work areas;
c. Student residence halls, dormitories, or apartment buildings;
d. By placing it on vehicles parked on the MTSU campus; or
e. By affixing it to utility poles, trees, walls, buildings, sidewalks, streets, or other objects on campus.
This shall not restrict a faculty member from distributing within the classroom non-commercial material related to the particular course or subject matter.
5. Upon approval of an application to use MTSU property and/or facilities, MTSU will permit the sale or distribution of literature, non-commercial solicitations, or advertising in designated locations within the lobbies or other general use areas of the above-noted buildings or other campus facilities designated for placement of literature for distribution or sale.
6. MTSU shall have the right to terminate the distribution or sale of literature by any group, organization, or individual that violates the provisions of this policy.
7. Nothing in this section should be construed to limit the rights of access to state employees set forth in T.C.A. § 8-50-1001.
Unless otherwise provided, solicitation for the purpose of entering or consummating a commercial transaction on any property owned or used by MTSU is prohibited. Solicitation for other than a commercial purpose is prohibited unless expressly provided for by MTSU policy or approved by the President or designee.
1. General Requirements:
a. MTSU may require any group, organization, or individual to verify the use, application, or disposition of funds solicited on campus property.
b. Solicitations shall be permitted only in those areas designated for such activity by MTSU.
2. Permitted Activities. Subject to the application and approval process set forth above, the following solicitations are permitted on MTSU’s property and/or facilities.
a. Fundraising by Affiliated Individuals/Entities. Activities or events engaged in by affiliated entities/individuals or by registered student organizations for the purpose of raising funds to meet expenses of the group, organization, or individual are permitted, provided that funds raised by such activities or events shall be used for the benefit of the group, individual, or organization, and no funds shall be distributed to the officers, members, or any individual for personal profit or use. Fundraising by students and student organizations shall also be subject to Policy 540 Student Conduct and Policy 560 Student Organization Registration and Recognition.
b. Solicitation of Membership by Affiliated Individuals/Entities. Solicitation of dues and/or membership in an organization by affiliated groups or individuals or by registered student organizations. Solicitation by students and student organizations shall also be subject to Policy 561 Student Organization Operations, Section V.
c. Distribution of Literature by Non-affiliated Individual/Entity. Distributing literature by a non-affiliated group containing general information about their organization. Such distribution shall be in compliance with the provisions of Section IX.A. Distribution of Literature or Advertising Material.
d. Sales and Solicitation by Non-affiliated Individual/Entity. MTSU property and/or facilities may not be used by any non-affiliated entity/individual for the conduct of commercial solicitation, on-site sales, or other profit-making activities except when (1) a license or lease agreement exists; (2) the activity is conducted in accordance with any other valid contract or agreement with MTSU; (3) the commercial solicitation, on-site sales, or other profit-making activity takes place pursuant to an agreement; and (4) is sponsored by a registered student organization for the purpose of raising funds to support the organization's activities. No sales or solicitation will be approved under this policy if the activity conflicts with any contractual obligations of MTSU.
Agreements between non-affiliated vendors sponsored by MTSU or a registered student organization to engage in commercial solicitations, on-site sales, or other profit-making activities are subject to the following conditions:
(1) No student organization will be permitted to sponsor the same non-affiliated vendor more than two (2) days per month.
(2) Requests from student organizations to sponsor a non-affiliated vendor must be approved by the Assistant Vice President for Student Affairs or designee.
(3) Permission to sponsor a non-affiliated vendor may be denied if the presence of such vendor would be disruptive, would interfere with any aspect of MTSU’s operation, or would detract from the orderly and aesthetic appearance of the campus.
(4) All non-affiliated vendors sponsored by a student organization will be charged a per diem fee to be paid at the time the activity is registered. This fee will be assessed apart from any financial arrangement made between the sponsoring student organization and the non-affiliated vendor. Any fee associated with these activities is provided on the Event Coordination Forms website.
(5) Non-affiliated vendors sponsored by MTSU or a student organization are strictly prohibited from engaging in conduct that is unduly intrusive in their interactions with students, staff, or faculty, or otherwise harasses, disturbs, or interferes with the rights of students, staff, and faculty to the use and enjoyment of institutional property and/or facilities .
(6) Non-affiliated vendors sponsored by student organizations may be required to show proof of compliance with all state and local laws and ordinances governing their activities.
e. Solicitation of charitable funds shall be governed by the provisions of Policy 170 Charitable Solicitations.
