Essential Policies for the Columbia Community


These policies delineate a framework to aid University groups and organizations in planning and scheduling events such as meetings, exhibits, performances, conferences, training, and recreational events to be held at Columbia. By describing a uniform approach to event planning and evaluation, we hope to make the process of planning events consistent across campus. Managers of Columbia meeting and event venues, and University departments, offices, groups, and student organizations requesting to reserve campus facilities are expected to follow these policies.

Venue Managers

Venue managers are responsible for their spaces and are expected to follow and oversee the local policies or prerequisites for use of their spaces. A venue is any location where an activity, meeting, conference, or social gathering may be held. Some examples of locations managed in this way are Lerner Hall, Faculty House, Miller Theatre, Earl Hall, St. Paul’s Chapel, Kellogg Center, Low Library, Philosophy Lounge, classrooms, conference rooms, and other meeting spaces around campus.

Event Sponsorship

The sponsor of an event must be a recognized University group or organization, identified by a University chartstring and, in the case of Student Events, an adviser. The sponsor is the primary planner and contact for the event and accepts full responsibility for all stages of planning and execution of the event. In addition, the sponsoring organization must have a strong presence at the event and, when necessary, have a valid University account number or have approved access to a valid University account number and take fiscal responsibility for event costs. The sponsoring organization or group must be the sole source of event advertising and must have its name on all such advertising.

For cosponsored events, both groups and organizations must qualify as described above. Cosponsorship of an event with those not affiliated with the University will be considered under the nonaffiliate policy. Event sponsors may not transfer a reservation to another organization, nor may space reserved for an approved program be used for another purpose.

Event Sponsorship—Nonaffiliated Groups

Columbia-recognized University departments or offices may sponsor nonaffiliates seeking to hold events at Columbia. Nonprofit community organizations, public and civic organizations, political organizations, and governmental organizations must use the University’s Office of Government Relations and Community Affairs as their campus contact and sponsor in arranging for space.

A sponsor is the primary planner or contact for the event and accepts full responsibility for all stages of planning and execution of the event. In addition, the sponsoring organization must have a strong presence at the event and, when necessary, have a valid University chartstring and take fiscal responsibility for event costs. The sponsoring department or office is expected to approve all advertising for the event. Event sponsors may not transfer a reservation to another organization, nor may space reserved for an approved program be used for another purpose.

University Interest

In order for a nonaffiliate to gain access to University facilities, there should be a significant University interest in hosting the event. There should also be a strong nexus between the event the nonaffiliate wishes to hold at the University and the educational and research mission of the University or its standing as a member of the community. As a starting point, the nonaffiliate should speak with a department head or representative of the Office of Governmental and Community Affairs. In addition, the nonaffiliate must agree to comply with all of the University’s standard terms and conditions.

Event Classification

For purposes of determining necessary levels of planning and support, events are classified as Standard or Special Events. The classification of an event is dependent upon variables such as type of event (meeting, performance, exhibit, etc.), attendance projections, speakers or performers, level of advertising, and safety considerations. A space use request, available at, is completed to help identify the participants and sponsors of an event and to assist in determining the level of support necessary to hold the event. The request should be filed as early as possible.

For Special Events, 10 business days’ notice is required. The deadlines listed below are the latest times at which requests may be submitted. The adviser will send notification to the University Event Management office at Lerner Hall at the time that the group or organization applies for space to hold a Special Event. The event level will be determined following the Event Review.

Special Events include those events that meet the following criteria:

  • presence of press/media (invited or otherwise)
  • advertised beyond Columbia’s campus
  • high attendance/capacity
  • presence of alcohol
  • potential for significant disruption
  • security concerns on the part of the recognized student group, advisers, or guest

The presence of one of these criteria may not necessarily elevate the event to a Special Event status; however, these factors should be considered cumulatively.

