Planning an event

“Amazing!” “So glad I went!” “That was the best event on campus all year!”

Want feedback like this from your event? It starts with your great idea. But with a lot of detailed planning and preparation. 

From this page, you can easily access the information, resources and links that Bluffton students, advisors, faculty or staff may need to plan an event for an organization, department or performance group.

Have questions? Contact the Office of Student Engagement at

Steps to plan an event

What is the event?
  • Clarify the goal, purpose and hoped for outcomes of this event.

Where and when?
  • Register your event with the Office of Student Engagement.
    • By registering your event, the office of student engagement will be able to tell you immediately if there is a conflict with the space or date requested to allow ample time for adjustment. Every effort will be made to ensure campus events do not conflict with one another. By registering your event, you may also receive assistance from OSE staff and your event can be promoted through OSE social media channels including Instagram and Channel 2 along with the Student Community Connection email and the online calendar. Registering your event streamlines all of this for you.
  • Reserve space for your event
    • Registering your event through the Office of Student Engagement will ensure the space is reserved for you. If there is a conflict with the space or time/date requested, you will be notified.
    • Browse the event calendar to see what spaces are available

Create a master plan
  • List and set deadlines for all tasks to complete before, during and after your event.
  • Review all relevant campus policies or expectations
Finances and supplies
  • Determine your budget. Consider how you are funding your event. 
  • Is this a fundraising event?
    • If so you must coordinate with Bluffton’s Advancement Office. Any event that will be soliciting money or goods from students will need to complete the fundraising form and coordinate with Bluffton’s Advancement Office. We want to ensure the event and fundraiser aligns with our university mission and values and also does not conflict with other potential fundraisers happening at the same time.
  • Reserve supplies (if needed)
    Contact the Office of Student Engagement to reserve or access supplies.
    • The Student Engagement Resource Room is full of supplies: from arts and crafts to karaoke machines, board games, tea, hot chocolate, popcorn, plates, cups, s’more supplies, etc., to be used for student events. Please contact Michael Bryan for access to these items at least one week in advance of your event.
    • Additional items to reserve include: 
      • Cornhole boards
      • Giant games
      • Bubble soccer
      • 10x10-foot canopy


Let others know about your amazing event! First, define your target market.

  • If your event is open to the public and requires off-campus publicity, or is a fundraiser:
    • All publicity must be planned in consultation with the PR office.
      Please contact Alison King six weeks in advance.
  • If your event is for Bluffton University student, faculty and staff only:
    • Publicity policy
    • We recommend sending your marketing materials to the Office of Student Engagement at least one week in advance of your event to be approved and for assistance in distributing them both on social media, channel 2 and in print.
    • Submit a request to be added to the online student engagement calendar.