For students

Planning an Event

Planning

The Office of the Dean of Students encourages LSSOs to create programs and events that foster a sense of community among groups and individuals to enhance a student’s overall experience at the Law School. LSSOs should think creatively and thoughtfully throughout the program planning process, as they can provide students with a wide range of programming throughout the year.

Advising

The Office of the Dean of Students provides guidance for event planning.  This may include suggestions for topic selection, networking with other departments on campus, managing logistics, and inviting faculty, alumni, or other special guests.  Additionally, the Office of the Dean of Students can assist with leadership issues, either one-on-one or collectively with executive boards or other groups of leaders.

Guest Restrictions and Guest Approval Process

LSSOs interested in inviting a distinguished guest to the Law School, such as an alumni of the Law School or University, an elected or appointed government official (judge, senator, attorney general, etc.), or any other high profile person, must receive approval from the Office of the Dean of Students in advance of extending an invitation. LSSOs interested in inviting Law Firms or other providers to campus must seek approval as well.  A distinguished guest request can be made by filling out the form at https://goo.gl/forms/ZWur7FwBhiMdj5x92. Requests will be reviewed by the appropriate departments and LSSOs should receive a response to their request within one week of submission.

Events that do not include any of the parties listed above may proceed directly to making a room reservation. 

Alumni Outreach

The Office of External Affairs manages the Alumni Community Directory that provides alumni, students, and faculty with alumni contact, practice, and former Law School membership information.  To obtain information from this database contact Maggie Elmarakby, Assistant Director of Young Alumni and Engagement at melmarakby@uchicago.edu with questions. 

The Office of Career Services has information about where recent graduates are working and can be helpful in finding potential speakers and contacts. Students can reach out to career_services@law.uchicago.edu for information.

A reminder that all LSSOs must still submit a distinguished guest request before extending an invitation to the Law School even if when working with another department at the Law School.

Programs Involving Minors

Programming involving minors must be discussed with the Office of the Dean of Students prior to the event being scheduled to ensure compliance with University policy and other regulations.

Programs Involving Animals

Programming that includes the presence of animals, outside of assistive pets, is not permitted in the Law School.

Communications with Law Firms, Guests, and other Professionals

Remember that students represent the Law School in dealings with attorneys, judges, alumni, law firms, and other professionals.   Keep in mind that working professionals are accustomed to prompt responses to correspondence, so it is important to make sure that members respond to email correspondence as soon as is reasonably possible, even if simply to acknowledge that the message has been received and will follow up with a more detailed response at a later date. 

In addition, please remember to use a respectful and courteous tone in all written correspondence.  Specifically, use salutations (Dear, To Whom It May Concern, etc.), titles (Professor, Judge, Ms., Mr., etc.), and closings (Sincerely, Best Regards, etc.).  Also make sure that any outgoing correspondence is carefully proofread before it is sent out.  Sloppily written emails can leave a guest or law firm with a negative impression of the writer and the Law School.  For a sample email invitation to a guest speaker, please see the Appendix A.

Once a guest accepts an invitation to the Law School, remember to confirm the event with the speaker again at least 10-14 days prior to the date of the event.  In that confirmation, be sure to inform the guest of any necessary logistical details (driving directions, where to meet a student organization’s members, parking arrangements, food accommodations, etc.).  For a sample guest speaker logistics email, please see the Appendix B.

Finally, be sure to send the guest a written thank-you after the event.  For a sample thank you email, please see Appendix C.

Failure to adhere to these communication guidelines not only may reflect poorly on the Law School and law students, but also may jeopardize opportunities for the Law School and/or LSSOs to work with a guest, law firm, or organization in the future. 

Open versus Closed Events

Any LSSO that does not maintain a membership list must make all events open to all law students. If an LSSO chooses to maintain a list of members in good standing, the LSSO may hold members-only events if the members of the LSSO deem it appropriate in light of the format and purpose of the event. LSSOs must ensure that the number of members-only events is small relative to the number of events held by the group overall.  LSSOs may use ¼ of their LSA funding for members-only events.  LSSOs are expected to track their use of funds for members-only events to submit to LSA upon request.

Additionally, the Office of the Dean of Students will not provide funding for any event that is not open to all students. A LSSO may also restrict voting in elections for officers or board members to members in good standing.  LSSOs with membership lists must be saved on the LSSO Google Drive (https://goo.gl/MwIy7s) in the assigned student organization folder at the beginning of the autumn quarter. 

