The facilities at Francis Marion University and the acreage which comprise the campus exist to support the educational mission of the University. Francis Marion strives to ensure all our students, community members, and those visiting enjoy all that is FMU.  Much of the facilities of the University can be requested to be used for University related activities, special events, and many other private activities.  If you have previously rented and reserved University facilities and are aware of our policies and procedures and just need to Submit a Reservation Request please see the section below.  If this is your first time to this site we encourage you take the time to review our polices and procedures in our FAQs for Reserving Facilities at FMU at the bottom of the page.  If you have any questions contact our Space Coordinator at the number and email below and they will be glad to guide you in the right direction.

Campus Space Coordinator

843-661-1133 (extension 1133 on-campus)
Stokes Administration Building, Room 107

Steps to Reserving University Facilities

Step 1:

If you are reserving a space at any of the following locations please see the separate rental procedures.

  • The Cottage – Reservations information, rental rates and more information on the Cottage is available at https://www.fmarion.edu/foundation/thecottage/#1507302287500-4ecb6e8b-a59f or you can call 843-661-1380 weekdays from 8:30am to 5pm.  Reservations must be made at least seven days in advance of an event.
  • Performing Arts Center – Rental rates, policies, and rental space request forms can be found at https://fmupac.org/rentals/.
  • UP Art Gallery – Rentals can be made by contacting the Gallery at 843-661-4638 or the Gallery Coordinator at 843-661-4637.

Step 2:

For all other rental options you will first need to find out the availability of various facilities.  This can be done by contacting the Space Coordinator at the information provided above.

Step 3:

You’ve confirmed the space is available you are almost ready to fill out a reservation form.  Before you move on to step 4 you may want to consider:

  • Will I need catering?
  • Will I need the facilities setup for the event?
  • Will I need media / technology services for the event?
  • Will Campus Police be needed?
  • Will Sound and Light (for auditoriums) services be needed?

The Reservation form will cover all this information so be prepared!

Step 4:

You are now ready to fill out a reservation form click the button below to begin.


FAQs for Reserving Facilities at FMU

Who can reserve university facilities?

Anyone can request to utilize the University’s facilities or acreage of the University; however, the University has the right to deny certain uses, availability of space and special setup requests made of our facilities.  Utilization of facilities is provided in the following prioritization:

1) University and University Group events

2) Current students, student organizations, and jointly-sponsored events (Events requested by a University group or student organization jointly with a sponsored non-university group with the University or student organization being responsible for all aspects of the event).

3) Non-University Groups (Other public/private entities and private persons).

While it does not frequently occur, FMU holds the right to relocate or cancel facility rentals of students, student organizations and other outside groups if facilities are needed by the University for university functions and purposes.

What types of facilities are available?

Francis Marion offers a wide variety of facilities.  We have several large auditoriums both on the main campus and the downtown campus, art gallery space, a performing art center, athletic facilities, as well as academic classrooms, and our alumni cottage.  While use of most FMU facilities can be requested via this site several of our facilities are manged by other departments and organizations associated with FMU.  Below is a list of those areas that have special usage policies or have different rental reservation processes and contact information.

Athletic Facilities

While athletic facilities can be reserved through this website there are additional policies for use of these facilities required by our Athletic Department. Contact the Athletic Department for more information.

Performing Arts Center and UP Art Gallery

Performing Arts Center rental rates, policies, and rental space request forms can be found at https://fmupac.org/rentals/.

UP Art Gallery rentals can be made by contacting the Gallery at 843-661-4638 or the Gallery Coordinator at 843-661-4637.

The Cottage

The cottage has several areas that are wonderful for receptions, meetings, and a wide range of other events.  Reservation information, rental rates and more information on the Cottage is available at https://www.fmarion.edu/foundation/thecottage/#1507302287500-4ecb6e8b-a59f or you can call 843-661-1380 weekdays from 8:30am to 5pm.  Reservations must be made at least seven days in advance of an event.

After I have submitted a space request how long does it take to get notification that my event has been approved?

