Western Kentucky University

Union Room Policies and Procedures




Over 300 Registered Student Organizations (RSOs) and various WKU administrative and academic departments request the use of limited meeting space at the Downing Student Union. The intent of this policy is to specify an equitable system for usage of this facility.

The Student Union has been designed to support the activities, meetings, and conferences of the students, faculty and staff of Western Kentucky University.  Since this facility was primarily intended to support student activities and meetings, priority has been extended to them.

This policy refers specifically to non-instructional use of space in the Downing Student Union.  All requests for instructional use of space should be made in the designated department of study and/or academic building. No reservations will be accepted for individual/group study or academic classes.


  1. Registered Student Organizations (RSO), academic departments, and administrative departments may submit reservation requests for all spaces through the Union Operations Office located in room 228.
  2. Non-university groups may submit reservation requests through the Campus & Community Events Office at 270-745-2497.
  3. User groups are responsible for knowing the specific policies that apply to the facility being used and must comply with those policies.
  4. Users are financially responsible for any damages which occur during their use and/or charges connected with cleaning of the space.  Groups having outstanding bills with any University department may not reserve additional space until those charges have been paid.
  5. Events classified as "programs" will require a meeting with the Union staff to review planning and arrangements.  Space reservations will not be confirmed until program plans have been reviewed and all necessary arrangements completed.
  6. Reservation requests must be made and confirmed 14 working days in advance for large events and use of the Union Auditorium. Reservations for meeting rooms or table space must be made 48 hours in advance. Reservations for Saturday, Sunday, or Monday must be made by 12:00 noon on Friday. 


University Use

  • Rental fees are not charged for meetings and events that require standard set-up for registered Student Organizations, Academic Departments, or University sponsored events
  • .A labor charge is assessed if the event requires special set-up, clean-up, or additional staff.
  • Groups that misrepresent an event or affiliation in order to avoid fees and charges will be charged appropriately, may incur additional charges, and may have their reservation privileges suspended.  These determinations are made by the Associate Director, Operations Coordinator, or designee.
  • The Director or designee assesses individuals and/or groups for damages to the facility and its contents, or for inadequate clean-up.

Non-University Use

All usage by non-University affiliated groups incur a rental fee and labor charges for set-up, clean-up and technical staff as determined by the Office of Campus & Community Events and University Center staff.

  • Groups that misrepresent an event or affiliation in order to avoid fees and charges will be charged appropriately, may incur additional charges, and may have their reservation privileges suspended.  These determinations are made by the Associate Director, Operations Coordinator, or designee.
  • The Director or designee assesses individuals and/or groups for damages to the facility and its contents, or for inadequate clean-up.


All food items in meeting rooms and for events must be provided by and approved by WKU Restaurant and Catering Office (745-5242). The refreshments must be removed from the room after the meeting.



 General Policies

  •  No posters may be affixed to walls (inside or outside the building).
  • A table and two chairs will be provided. Maximum number of people permitted behind a table is three.
  • No sound permitted inside or outside except with the approval of the Associate Director of  Downing Student Union Operations.
  • Volume must be confined to immediate area. The Union staff reserves the right to control volume.
  • Customers eating in the lobby must discard their trash in appropriate receptacles.
  • Groups must stay behind their table and not solicit to passersby.
  • All food items must be approved by the Union Operations Office and WKU Restaurant and Catering Group.  To schedule catered food requests, contact the WKU Restaurant and Catering Office at 745-5242.

 Student Organizations

  • Selling is permitted in the lobby and on the patio only for the benefit of student organizations and not for personal gain or private enterprise.
  • A representative from the organization must man the table at all times, and the organization must be clearly identified.
  • Groups should stay behind the table and not solicit to passersby.
  • Maximum number of tables in the lobby and on the patio is determined by management.
  • Groups can have a table only three days per week. If a group does not show up for their table on the first day of their reservation, their reservation will be canceled.
  • Any student group may reserve a table free of charge except when engaged in commercial enterprise. A fee may be charged for commercial purposes. You must obtain approval from the Associate Director for Student Union Operations. Union staff has the right to ask the group to leave.
  • Reservation tables are subject to the approval by Union staff and the Office of Special Events and must not come in conflict with the mission of the institution.

