Guidelines and Policies

All students — as well as student organizations and groups — are expected to comply with campus policies, rules and regulations, as well as federal, state and local laws.

Campus Picketing and Assembling

If you want to demonstrate on campus, make sure you understand how UB protects the rights of demonstrators, while ensuring respect for the entire campus community. This document provides parameters for picketing and assembling on campus, as well as designated areas for public assemblies.

SUNY Rules for the Maintenance of Public Order

In addition to following UB policies, students must also comply with SUNY rules. This document explains the rules, and offers additional clarification regarding freedom of speech, assembly, picketing and demonstrations on campuses (including procedures and penalties for violations).

University-Wide Recognition Student Club and Organization Policy

Learn the benefits of having your organization officially recognized, understand the responsibilities of recognized organizations, and know how the rules apply.

Fraternity and Sorority Life

Anti-Discrimination Policy

The Inter-Greek Council, the Inter-Fraternity Council, the National Pan-Hellenic Council, the Panhellenic Council, and the United Council of Cultural Fraternities and Sororities do not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, sexual orientation, condition of handicap, religion or creed.

Hazing

Statement on Hazing

Hazing is defined as “any action taken or situation created, intentionally, whether on or off fraternity premises, to produce mental or physical discomfort, embarrassment, harassment, or ridicule. Such activities may include but are not limited to the following: use of alcohol, paddling in any form, creation of excessive fatigue, physical and psychological shocks, quests, treasure hunts, scavenger hunts, road trips or any other such activities carried on outside or inside of the confines of the chapter house; wearing of public apparel which is conspicuous and not normally in good taste, engaging in public stunts and buffoonery, morally degrading or humiliating games and activities, and any other activities which are not consistent with academic achievement, fraternal law, ritual or policy or the regulations and policies of the educational institution or applicable state law.” This information comes from FIPG (Fraternity Insurance Purchasing Group); all groups are required to follow FIPG policy or their national policy.

Risk Management Policy

The Risk Management Policy of FIPG, Inc. includes provisions that can apply to all fraternity entities and all levels of fraternity membership. This policy addresses the use of alcohol and other drugs, hazing and other concerns.

Policy and Operational Guidelines for Social Fraternal Organizations

Social fraternal organizations must encourage academic excellence, self-governance and service while offering opportunities for leadership. These groups are also expected to complement the University’s mission, and comply with campus policies, rules and regulations as well as federal, state and local laws. The Policy and Operational Guidelines address governance, responsibilities and other policy-related issues for these organizations.

Student Union Guidelines and Policies

In this section:

Rental Agreement / Policy

As a public institution of higher education, the University at Buffalo recognizes its responsibility to supplement its undergraduate, graduate and professional programs with extracurricular activities.

To permit the appropriate scheduling of facilities, and the observance of requirements for financial responsibility, all requests for use of any type of University space or grounds — other than that required for scheduled academic, intramural and intercollegiate activities — must be presented to Campus Life.

The requests must be made on the form provided and should contain all needed information including the following:

  1. Name and function of the group
  2. Purpose of the meeting
  3. Preferred meeting dates
  4. University facilities, food service, personnel required, and other special needs
  5. Budget and account number, where expenses are indicated

All requests will be reviewed by the Coordinator for conformity to the State University regulations and University at Buffalo policies, including the following regulations:

  1. The purpose of the meeting/event is consistent with the general objectives of the University
  2. The necessary documents (standard contract for non-university groups, documents of agreement for University groups) are executed and filed

In a case where clear determination of acceptance is not possible, the request will be referred to the Director of Campus Life, who will make a determination regarding the appropriateness of the request.

The University’s use of all facilities shall have preemptive priority. Academic use of space shall have preemptive priority over non-academic use. The exercise of preemptive priority where commitments have been made can only be authorized by the Office of the President.

The request for space is accepted or rejected on the basis of space availability, necessary services, review of the event for propriety, and timely and properly executed documents of authorization.

Requests for ad hoc use of space for non-academic purposes comes from both University and non-University groups. Subject to the above statements, the following procedures and conditions apply:

1. University Groups

All events must have a University sponsorship, and the sponsoring group must accept financial responsibility for damage to University property and/or inordinate cleaning.

If fees are charged for an event, all financial accounting must be processed through an approved University accounting agency. The University will require 50 percent of any net revenue to be returned to the University. That portion of the net revenue returned to the University will be held in a university holding account for the balance of the academic year in which the revenue was received. If the organization creating the revenue experiences a loss in any subsequent events during the same academic year, the loss will be offset by any accumulated revenues held in the holding account established for the organization. At the end of the academic year, any amount remaining in the holding account will be treated as University revenue.

