By Bruce Knittle
University facilities are considered prime locations for sports events for a variety of reasons. After all, the facilities are usually immaculately maintained, and athletes say they love competing where college athletes play. But once a location is secured, challenges can exist. Below are tips for overcoming challenges and producing a great event at a university venue.
Read The Contract Carefully
Frequently, colleges have standard contracts that apply to a diverse range of entities. Before signing anything, planners need to know specifically what is important to their event before reaching any agreement.
Usually there is room in university contracts for negotiation on certain issues, except for items such as the amount of insurance required. Rather than worrying later, it is advantageous having everything of significance put to writing.
Find Someone You Trust
While the sports event planner will usually be working with the athletic department, this is not always the case. Whichever department is responsible, it is wise to form a positive relationship with the person in charge. If problems arise, having someone to go to whom you trust is imperative.
When working with college administrators, you will want to know which personnel will be assigned to your event. Sometimes, college students, eager for experience, will be your best helpers, and will not mind working longer hours.
Understand Safety & Medical Policies
Every school has a safety and medical policy that the event organizer should be aware of. He or she then needs to relay this information to all event participants.
There is nothing more important than providing a safe environment, and having the proper event security is essential. If added security is warranted, these considerations need to be addressed before the event.
Colleges, of course, have their own medical staff available to them. Sports event planners will need to find out if school healthcare personnel would be available for the event. If there is school medical care provided, this should be stated in the contract.
Add University Staff To Your Planning Team
When planning your event, engage volunteers who are either college staff or students as members of your planning team. These individuals are familiar with the school, and will help the event planner navigate through any facility issues that arise.
Having members of the collegiate community on your team can also help with marketing your event. This local influence can help develop goodwill for your event through positive word of mouth.
Think About Dorms For Housing
One advantage of hosting an event on a college campus is university dormitories are a convenient mode of lodging. If arrangements are preplanned, these dormitories are inexpensive alternatives to hotel arrangements.
Especially when hosting a tournament with numerous teams involved, having dormitories available so close to the actual event, will appeal to participants.