Alcohol Policy

LSSOs that serve alcohol at Law School events take on great responsibility, not only to follow the law, but also to take appropriate precautions to prevent physical or emotional injury from drinking.  Only moderate consumption of alcohol is permitted at LSSO events.

If an LSSO would like to serve alcohol at an event, regardless of whether the event is on-campus or off-campus, the following actions must be taken at least two weeks in advance of the event:

  1. Anyone serving alcohol at an on campus event must complete the University’s Alcohol Rick Reduction Education program, UCARE.  UCARE Training is available at https://wellness.uchicago.edu/ucare.shtml.  Certificates should be sent to Candace Bergeron at cbergeron@uchicago.edu.
  1. An Alcohol Permission Request Form must be submitted online to the Office of the Dean of Students.  The Alcohol Event Request Form is available here.  To complete this form, UCare trained servers must be identified unless the event is being held at a commercial establishment with a liquor license. 
  1. Once the Alcohol Permission Request Form has been received and confirmed by the Office of the Dean of Students, LSSOs must fill out an Alcohol Event Supervision Form that must be signed by a faculty or staff member who has agreed to supervise the entirety of the event. That form will be sent to the organization via email and must be signed and turned into Candace Bergeron at least 24 hours prior to the event.

Non-salty food and non-alcoholic drinks must be provided at all events at which alcohol will be served.

LSSOs that are also RSOs also must adhere to any applicable CLI alcohol policies.  For additional information on CLI alcohol policies, LSSOs should contact their CLI advisor and review the information available at https://studentactivities.uchicago.edu/alcohol-policy.

The above requirements do not apply to LSSO events taking place at commercial establishments where non-students serve alcohol (bars, pubs, etc.), so long as no student organization funds of any kind (LSSO funding, LSA funding, CLI funding, etc.) are spent on the alcohol. 

Special Events

Office of Events

The Law School Office of Events makes arrangements for all large, more formal Law School events.  On occasion, the Events Department may oversee student organization events (e.g., in the event of a visit by a major dignitary, a conference, or special event).  On rare occasions, a student organization may wish to use an event caterer for events such as a reception, dinner, or a lunch with a high-profile speaker.  Before contacting the Events Office, please discuss the event with the Office of the Dean of Students to determine if it is one that needs support from the Events Office.

Political Activities

As a tax-exempt organization under Section 501(c)(3) of the tax code, the University is prohibited from participating in political campaign activities. Although the University may, consistent with its purposes, engage in and sponsor debate and discussion of political issues, the support of individual candidates, campaigns or political parties is prohibited.

The University may not endorse any candidates, make donations to any politician’s campaign, issue statements for or against any candidate, or engage in any activity that would either support or oppose any candidate for public office. Furthermore, no political fundraising may occur on the University’s campus, in the name of the University, or through the use of University e-mail accounts.  These prohibitions apply to all campaigns, including those at the federal, state, and local levels.

During election years, it is particularly important that LSSOs be mindful of the University’s policy regarding political campaign-related activities.  If a LSSO plans an event focusing on an election or working with an individual currently running for political office, please discuss it ahead of time with the Office of the Dean of Students.

Conferences and Student Travel

Any LSSO desiring to organize a trip (whether domestic or international) under the auspices of the organization (and therefore the Law School and the University) must speak with the Office of the Dean of Students about the applicable University and Law School policies and the source of funding for the proposed trip prior to making any travel arrangements.  Please note that limits may be imposed on the number of trips for which a LSSO may receive travel funding and that funding requests must be made in advance of travel. For more information on funding, please see the Funding, Budgets, and Reimbursement section.

Moot Court Competitions

The Law School hosts an internal event called the Hinton Moot Court Competition, named for Judge Edward W. Hinton (Professor of Law, 1913-36), which is open to all second- and third-year students (except those 3Ls who made it to the semifinals during their 2L year). Additional information on this competition can be found at http://www.law.uchicago.edu/studentorgs/mootcourt

Students may participate in moot court competitions hosted by outside entities, as long as the competitions do not require the student participants to miss any classes, exams or otherwise interfere with their coursework.  Students may not receive course credit or fulfill the Law School’s writing requirements for moot court competitions or similar activities, such as mock arbitrations.  As a general rule, the Law School does not provide funding for outside moot competitions.  There may, however, be special funds available from donors depending on the competition topic.  If such funding is available, it is typically capped at $500 per team and may be used to cover registration costs.  To learn whether funding is available, please contact the Office of the Dean of Students.