For a Special Event, space and service application must be completed and submitted no later than 10 business days before the requested date of the event, and an Event Review must be completed. At the time of the reservation deadline, all requests for technical, setup, and other services must also be submitted.

Standard Events include events that do not meet the criteria for a Special Event. These events can include meetings and similar programs, performances, lectures, etc. Space Requests and all service requests must be completed and submitted no later than 10 business days before the requested date of the event. At the time of the reservation deadline, all requests for technical, setup, and other services must also be submitted.

CUID-Only Special Events

All Special Events are subject to a CUID-only rule. Waivers of this rule are available and will be granted where possible, taking into account: (a) whether the event features student participation, and (b) the safety and security of all participants and audience.  

Guidance: Many events hosted by registered student organizations at Columbia offer wonderful opportunities for students to engage, present and perform with and for others outside of our University community. For this reason, University staff will grant requests for waivers of the CUID-only rule particularly where an event features student participation, such as interschool collaborations, competitions, workshops, forums and conferences; student parties; student performances or similar student activities. As always, University staff will also consider the safety and security of all involved. 

Partisan Political Campaign Activities on Campus or at Campus Facilities

Because of its nonprofit status, the University is strictly prohibited from participating or intervening in any political campaign on behalf of or in opposition to any candidate for public office. As a result, the use of the campus or campus facilities for partisan political campaign activities is strictly regulated. Those planning, sponsoring, or hosting any event that may constitute a partisan political campaign activity must check with the General Counsel’s Office.


If an event is income producing for the sponsoring organization, or involves ticket sales to the general public, the University will determine if the sponsoring organization must purchase insurance to cover any claims or suits that could result from the conduct of the event and the level of insurance necessary. The cost of such insurance will be borne by the sponsoring organization. If an event is cosponsored with a nonaffiliated organization that will receive income from the event, the University will require that the nonaffiliated organization provide evidence of insurance for the event.


Event advertising, both on and off campus, may not be done before copy is approved by the host venue manager and, where relevant, the student activities adviser or appropriate dean. When an event requires admission by ticket, or if there is an attendance limit, all advertising must describe these requirements. If an event is sold out, the sponsoring organization must make a good faith effort to publicize that information. If admission requires an ID, copy must include which IDs will be accepted, stating “Valid ID card from (insert names of invited schools or organizations) or Columbia University required for admission to event.” The sponsoring organization must be the sole source of event advertising and its name must appear on all advertising. Advertising indicating that a Columbia University school or department is sponsoring the event must receive written consent of the appropriate University dean or designated school officer. University policies and state laws covering the distribution or sale of alcohol at an event will apply to all advertising copy.

Noise Control

The City Noise Control Code addresses unreasonable noise, meaning any excessive or unusually loud sound that disturbs the peace, comfort, or repose of a reasonable person. During the planning of an event, potential sound levels, especially where amplified sound is involved, will be reviewed with the sponsors in order to address provisions of the code.

Occupancy Limits

Columbia University regulates occupancy limits on the number of persons who can be in a space during each event to ensure the safety of all in attendance. Ticket sales will be restricted to the appropriate capacity limit to ensure compliance with established limits. Occupancy capacities for specific venues will be discussed and resolved as part of the space reservation/event management process. The sponsoring organization is responsible for taking positive actions to ensure that occupancy limits are observed throughout the course of the event.

Fire Safety

All events must adhere to the University’s Fire Safety Policy. An event can be interrupted or possibly canceled or terminated should fire safety violations exist. Event venues must have clearly identified fire exits and occupancy limits must be enforced. Should a fire alarm sound, house lights will be turned up, if necessary, and all participants will be instructed to leave the area or to respond as directed by fire safety or fire department personnel.

