Outside Space Usage & Booking
Please submit all requests here: https://www.shepherd.edu/outside-event-request/
Freedom of Speech
Freedom of Speech is fundamental to the mission of Shepherd University. Shepherd supports and encourages freedom of speech for all students, faculty, and staff both in and outside the classroom without restraints that would unreasonably restrict their academic or social endeavors. The Shepherd community shares responsibility for maintaining an environment in which free speech is encouraged and in which the rights of each member of the community is respected.
Free speech is guaranteed to students, faculty, and staff and shall also be provided to invited speakers at Shepherd University during approved events. Invited speakers’ appearances shall be in accordance with Shepherd University policies and regulations.
The right of free discussion of ideas shall be protected and upheld, consistent with federal, state, and University laws and policies, including reasonable management as to time, place and manner. The right to present the opposing point of view in an appropriate manner, forum, and time shall be assured. The appearance and presentation of any individual on Shepherd’s campus does not mean, and should not be presumed, that the University endorses that individual’s message.
Students, faculty, or staff who substantially disrupt the functioning of the University, or any unit or entity of the University, or who substantially interferes with the protected free expression of others, will be considered to have violated the Code of Conduct and will be subject to appropriate outcomes in accordance with applicable procedures consistent with Shepherd University policy. Visitors who engage in such misconduct may be restricted from campus and may face criminal charges under state law.
Freedom of Association
Individual students may join whatever associations they deem desirable and are entitled to affiliate with any group or organization with which they qualify for membership. Organizational constitutions, charters, and bylaws must be nondiscriminatory with reference to the beliefs, ethnicity, race, gender, gender expression, life experiences, nation-of-origin, disability, or sexual orientation of prospective members. Fraternities, sororities, and religious organizations shall not be considered discriminatory in terms of sex or religious affiliation, respectively.
Reservations by Non-Campus Groups or by Campus Groups seeking an event which does not qualify as a Simple Event (see below) are subject to the following rules:
- Reservations must be received at least ten (10) business days prior to event. Complex event proposals may require additional advance notice to be viable; a reservation request may be denied if not received adequately in advance for necessary planning. https://www.shepherd.edu/outside-event-request/
- Reservations are subject to cancellation when determined necessary for campus safety or welfare.
- In most cases reservations will be made on a first-come first-served basis.
- All student organizations/clubs must follow the guidelines outlined in the Student Handbook and the Student Organization Handbook.
- All applicable campus policies apply to all persons attending a reserved event.
- Approved University fire pits (aka circles) and grills, are the only open flame device permitted. Please be sure all ashes and coals are disposed of properly.
- Tent stakes (longer than 3 inches), sign posts, and other wood/metal objects may not be placed into the ground without prior written approval from the Facilities Management office.
- Activities and persons may not block or otherwise interfere with the free flow of vehicular, bicycle or pedestrian traffic. The right of way on streets and sidewalks must be maintained.
- Activities and persons may not block or otherwise interfere with ingress and egress into and out of campus buildings.
- Activities and persons shall not obstruct, disrupt, interrupt or attempt to force the cancellation of any event or activity sponsored by the University, including classes, or by any users authorized to use University facilities. Sound amplification is limited by this requirement.
- Groups or individuals are expected to return grounds as they were found and clean up the space at the conclusion of the event.
- Please note, proper permits are required for all vehicles parking on campus. Please contact Shepherd University Police Department for details: https://www.shepherd.edu/police
- Shepherd University reserves the right to ask any individual(s) and/or group(s) to leave that are in violation of campus policy and/or local, state, or federal law.
Policy Generally Applicable as to All Persons Attending Events
No Attendee may:
- Attempt or actually interfere with, impair or impede the institution’s regularly scheduled classes, events, ceremonies or normal and essential operations.
- Interfere with, impede or cause blockage of the flow of vehicular or pedestrian traffic.
- Interfere with, impede or cause blockage of ingress or egress to or from any building.
- Willfully, negligently or recklessly commit any act likely to create an imminent health or safety hazard.
- Interfere with a University event by blocking audience view, make sufficient noise to hamper a speaker or performance from being heard or perform any other act disruptive to the event.
- Leave an area littered.
- Use voice or amplification systems resulting in noise levels that interfere with regularly scheduled classes, campus events or operations or interfere with quiet expectations between 9:30 p.m. and 7:30 a.m. at the residence halls.
- Willfully, negligently or recklessly engage in destruction of property or physical harm to others.