You’ve checked to ensure the space was available with the space coordinator and then you filled out and submitted the Facilities Space Request Form, Great!  At this point, this is where the Space Coordinator takes your request and begins ensuring the needed departments and approvers authorize the use of the facilities.  Approvals will be given as needed from the following approver groups:

  • Student Organization Advisors
  • Student Life
  • Building Directors/Approvers
  • Facilities (for space setup requests)
  • Fine Arts (for lighting and sound management in auditoriums)
  • Media Center for (AV, Sound, and other media needs)
  • Campus Police

Once I have received approval of the event, what is next?

Once you have received approval, there still may be things you need to do.  Unless you are a University group, student organization, governmental entity, or not-for-profit, you will likely have to pay a rental fee for you use of these facilities.  When you are notified of your events approval you will also be notified of any facility rental fees due.  You must pay these fees before you will actually be granted use of the facilities. See the FAQ on facilities fees for rates.

Who has to pay rental fees to use university facilities?

The following categories shall be used in determining the rental rates for Francis Marion University facilities:

University Groups – Events scheduled by University groups, units/offices, and registered student organizations whose primary audience is Francis Marion University students, faculty or staff are exempt from room rental charges with the exception of state, regional and or/national conferences coordinated by the University group on behalf or in collaboration with an external, non-University group (see Jointly-sponsored events).

Non-University Groups – Events scheduled by all non-University non-profit or for-profit groups are subject to standard room rental charges.

University Employees or Current Students – Events scheduled by individual University employees or current students not part of a student organization (see University Groups paragraph noted above) are subject to standard room rental charges.

Jointly-Sponsored Events – Events & Conferences scheduled by University groups, units/offices, and registered student organizations that jointly sponsor with a non-University group (non-profit or for-profit) are subject to standard room rental charges. The University group shall be responsible for all aspects of the event or conference.


What are the rental rates for Facilities?

The University reserves the right to require a payment on facilities charges.

Cauthen Educational Media Center

Lowrimore Auditorium – Capacity 201

Lobby Only


Ervin Dining Hall

4hr event + 2 hr setup + 1hr breakdown 
Hendrick Dining Room

Palmetto Room

Main Dining Room

Full day event
Hendrick Dining Room

Palmetto Room

Main Dining Room

Founders Hall


Leatherman Science Facility


Lee Nursing Building

Thomason Auditorium and Lobby

Lobby Only


McNair Science Building

Chapman Auditorium – Capacity 246-478
$500 plus Auditorium Coordinator

Lobby Only

University Center


$300 plus Building Worker, Security, and Special Services

University Center (Indoor) Pool and Outdoor Pool

University Center (Indoor) Pool
$75 per hour

Outdoor Pool
$75 per hour

Pool Reservations – Indoor and outdoor pool reservations must include a two-hour minimum rental and are subject to the availability of lifeguards and locker rooms. The Outdoor Pool may be reserved by officially recognized student organizations one night per week (usually Monday) for a two-hour period at $75 per hour. Additional lifeguard is $20 per hour and may be required depending upon the size and age of participants.

Indoor and Outdoor Pool Policies & Procedures are available from the University’s Office of Student Affairs.

Additional Charges

Charges may be incurred for facilities usage as well as separate day(s) needed for set-up and clean-up. Additional charges may also be incurred including set-up costs, extending beyond approved reserve times, fees for personnel for lighting, sound, security (Campus Police), custodial services, etc., or other additional costs not noted.

Individuals or groups may be charged for damages to University furnishings, equipment, facilities, or landscaping as well as missing University property (extension cords for example), or cleaning costs due to trash or materials left behind. If the event is catered by the University’s Dining Services provider, Dining Services is responsible for disposing of all garbage/trash.

Payment Due Date – If a facilities charge and/or charges for additional services are assessed, payment in full is due within two (2) weeks of invoice date. A late charge will be applied for delinquent payments.

How far in advance can I / should I book my event?

Timing – Space should be requested and forms should be filed at least two weeks in advance for routine events and earlier for large events or those requiring special preparation.

Advance Scheduling

University Groups – University Groups may schedule events up to 12 months in advance. University Groups may schedule a major event up to two years in advance. A major event is defined as a conference or similar activity requiring multiple rooms and where a commitment for facilities is required more than one year in advance. Student organizations may schedule events during the current semester.

Non-University GroupsNon-University Groups may schedule an event up to 60 days in advance.

