Event Planning Resources for Faculty & Staff

I. Determine event details and plan

  1. Who: Who will be involved in the event (a speaker, panel, etc.)? Who is the target audience?
  2. What:  What kind of event is it? What is the scale of the event (large or public, campus wide, small group)?
  3. Why: What is the purpose of the event? Is it a fundraiser, tied to Roanoke's academic theme or an event that can tie-in with an endowed program, such as Fowler, Jordan or Center for Religion and Society? Note: If your event involves showing a movie on campus, make sure you have purchased the appropriate Public Performance Rights from the movie's distribution company.
  4. When: Plan a date and time to hold the event. Also, ask them to help give a broader scope of other events happening on campus that may not be listed on the web calendar. Consult the college's online calendar to keep from planning an event on a date that conflicts with other scheduled campus events.
  5. Where: Decide where to host the event.
    1. Contact the Colket Center Info desk to find out the availability of a facility. Submit a Room and Facilities Request Form to request this location on campus.
    2. If an event is not held in the Colket Center and there is a need for podiums, chairs, tables, microphones and other equipment, contact the Building & Grounds department. (You may be asked to complete an online form for your request.)
    3. If an event is not held in the Colket Center, and you need AV, computers, video taping or other equipment, reserve equipment via the Instructional Technology Resource Center.
  6. Food: Contact the manager of the cafeteria/catering services at least two weeks in advance of the event.
  7. Tickets: If you issue tickets or charge for admission, you MUST work with Colket Center (Diane Wing) or Olin Box office (Ronda Philips) to arrange for the tickets. You are also required to pay the 7% admissions tax to the City of Salem if the tickets are not free.
  8. Other cost considerations:
    1. Rental fees for non-college sponsored events held on campus
    2. Insurance costs for non-college sponsored events.

II. Promoting an event

  1. Create an event blurb, which includes all pertinent details for the audience. Also, obtain a photograph that could be used with the information, including a headshot of a speaker or a logo.

    Ex. The Importance of Judicial Integrity: Judge Dorothy Winston Colom  Tuesday, Oct. 2, 7:30 p.m. Colket Center Wortmann Ballroom  Dorothy Winston Colom, a Mississippi judge and 1974 Roanoke College graduate, will speak on the role of honesty in the law and legal profession. Colum is a judge for the 14th Chancery Court District of Mississippi. She practiced law for 14 years, before becoming a state trial judge in 1994. Her talk is part of the Turk Pre-Law Series.
  2. Do-It-Yourself promotions:
    1. Enter the event on the College's Web Calendar using the online form.
    2. Notify the PR office (Kelsea Pieters) of your event as soon as details are confirmed.
    3. Enter an announcement in the campus-wide daily email. This is distributed to all students, faculty and staff each weekday and announcements are available on the MY RC portal as well. (Click the "Submit" link at the top of the Announcements section in a Daily Email.).
    4. Email your department and student groups. Email other departments that may have an interest in the speaker or event. They may be a good addition to your audience.
    5. Ask professors to consider the event for class credit or extra credit.
    6. Create a Facebook event if you or your department has a FB presence. Encourage department's students to share the event details via social media.
    7. Post something to Facebook or Twitter if your group uses these social media outlets.
    8. Create a poster (or ask PR to do one) via a project request form
    9. Contact local media, if you have contacts, BUT make sure PR knows about the contact.
  3. Promotional efforts via the PR office:
    1. The PR office gathers information and prints two Calendar of Events booklets each year. Deadlines are in July for the Fall Calendar and November for the Spring Calendar. This is free for events that are open to the public.
    2. The PR office sends events news releases to local media outlets each month during the academic year. These releases highlight the events coming up that month.
    3. PR events student assistants enter RC events into local and regional web calendars.
  4. Promotional ideas with an additional budget:
    1. Advertisements require design work from the College and the ads must be scheduled and placed with media. This takes about 4 weeks so start early.
    2. The PR office works with some media offering non-profit rates so ads can be obtained for as little as $300 to $500.
    3. Posters: if you want PR to design an eye-catching poster, contact designer James France through the online publications form. You will need to provide a photo of the speaker or an idea of the image to be used, as well as the text copy for the poster.
    4. Programs: through the online publications form.