General Reservation Guidelines

The Ferguson Center Event Planning Office (EPO) is located in suite 2600 in the Ferguson Center Student Union. The staff is available from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday – Thursday and 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Fridays to answer questions and can help you successfully plan and carry out any size event.

Reservation Checklist:

  • Reservation Form Submitted Online
  • Event Request Submitted through MySource (Student Organizations only)
  • Approved Caterer selected (if having food catered for event)
  • Security or UAPD reserved/confirmed (if required)
  • Certificate of Insurance submitted to Events Office (External Groups only)
  • Contract signed & returned (External Groups only)

Contact Us:

Quick Links General FAQs

Quick Links Specific Policies


General FAQs:

How do I reserve a space at the Ferguson Student Center?

  • On-line reservation form requests are preferred and can be submitted via the on-line reservation system. To access the web site go to www.ferguson.ua.edu and click on Reservations/Room Request.
  • The Ferguson Center EPO will try to assign requested space when possible and appropriate. The EPO reserves the right to substitute assignments when necessary to best accommodate all space requests.

Who may reserve Ferguson Center facilities?

  • Registered student organizations, University Departments, faculty/staff organizations and external guests of the University are eligible to reserve Ferguson Center facilities.
  • Please note that the Ferguson Center is not available for regular academic classes, including exams and testing.
  • Reservations may only be made by those Registered Student Organizations, University Departments or off-campus organizations that are in good financial standing with the Ferguson Center Student Union and Event Planning Office.
  • The Ferguson Center Student Union reserves the right to verify the identification of persons making reservations by asking for valid photo identification or other forms of identification.

Who has responsibility for the event?

  • The individual making the reservation(s) assumes all responsibility for the event.
  • Registered Student Organizations, University Departments and off campus organizations and individuals, are not permitted to reserve space on behalf of other Registered Student Organizations, University Departments and off campus organizations and individuals or other organizations or individuals or transfer reservations to another Registered Student Organization, University Departments and off campus organizations and individuals, or sublet Ferguson Center facilities.
  • Registered Student Organizations, University Departments and off campus organizations participating in these actions will have all reservation privileges (including existing reservations) suspended for a six (6) month consecutive period, not including interim, summer or break periods.
  • The sponsoring organization is responsible for all charges, fees, and any damage resulting from a member of the organization or from anyone attending the event.
  • The sponsoring organization will be assessed the full replacement cost for any damaged furniture, draperies, carpeting, etc.
  • Users of departmental facilities or grounds must abide by University regulations and Federal, State and local laws. Failure to do so may result in the cancellation of future reservations and/or restriction of use of Ferguson Center facilities

Specific Policies:

Audio/Visual Policies

  • The use of all audio/visual equipment requires a reservation placed five working days in advance of the event date.
  • Cancellations made less than 48 business hours before the event will be charged a cancellation fee of 50% of the rental charges.

Bake Sale

  • When food is sold, the food must be prepared in a commercial kitchen that holds the appropriate permit and license to allow the sale of food.  While a commercial kitchen is typically in a fixed location, it can also include a mobile unit such a trailer or truck.  In any case, the permit and license must be specific to the fixed or portable operation.
  • The sale of food includes events where a ticket is exchanged for a meal, or there is an admission charge that includes food as an element of the event.  The sale of food also includes charity events where a donation includes food.

Billing

  • All University of Alabama Departments are required to submit a FOAPAL when requesting a room.
  • All reservations will be billed on a weekly basis and payment should be remitted to the Accounting Assistant for Ferguson Center at Box 870292, Tuscaloosa, AL 35487.

Decorations

  • Must be flame retardant.
  • Candles, incense, and firearms not permitted.
  • No glitter sparkles or small confetti may be used.
  • No smoke machines are allowed.
  • Waterfalls, fountains, or pools are not allowed.
  • No decoration materials of any kind are to be attached to the interior walls, doors, door frames, draperies, light fixtures, columns, or ceilings.
  • Taping, tacking, nailing, or gluing decorations is strictly prohibited.
  • Please contact the Ferguson Center Event Coordinator for decorating ideas and suggestions.

