On-Campus Events

Updated July 12, 2023

Event organizers at UBC Okanagan must ensure that their events provide a safe, secure and respectful environment for UBC community members and event attendees, and are responsible for following appropriate approval processes where required.

Safe Event Planning

While not all events require approval, Campus Operations asks that organizers of all events, including conferences, celebratory events, ceremonies, social gatherings, sporting events, club meetings, concerts and performances, and events that are open to the public submit a Safe Event Application for informational purposes. Alerting us of your event allows us to:

  • notify you of circumstances that may affect your event, such as a utility failure
  • improve the event experience by coordinating items such as building access and sprinkler shutoff, and
  • take appropriate steps to ensure the safety of event attendees in the case of a campus emergency.

To let us know about an event, first determine whether your event requires approval by reviewing the information listed under Potential to Interfere Events below.

If your event does not require approval:  Organizers are requested to complete the Safe Event Application template (first page only) and submit as an attachment to operations.ok@ubc.ca.

Currently, a Safe Event Application is not required for off-campus events. Students hosting off-campus events must still obtain approval through the SUO’s event booking process.

If your event does require approval: Complete both pages of the Safe Event Application template and submit to operations.ok@ubc.ca with any additional documentation (i.e. site map). See below for recommended timelines.

Potential to Interfere Events – Minimizing disruption to teaching and research

Events involving the below activities require additional measures to ensure safety and prevent unreasonable disruptions to teaching, learning and research. These events must be sponsored by an appropriate UBC leader and require approval from Campus Operations and Risk Management.

  • Large events (1,000 people or more)
  • Serving of alcohol
  • Amplified sound (P.A. system, DJ, live music)
  • Use of barbeque(s) or open flame
  • Extreme sports
  • Held in a highly populated area or during a key or busy time (i.e. Convocation)
  • Environmental impact (i.e. potential damage to turf, garbage/waste, chemical release)
  • Outside services, including food trucks
  • Guest speakers (external to UBC)
  • Temporary installations
  • Traffic control or road closures

Note: Bolded activities may be subject to additional levels of approval which affects review timelines. Please see submission timelines below.

Event Application Submission Timelines

  • No potential to interfere: Approval not required, but notification is encouraged (10 days days requested)
  • Any activities with the Potential to Interfere: Minimum 10 business days in advance (30 days encouraged)
  • Potential to Interfere activities subject to additional approvals (bolded above): Minimum 30 days in advance
  • Large events: 90 days in advance

Planning Considerations & Guidance


  • Not all members of the community are comfortable with face-to-face or in-person gatherings. Organizers should consider inclusive, virtual or hybrid options.
  • Make space bookings and contact service departments (i.e. IT Services, Food Services, Facilities Management) as early as possible. Some departments may have less availability to support events than in previous years.
  • UBC events must follow all public health orders and UBC policies. In the case of a change to public health context, previously approved events may need to be adjusted, scaled back, or cancelled without notice.

Communicable Disease Safety

UBC’s Communicable Disease Framework outlines the different layers of prevention available to members of the community for reducing the spread of communicable disease. Some of the measures outlined in the Framework are used on an ongoing basis while others may only be used during times of elevated risk (see the Communicable Disease Control webpage for elevated risk statements). Below are some suggestions for incorporating some of the measures discussed in the Framework into your event planning:

Get outside

  • Schedule events outdoors where possible

Provide a clean and comfortable environment

  • Frequently clean (or provide a way to clean) common or high-touch surfaces
  • Provide self-serve cleaning and sanitization stations so that attendees can clean common surfaces to their level of comfort
  • Spread out in your event space and limit the number of people to a table

Encourage healthy behaviours

  • Stay home if you are ill
  • Encourage hand hygiene by providing access to hand sanitizer or handwashing facilities
  • Encourage attendees to practice respiratory etiquette