Disability Services

During event planning, help with access needs for persons with disabilities can be obtained from the Office of Disability Services, first floor of Wien Hall, 212-854-2388/2378 (Voice/TDD). An accessibility map outlining Columbia’s Morningside campus buildings and facilities is also available at Disability Services and online as a PDF at

Event Policies on Alcohol

In order to comply with federal, state, and city laws, and to promote the health and well-being of its community, Columbia has enacted the following event policy on alcohol. All students, faculty, and staff are expected to comply with this policy.

Columbia University is committed to creating and maintaining an environment that is free of alcohol abuse. The University complies with New York State law and other applicable regulations governing alcoholic beverages for those on the University’s premises or participating in its activities. The University strongly supports education and treatment programs as the most effective means to help prevent and reduce alcohol abuse.

Hard alcohol is not permitted at outdoor events. Hard alcohol is not permitted at undergraduate student events.

In addition, Columbia University is committed to providing an academic and social environment that supports individual freedom while promoting individual responsibility, health and safety, and community welfare. To that end:

  1. Columbia expects that those who wish to include alcohol as part of their activities will do so responsibly and lawfully. Responsible drinking includes making sound judgments about whether, when, and how much to drink, understanding the health issues related to the consumption of alcohol, and avoiding excessive or “binge” drinking or any other abuse of alcohol that negatively affects one’s academic, work, social, athletic, or personal activities, and health.
  2. Persons planning events on campus should be mindful of the complexities introduced into planning an event with alcohol. Event management issues—the presentation of entertainment, provision of refreshments, management of the participants or audience, security, and other factors—require serious attention for any event, and all the more for an event at which alcohol is served. Event organizers must fully understand the University alcohol policy and applicable laws and manage their events accordingly. They also are expected to keep the safety and well-being of participants at the forefront of their planning and management of events. Staff members who advise students are expected to assist them in making responsible decisions about their events and to facilitate the enforcement of the University’s alcohol policy.
  3. Organizations may not plan events that promote or encourage the consumption of alcohol, nor may event planning be based upon the assumption of abusive or illegal alcohol consumption. Persons planning events should remember that the vast majority of events at Columbia take place without alcohol, that most members of the undergraduate community are not of legal drinking age, and that among those who are, many do not drink alcoholic beverages at all. Campus organizations that choose to plan events with alcoholic beverages are expected to maintain a reasonable balance in their programming between events with and those without the serving of alcoholic beverages.

Legal Requirements

New York State law provides that:
  1. Alcoholic beverages shall not be provided under any circumstances by any licensed server to any person under the age of 21 or to anyone who is disorderly, visibly intoxicated, or known to be a habitual drunkard.
  2. No person under 21 years of age may misrepresent her/his age for the purpose of obtaining alcoholic beverages, nor may a person assist another in such a misrepresentation.
  3. Proof of age must include presentation of a valid American or Canadian driver’s license or nondriver identification card, a valid passport, or a valid identification card issued by the United States Armed Forces. No person under 21 years of age shall provide false or written evidence of age for the purpose of attempting to purchase alcoholic beverages.
  4. No person under the age of 21 may possess any alcoholic beverage with the intent to consume it.
  5. Actions or situations that involve forced consumption of liquor or drugs for the purpose of initiation into or affiliation with any organization are prohibited.
  6. Alcoholic beverages may not be served where money changes hands (sale of drinks, admission charged, donations solicited, etc.) without the appropriate license or permit.
  7. Events that involve money changing hands require a Temporary Beer and Wine Permit issued by the New York State Alcoholic Beverage Control Board. Hard liquor is not permitted at these events. This includes free events under an organization that charges a membership fee.
  8. In premises that hold a New York State Liquor License (Faculty House or Club, designated areas at Barnard, etc.), all individuals and groups must adhere to the provisions of the license. No unauthorized alcohol may be brought into such areas.
  9. In unlicensed premises, beer or wine may be sold or dispensed if a Temporary Beer and Wine Permit issued by the New York State Alcoholic Beverage Control Board is obtained. Hard liquor is not permitted at these events.
  10. Appropriate posted warnings about the effects of alcohol during pregnancy must appear at all events where alcohol is served.