1. No advertising signs, posters, or other material may be placed on any campus property and/or facility by any non-affiliated entity/individual, except that MTSU may permit advertising on specifically designated bulletin boards, digital signage, and other designated locations on campus. Affiliated entities/individuals may place advertising materials on campus property but only in such places as are designated by MTSU.
2. MTSU may authorize the inclusion of advertisements in appropriate campus publications or on other campus property (e.g., scoreboards, busses, etc.) for a reasonable fee.
3. MTSU may permit limited advertising by groups, organizations, or individuals when incidental to a donation of property or services to MTSU or pursuant to a contract with MTSU.
D. Bulletin Boards/Digital Signage.
All postings of advertising or other material on utility poles, trees, walls, buildings, or other objects on campus is strictly prohibited. To facilitate posting of information and material where permitted, MTSU has installed certain bulletin boards, designated as community bulletin boards, across campus that may to be used by members of the campus community for postings unrelated to official MTSU business. All other bulletin boards are reserved for official MTSU business and are not available for postings by any other individual or entity. Designated digital signs in certain campus multiple-use locations may be available to post event announcements.
The specific rules applicable to a community bulletin board will be conspicuously posted on each board and will control all postings on that board. Any posting that does not comply with the stated rules is subject to immediate removal without warning.
1. At a minimum, each community bulletin board shall comply with the following:
a. Prominently display a sign above the board indicating that it is a community bulletin board.
b. Prominently display on a sheet of paper at least 8 ½” x 14” the rules for posting on the community bulletin board, including, at a minimum, the following:
(1) A listing of the specific individuals and/or entities that are permitted to post on that bulletin board;
(2) Whether permission is required in advance of posting on that board and, if so, from whom;
(3) Any limitations of the types of messages that may be posted on the board;
(4) The maximum size of any message that may be posted on that board;
(5) That no obscene material or material that violates state, federal, or local law or MTSU policy may be posted on the board;and
(6) A regularly scheduled date on which all material will be removed from the board. For instance, the individuals/offices authorizing the use of the board may wish to remove all material from the board on the first day each month or the day following Graduation, etc.
2. All individuals/offices requiring prior permission to use a community bulletin board may deny a request on the basis of one (1) or more of the following. The denial of the request shall be in writing and shall state the reason for the denial.
a. The person or group is not authorized to use the board in question;
b. The material is not the type authorized to be on the board in question or fails to meet any of the rules for posting on the board;
c The material is obscene or otherwise violates any federal or state law or regulation of MTSU; or
d. There is insufficient space for the material on the board due to the previous posting of other materials.
The individual/office responsible for any bulletin board on campus, in conjunction with the MTSU Fire Marshal, shall confirm that the placement of the bulletin board complies with the local fire code.
3. Digital signage in certain campus locations is available to be used in conjunction with meetings/events. Specifics of digital signage use guidelines are located at mtsu.edu/digital-signs.
4. Nothing in this section should be construed to limit the rights for access to State employees set forth in T.C.A. § 8-50-1001.
Except as specified below, banners or other large printed material may not be placed or hung on any MTSU property or structure.
1. Keathley University Center (KUC). MTSU has made a limited amount of space on the patio rails and the columns at the KUC available for affiliated entities and MTSU departments to hang banners for limited purposes of advertising their events and/or promoting their organization. No other groups will be allowed to hang banners on MTSU’s property and/or facilities. The following restrictions shall apply to all banners displayed under this policy:
a. Banners may be displayed a maximum of two (2) consecutive weeks unless additional time is approved by the Dean of Students or designee.
b. Banners are limited to one (1) per organization unless approved by the Dean of Students or designee.
c. Banners made for the KUC patio rails will be hung and taken down by MT Unions staff. Please drop off banners at the KUC Information Desk (located on the 2nd floor of the KUC) no later than the day before your reservation.
d. Banners for SGA Elections and Homecoming must be displayed horizontally in front of the KUC and may not exceed three feet (3') x five feet (5'). Check the SGA election packets for more information.
e. Banners made for the KUC columns must be professionally made and have metal grommets. A University account must be provided in order to have the banner hung. The organization/department will incur a cost from Facilities Services to hang and remove the banner. Banners to be hung on the columns must be turned into MT Unions staff no later than five (5) business days prior to the first date of the reservation so that a work order can be placed with Facilities Services to provide the banner hanging service. Bungee cords are provided by MT Unions for the purpose of hanging banners. Banners that do not meet this criterion will not be hung. Please note: The banner hanging service provided by Facilities Services is weather dependent, so the banner may or may not be hung by the first day of the reservation. Banners must be no bigger than twelve feet (12') in width for the main column and six feet (6') for the side columns.
f. Banners hung at the KUC must be retrieved from the KUC Information Desk no later than five (5) business days following the removal date. MT Unions is not responsible for banners left after five (5) days, and is not responsible for the loss or damage to any banner.
g. Banner space is available on a first come, first serve basis.