University Employees or Current Students – Individual University employees or current students not part of a registered student organization may schedule an event up to 60 days in advance.

Summer Camps/Programs – Please contact the Coordinator of the University Center at (843) 661-1189 concerning Summer Camps/Programs.

What catering services are available for events held on university properties?

Francis Marion does offer catering services and if food is to be served at a function Francis Marion Catering is the required vendor.  You may contact catering at Catering@fmarion.edu or call at 843-661-1262.

What if my event needs security personnel?

If a police presence is required it must be FMU Campus Police or other certified law enforcement officers coordinated and approved by the Chief of Campus Police.

A minimum of fourteen (14) days notice is required to schedule officers. The event sponsor will be charged an hourly rate for each officer. The current cost of FMU PD officers is $15.45 per hour with a (4) hour minimum.The cost will be incorporated in the bill from Finance and Facilities. If the sponsor significantly underestimates the crowd or if additional officers are required to maintain order at the event, the additional resource cost will be levied upon the sponsor.

If the event is canceled, it is the sponsor’s responsibility to give Campus Police at least 8 hours notice.  if this condition is not met the sponsor will be responsible for the minimum officer costs (i.e. (4) hours per office requested).

** It is the Event Coordinators responsibility to contact Campus Police at (843)661-1109 regarding event details.

 Potential Additional Fire, Police, and Security Requirements

  • Francis Marion University Campus Police Department (FMUPD) reserves the right to require fire, police or other security personnel for events at Francis Marion University. The need shall be determined based on the time, place, and type of event, anticipated crowd and any extraordinary requests from the requesting parties.
  • Law enforcement personnel may also be provided at the request of the sponsoring group.
  • Events requiring security coverage will not be permitted if adequate security is unavailable.
  • To allow sufficient security for the event, law enforcement personnel must be coordinated in advance with the Francis Marion University Campus Police Department.
  • If a police presence is required, please complete the FMUPD Special Event/Request for Police Officers form. This form:
    • Must be completed by the individual or group requesting the services.
    • Can be obtained from the FMU Campus Police Department, the Office of Financial Services, or the Office of Student Life.
    • For student organizations, must be signed by the organization’s advisor.
    • Is completed along with the other forms relevant to the space being requested.
    • Must be turned in to Campus Police at least 2 weeks in advance of the event.
  • All Special Event requirements outlined in the Student Handbook must be complied with including additional requirements when hosting large events.
  • The individual or group sponsoring the event is responsible for all applicable security charges.
  • Campus Police can be contacted by calling 843-661-1109.

What if I need to rearrange the furniture in the area I am using?

If furniture is needed to be moved, you are going to need to document on your facility request that you need to have setup services.  Diagrams of how you wish to have the space setup is recommended to ensure if such accommodations can be made. If such accommodations can be made, we want to ensure we have a clear picture of what you want.  The Space Coordinator as well as the Facilities Management Office can assist you in determining if it is possible to do what you want to do in a particular facility.  Our Facilities Management Office can be contacted at 843-661-1108.

My student organization wants to rent facilities and host a fund raiser what is required to receive approval of a fundraiser?

The Student Organization Fundraising Income Report must be completed at least 10 business days after the event.  This form can found on the Student Life webpage.

**Note – An organization Fund Raising Income Report must be completed and submitted to the Student Affairs office within 10 business days of the fundraising event. Failure to report income received may result in disapproval of
future Fund Raising Event Requests.

I need to cancel a facilities request what do I need to do?

Cancellation of an event should be made by calling 843-661-1133 Monday through Friday, or you can submit a cancellation form using the link above. If necessary to cancel during the weekend, due to the proximity to the event date, please call Campus Police at 843-661-1109.

University groups must report cancellation of an event at least 48 hours prior to the event.

All other individuals or groups must report cancellation of an event at least seven business days prior to the event or forfeit the deposit if one had been required.

Failure to report cancellation in a timely manner may result in a charge of up to $50 or more.

If an individual or group cancels an event, the individual or group will be held responsible for all charges incurred as a result of any commitments made to facilitate the event.

General Rules and Guidelines for Facility Use.

Extraordinary Events – Requests for events which require extraordinary University services and use of facilities may be referred to senior administration by the Campus Space Coordinator for evaluation.