On-Campus Persons and Groups
Generally, and with limited exceptions and restrictions, the outdoor areas of the Shepherd University Campus are available for the open use of the Campus Community. The Campus community means students, administrators, faculty, and staff at Shepherd, and their invited guests. To qualify as a Campus Community activity, at least one person who is engaged in the leadership of the event must be a member of the Campus Community.
Limited areas that are not available for general use:
- The McMurran Hall lawn is a resource shared with the Town, and therefore any usage other than common pedestrian passage, or any assembly of persons, requires an approved reservation at least ten (10) days in advance. https://www.shepherd.edu/application-to-use-mcmurran-hall-grounds/
- The Popodicon Grounds are used solely for personal residence and for programmed University events.
- Grounds which are partitioned with fencing or other barriers or signage on either a permanent or temporary basis are restricted from entry, as designated. Some fenced fields are able to be reserved or rented via reservation; some are exclusively used for University activities.
- Grass grounds within 50 feet of a residence hall building are restricted from use unless approved in advance by Residence Life Staff.
A Simple Event is any expressive activity of a person or group of the Campus Community in which no large, obstructive items such as tables, platforms, electronics and/or physical displays are used and maximum size does not exceed 50 persons.
- Simple Events may occur in any unrestricted outdoor area between 7:30am and 9:30pm., but may not disrupt or impede official University events, activities or operations and may not disrupt or impede events reserved by other members of the Campus Community.
- Advance Registration of a Simple Event is highly encouraged, to ensure that a reserved event or official University event will not conflict, but reservations are not required for a Simple Event which is fully compliant with all University policies. https://www.shepherd.edu/outside-event-request/
- Sound amplification is not permitted for a Simple Event.
- Commercial transactions may not occur as a part of Simple Events.
- Damage to grass or plantings must be avoided.
Non-Campus Community Persons and Groups
Without need of a reservation, persons or groups not exceeding 25 persons who are not part of the Campus Community may engage in Free Expression activity:
- Immediately adjacent to any sidewalks or other paved, pedestrian outdoor spaces of the University between 7:30and 9:30pm; or
- If no conflicting event is there and then occurring, at the Amphitheater, the Midway, the CC2/Underpass lawn, or the Potomac Place Courtyard.
Such activity may not:
- impede pedestrian traffic and may not disrupt University activities or operations
- use sound amplification
- conduct commercial transactions
- cause damage to grass or plantings
Sound Amplification Policy for Outdoor Venues
Limitations to outdoor amplified sound exist to balance the needs of the University and surrounding community and to allow classes and University business to be conducted without disruption. Amplified Sound is defined as a portable P.A., DJ system, concert sound system, or bullhorn. Bluetooth and portable radios are permitted as long as they do not interfere with the academic environment.
The use of amplified sound by student clubs, organizations, and outside groups will be limited to the following terms, times, and conditions:
- Monday through Friday from 4pm until 10pm and Saturday/Sunday between the hours of 10am and 10pm.
- Amplified sound times in the green spaces adjacent to the residence halls are Sunday through Thursday between 4pm and 8pm and Friday/Saturday between 4pm and 10pm.
- Areas near the residence halls have additional restrictions to coincide with their established quiet hours of Sunday through Thursday between 8pm and 12pm (the next day) and Friday through Saturday between 10pm and 12pm (the next day).
- No amplified sound is permitted directly adjacent to the Scarborough Library; Snyder; and the Byrd Science Center because of 24-hour study rooms in that area.
- No amplified sound is permitted on the East and West lawns located on either side of the Pedestrian Underpass; on the Walter Barr Plaza next to Ram Stadium; the McMurran Hall Grounds; and on the turnabout next to CCA II.
- Special exceptions may be requested, in writing, at least fifteen (15) days prior to the event. Request form: https://www.shepherd.edu/outside-event-request/
Bash Event Protocols
Bash events are limited to the following terms, times, and conditions:
- Bash events may only be booked at outside space venues.
- Tarp(s) must be placed under item(s) to collect debris and all hazardous components removed.
- Participants must wear eye protection to prevent damage from broken/flying objects.
- Caution tape must be placed around the object to keep spectators at a safe distance.
- Adequate and appropriate space must be provided for event in order to have a complete removal of item(s).
- Event host(s) must completely remove all debris that has been created as a result of the event.
- Space reserved for event must be left in the same or better condition as it was prior to event.
- If the item is any type of motor vehicle:
- Plan for a tow truck to be able to safely remove all parts within twelve (12) hours of event conclusion.
- All glass must be removed including windshield, mirrors, reflectors, headlights, etc.
- All components that hold any type of fluid must be drained and removed including gas tank, oil, antifreeze, etc.