Event Logistics

Room Reservations

Space in the Law School is extremely limited therefore it is important to make room reservations as early as possible and to remove reservations on rooms that are longer needed.  LSSOs should not leave holds on rooms in excess of one week. 

Once all distinguished guests or outside groups have been approved and confirmed by the Office of the Dean of Students, LSSOs may proceed to making a room reservation on the Law School’s Meeting Room Manager calendar (MRM).  The MRM calendar is available at https://majority.uchicago.edu/mrm/. Students can log in to the MRM calendar using their UCLaw username and password.

LSSOs are able to book Law School classrooms only on their own.  LSSOs interested in booking larger event spaces such as the Auditorium, Courtroom, of Green Lounges, etc. should reach out to the Office of the Dean of Students.

Conference rooms in the D’Angelo Law Library can be reserved online at http://www.lib.uchicago.edu/e/law/using/conferencerooms.html

Room reservations scheduled outside of standard Law School hours (i.e., weekend programs) may incur extra fees for cleaning services or a security fee if the building needs open early/late. Please work with the Office of the Dean of Students to arrange these events.

Based upon a need to ensure room availability for make-up classes, a desire to attempt to ensure good attendance for events, and to ensure adequate supervision and assistance for events, several classrooms are blocked each day.  These “Dean’s Holds” are released only in extraordinary circumstances, for make-up classes, or for faculty use.  

Facilities Requests

The Facilities Department handles all requests for facilities needs, including: moving tables and furniture; providing additional tables, chairs, poster stands, and garbage cans; managing the room temperature; and other responsibilities.  LSSOs can request facilities services through the MRM calendar at https://majority.uchicago.edu/mrm/. For additional questions or requests, contact facilities@uclaw.uchicago.edu.

Technology Requests

LSSOs may request special technology for an event (microphones, computer, or AV requests) through the MRM calendar at https://majority.uchicago.edu/mrm/. IT requests should be submitted via the room calendar at least 3 business days in advance of the event. There may be additional charges for certain services or for services requested after-hours (evening events during the week or weekend events).  LSSOs experiencing technical difficulties during an event should press the Help Button on the upper right corner of the monitor in each classroom. Monitors may not be moved under any circumstances.

Consider requesting audio recording to allow for the event to be podcast. More information on how to set up an event for recording can be found at http://www.law.uchicago.edu/studentorgs/plan/record.

Presentation clickers are available to rent at the VCA desk.  To check out a clicker, students must leave their student ID with the VCA desk receptionist until the clicker is returned.

For additional information regarding special technology requests, contact the Information Technology Office at 773-834-5300 or email helpdesk@law.uchicago.edu.  

Catering

LSSOs are limited to ordering food from the Law School’s approved vendors. Caterers that are not listed in the MRM calendar are not permitted at the Law School.  To place a catering order, complete the online order form available on the Law School’s MRM calendar at https://majority.uchicago.edu/mrm/.  This includes filling out the Catering (Items), Catering (Order Info), Facilities, and AV/IT tabs. LSSOs will be directly billed for the event.  The Office of the Dean of Students will receive a copy of the final bill from the event.  The bill will then be automatically paid using the student organization’s LSA funds. Event requests must be made at least 3 business days in advance of the event (e.g., an order for Monday should be ordered by lunchtime on Wednesday).

Students are not to contact any vendor directly.  If there are any questions or issues, such as a vendor failing to supply plates, please contact the Office of Events at lgoodman@uchicago.edu.

Leftover Catering Items

Food served at events is strictly for students and guests attending the program. Non-attenders are not permitted to take leftover food from the classroom corridors, but instead must wait until food is moved to the Green Lounge for general consumption. Each LSSO must designate at least one member to stand with the catering and wait for facilities staff to take the food items to the Green Lounge. The designated LSSO members must ensure that only those attending events take the food ordered for that event until the food is moved to the Green Lounge. Consistent with LSA guidelines, organizations that fail to oversee the food lines in this manner will be fined $50 from their budget allotment, up to $500 in total, for each violation as observed and reported to LSA. Students should contact the Facilities Department directly at facilities@uclaw.uchicago.edu or 773-702-9572 if the catering removal cart is delayed. 