Event Security

  • Sponsoring student organizations must take adequate precautions for the security of attendees at an event, as determined by the Union Director’s office and the University of Alabama Police Department. Failure to adhere to these security policies may result in an administrative and/or disciplinary sanction.
  • Event security is scheduled through the Ferguson Center Union Director’s Office. The sponsoring organization will be required to pay a portion of the security personnel in advance of the event. UAPD establishes the hourly rates for security and UAPD and Ferguson Center will jointly decide the number of officers needed for an event. If security requirements are not completed, the event will be canceled.

Determinations impacting event security:

In general, the required number and type of security personnel for an event will be determined by the following:

Projected attendance (usually 250 or more people)
  • Time and location of event
  • Presence of alcoholic beverages
  • Description of activity planned
  • Number of organizational personnel available to help monitor the event
  • Final determination as to the appropriate number of security personnel will be made by the Director of the Ferguson Center.
Advertising:
  • Dependent upon the content and nature, advertising can either increase or reduce the need for security. Advertising which indicates that the attendance will be limited in number and/or restricted to University of Alabama students and their guests may reduce security needs.
Closed vs. Open Event:
  • Closed events (restricted to the members of the sponsoring organization and their guests) may require less security than events open to all University of Alabama students and their guests.
Money Collection:
  • The collection of money for any purposes (ticket sales, souvenir sales, refreshment sales, etc.) could require additional security personnel.
Risk Assessment:
  • Increased risks (e.g., threats received, demonstrations planned) will increase the security requirement.
Written Invitations or Prior Ticket Sales:
  • Events which are restricted to persons with written invitations or advanced ticket sale holders will usually require less security than events selling tickets at the door.

Finals Week and Study Week:

  • No student organization events may be registered to occur during the five (5) day period immediately preceding the beginning of final exams for the fall and spring semesters or during the two (2) day period preceding final exams of the summer term or during the week of finals.
  • Information tables reserved during Study Week (Dead Week) or Finals Week should not be staffed by students.

Food and Alcoholic Beverages

  • Groups utilizing the Ferguson Student Center must use a caterer that has been approved through the Outside Vendor Catering Program.
  • The list of approved caterers can be found at http://riskmanagement.ua.edu/information/Approved-Caterers-List.pdf.
  • When serving alcohol, arrangements must be made through Ferguson Center to ensure that no one under 21 will be consuming alcohol.
  • Any organization bringing in its own food or beverages in violation of these policies may lose their right to meet in Ferguson Center.

Furniture and Room Sets

  • The following rooms have pre-set conference furniture:
    • 3110: The SGA President’s Room
    • 3114: Morris Mayer Room
    • 3115: Anderson Society Room
    • 3125: Anderson Room
    • 3103: Board Room
    • 3519: Conference Rom
    • 3106: Sparkman Room
    • 3700: The Forum (3700)
    • 2408: Classroom for 25
    • 2200C
    • 2200D
  • A minimum of $25 fee will be levied if these sets are altered or rearranged in any way.
  • Organizations should contact the Event Planning Office at least five days in advance to discuss room sets.
  • Ferguson Center furniture and audio/visual equipment is not available for rental at other venues on campus. As the only exception to this provision, Ferguson furniture and equipment may be rented by organizations using the Plaza or Promenade. The EPO can arrange the rental furniture order for you.

Extending Building Hours

  • Requests for a building hour extension must be made at least 10 working days in advance of the event to the Event Planning Office.
  • If an extension is approved, an operating cost of $150 per hour will be charged to keep the building open late. Fees are not pro-rated for partial hours.

HOLD List:

  • Registered Student Organizations, University Departments, and off campus organizations that have accounts that are over ninety (90) days past due will be placed on the “HOLD” list and will not be allowed to make additional reservations. The existing reservation(s) will be cancelled until account is paid in full.