2. Greek Row. Subject to approval by the appropriate MTSU office, residents of the houses located on MTSU’s Greek Row may hang appropriate exterior banners, posters, and signs (collectively “banners”) that promote student organization or campus events. The dimensions of banners on the exterior of Greek Row houses may not exceed eight feet (8') by six feet (6'). Houses that are leased from MTSU by Greek organizations must obtain approval from the Office of Fraternity and Sorority Life prior to hanging the banner. Houses that are occupied by individuals pursuant to a Housing License Agreement with the Office of Housing and Residential Life must obtain approval from this office prior to hanging the banner.
In evaluating a request for approval, the appropriate office shall confirm that the sign promotes student organization or campus events and that it is of a quality that does not detract from the appearance of Greek Row. In addition, the appropriate office can also determine if safety concerns require that Facilities Services hang and remove the sign. All charges for the hanging and removal of the sign shall be paid in advance by the applicant.
Faculty and/or affiliated entities are authorized to extend invitations to uncompensated, unaffiliated guest speakers for regular class sessions and/or meetings, without prior application as set forth in this policy as long as the following conditions are met:
1. Attendance at the class session or meeting will be limited to members of the class or affiliated entity; and
2. No fee or compensation from state funds will be paid to the speaker.
Except in the circumstances provided below, all individuals or groups engaging in activities covered under this policy are prohibited from constructing or erecting any permanent or semi-permanent structure(s) on MTSU property and from erecting, maintaining, or occupying any temporary sleeping equipment, including, but not limited to, tents, sleeping bags, hammocks, and other non-permanent structures, sleeping quarters, or apparatus.
The above prohibitions shall not apply in the following circumstances:
1. Erecting, maintaining, and occupying temporary sleeping equipment between the hours of 7:00 a.m. and 11:00 p.m.;
2. Maintaining or occupying a motor vehicle or trailer equipped with living space and amenities found in a home, such as a recreational vehicle, camper van, motor home, or the like, provided that: (1) the vehicle or trailer is licensed for use and operation, and a license plate demonstrating this fact is affixed to the vehicle; (2) the use of the vehicle or trailer has been approved in advance by either the Blue Raider Athletic Association, Tennessee Livestock Center, or the Tennessee Miller Coliseum (collectively the "approving entity") in a manner consistent with the existing policies of the approving entity and all required fees have been paid; and (3) the vehicle or trailer is parked in a space for such vehicles or trailers as designated by the approving entity;
3. Maintaining or occupying motor vehicles or trailers equipped with office space or living space and amenities found in a home, such as a recreational vehicle, camper van, motor home, or the like, on MTSU property that has been leased by MTSU to another entity or on property assigned to, and under the control of, a contractor of MTSU. Activities under this paragraph must specifically be permitted by contract and/or lease and be conducted in accordance with the terms of the contract or lease;
4. Participants in events being held in unsecured or open buildings or structures, including specifically the animal barns at the Tennessee Livestock Center and the Tennessee Miller Coliseum, may erect, maintain, or occupy overnight sleeping equipment to stay overnight with belongings, including livestock, for purposes of protecting or securing said belongings. Participants shall notify the organizer of the event of their intent to remain on the premises overnight.
X. Notice of Policy
The MTSU Event Coordination Department and all responsible offices set forth in this policy shall maintain a copy of this policy for inspection by groups, organizations, and individuals interested in the use of campus property and/or facilities and shall provide a copy of such policy upon request.
Revisions: June 5, 2017 (original); June 12, 2018.
Last Reviewed: June 2018.
References: Policies 101 Minors Participating in University-Sponsored Programs or Programs Using University Facilities; 170 Charitable Solicitations; 540 Student Conduct; 560 Student Organization Registration and Recognition; 561 Student Organization Operations; 661 Purchasing of Meals and Refreshments for Both on and Off-Campus; 662 Food Service Self Catered or Off-Campus Vendor; 775 Traffic, Parking, and Safety Enforcement; T.C.A. § 8-50-1001, 49-7-2401 et seq., 49-7-3201 et seq., 49-7-3205(a)(11)(14)(15)(16), 49-7-3205(c), 49-7-3208(2).