A. Faculty and Staff Requests


An academic or administrative unit must obtain appropriate sponsorship through a department chair, director, dean or vice president.

B. Student Requests


A student group must obtain sponsorship (authorized by the signature of an appropriate officer on this form) from a recognized student organization (Undergraduate Student Association, Graduate Student Association, Medical School Polity, American Student Dental Association, Student Bar Association, Graduate Management Association and School of Pharmacy Student Association) or such other student groups as certified by the Office of the Vice President for Student Affairs as those representative bodies.

C. Major Student Events

Events sponsored by student organizations which either

a.) project an attendance of more than 400, or

b.) demonstrate by their scope and nature, possible risk to the health, safety or welfare of the participants or to the campus population, will be referred to Campus Life to apply for permit status.

2. Non-University Groups and Individuals

In recognizing its community service role, the University will consider requests from individuals and groups who have specialized needs. University facilities and grounds (State property) cannot be used for profit or personal gain; however, not-for-profit activities may be permitted if the criteria below are satisfied:

A. The purpose of the activity is consistent with the general objectives of the University.

B. The group or individual must obtain sponsorship of the proposed activity through a University at Buffalo academic department, administrative office or recognized student group (as indicated above).

C. Groups or individuals not sponsored by an academic unit, administrative office or recognized student group as set forth in previous section must execute an approved contract.

D. All information and promotion bearing the name of the University must be reviewed by the Office of Trademarks and Licensing prior to release.

E. The user may be required to pay to the University all costs incurred by the University as a result of the event (e.g., University Police and University Services personnel, material, etc.) including damages, if any, and must be willing to sign a contract to this effect. The contract will include appropriate requirements for the event.

F. Any users charging an admission fee and/or generating other income while using University facilities or grounds must return 50 percent of the gross revenue to the University. The University may grant exceptions for events that raise funds for charitable organizations; however, such waivers can only be granted by Campus Life.

The following guidelines and regulations are provided to assist those individuals or groups in planning their proposed events.

Processing the Request

A formal request for the use of university facilities or grounds must be submitted to 150 Student Union. This request must be received in 150 Student Union fourteen (14) working days prior to the proposed event, unless a contract is involved, or alcohol service is requested, in which case 60 days notice is required.

Contracts

Student organizations sponsoring events requiring contracts must submit their reservation requests at least four weeks in advance of the proposed event. A written confirmation of the space request should be in the possession of the requestor before commitment to contractual obligations.

Disabled Accessibility

All events held on campus must be scheduled in locations that are accessible to the disabled, or specific provisions must be made by the sponsor(s) to make the event accessible to the disabled.

Safety

It is the responsibility of the sponsoring organization to actively enforce room capacities and to comply with safety codes and procedures as required by the University’s Office of Occupational and Environmental Safety Services. If the capacity of a facility is exceeded or if other safety regulations are not enforced, the sponsor(s) may be prohibited from further utilization of University facilities or grounds.

Cancellation/No Show Policy

An organization wishing to cancel a confirmed space reservation must notify Campus Life no later than two business days prior to the scheduled event. Student Groups who fail to cancel their reservation or do not do so on time will be billed a cancellation fee of $30 per space and any applicable charges. University or non-University groups will be charged the cost of the room/rooms reserved. Groups who are continuous “no shows” will have their reservation privileges reviewed.

Individuals or groups who do not adhere to the aforementioned guidelines and regulations may be denied the use of University facilities or grounds upon filing a future reservation request.

Billing Policy

Organizations are charged for use of Student Unions space, equipment and services according to the fee schedule. The Reservation Coordinator is responsible for billing the appropriate organization following use of Student Unions facilities.

If a bill remains unpaid after the initial billing period, follow-up statements are sent to the organization every 30 days thereafter. Accounts 90 days past due will lead to a suspension of the organization’s reservation privileges.

Advertising Policies

Banner Policy

Banners in the Student Unions are restricted to campus activities and/or University at Buffalo related functions. Only banners that have received approval from Campus Life are permitted to be displayed in the Student Unions. Obtain approval sticker and Velcro straps at the Student Unions Welcome Center. Banners hung without an approval sticker from Campus Life will be removed.