Room Cleanup

At the conclusion of an LSSO event, the room must be left clean and ready for class. Specifically, all food must be removed from the room and chairs must be put back in their original positions Touchscreen monitors are not to be moved for any reason from the desk where they are located and all AV equipment must be returned in original condition. Groups that do not return equipment to its original condition will be fined if the equipment is not ready to use for the next class.

Cancelling or Rescheduling an Event

Catering orders must be canceled at minimum of 24 hours in advance of the event. If an event is canceled or has been rescheduled the event must be deleted from the MRM calendar and an email noting the cancelation must be sent to Lucienne Goodman at lgoodman@uchicago.edu immediately. Failure to cancel food orders 24 hours in advance and via direct email will result in the organization being billed for the food order.

Book Sales

Book sales are strictly prohibited at the Law School for two primary reasons.  First, for tax purposes, the Law School cannot engage in commerce.  Second, the Law School is fortunate to have many speakers who wish to speak at the Law School, and they are generally welcome to speak at the invitation of a LSSO.  The Law School seeks to prevent, however, speakers from pressuring students to host events on their book selling tours or pressuring students to purchase books.  The Law School wants the focus to be on the free exchange of ideas rather than purchasing books. Thus, although an author who has recently written a book may speak about it at the Law School­ and may sign books, books cannot be sold at the Law School.

Money Collection and Payment Processing

Students may not use any credit card processing software other than the approved University software.  LSSOs interested in collecting funds via credit card should contact the Office of the Dean of Students.

LSSOs collecting cash or checks for their organization are to pick up a bank bag from the Office of the Dean of Students for money collection.  At the end of each collection period, all funds are to be turned into Candace Bergeron in office 306B.1 for safe keeping as funds should never be stored by a student. All funds collected must be deposited into the organization’s LSA account.  At no time can funds be collected to benefit an outside group or organization as it violates the University’s non-profit status.  Checks must be made payable to the University of Chicago Law School and cannot be payable to a specific student or organization.

Parking Passes

Daily parking passes are available for speakers or guests participating in events. The LSSO requesting the parking pass will be charged $10 per pass. To request a parking pass, email Candace Bergeron at cbergeron@uchicago.edu with the student organization name, speaker name(s), and date of the event.  Parking passes may be picked up from the Law School Receptionist at the VCA desk on the day of the event.  Be sure to request parking passes for guests at least two days prior to the event.

Promotional Tables

LSSOs can reserve a promotional table on weekdays from 10:00am – 2:00pm in the North Green Lounge.  All food sales/giveaways must be approved in advance of the event.  Please contact the Office of the Dean of Students to reserve a table.

Publicity

Communications Office

The Law School’s Communications Office can assist LSSOs seeking to publicize their events (1) to the greater Law School community through the Law School website, and (2) to the University more generally, including through the News Office. 

The Law School has an active presence on various social media outlets including Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, and Twitter. All social media accounts are maintained by the Communications Office. 

If an organization would like to have an event advertised on the Law School’s social media various sites, if an LSSO would like to start a social media page, or if interested in exploring the various publicity option please contact the Communications Coordinator at communications@law.uchicago.edu.

The Communications Office does not design or print posters, fliers, or brochures for LSSOs. For student designed posters, fliers, or brochures, the computer lab (located on the 3rd floor of the D’Angelo Law Library) contains a color printer for student printing.

Each Student Organization is eligible to receive a free print card that is preloaded with $50.00. This card LSSOs to print posters for their events.  Print cards are placed in each LSSO mail folder at the beginning of the autumn quarter. Questions regarding printing accounts should be directed to the IT department at helpdesk@law.uchicago.edu

Law School Website Event Calendar and Briefs

LSSOs are encouraged to post events to the Law School website event calendar and to the Briefs because it allows the Law School community, alumni, and other interested parties to learn in advance about LSSO events. The Law School Briefs are a weekly bulletin of activities and announcements for the Law School community published each Monday by the Communications Office.  LSSOs that wish to add their event to the Law School event calendar and to the Briefs can do so simultaneously by creating an event page on the Law School website calendar at https://www.law.uchicago.edu/node/add/event.  Aside from personal emails, submitting an event to the Law School website event calendar so it is added to the briefs is the most effective way to notify the Law School community about events. It is important to note that the Law School website calendar and the MRM calendar are two different sites and do not interact.