Non-University Use

  • Non-university users must abide by relevant clauses listed in the WKU Student Handbook                           http://www.wku.edu/handbook/
  • Soliciting and Selling; non-university related organizations; or individuals may not sell or solicit  in the Downing Student Union for any purpose without approval of the Operations Coordinator or  Associate Director.
  • Tables can be reserved for a non-university organization but must be approved through the Operations Coordinator or Associate Director. Tables can be for general information or  solicitation and users will be charged a fee as determined by the Operations Coordinator or Associate Director.
  • The first three weeks of each semester are used mainly for student organizations and space use is limited to non-university groups, but may be reserved for a higher fee.
  • Tables and usable spaces must not come in conflict with the mission of the institution.
  • Groups must stay behind and not solicit to passersby.


Bake Sale Policy

  • Only approved student organizations may have bake sales as fundraisers in the Student Union.
  • The table may not be located near dining areas. We will provide and place the table.
  • Due to health regulations, only pre-packaged or wrapped foods or drinks may be sold. Therefore, drinks may not be served / sold unless they are pre-packaged.
  • Student organizations are responsible for picking up the trash that is directly a result of their bake sale and must discard any items that remain after the sale. 

Credit Card Policy

No credit card solicitation is allowed in the Dero Downing Student Union, with the exclusion of Alumni Affairs.



Western Kentucky University is committed to providing an environment supportive of free speech and individual expression.  The University reaffirms the premise that students have rights to public statements of opinion through written materials.  Content is unrestricted unless the written word is in violation of university rules and regulations and/or state and local laws, although the Office of Student Activities reserves the right to deny posting privileges or remove written materials that are deemed inappropriate.


  • Registered student organizations and university departments must reserve banner space through the Union Operations Office prior to hanging banners.  Non-University organizations are prohibited from displaying banners without sponsorship by a registered student organization or University department.
  • The Office of Student Activities/Downing Student Union is not responsible for theft or damage to banners caused by weather or vandalism.
  • Indoor Banner locations are along the railing on the third floor mezzanine level.
  • The banner must not exceed 4 ft in length and/or width.
  • All banners must be attached with string, wire, or rope. No tape or other adhesive materials may be used to attach banners to railing.
  • Registered organizations may reserve banner space for seven day increments.
  • The sponsoring organization is responsible for hanging the banner and for removing the banner by end of operating hours on the last day of reservation.  Banners not removed will be discarded.
  • If the banner relates to a specific event, the group must remove it within 24 hours of the event's completion.
  • The organization's name must clearly be the focus of the message.  Two or more registered student organizations may jointly sponsor a banner, but all sponsoring organizations must be easily identifiable.

Charity Collection Box Policy

  • At any time, there may be no more than one (1) charity collection box in the Union Lobby.
  • The charity collection box may be placed in the Union Lobby for a limit of two (2) weeks.
  • The collection box items MUST BE collected every day and the Downing Student Union staff is not  liable for items being placed in or removed from the collection box.
  • The collection box must be labeled with the following:
    • Name of group sponsoring the collection
    • Name of project
    • Date the box is placed in the lobby
    • Contact information of the group sponsoring

Bulletin Boards

  • Posters, signs, and notices in keeping with the University policy may be placed on available bulletin boards only.  All signs posted elsewhere will be removed.
  • All posters announcing campus events are to be limited to 14" x 22" (one half of a standard poster board).  Exceptions will be made for commercially printed material.
  • All notices and signs shall have a maximum exposure of two weeks.
  • All off-campus advertisements from commercial businesses are to be cleared by the Union staff member.
  • To maintain an attractive and clean environment, posters, leaflets, announcements, and decorations are not to be placed on the walls, doors, windows, and posts on the inside or outside of the Downing Student Union.
  • Only one flyer (item) may be posted per activity or announcement. Duplicates will be removed.
  • Flyers should not cover previously posted material.
  • Material will be checked daily.  Outdated or inappropriate material will be removed.


The burning of candles in the Downing Student Union is strictly prohibited.  Any organization who disregards this policy may lose their privilege of using the meeting rooms for one semester, as well as be responsible for any damages that may incur due to their negligence.

 Last Modified 7/11/14