Public Space and Room Usage Policy

Main Content

The physical space at Morris Library has been designed, in part, to enhance and extend the Library as a center of academic community and campus life: intellectual, social, cultural, and creative. To this end, a variety of spaces have been created. The Library welcomes campus organizations and University-affiliated groups to hold events, meetings, and other functions in Morris Library. Request by other groups may also be considered as identified in this policy.

This document explains the policies related to room usage at Morris Library. In all areas, exceptions will be considered. All requests for exceptions and special permission must be received in writing and granted in writing by the Office of the Dean of Library Affairs.


The following groups are eligible to request rooms and space at Morris Library. Note: eligibility for room usage is different from room charges which are explained in a later section.

  1. Organization or units that are organizationally part of the University. Examples: academic colleges and departments, research centers, University business/operational centers (e.g., Information Technology, Physical Plant, Financial Aid, Sharp Museum, etc.)
  2. Organizations or groups affiliated with the University. Examples: Alumni Association, Faculty Club, RSO’s, Friends of Morris Library, SIU Foundation, etc.
  3. Other organizations, especially non-profit organizations, whose primary mission and intended event or meeting is instructional or research-related and which may contribute to or enhance the academic or cultural life of the campus.

The Library will give priority to requests from affiliated groups (1 and 2 above); requests from other organizations will be considered but will be subject to availability, ease of scheduling/ accommodation to library hours, and relevance of the proposed activity to the mission of the Library as a center of academic community and campus life.

Reservation Time Frames

Organizations may initiate requests for reservations up to one year in advance. All event details (scheduled time, requested equipment, etc.) are required no later than seven (7) business days prior to the event. Cancellations are required five (5) business days before the requested event (see cancellation for additional details).

Request and Scheduling Process

  • Requests must be made using the proper Event Space Application.
  • Events must occur during designated event hours. During the fall and spring semesters event hours are as follows: Monday through Thursday from 8am - 9pm, Friday from 8am to 8:30pm, Saturday from 10am to 6pm, and Sunday from 11am to 9pm. Events that fall outside this time frame will be charged $200 ($150 for RSOs) Outside Hours Fee.
  • Requests during final exam week and study period (the week before finals) will be considered but may not be approved due to the special constraints and demands on space during this time.
  • No space at Morris should be used for regularly scheduled classes over the course of the semester.
  • When a reservation request is made, it can take up to three business days for Administrative Office staff to process the reservation.
  • Once it is processed, a confirmation e‐mail will be sent to the primary contact person.

Food and Drink

  • Use of food and drink must be requested (see space request form). If approved, all groups should be conscious that the event occurs in a library and that food and drink can attract pests that are harmful to books and printed materials. While groups may bring pre-packaged food purchased from grocery stores etc., homemade food is not permissible. 
  • SIU maintains a list of approved caterers that you may use for your event.
  • Use of alcohol may be permitted if requested. If approved, the requesting group is responsible for seeking necessary and appropriate permissions from the University ( The Dean of Library Affairs must sign the form as “Facility Director.” This form should be submitted with the Space Use Request Form.
  • In all cases, groups are responsible for food and drink with vendors including service arrangements and payment.


  • Most rooms have built-in computer capabilities for display and internet access (see room inventory). Morris Library does not provide assistance with the technology. For help with projectors, computers, internet, passwords, etc. please contact SalukiTech.
  • Wireless access is available throughout the building but it is not recommended that groups rely on wireless connectivity for internet access.
  • Supplemental technology may be moved into the space for the event as may be necessary. This must be arranged by the requestor. Technical support of supplemental technology is the responsibility of the technology provider. Supplemental equipment and tech support costs are the responsibility of the requestor.
  • All Library workstations include the standard Windows-based office applications (Word, Excel, and PowerPoint) and internet connectivity through established browsers (Explorer and Firefox).

Furniture and General Usage

  • The Library has limited additional seating and tables available upon request. Furniture may also be brought in by an outside vendor. Groups are responsible for arrangements with vendors including service arrangements and payment.
  • Morris Library does not set up the furniture for you. The tables, chairs, and easels that you request will be located between the first floor rotunda and Guyon Auditorium. It is your responsibility to locate those items and set them up how you would like for your event. Please allow extra time for this. If needed, you may contact Building Services for assistance in set up. This must be done by the event organizer ahead of time.


  • Cancellation. Cancellations should be received at least two weeks prior to the event.  If late or no notice is given, the Library Administration may decline future reservations for the sponsoring group. If no cancellation is received within 72 hours the department or program will be charged a $25 fee. Cancellation policy will be waived if weather conditions or other emergencies cause the cancellation. The sponsoring group is responsible for cancelling any other non-library services that it may have arranged (such as catering or furniture rental).


  • Liabilities and Insurance. Groups not affiliated with the University may be required to purchase insurance for the event.
  • Parking. Groups not affiliated with the University must make arrangements with University Parking. The Library is not responsible for parking tickets as may be issued. Information about parking is available at: and a helpful FAQ at:
  • Library Name. Groups may use the name of Morris Library in materials related to the meeting. Any use other than to identify the location must be approved separately. Invitations must not give the impression of Library sponsorship unless the Library has agreed to be a co-sponsor of the event.
  • Safety. Due to fire code regulations, the number of guests attending the scheduled function may not exceed the capacity of the room. In additional, aisles leading to exit doors cannot be obstructed. The maximum capacity of each spaced is addressed in the public room/space inventory.

Event Technology/Support Charges

The Library is no longer charging Event Technology or Support Charges to campus affiliates.

** In forming this policy, the Library reviewed a number of other library space usage policies from other institutions. Helpful information was found at the web sites of the libraries at UMass Amherst, University of Minnesota, Carnegie Mellon, Central Michigan University and others. In a few cases, wording has been used directly from selected sections of these other policies.


Approved by the Library Affairs Steering Committee on January 31, 2024.