Providing a forum for student expression is vital to the learning environment of the University. As a state institution, the University of Illinois adheres to the protections guaranteed by the First Amendment to the Constitution of the United States. Free speech, free expression, and peaceable assembly are basic to the exchange of ideas and beliefs. Academic progress and freedom flourish when the rights of free expression are assured, particularly at an institution of higher education.
In accordance with the Campus Administrative Manual, Anniversary Plaza (the space formally designated by red bricks between the Illini Union and the Quad) has been designated as a public forum due to its high visibility to the student body, easy access, and its location as being less likely to disrupt or obstruct University activities and functions (when activity occurs there). Anniversary Plaza is approximately 30’x25’ in size. A sample of programming events that typically occur in Anniversary Plaza include, but are not limited to, speeches, rallies, protests, demonstrations, vigils, large scale educational displays, and visits by local and national political figures.
Although the University can establish time, place, and manner restrictions on expression, this is done without regard to the views expressed during the program and any restrictions must be viewpoint neutral and serve a legitimate University purpose.
Adjacent to Anniversary Plaza is the Illini Union/Quad crosswalk. This pedestrian crosswalk space is utilized by Registered Organizations and is more appropriate for basic events like information tables/distribution, fundraising, and event publicity. While not formally occurring on Anniversary Plaza, this space follows the same policies and basic reservations process as the programmed events on Anniversary Plaza.
Registering to use the Illini Union/Quad for Tabling Organizations who want to have space reserved for events such as information distribution and fundraisers shall submit an online Space Request Form. These types of activities are simple in nature and do not necessarily constitute formal programming. Upon processing the Space Request Form, if the Registered Organization is in good standing, space may be assigned to the group for their event. Groups utilizing space for this type of event shall not use the formal Anniversary Plaza location, but may setup tables adjacent to Anniversary Plaza.
While amplification is not permitted with these types of reservations, small radios may be utilized so long as the volume level is maintained at a volume that is reasonable and does not inhibit another group from conducting their event or disturb the academic environment.
Registering to use Anniversary Plaza Organizations that want to host formal programs including but not limited to demonstrations, rallies, speeches, concerts, vigils, and film screenings on Anniversary Plaza must submit a Space Request Form to and receive prior approval for the proposed event from the Office of Registered Organizations. Approval is contingent upon the organization being in good standing and may include a meeting with the Director. Upon being allocated the space for the proposed event, the sponsoring organization must adhere to the Student Code and follow the “Anniversary Plaza Registration Rules” and abide by all “Rules Governing the Use of Anniversary Plaza.”
Registered organizations that want to sponsor these types of events may do so as long as the event does not disrupt or interrupt the regular and essential operation of the University; interfere with the rights of others; and/or destroy property. Registration of such events through the Office of Registered Organizations is encouraged, as it will help ensure that there is an orderly scheduling of facilities, the opportunity for adequate preparation for the event, and that the demonstration and/or rally is conducted in a manner appropriate to the University community.
Failure to properly register the event and receive event approval may result in sanctions being imposed upon the sponsoring organization. No multimedia services will be provided by the University if the event has not been previously approved and scheduled.
The registration of the demonstration and/or rally is further requested to avoid the problem of competition for space. This process serves as a means to facilitate the coexistence of students’ rights to speak and the rights of others to access academic programs and scheduled functions of the University. Since the Anniversary Plaza is a popular programming space, if more than one event is planned for the same area, priority is given to Registered Organizations who registered their assembly with the Office of Registered Organizations.
Sound equipment may be used on Anniversary Plaza but is regulated to prevent interference with academic programs or other scheduled events (see “Rules Governing the Use of Anniversary Plaza” below for specific information regarding time). Amplifying equipment for musical instruments is not permitted.
If you have a question about whether your organization’s proposed event needs to be registered with the Illini Union Office of Registered Organizations, you should contact the office.
Rules Governing the Use of Anniversary Plaza
- All policies and procedures governing the use of Anniversary Plaza remain consistent with the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign Student Code and the Campus Administrative Manual.
- Due to the size and limits on its use, reservations of Anniversary Plaza for programming purposes are restricted to one organization/event at a time.
- Anniversary Plaza may be reserved by Registered Organizations, university departments, and students/ faculty/staff for programming that is sponsored by their respective unit. Priority for use of Anniversary Plaza is given to Registered Organizations. Non-University entities are prohibited from reserving Anniversary Plaza.
- All Registered Organizations must submit a space request form for the use of Anniversary Plaza. In order to meet the potential needs that each organization has, all space request forms must be received by the Illini Union Office of Registered Organizations in a timely manner.
- Events may require a meeting with the Assistant Director to discuss logistics and approval.
- Amplified sound (voice only) is permitted Monday-Friday between the hours of Noon-1pm and after 5pm, and is subject to approval on the weekends. Amplified sound may be approved between 5-11pm and on weekends but is subject to approval by the Illini Union Office of Registered Organizations and the Office of Facility Management and Scheduling.
- All events that are held in Anniversary Plaza may not impede pedestrian traffic nor disrupt the functions of the University.
- An authorized agent of the sponsoring organization must be present at the event and be available for consultation, discussion, and assistance if needed.
- A reservation made by a Registered Organization may not be turned over to another organization, individual, or non-university affiliate.
- Sponsoring organization is expected to manage the event in a manner that upholds the ideals of the University’s community.
- Any reasonable request made prior to or during the program by campus administrators must be addressed immediately as these types of requests are in reference to campus operational needs, university policies, and public safety.
- Per the Campus Administrative Manual, Quad Noise may only be amplified from 12-1pm. Noise must be kept at a reasonable volume at all other times and is subject to the discretion of the Office of Registered Organizations.
- Organizations are only able to reserve Anniversary Plaza one time per semester.
Failure for an organization and/or individual to abide by any of the above rules or policies may result in their removal from Anniversary Plaza and/or prohibition from reserving the space in the future. Any questions regarding student use of Anniversary Plaza or its registration may be directed to the Office of Registered Organizations