Violation of these laws may subject the violator to legal penalties that range from confiscation of the beverage by a police officer to suspension of one’s driver’s license to fine or imprisonment. Moreover, within the University the illegal or wrongful possession, provision, or consumption of alcohol will lead to proceedings in accordance with the procedures of the respective school or administrative unit, which can include the requirement for the student to receive psychological or medical assessment and/or counseling and appropriate treatment. Disciplinary action may result in suspension or expulsion or the referral of violators for criminal prosecution. Employees should also note that they may not report to work or be at work while under the influence of alcohol.

University Policies

In addition to the provisions of New York State law as outlined above, the University requires adherence to the following policies at events where alcohol is served:

  1. Alcohol may not be consumed outdoors on University property except at a registered and approved event.
  2. Alcohol that is not specifically manufactured for human consumption may not be offered, served, or consumed in any form (e.g., diluted or undiluted, or as an ingredient in punches or other admixtures) under any circumstances.
  3. The theme of all events where alcohol is served must be primarily social, cultural, or educational, and not the availability of alcohol. Language stating that double proof of age is required for consumption of alcoholic beverages must appear in all promotional material. No other mention or depiction of alcohol is permitted.
  4. Ample quantities of food and appealing nonalcoholic beverages must be continuously provided and visibly displayed during the event.
  5. There may be no games of chance, drinking games, contests, “happy hours,” or other activities that induce, encourage, or result in the consumption of alcohol.
  6. Games of chance are not permitted at events where alcohol is served.
  7. Only one drink at a time may be dispensed to each person.
  8. Kegs or other bulk containers of alcoholic beverages are permitted only in connection with registered and approved events, and all such containers must be closed or untapped at the conclusion of the event and removed from the premises as soon as is practicable. The possession, use, or storage of such containers is otherwise prohibited.
  9. Those who serve alcohol and those who check proof of age for any event may not consume alcohol during that event. Prior to the event, the sponsoring organization must designate an additional nondrinking individual who will be present during the event to assist in its management.
  10. Those who serve alcohol at any University event must be at least 21 years of age.
  11. Application for approval of events where alcohol is served must be made by an appropriately authorized representative of the sponsoring organization or group. This person must be at least 21 years of age.
  12. All student events where alcohol is served require written approval by student organization advisers, student activities officers, or other recognizing body. The approving officer must meet with the organizer(s) of the event prior to approving same and discuss in detail the applicable provisions of this policy including: proctoring, health issues related to alcohol consumption, availability of food and alternative nonalcoholic beverages, event management, and any additional requirements relative to the location of the event or the policies and procedures of the recognizing office. Signature of approval will constitute an assertion of compliance with this provision.
  13. The following types of student events where alcohol is served must be registered with the appropriate school’s dean’s office or student activities office at least two weeks prior to the event. Applications for such events must be approved by that office, which will also assist in the application for a Temporary Wine and Beer Permit when necessary:
  14. a. events that occur outdoors on University property; or
    b. events that are open to the University community; or
    c. events that are funded with University funds, or use University resources, irrespective of whether the attendees are affiliates or nonaffiliates; or
    d. events where attendance is expected to exceed 50 invited guests; or
    e. events where money changes hands
  15. Student events where alcohol will be served may not be publicized until the event has been approved by the appropriate recognized adviser of the organization.
  16. Proctors are not required for events where attendance is restricted to those over 21, except at the discretion of the appropriate dean or student activities officer. Such events will be governed only by the preceding legal and University requirements.
  17. Where there is reason to believe that attendees may include persons under 21, individuals must present double proof of age before being served alcoholic beverages. A valid Columbia Card may constitute the second proof of age. Such events require proctors as directed by the University.
  18. Officers of student organizations are responsible for the implementation and enforcement of these policies. Officers are also responsible for educating their membership, guests, alumni, and incoming officers about these policies. Violations will result in disciplinary action against the responsible individuals and organization, up to and including loss of University recognition and loss of housing status.
  19. Consumption of alcohol in residence halls is additionally limited by these requirements:
  20. a. No student events involving alcohol can be permitted in Carman, John Jay, Furnald, Hartley-Wallach, or Barnard’s Sulzberger Hall.
    b. Alcohol may not be consumed by any person in any part of a residence hall except in a residential room or at a registered and approved event.
    c. While the individual student or host has primary responsibility for abiding by this policy and New York State law, members of the Residence Life staff will address individual consumption or possession violations in their respective buildings as follows:
    (1) On the first violation, a verbal warning will be given and documented.
    (2) On the second violation, a written warning will be given.
    (3) On the third violation, the individual will be referred to the appropriate dean of students’ office.
    (4) If an individual is found with alcohol and is underage or is consuming it in a restricted area, she/he will be directed to dispose of the alcohol and is expected to do so.
    (5) In situations of multiple or serious violations of this policy, the individual may be referred immediately to the relevant dean of students.
  21. Consumption of alcohol at events sponsored by a Greek-letter organization is governed additionally by these specific provisions, as well as by any additional requirements as directed by the Coordinator of Greek Affairs:
  22. a. Alcohol is not permitted at any rush event.
    b. Pledge fees may not be used to purchase alcoholic beverages.

