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Special Events, Domestic Travel, and You

Aug. 1, 2012

Each year at Baylor University, University departments and student organizations host hundreds of "special events" on campus and events away from campus. People don't plan for accidents to happen. Consideration of risks involved in a seemingly benign event never occurs to some people. The Office of General Counsel works with the Department of Risk Management to lead departments and student groups through a process designed to assess risk, and when possible, take steps to mitigate those risks. In order to assist in this risk assessment process, departments and organizations hosting events are required to complete Special Event Request Forms and Domestic Travel Release Forms and submit them for approval through the Department of Risk Management.

Risk management is defined as "... a systematic approach to minimizing an organization's exposure to risk." There are certain protocols in place to identify and evaluate how accidents (and tragedy) can be avoided. The Department of Risk Management and the Office of General Counsel have identified some risk mitigation actions that should be considered when organizing an event:

• Consent and release of liability

• First aid stations

• Parking

• Security

• Fire Marshal permits

• Insurance

• Official driver certification

Additional risk factors should also be considered:

• Physical activities such as organized sports, dances, etc.

• Large group gatherings by both on and off campus participants

• Minors on campus or traveling with a group affiliated with University business

• Overnight stays on campus

• Food not provided by University Dining Services

• Over-the-road travel

These are but a few of the "red flags" taken into consideration for each and every Special Event Request Form and Domestic Travel Release Form submitted for approval. Should your department or student organization have any questions regarding assessing risk or developing risk mitigation strategies for your upcoming event or travel, please contact Baylor University's Department of Risk Management.