Student Event Planning

Please follow the guidelines here to ensure that all HST events meet the requirements of HST's parent institutions. An "HST event" is defined as one that is funded by HST, sponsored by members of the HST community, or advertised via HST communications.

When planning an event, please contact laurie [at] mit.edu (subject: Event%20Planning) (Laurie Ward <laurie at mit.edu>) or pat_cunnginham [at] hms.harvard.edu (subject: Event%20Planning) (Patty Cunningham <pat_cunnginham at hms.harvard.edu>) to make sure that you arrange proper permission for the use of space, the presence of alcohol, and the potential need for security arrangements. There are strict institutional policies regarding alcohol served at MIT and Harvard events, and HST is determined to insure that all events comply with these policies.

Reserving Event Space

Spaces used for social events may be scheduled and controlled by HST, Harvard Medical School, Harvard School of Engineering and Applied Sciences (SEAS), MIT's Campus Activities Complex, MIT's Schedules Office, or individual departments within one of these institutions. Spaces are often booked far in advance. Please be sure to leave yourself enough time to book the space you want; this can range from only a day or two for meetings in small conference spaces controlled by HST to several months for popular campus event facilities. For details about how to book spaces, contact laurie [at] mit.edu (subject: Event%20Planning) (Laurie Ward <laurie at mit.edu>).

School Specific Policies

MIT Event Policies and Procedures

MIT event registration is required for most events, for lising of what types of events require registration see MIT Event Registration.

Steps to take to registering a student hosted event at MIT:

  1. Register your event no later than least ten (10) business days prior to the event
  2. Before submitting the online Event Registration Form through Atlas, Events (requires the use of MIT personal and web certificates)
    1. Designate a TIPS certified person to serve alcohol OR host event with 3rd party licensed bartender
    2. Determine an Event Host who will be responsible for the event and present for its duration. This should be a current HST student who is familiar with MIT Event policies.  S/he should complete the Student Event Planning Orientation (also known as Event Planning 101) in Atlas, found under the Planning Resources tab.
    3. Reserve location. Staff in the Academic Office can assist with reserving space in E25 or advise you on other MIT campus locations.
  3. Register event as
    1. Planner/Event Host = Grad. Student/Group
    2. Sponsors/Student Group Type = Assoc. of Student Activities (ASA)
    3. Sponsors/MIT Group Name = HST Student Community
    4. Alcohol/Sponsoring Department = Ofc of the Dean for Graduate Education (ODGE)

For more details, see Student Life Programs' MIT Event Planning Guide and consult the MIT Alcohol Guidelines.

Staff may find more information on the Admin Connect and MIT Institute Events and Information Center event planning websites.

HMS Event Policies and Procedures

These procedures apply to all events occurring on-campus at Harvard Medical School.

The information below pertains to events that (if alcohol is being served) are taking place in a venue with a liquor license and licensed bartenders. Most of the buildings on the HMS campus have beer and wine licenses, so they do not require special purchases of licenses.

At HMS, students, faculty or staff may reserve rooms for events. A room reservation for an event involving large groups requiring special room set-ups or including alcohol may trigger further review.

Steps to take:

  • You may be required to povide information about the type of event, who is sponsoring the event, whether food or alcohol will be served, entertainment, room set up, and so on pending Room Scheduling review.  For assistance contact Patty Cunningham at pat_cunningham [at] hms.harvard.edu.
  • Room Scheduling may have HMS Security review the event. They may attach a police detail to the event, especially if it is after hours and involves a large number of students; the detail is charged to the department or student group sponsoring the event.
  • For events where alcohol will be served (but not sold), access to the events must be controlled and set away from public corridors. One person must act as the alcohol monitor and be stationed near the alcohol to ensure no under-age or excessive drinking occurs. A sign prohibiting under-age drinking must be posted near the alcohol. For further information on or a copy of the HMS alcohol policy, please email Patty Cunningham at pat_cunningham [at] hms.harvard.edu.