Misrepresentation

  • Student organizations shall not use their privileges for access to university space and services inappropriately. As an example, a student organization should never agree to reserve a meeting room for a non-university group or commercial vendor who would not have access to campus or for whom there would be a fee charged.
  • If a non-university group of any type contacts your student organization about “co-sponsorship” for access to space or service, please contact the Event Coordinator for more information.

No Shows/Cancellations

  • In order to accommodate as many requests for events as possible, we must ask all organizations to honor their reservations. Because of the high demand for Ferguson Center meeting rooms, an organization or department that reserves a room and does not use it and fails to cancel the reservation within a reasonable amount of time may be assessed a late cancellation fee.
  • Cancellations for regular Ferguson Center facilities must be received by 2 p.m. one (1) business day prior to the event by sending an e-mail to by calling 205-348-2827 or reservation@sa.ua.edu.
  • Cancellations for the Ferguson Center Ballroom,  or Ballroom/Heritage Room must be submitted at least five (5) business days prior to the event without incurring a charge.
  • Failure to show or cancel a reservation will result in the following:
    • First occurrence – warning
    • Second occurrence – loss of privileges for one month and cancellation fee.
    • Third occurrence – loss of privileges for one semester and cancellation fee.

Reservation Time Frame Guidelines:

Please note that the time frames listed below are guidelines. Requests may not be able to be accommodated if adequate notice is not received; additional fees may also be incurred.

  • 10 working days notice for:
    • Building hour extension
    • Security
    • Teleconference arrangements
    • Telephone line activation
    • Grounds Use Permit Application
    • Room set-up requirements
  • 5 working days notice for:
    • Cancellation of the Ballroom and Heritage Room
    • Audio-visual requests
  • 2 working days notice for:
    • Cancellation of audio-visual equipment
  • 1 working day notice for:
    • Cancellation of regular meeting rooms
    • Cancellation of vendor tables
    • Cancellation of information tables

Parking

  • Permits are required to park on campus Monday-Friday, 7:30 a.m.–4:30 p.m. Handicap zones are in effect at all times.
  • Arrangements for Visitor/Vendor parking permits can be made through the Transportation Services Office located in the Bus Hub (348-8391). Please note that there is a fee associated with temporary parking permits.
  • Parking is also available for $5.00 on the upper two levels of the Ferguson Center Parking Deck located off of McCorvey Drive.

Plaza and Promenade:

  • Ferguson furniture and equipment may be rented by organizations using the Plaza or Promenade.
  • The EPO can arrange the rental furniture order for you.
  • Renting furniture for the Promenade is based on availability.

Provisional/Prospective Student Groups

  • Privileges afforded Prospective student groups with “provisional” status are limited to use of Ferguson Center meeting space up to three (3) times within 30 days after submitting the form, permission to publicize meetings for membership recruitment and to complete the registration process, and pre-registration advising from the Office of the Dean of Students concerning organization and registration participation in “Get on Board Day.”
  • Please note that prospective student groups may meet on campus for organizational purposes only and do not receive standard privileges of sponsoring events or soliciting funds until organizations complete the registration process. Declarations of Intent are valid for one (1) calendar year from the date received by the Office of the Dean of Students.

Smoking Policy

  • The University of Alabama campus is a smoke free campus. There is no smoking permitted anywhere on campus grounds.

Solicitation and Publicity

  • May take place only at reserved locations on the First and Second Floor by registered student organizations, University Departments, or approved vendors who have made a reservation through the EPO.
  • In order to protect the rights of our patrons, distribution or solicitation is not allowed away from assigned space in other parts of Ferguson Center or in the areas outside of Ferguson Center (including parking lots).

Time Restraints

  • Rooms may be occupied only during specified event times.
  • Events must end at least 30 minutes before the building closes.

Weekly Meetings:

  • An organization or department may schedule only one series of general meetings and/or one series of executive committee/board meetings per week. The same holds true for sub-committees of larger student organizations. Auditions, petitions, interviews, etc. are not considered serial weekly meetings.