Campus Group Banners: Campus groups may hang one banner per event, and all banners should have the parent (sponsoring) organization’s name and logo on the lower corner of the banner. Banners must not exceed the size of 4' wide and 6' tall.

General Information Banners: General information banners may be hung for a maximum of 14 days. Date-specific banners will be removed 48 hours after the advertised event date. Set-up and removal of banners is the sole responsibility of the group. The banner area is checked daily, and banners will be removed and discarded as needed to comply with this policy.

Chalking Policy

Chalking of walls inside and outside Student Unions, or on sidewalks of the Student Unions, is prohibited under all circumstances. Individuals or groups found chalking will be charged a cleaning fee.

Distribution Policy

Literature and publications may be distributed in the Student Unions provided that the individual or group has received advance approval from Campus Life. Inquiries can be made at 150 Student Union.

Notice/Flyer Policy

Flyers may be posted on bulletin boards. Posting is not allowed on walls, doors, painted surfaces, windows, ceilings, etc. No more than one flyer per event is allowed on each bulletin board. Notices and flyers should be hung on bulletin boards and shall not exceed 11" x 14". Each flyer posted must include the name of the sponsoring organization. Flyers posted on bulletin boards in a language other than English must have a readable English translation. Student Unions reserves the right to remove inappropriate flyers.

All bulletin boards are cleared on Sunday evening; replacement/new flyers may be hung on Monday morning. Campus Life is not responsible for any loss of or damage done to a notice, flyer or banner posted in the building.

Any posting that violates the above regulations may be removed and disposed of immediately at the discretion of the Campus Life staff. Additionally, violations of the posting policies will result in a $5.00 fine for each flyer inappropriately posted and may jeopardize the offending organization’s Student Unions reservation privileges and allocated office space.

Window Painting Policy

Painting of windows in the Student Unions is allowed for special events with permission of Campus Life in coordination with a lobby reservation or as part of a week-long series of events. Painting is restricted to the windows in the first floor lobby. Only non-toxic, washable paint may be used on the windows. Groups will be billed a removal fee of $50.00 per window if not removed at the end of the reservation. Windows will only be cleaned with materials provided by Campus Life. Any other materials may cause damage to the windows resulting in further charges.

Digital Signage Policy

The purpose of the University at Buffalo’s Student Union digital signage is to support the mission of the University through content that encourages student involvement through digital advertising of events for the campus community. The digital signs will promote celebratory initiatives and serve as an entertainment entity.

The Student Union digital signs promote student activities, events and educational opportunities by providing well-produced, eye-catching advertisements to a large internal audience and visitors, with the goals of improving communication across campus, increasing attendance at events, and informing the campus community of world and University news — all while assisting and building broad-based support for the University’s mission of teaching, research, and service. Each advertisement has a short time frame to tell a story, due to the rotating nature of digital signage, so well-designed concise messages are critical.

Therefore, the purpose of UB’s Digital Signage Policy is to ensure accuracy, consistency, integrity and protection of the identity and image of the University by providing a set of minimum standards and guidelines for digital signage content for UB’s departments, schools, facilities, organizations and affiliates.

Disclaimer: Campus Life will have full access to add, delete and/or make changes to submitted media and assigned playlist rotations as well as, when needed, use the Digital Sign to display emergency or important information.

Content

Content should promote the University’s mission statement and University activities, events, and educational opportunities in a time-sensitive manner. Material should be informative and of interest to students, faculty and staff. Members from recognized student clubs and organizations as well as recognized academic and non-academic departments and offices may use the digital signage.

Content production for Digital Signage requires consideration of technical, legal and aesthetic factors for video and audio delivery. The technical considerations deal with the system’s capabilities and limitations. The aesthetic or creative considerations relate to making graphics interesting to see and effective communication tools.

Photography is a great way to promote events as it gives the viewers an idea of past events. When creating an ad with photos, be sure the information is visible. A general recommendation for a well-designed layout is to use no more than one photo per ad.

Campus Life reserves the right to refuse approval of any submitted content that is not compatible with the University’s image. Content should in no way be offensive or biased of one’s age, sex, race, religion, sexual orientation or ability.

