Registering Events With Alcohol

Student Expectations for Safe Event Hosting

All members of the Penn student community, undergraduate, graduate, or professional, are expected to follow University policies and local, state, and federal laws at all times. These expectations extend to all event hosting, whether in on-campus spaces (such as fraternity house or Houston Hall), off-campus residences, or third-party venues (such as clubs).

All student organizations are required to register social events with alcohol, regardless of where the event will be held. Registration helps student groups manage risk, since registered events require hosts to provide bartenders and security. Student group leaders should submit the registration materials and await response from AOD and/or an advisor (if applicable). Student groups should not publicize any event until they have received formal approval from AOD.

Many University undergraduate student organizations are subject to policies regarding the possession and consumption of alcohol imposed by a parent organization. If the policies governing an individual organization impose more restrictive regulations regarding alcohol possession and consumption it will be necessary for that organization to follow its parent organization's policies or risk sanctions. If, however, the parent organization permits the possession or consumption of alcohol where otherwise prohibited by University policy, the organization must comply with the University's policy, notwithstanding its parent organization's rules.

New in 2019:

  • No registered events may be held in basements, whether in on-campus fraternity houses, off-campus fraternity houses, or private off-campus residences. Organizations may hold chapter-based activities and internal house gatherings in basement spaces, but for safety concerns, events must be held on the first floor if a larger group made up of non-members are attending.
  • Other organizations, such as athletic teams or performing arts groups, may be subject to additional expectations by coaches, advisors, or sponsors.
  • Organizations that live in, and host events at, private off-campus residences are subject to additional expectations set forth in rental agreements/leases and in personal communications with landlords.
  • As of September 1, 2019, fraternities that are part of the North American Interfraternity Council (NIC) are subject to additional expectations set forth by their national organizations. These include:
    • Hard liquor may not be served at events in chapter houses
    • Events with alcohol are limited to a 3:1 maximum guest-to-member ratio, meaning the total guest list must not be greater than three times the chapter's total membership
    • Fraternities must keep a guest list for all events with alcohol

Costs associated with hosting events with alcohol:

Student groups hosting events where alcohol is served must have professional bartenders serving at the bar and professional security checking IDs at the front door. Funding is available to all undergraduate and graduate student groups to assist with the cost of these services. All student groups will have these costs automatically subsidized for up to 4 events per semester. There is no separate application process to receive funds; AOD will automatically book and pay for these services upon approval of registration forms. After those 4 events, student groups are responsible for the costs of bartenders ($35/hr/bartender) and security where applicable ($34/hr for a pair). Please contact Jackie Radford, jamich@upenn.edu, with any questions.


REGISTRATION GUIDELINES AND FORMS:

 How to Register an Event With Alcohol (On-Campus Location or Off-Campus Residence) 

 How to Register an Event With Alcohol (Third-Party Venue) 

 Registration FAQ 

Information on Hosting Events with Alcohol in Perelman Quad Spaces

Graduate student organizations: Visit the GSC guidelines page


Registering Events Without Alcohol

Student organizations wishing to hold events without alcohol are required to register with AOD, regardless of whether the event will be held in an on-campus fraternity house, off-campus residence, or third-party venue. Registration of these events helps Event Observers and Penn Police identify and differentiate between activity each weekend. Student group leaders should submit the registration materials and await response from AOD and/or an advisor (if applicable). Student groups should not publicize any event until they have received formal approval from AOD. 

 How to Register a Dry Event (Alcohol-Free) 


Questions? Contact AOD's Program Coordinator, Jackie Radford: jamich@upenn.edu or (215) 573-3525