    Required Procedures for Events with Alcohol

    All University-sponsored events involving alcohol that take place either on or off campus must be authorized by their individual school. Application forms for such events must be submitted, including appropriate adviser approvals, to the appropriate deans or student activities officers. Those registering events with alcohol must be at least 21 years of age.

    The deans and student activities officers of each school work with student leaders and their advisers to promote student responsibility and compliance with all University regulations and New York State and federal laws. Individual schools may also set more stringent restrictions on events involving alcohol, but all events must, at a minimum, comply with the policies outlined above.

    The deans and student activities officers of Columbia’s graduate and professional schools have responsibility for enforcing and implementing the University’s alcohol policy within each school. Undergraduate student organizations are expected to work with their designated adviser to comply with the University’s alcohol policy. Where appropriate, organization representatives must complete a formal training session for programming with alcohol.

    Students may direct their questions about programming with alcohol to the dean of their school or the alcohol programming liaison for their school coordinator.

Temporary Beer and Wine Permit

    Events that involve money include, but are not limited to, those with preadmission ticketing, sales of any kind, bar charges, and charity benefits. Events involving money require a Temporary Beer and Wine Permit from the New York State Alcoholic Beverage Control Board, which may be obtained, with appropriate documentation, from the appropriate dean’s office or student activities office. Forms must be received at least 15 working days prior to the event. When authorization is granted, an organizational representative will need to submit a Temporary Beer and Wine License application to the New York State Alcoholic Beverage Control Board and pay for a permit to be issued for the event specified. A copy of the license must be submitted to the appropriate dean’s office or student activities office at least 5 working days prior to the event.

Outdoor Events with Alcohol

    In accordance with New York State law, the consumption of alcohol in an outdoor space without appropriate authorization is prohibited. All outdoor events are subject to this policy and its attendant procedures.

University Alcohol Proctors

Undergraduate student organizations that program with alcohol are required to have representatives complete a formal training session for University programming with alcohol. University Event Management, in conjunction with ALICE!, Public Safety, and CAVA, offers weekly training sessions throughout the academic year. Only students of legal drinking age may be authorized to program events involving alcohol. Student representatives are required to be present throughout authorized events to serve as event managers and support the University alcohol proctors.