Acceptable Content

  • Announcements relating to significant student or faculty/staff achievements, awards or accomplishments
  • Event information for upcoming activities sponsored or coordinated by UB departments
  • Event information for upcoming activities sponsored or coordinated by recognized student organizations/clubs
  • Changes in timing or location of regularly scheduled classroom activities or special events, including street closings and parking procedures
  • Emergency notifications from University Police and significant changes in operation (e.g., cancellation of classes and activities)

Unacceptable Content

  • Advertisements from non-University groups
  • Classified ads (cars/apartments/bicycles/computers, etc.)
  • Personal messages (from one person to another)
  • Political statements relating to campus, local, statewide or national elections
  • Promotion of weekly meetings such as general body meetings or recurring events
  • Promotion of lobby information tables or vendor tables
  • Promotion of credit cards, alcoholic beverages, firearms, tobacco products, fireworks, candles or other restricted or hazardous materials
  • Promotion of pornographic materials or products
  • Any content regarding materials or products that create a clear and present danger to the University community, including but not limited to illegal items, bootleg materials and items made through copyright infringement

Time Sensitivity

Time-sensitive events may receive priority posting. Messages must be approved for 14 days prior to an event with the posting to be taken down no later than the first business day after the event has occurred. During times of high demand, shorter posting periods may be established in order to accommodate all the groups.

  • An advertisement will run for seven days before the event date
  • Advertisers are allowed one advertisement per event
  • Advertisements typically appear once for eight seconds in a three-minute loop

Appearance

The following specifications are required:

Horizontal aspect ratio

The LCD displays are 16 x 9 wide-screen displays. The background template contains windows or boxes and crawls or scrolls. It is important to realize this is a horizontal format.

Legibility

The resolution limitations of the digital signage require simple, bold text or type. It is best to avoid light, ornate fonts with fine thin lines or fonts with delicate serifs (even in larger sizes) because they are difficult to read. 

Digital signage requires a limit on the number of characters (letters, spaces, etc.) in a line and a limit on the number of lines on a graphic. The simpler the graphic, the better the communication will appear. When the maximum amount of text is being used, a thick, simple font is recommended. If it is not legible, it not only fails to achieve the goal of communication, but could also offend the viewer. Therefore, content should be limited so that the viewer has sufficient time to read it during the brief display time. Remember, most people are walking by the displays.

Graphic Colors, Contrast and Compatibility


Insufficient contrast between text and background can make reading difficult. Some color combinations may provide sufficient contrast, but still be difficult to view because one or more of the colors is extremely bright.

Sound Levels

The Student Unions staff will monitor noise levels and have the right to request organizations to lower noise levels. Failure to do so may result in loss of current and future reservations.

Portable Sound Systems

Only one portable sound system may be used between the Student Unions Social Hall and Special Events area. The in-house system may be used in the Social Hall if a portable system is being used in the Special Events space. The request for sound will be taken on a first come, first-served basis.

Bands

Bands are approved by Campus Life on a per event basis. Drums are not permitted in any open area in the Student Unions. The outdoor stage is the only outdoor space allotted for bands at the Student Unions. Campus Life will take the following into consideration while reviewing reservation requests:

  • Time of day of event
  • Location of event
  • Other events in the building

Piano Usage

Pianos in closed reservation rooms may be used in conjunction with confirmed events. The UB community may enjoy use of the piano in the Social Hall unless the sign indicates a noise conflict within the building.

Bicycles, Rollerblades, Scooters and Skateboards

For the safety of the users of the building, bicycles, rollerblades, scooters, skateboards electronic self-balancing boards and scooters and other wheeled recreational vehicles may not be ridden in the Student Unions. For your convenience, bike racks are located outside the main entrance of the Student Unions.

Lost and Found

The Student Unions assume no responsibility for lost or stolen articles. Lost and found articles can be turned in at the Information Center on the first floor of the Student Unions.

  • Any cards — including UB Cards and credit cards — will be turned into the UB Card Office, who will attempt to contact the individual.
  • Items we collect during the week will be kept until Monday, at which time items of value will be turned over to University Police. Located in Bissell Hall, University Police maintains the University’s central lost and found department.

If you lose something on campus, check one of the lost and found locations.

  • Student Union Information Center
  • UB Card Office, 228 Student Union (for all UB Cards and credit cards)
  • University Police, Bissell Hall
  • Libraries lost and found

Club Room Office Guidelines and Community Standards

The Club Room Office provides an opportunity for campus club leaders to work, learn and grow together. If you use this room, you are expected to follow the guidelines and standards that help ensure a safe, respectful environment for everyone. Please review the Club Room Office Guidelines and Community Standards.

Need Help?

Campus Life

Student Life

University at Buffalo
150 Student Union, North Campus
Buffalo, NY 14260

Phone: (716) 645-2055; Fax: (716) 645-2371