Opening and Closing of Facilities – After hours and on weekends, Campus Police may open facilities based on the Facilities Reservation Request. To preclude a space being left unattended, no facility will be opened until a member of the requesting group is on hand to assume responsibility for the area. The individual and/or group is financially liable for any and all
damages to University equipment, facilities, and grounds as duly determined by the University.

Campus Closing – Should the campus be closed due to inclement weather or any other unexpected event beyond the University’s control on the date(s) requested above, your event will be CANCELLED. If the sponsor is unable to reach the contact person for your event, closing information can be found on the Francis Marion University website.

Sponsor Accountability

The individual or group sponsoring an event is held accountable for the actions of the participants throughout the Francis Marion University campus.

Observance of Rules and Policies

Individuals or groups using Francis Marion University facilities shall assume full responsibility for adherence to University policies as well as all local, state and federal laws regarding the use of facilities. This includes but is not limited to policies stated on the University’s website including the Code of Student Conduct as well as other University policies located in the Rights and Responsibilities section of the Student Handbook.

Denial of Use of Facilities

Violation of any section of this policy may result in subject individuals or group(s) being denied the privilege of continued or future use of Francis Marion University facilities. Appeals must be submitted in writing to the Campus Space Coordinator within five working days of the issue being appealed. The appeals statement must contain grounds for the appeal and include all information presented for appeal. Decisions will be communicated to all parties within ten business days.

Supervision of Minors

Groups with participants under the age of 18 must provide adequate adult supervision.

Alcoholic Beverages

The possession and/or consumption of alcoholic beverages on the Francis Marion University campus is strictly prohibited except where permitted by established University policy. The University will enforce federal, state, and local laws, as well as its own alcohol and drug policies. The purpose of the Alcohol and Other Drug Policy Summary located in the Rights and Responsibilities section of the Student Handbook (as well as policies contained in the FMU Faculty Handbook, and the FMU Staff Handbook) is to address those areas wherein the consumption and/or possession of alcoholic beverages is permissible and to establish under what conditions such consumption and/or possession is permitted.


All State, Federal, and local laws will be strictly enforced. The possession of stimulants, depressants, narcotics, hallucinatory drugs, drug paraphernalia, and/or other agents having potential for mental or physical harm (except when these agents have been prescribed by a physician) is prohibited. Likewise, the selling, exchanging, and giving away of such drugs to any person not intended to possess them is prohibited. Prescribed medications should remain in the original marked containers.

Tobacco-Free Designation

Francis Marion University facilities are designated as tobacco-free.


Possession and/or use of any weapons or simulated weapons including, but not limited to, firearms, BB/pellet/air guns, blow guns, paint ball guns, sling shots or other projectile weapons; hatchets, knives or other edged weapons; bows/arrows, explosives, fireworks, chemical components expelled by compressed gases (i.e. OC or pepper spray); impact weapons (i.e., nun chucks, slap jacks, or other martial arts type weapons); electrical shock devices (i.e. stun guns or Taser type weapons); dangerous/noxious chemical mixtures, incendiary devices, propelled missiles or other dangerous substances is prohibited and may be illegal.


Advertising an event prior to event confirmation is prohibited and may result in denial of the request to use Francis Marion University facilities. All advertising for fund raising activities sponsored by University groups must prominently display the name of the sponsoring department or student organization.

Disclaimer Requirement for Printed Materials

Non-University individuals or groups may be asked to include the following statement in any printed materials related to a scheduled event: “Use of Francis Marion University facilities does not imply University sponsorship.”

Sales and Solicitations

Some sales or solicitations are permitted at Francis Marion University, but only as part of the legitimate fund raising activities of a student organization or University group. Requests for approval of any form of solicitation must be made in writing to the Dean of Students Office no later than seven business days preceding the proposed date of the activity. Following content approval by the Dean of Students Office; the appropriate space must be reserved. Sales and Solicitations must abide by the: “Solicitation Policy” in the Rights & Responsibilities section of the Student Handbook. Also, see the “Solicitation on Campus by Student Organizations” in the Student Services section of the Student Handbook.