Supplemental Guidelines and Procedures to Implement the University Policy on Alcohol at the Medical Center

General Principles

  1. There are laws governing when and to whom alcohol may be served. There is a University policy on alcohol, which is part of a larger policy statement on alcohol, drugs, and smoking. All Medical Center students are expected to comply with the laws and with University policies. Copies of the University policies are available in the Student Affairs Office of each CUMC school and program in the CUMC Office of Housing Services and in the P&S Club.
  2. As a Medical Center campus, we have a particular responsibility to recognize that alcohol misuse and dependency are very serious personal and public health problems. All members of the Medical Center community are expected to be sensitive to the difference between responsible and irresponsible serving and consumption of beer, wine, and other alcoholic beverages.
  3. As CUMC is largely a graduate student campus, we operate on the presumption that our students are adults who are responsible for their own behavior, and the procedures we adopt reflect this fact. At the same time, as in the society at large, specific guidelines and procedures are necessary to clarify expectations of behavior and to protect and promote the welfare of the larger community. When alcohol is served at student-sponsored events, the students in charge of the event are responsible for assuring that moderation is exercised in the amount of alcohol purchased and served, that both alcoholic and nonalcoholic beverages are available, and that food is served. In addition, at every student-sponsored event where alcohol is served, at least one student must be designated to ensure that the event is in compliance with the policies outlined here (see numbers six and seven below). Individual students are responsible for moderating their own consumption of alcohol.
  4. In compliance with University policy, no alcohol is to be served to a person who is disorderly or who is or appears to be intoxicated.
  5. While most Medical Center students are over 21, not all are. State law prohibits the serving of alcohol to anyone under the age of 21. As prescribed by law and by University policy, no individual on the Medical Center campus shall be sold, served, given, or otherwise receive alcoholic beverages if that individual is not at least 21 years of age. Any student-sponsored function where there is a possibility of students attending who are not yet 21 must pay special attention to and comply with procedure number three in the section on procedures (see number seven below).
  6. Respect for personal and property rights must be maintained at student events where alcohol is served. When a student-sponsored event takes place in a resident hall or other University space, there must be a designated student(s) responsible and accountable for assuring that University and Medical Center policies and procedures are known and complied with. Any damage to property resulting from disorderly or intoxicated conduct will be the financial responsibility of the students involved in such conduct. If the identity of the students cannot be determined, the group sponsoring the event during which property damage occurred will assume financial responsibility.
  7. Designated students responsible for upholding the alcohol policy at an event must participate in a training sponsored by the AI:MS program through the Center for Student Wellness. The training will cover skills related to the points identified above, particularly:
    • procedures regarding the identification of under-age students;
    • procedures regarding the intoxicated student (nonadmission,no further service, control of behavior);
    • procedures for controlling the serving of/access to alcohol.
  8. Students whose behavior under the influence of alcohol or other drugs becomes a public matter (e.g., call from Security for health reasons, damage to property) will be required to meet confidentially with the Director of the AI:MS program to discuss the incident.
  9. Because of issues related to professionalism outlined in the CUMC Alcohol Policy, repeated occurrences related to number eight above may warrant involvement of the appropriate Student Affairs Dean.

