News for Student Organization Officers

November 2023

(Emailed to officers)

Dear Student Organization Officer, 

Thank you for serving as a leader in your student organization. Marquette fosters a culture that values, respects and promotes a sense of belonging for our community. Part of this is having opportunities to develop intellectual, personal and physical growth outside the classroom, including through our more than 270 student clubs and organizations.  

At this juncture in the year, when student organization events are in full swing, and as we move into a presidential election year in 2024, it is useful to remind you of the student organization policies that govern events and, in particular, events that include speakers, performers, enactments, and the distribution of literature.  

First, Marquette student organizations, while recognized by the university, operate independently of the university. No student group speaks for the university or its leadership. The university does not endorse the views of student organizations, their guest speakers or an organization’s participation in events organized outside of the university, nor does it govern the content of student organization meetings.  

Second, events held by student organizations are required to be registered through Presence/Marquee. Reserving space is not an event registration. Event registration should happen a minimum of 14 days prior to an event. Note that sometimes approvals take longer, especially in the case where a contract for a speaker or performer has to be executed. As a student organization, you do not have the legal right to bind the university in a contract. All contracts must be submitted to Student Engagement Services for review by legal counsel, and this process requires time. Some events require particular logistics as well, and this can take additional time to work through as well. As a rule of thumb, events where paid contracts are involved should be registered six weeks in advance. 

Marquette University makes campus space available to student organizations provided they follow university rules and regulations. A program qualifies as a student organization event when the space is reserved by a member of that organization and the group is actively involved in the planning process.   

Third, student organizations are required to read and/or display the university’s speaker statement at events with speakers or where literature is being distributed. This statement can be found in the student organization event policies under “Speakers, Films, Concerts, and Other Public Performances.” The views expressed by speakers of student organization hosted events in in literature they are distributing are those solely of the speaker/author and not of Marquette University. The use of Marquette’s facilities does not constitute an endorsement of the views expressed. Marquette University does not endorse any candidate for public office, political party, or referendum matters and no fundraising for these activities can take place at this event. 

Any group that sponsors an activity or event is responsible for the actions of guests and participants and the proper use of facilities. Some events may require security as requested by the sponsoring organization or by the Alumni Memorial Union or both.    

Finally, the university has final discretion in decisions regarding the distribution of literature, the sponsorship of visiting speakers and public performances, and the screening of films. In keeping with the mission of the university and the instructive value of dialogue, educational or artistic merit and a balanced perspective will be the benchmarks for decisions. The use of the university as a forum, however, in no way implies university approval or endorsement of the views expressed by material distributed, by a speaker, in a public performance, or in a film. In those cases where a program, film or printed material is opposed to the mission of the university, there may be a requirement for the presentation of multiple points of view.   

As an officer, you are responsible for understanding the student organization policies, so please take some time to read through these.