All items and procedures for sale must comply with South Carolina law. All of the profits generated by a sale or solicitation conducted at Francis Marion University must be used for the activities of the sponsoring student organization, University group, or their publicly stated cause, e.g., a charitable organization. A fundraiser must be approved by the Office of Student Life prior to the event and a financial report must be submitted to the Office of Student Life after the fundraiser.

Distribution of Literature, Petition Drives, Surveys and Similar Activities

These activities must be conducted only from a reserved location, in accordance with the University Literature Distribution Policy (see the Rights & Responsibilities section of the Student Handbook), and with the approval of the Office of Student Life.


No pets are allowed with the exception of service animals (animals that are individually trained to perform tasks for people with disabilities).

Lost, Stolen, or Damaged Property

Francis Marion University is not responsible for any lost, stolen or damaged property belonging to users of the facilities.

Damages, Missing Items, or Trash

Individuals or groups are responsible for returning University facilities (including classrooms) to the original or better condition than prior to the event including the removal of trash, decorations, and materials. Damages, missing items, or trash may result in additional charges (see Facilities Charges section).

Decorations, Exhibits, and Displays

Decorating and posting limitations must be discussed with the Campus Space Coordinator at the time the event is scheduled. No tape, glue, tacks, Velcro, staples, pins, or nails are permitted on the walls, doors, floors, ceilings, glass, draperies, or woodwork of Francis Marion University facilities without approval of the respective building coordinator.

  1. Doorways, hallways, corridors, staircases and fire exits cannot be blocked or obstructed; all fire alarm pull stations, hydrants, and extinguishers must remain unobstructed and accessible by someone in a wheelchair.
  2. Light bulbs may not be placed where the heat from the bulbs might create a fire hazard.
  3. The use of candles or incense is not permitted.
  4. Table centerpieces must be non-flammable or constructed of fire resistant materials.
  5. Special effects equipment, such as smoke, fog and fire machines, sparklers, etc., is not permitted without approval of the Director of Campus Police at 843-661-1109.
  6. The use of glitter, rice, or similar materials in decorations and activities is not permitted.
  7. Decorations, exhibits, displays, and directional signs must be removed immediately following the event or activity, unless the respective building coordinator has approved other arrangements.
  8. The University (or it’s designated vendor) is not responsible for the loss of any materials, displays, gifts, favors or other items left in a building or on the grounds.
  9. Any special needs for decorations, exhibits, and displays beyond the scope of this policy must be approved by Francis Marion University.

Disclaimer of Liabilities and Limitations

Francis Marion University, its respective officers, employees, agents, and assigns explicitly disclaim any and all liability, damage, injury, or death resulting from the use of its facilities by University or non-University individuals or groups, regardless of whether or not such liability, damage, injury, or death arises, in whole or in part, from the negligence of Francis Marion University, its Board of Trustees, its respective officers, employees, agents, and assigns.

Further, University or non-University individuals or groups, their officers, employees, agents, or assigns shall hold harmless and indemnify Francis Marion University, its Board of Trustees, its respective officers, employees, agents, and assigns from any and all liability, damage, injury, or death resulting from the use of its facilities, regardless of whether or not such liability, damage, injury, or death arises, in whole or in part, from the negligence of Francis Marion University, its respective officers, employees, agents, and assigns.


For a medical emergency, to report a fire, or to summon Campus Police:

  • Dial 843-661-1109 from an off-campus or cell phone
  • Dial 1109 from a campus phone
  • Use one of the Emergency Call Boxes or access telephones on campus. These devices provide 24 hour access to Campus Police.
  • Go directly to the Campus Police Office located in the Campus Police/Facilities Management Building, 4804 Heyward Drive. The building is normally open Monday through Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 11:30 p.m.

Automated External Defibrillator (AED) Units

Automated External Defibrillator (AED) units are available in several buildings on campus but should be used only by persons trained in the use of this equipment.

Emergency Siren System

An emergency siren system has been added to the campus to notify the campus community of emergencies that might threaten the health and safety of the FMU community. In the event of a natural or man-made emergency the siren system may be activated to advise what action should be taken.

Fire Evacuation

In the event of a fire or as a result of fire alarm activation, all persons in the facility will evacuate the building. Everyone will remain outside the building until the area is cleared by Campus Police or responding fire department personnel.

POLICY AMENDED: December 2019