Procedures to be Followed

These procedures are to be followed for all student-sponsored events in University space where alcohol is expected to be served.
  1. Prior to reserving space, the student or student organization sponsoring such an event must file a plan with the appropriate office. The appropriate offices are as follows: the Medical Center Office of Housing Services for Bard Hall and Georgian Apartment, or the relevant office of student affairs for all other space, including the Riverview Lounge. If sponsoring students are from more than one school or program, the event must be registered with each of the relevant schools and programs.
  2. Copies of the University Policy on Alcohol and the Guidelines and Procedures to Implement the University Policy on Alcohol on the Medical Center campus will be available in each of these offices. Student sponsors are responsible for knowing these policies and complying with them.
  3. If there is any possibility that individuals attending the event may be under 21, the event must be supervised in accordance with University policy. A designated individual or individuals must be responsible for checking the IDs of all students to assure that no one under 21 is served. Students have the option of hiring a paid proctor to carry out this responsibility or designating one or more of their own number to do so. This individual(s) must be identified by name in the plan and may not drink prior to or during the time he/she is proctoring.
  4. The plan that is filed must contain the following information: sponsoring student(s) and, where relevant, organization(s); students’ schools or programs; date or dates of the event; location of the event; number of people expected; whether any individuals attending may be under 21 (if so, the plan must indicate how IDs will be checked and by whom, and whether the event will be supervised by a paid proctor or by the sponsoring students); hours the space is needed for setup, for the event, and for cleanup; hours during which alcohol will be served (note: no alcohol may be served after 1:00 a.m.); alcoholic beverages to be served; planned number of beer kegs to be served (note: one keg of beer serves about 75 people with two 12-ounce glasses, gross, each); nonalcoholic beverages to be served; food to be served; the names of individuals who will be responsible for setup and cleanup (note: at the end of the event, the sponsoring students must remove the taps from all kegs).
  5. Forms for providing the required plan information will be available in the student affairs offices of each of the schools and programs, in the Office of Facilities Management where space is scheduled, and in the Bard Hall Office of the Assistant Director of Residence Halls, Medical Center.
  6. These guidelines and procedures in no way supersede or substitute for the rules and Dean’s Discipline of the individual schools and programs nor for the policies and rules of the Medical Center Office of Housing Services. These policies and guidelines will be reviewed on a regular basis.

Policies Applicable to Outdoor Space

Outdoor spaces around campus can be reserved for events and activities between 8:00 a.m. and 1:00 a.m.  Overnight activities and/or events are prohibited.
  • Hardscapes are available year-round for events.
  • The following lawns are reservable from April 1 through the last day of undergraduate classes of the fall semester: South Lawn East, South Lawn West, and Butler Lawn.
  • All other reservable lawns are available for reservation between the first Monday following April 21 through the first Monday after October 21.

Outdoor space on the Morningside campus is reserved through the University Event Management Office at Alfred Lerner Hall. To view the available space, see the University Events Management website at


Tabling is permitted in various outdoor spaces, activity must comply with all guidelines for use of lawns and hardscapes. Tabling events may not include additional fixtures such as tents, booths or inflatables.



Amplification will not be approved during time periods in which it may disrupt the workday, classes, or other events. Amplification is not approved during reading periods or exam periods. New York City noise codes prohibit amplification after 10 p.m. University policy prohibits excessive noise amplification during business hours, although exceptions for limited amplification may be made between noon and 2 p.m. Amplification includes, but is not limited to, any speaker more powerful than a portable radio, professional sound equipment, novice sound equipment, and any single instrument with an amplifier.

Candles and Chalking

The use of candles or chalk on Morningside campus lawns, pavers, and hardscapes is prohibited.


No pets are allowed on campus.


The use of paint on Morningside campus lawns, pavers, and hardscapes is prohibited.

Commercial Filming, News, Documentaries, and Student Filming

Commercial films are defined as all feature films, commercials, still photography ads, and any other non-news related film/photography ventures. All production companies wishing to scout locations on campus are to be directed to the Executive Director of University Event Management. The Executive Director will review the request and forward it to proper departments for review. The Offices of Communications and Public Affairs and the General Counsel must review the premise/genre of the shoot. Permission from the Building Manager and appropriate Deans needs to be procured, contracts need to be signed, and insurance certificates need to be on file before final filming arrangements are made. Hourly rates are charged for all types of commercial work. The academic and event calendar may prohibit commercial filming during certain times of the year.

All news media, documentary, and film interview requests are handled through the Office of Communications and Public Affairs in 304 Low Library, 212-854-5573.

Columbia film students interested in filming on campus must complete a student filming application, which is available on the University Events Management website at Columbia students are not charged for using University space.

Commercial film, hard news, documentaries, and student film requests can be refused for reasons of time constraints if made later than 10 business days prior to requested schedule.