Planning Process

This site is here to assist in planning and implementing campus-wide events.

  • No contracts, commitments, flyers, invitations, etc. can be put into action until the Major Event has been approved by President’s Cabinet. Check the President's Cabinet dates (at right) to calendar your event approval.
  • Planning for any major event should being at least six months prior to the event. The sooner you plan the better the event!
  • The event plan should first be developed and discussed in consultation with initiator’s supervisor and with the Dean's approval.
  • Invitations to all VIPs (District, college, and external) MUST be coordinated with the President's Office. Any invitation to District officials and other VIPS and be extended from the college President. Please contact Sara Beth Cain at 619-388-2722, or email
  • Be sure to check the Events Planning Calendar for conflicts with other events and opportunities (sharing in table and tent rentals, etc)
  • All events should address the college’s mission, vision and values, and the goals, priorities, ILOs and the department’s SLOs.

When planning an event, please be considerate of people's time and availability. Certainly, large events such as Commencement and the Scholarship Gala require bringing together a group of involved departments and staff. But not every event requires the formation of a taskforce. Smaller events can be done with an informal group. And, planning of larger events do not always require getting everyone in one room together. Consider communicating and involving important contributors via email rather than calling a meeting.

Establishing an event budget takes time and research. Planning your budget is just as important as the content itself to ensure success. First figure out what your expenses will be. Consider:

• Printing – Think before you print. Utilize eblast and invitations, and posting information to your websites. Use Reprographics to save time and money.

• Postage – Again, do you need to mail or can you communicate electronically?

• Speakers/Consultants/Entertainer expenses

• Food/Hospitality

• Equipment Rental

• Supplies (balloons, paper, serving equipment, thank you gifts)

• Custodial and audio-visual expenses (set-up, take-down)

• Permits

Finding Funds for Your Event

  • Some events can be funded through general or categorical funds, or admissions/registration fees or donation solicitations.
  • Consider setting up or using Fiduciary Account for admission/registration fees and donated income.
  • Think outside the box for funding sources: vendors, partnering institutions, company and community sponsors.
  • Possible on campus funding sources: Fiduciary Accounts, Humanities Institute, Associated Student Government;Staff Development Funds
  • Please be sure seek the assistance of your manager and Business Services to ensure proper collection and documentation of funds received. Also, keep in mind that some funding options have deadlines that require that applications be submitted a year in advance of your event.
  • Check the campus Master Planning Calendar (click on the link at left) to make sure there are no other competing major events that are already approved for the same day.
  • Also check the Planning Calendar to see if there is another major event that may complement your event and for which you could share resources such as equipment rental, facilities set-up, etc. Be flexible to obtain achieve cost efficiencies.
  • If you event is for staff, Fridays are a great day because of facility, parking and personnel availability.
  • Is the event for students? Consider class start and end times.
  • Availability of desired speaker, consultant, or entertainer. Remember that all VIP invitation (college, SDCCD and external) must be made in consultation with and come from the Office of the President.
  • Avoid Tuesdays. The President attends Chancellor's Cabinet every Tuesday morning and is unavailable. Administrators and President's Cabinet meet on Tuesday afternoons.
  • Weekend and evening activities may require additional fees for AV, facilities, etc.

When choosing a location, you need to consider the needs of the event.

  • How many attendees are expected?
  • Is a SMART classroom/room needed?
  • For off-campus attendees, is the location easy to find?
  • Where will they park?
  • If holding an outside event, how will the construction noise and dust affect the event?
  • Be sure to include set up and take down time in your reservation request. Sometimes, for morning events, you may be able to set up the evening before.

Check location availability in the Public Folders, under Mesa, Mesa LRC Rms and Mesa Quad Reservations. To reserve a space, contact the following:

  • LRC: Ginger Davis, 388-2799
  • Art Gallery: (receptions only) Pat Vine, 388-2829
  • Athletic Fields: Ida Stark, 388-2737
  • All other rooms: Mila Zagyanskiy, 388-2755
  • All outdoor locations: Mila Zagyanskiy, 388-2755

NOTE: The Gymnasium and Apolliad Theatre are for instructional classroom use only.

The Mesa College Communications Office can help you plan and “package” your event with an appropriate theme and design for electronic and print promotions; as well as help you promote your event on campus and in the community. Contact Lina Heil at 619-388-2759 or early in your planning stages, but after you have received approval for the event from your supervisor and Dean. Lina and Mesa's graphic artists/photographers will work with you to develop a theme and look, and to develop a cost-efficient and effective plan to market your event. They can help you with:

  • Programs
  • Photography
  • Event Listing in This Month at Mesa/eNews Coverage
  • Facebook and Social Media promotion
  • Flyers, posters, AFrames
  • Electronic promotion: web, facebook, eblast and invites
  • Online Campus Calendar
  • Electronic Signage and VISIX slides
  • Press Releases and news media coordination

Audio Visual

Audio Visual needs can encompass many things: microphones, laptops for Powerpoint presentations; video taping and sound. Contact the AV Supervisor at x2690 to discuss to your AV needs. Make your reservation as soon as possible. Staffing is limited .


Once you have reserved your event space(s), you need to make all the arrangements for facilities set up. These include

• Furniture/equipment needs defined

• Setup and teardown diagrams and instructions, foot traffic flow, etc.

• Custodial help before, during, and after

• Electrical power and lighting services

• Storage, if applicable

Requests are made through the Facilities Services website. Questions can be directed to 388-2814


Some major events require the rental of equipment such as tables and skirting, tents, canopies, chairs, umbrellas, lecterns and more.It is important to first check with Campus Facilities (388-2814) to see what equipment is available. Other offices on campus may have items that can be borrowed such as tents/canopies or umbrellas.


If you are inviting outside guest and/or vendors to your event, you need to consider parking, maps and directional signage. Some spaces may be reserved, or you may be able to obtain a limited number of permits for smaller events. Talk to your manager and parking services at 619-388-6416.


The approval of vending activities and food handling on campus is subject to District Policy 6905.1. Note that if you plan to serve food, you must provide copies of the appropriate catering or temporary food vending license/permit from the food vendor to your School Dean at least 10 days prior to the event or upon request.If you have questions regarding food and food vending, contact Aaron Trapp at 619-388-2560.

VIPs: If the college president is to be invited or asked to speak, you should first clear the President's availability. Attendance by VIPs (district or external) or VIPS or high profile speakers must also be made in consultation/coordination with the President's Office, and all invitations to this group must come from the Office of the President. Please have your manager or dean contact Beth Cain at 619-388-2722.

Speakers/Consultants/Entertainers: Outside speakers, consultants and entertainers can strengthen any event. When considering incorporating these persons, you must follow certain District requirements and paperwork:

• Instructions for Lecturer and Consultants

• District Lecture/Workshop Agreement

• Guest Lecture Invoice

• District Evaluation of Employer/Employee Relationship

Other items to consider include:

• Accommodations

• Travel

• Parking

• Hospitality (for day of the event)

• Thank you gifts and after event thank you notes