Student Group Welcome Events

The Student Activities Office is committed to supporting spaces for student groups to build community and contribute to an inclusive campus climate for incoming undergraduate, graduate, and professional students while following public health safety guidelines, as outlined by the University and the Minnesota Department of Health.

We invite student groups to host a virtual or in-person Student Group Welcome Event during the first three weeks of Fall semester (September 5-25). Answers to Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs), information on participation benefits, and resources for student groups can be found below.

For help planning your Welcome Event, meet with an advisor by visiting z.umn.edu/sgeventadvising.

Student Groups may access the Event Submission Form by visiting https://twin-cities-umn.presence.io/form/2021-student-group-welcome-event-submission-form.

General Information

What is the intended goal of this opportunity?

  • The intended goal is to support student groups’ efforts to build community, promote the benefits of campus involvement, and to enhance the diversity and inclusivity of the campus community for all incoming students.

Who is the primary audience of this opportunity?

  • Incoming undergraduate and second-year students, graduate students, and professional students are the primary audience.

What is the event criteria to participate in this opportunity?

  • Student groups must be currently registered and in good standing to submit a Student Group Welcome Event.
  • In order for a Student Group Welcome Event to be promoted to all incoming students, the event must:
    • Take place between September 5-25, 2021
    • Be posted to the GopherLink Events Calendar
    • Be digitally accessible (if hosted virtually)
    • Be on campus (if hosted in-person)
    • Be free and open to all students
    • Have no alcohol
    • Have no fundraising
    • Not exceed 4 hours long
  • Additionally, student groups must provide information that demonstrates how their event aligns with the following:
    • Builds community for incoming students
    • Promotes the benefits of campus involvement
    • Enhances the diversity and inclusivity of the campus community
  • Groups may only host one Welcome Event, and it must be an event they are hosting themselves and not an event that is a part of another initiative (i.e., Activities Fairs, Explore U, etc.).

Is my group eligible to sign up to host an event?

  • Groups must be currently registered and in good standing with Student Unions & Activities in order to sign up to host a Welcome Event. Refer to your group’s GopherLink profile if you need clarification on your group’s status. Groups who aren’t registered will need to complete registration before their Welcome Event submission will be accepted.

What if our group wants to partner with another group?

  • Groups may co-host events, but one group must act as the primary contact for the event in the application.

Do groups have to pay to participate in this opportunity?

  • No payment is required to participate in this opportunity.

Will groups receive any funding to participate in this opportunity?

  • All approved Welcome Events will be eligible for a $50 promotional grant to be used towards purchasing promotional supplies needed for the event. If additional costs are a concern, groups may seek other sources of funding. Refer to the Student Group Funding page for more information.
    • Note: Should the Welcome Event be cancelled, the hosting student group is responsible for any costs incurred and returning the $50 promotional grant.

How will the approved events be promoted?

  • All approved events will be posted to the GopherLink Events Calendar and will be promoted to all incoming students by the Office for Student Affairs (OSA), Student Unions and Activities (SUA), Orientation & Transition Experiences (OTE), the Academic, Career & Campus Update (ACCU), and the Undergraduate Update (UU).
    • Note:
      • If a group’s event occurs on September 5 or 6, it will receive additional promotion through Welcome Week communications
  • Student groups are also encouraged to promote their events through other methods, such as social media, using their $50 promotional grant.

Are groups allowed to have food at their events?

Why do we say “incoming students”?

  • The students who are entering the University of Minnesota are at various points in their academic journey. For some students, this is their first time in a college or University setting. For others, they are new to the University of Minnesota, but began their academic career at another institution. To remain inclusive, please use the term “incoming students” to be inclusive of all first-year and transfer undergraduate, graduate, and professional student experiences.

Can my group receive advising about our Welcome Event?

  • Yes! Student groups can schedule a general advising appointment (z.umn.edu/studentgroupadvising) with their assigned Student Activities Advisor to discuss event planning, recruitment, and general best practices for inclusive events. Student groups may also sign up for an event advising appointment (z.umn.edu/sgeventadvising) with a Programs Advisor for specific assistance in coordinating virtual or in-person events.

Participation Benefits

What are the benefits to student groups participating in this opportunity?

  • Student Unions and Activities will support free promotion through through GopherLink, the Office for Student Affairs (OSA), Student Unions and Activities (SUA), Orientation & Transition Experiences (OTE), the Academic, Career & Campus Update (ACCU), and the Undergraduate Update (UU)
    • If a group’s event occurs on September 5 or 6 and the primary audience is Undergraduate students, it will receive additional promotion through Welcome Week communications
  • All approved Welcome Events will be eligible for a $50 promotional grant to be used towards purchasing promotional supplies needed for the event
    • Funding will be processed at the end of July and groups will receive funding within 2-4 weeks.
  • Increased awareness and membership for your student group

Signups

How does my group sign up?

  • Student groups must submit an application for their event to be considered a Welcome Event and be included in promotions to all incoming students. Groups may apply via the event submission form. The form will begin accepting submissions on Monday, June 21 at 7:00 AM Central Time (US and Canada) and all submissions are due by Tuesday, July 27 at 5:00 PM Central Time (US and Canada). Submissions will be reviewed on a rolling basis and student groups will receive feedback on what criteria has not been met. Groups may resubmit their applications with updates until the final deadline on Tuesday, July 27.

Is my group guaranteed to participate if we sign up?

  • Groups are not guaranteed participation when they sign up. Submissions will be reviewed to ensure that they meet the intended goals of this opportunity. Groups who do not meet the event criteria or the appropriate deadlines may not participate in this opportunity.

Can we change our event details after submission?

  • Student groups are discouraged from making significant edits to their event details after their event has been approved.

What if we can no longer participate?

Notify the Student Activities Office at sao@umn.edu as soon as possible. The hosting student group is also responsible for any costs incurred and returning the $50 promotional grant.

Resources for Student Groups

COVID-19 Student Group Event Guidelines

  • Reference the guidelines for student group events when developing your event. These guidelines are in addition to those set forth by the University of Minnesota, the Minnesota Department of Health, the Centers for Disease Control, and other state and federal guidelines. Student groups that are non-compliant with University guidelines may lose access to benefits, including requesting and reserving space on-campus, and their student group status may be impacted.

General Event Planning Guidance

  • Student Groups may reference the Event Planning resources put together by Student Group Services to help your group plan a successful event.

Event Advising

  • Student groups can sign up for an event advising appointment (z.umn.edu/sgeventadvising) with a Student Activities Advisor for assistance in coordinating virtual or in-person events.

Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Resources

Digital Accessibility Resources

Contact the Student Activities Office at sao@umn.edu or 612-626-6919 with any questions.