Listservs

LSA organizations are required to use the LSA-Orgs listserv listserv (lsa-orgs@lists.uchicago.edu) for event announcements, which are limited to two emails per event.  As with LawAnnounce, postings should be short (50 words or less if possible), clearly identify the topic in the subject line, include the date of the event/activity, and include the contact information for the sender.  It is also important that all co-sponsoring organizations/offices/firms be listed in publicity sent to LSA-Orgs.  LSA-Orgs emails may not refer to or encourage drinking, whether directly or indirectly (i.e. getting “wasted,” prices for alcoholic beverages, etc.), be sexually explicit, use racial or other slurs, personally attack a member of the Law School, or otherwise be inappropriate in any way.

LSSOs are encouraged to seek co-sponsors or share information with other student organization leaders through the LSA-OrgsLeaders listserv (lsa-orgsleaders@lists.uchicago.edu).  The LSA-OrgsLeaders listserv is designed as a resource for student organization leaders to share information and to seek co-sponsors for events.  The Law-Announce listserv should not be used to announce events.

LSSOs may create a group-specific listserv that is only for announcements of interest to that group’s members.  For example, a separate listserv for discussions and intra-organization announcements, such as forwarding articles of interest may be used.  Visit https://lists.uchicago.edu/web for information about establishing a mailing list(s). 

Remember that all events, except for the limited number of events held for members only, must be open to all students and advertised to the LSA-Orgs listserv. Failure to adhere to this advertisement policy may cause an organization to lose its LSSO status

Law School Posting Policy

The Law School permits Law School and University of Chicago organizations, schools, divisions, departments, and members of the Law School or University of Chicago community to post documents, fliers, signs, or posters in designated areas in the Law School.  All postings must be dated and only one posting per location/bulletin board is permitted.  Anonymous postings are strictly prohibited in the Law School, and all postings must include the name of a current University of Chicago-affiliated contact (whether an organization, a school, a division, a department, or an individual) and an active uchicago.edu email address. 

Postings are only permitted in designated areas in the Law School.  Those designated areas are limited to (1) the free-standing boards for fliers for “today’s events” only; (2) the bulletin board located above the mail folders; (3) the holders outside classroom doors; (4) the designated student organization bulletin boards; (5) the kiosk boards on the lower level; and (6) the bulletin board space inside classrooms I-IV right inside the north door to each of those rooms. No signs, fliers, or posters are permitted on any other surfaces within the building ― wood, glass, columns in the Green Lounge, classroom walls, tables, desks, counters, etc. Signs, documents, fliers, or posters placed in unauthorized places or posted in violation of this policy will be removed and a cleanup fee of $50 will be charged to any individual or organization that fails to adhere to these guidelines. 

Anyone posting in the Law School must remove the posting within seven days of the date listed on the posting or, if the posting relates to a specific event, within seven days of the conclusion of the advertised event.  On a periodic basis, Law School staff will remove all postings inconsistent with the Law School’s posting policy.  To report violations of the Law School posting policy, please email lawpostingpolicy@lists.uchicago.edu

As with all violations of Law School and University policy, please note that violations of the Law School posting policy may in some instances lead to fines or disciplinary action. 

Event announcements can be written on whiteboards located at the entrance to each classroom but not on the main whiteboards in the center of the classroom as those are intended for the use of professors during class.

Security

On rare occasions, LSSOs host events for which additional security is necessary. Examples include when a speaker is high-profile (in which case they often travel with their own security) or when an LSSO expects that there may be protesters at the event. If a LSSO needs security for an event or has received indications that protestors may be present at an event, please contact the Office of the Dean of Students as far in advance as possible so necessary arrangements can be made.  There is a fee for security service ($85 per hour, per officer), which will be charged to the organization’s LSA account.

Transportation

LSSOs that would like to provide event transportation such as buses, private cars, or Uber ride shares should contact the Office of the Dean of Students two weeks in advance of the event to set up transportation.  Instead of students or guests individually paying for an Uber ride, the Office of the Dean of Students can generate a prepaid group code to use for multiple students/guests.  All bus reservation must go through the Office of the Dean of Students as students are not permitted to sign contracts on the behalf of the University.