Events and Gatherings

As of May 10, 2021, university organizations may offer in-person programming and Ohio State venues may consider third-party events that want to use university spaces under these guidelines.

  • All events and gatherings must follow state, local and university protocols to protect all involved. Note that all guidance is subject to change based on health guidance.
  • Daily activities are permitted. Overnight activities are not at this time.
  • All events must be approved in advance through one of the below protocols. University venues are prepared to help event sponsors through the process and requirements to facilitate safe events.
    • Event organizers who want to hold an event at a university approved venue should work directly with the venue contact. Venues will submit the event approval application on behalf of the event organizer. 

    • Event organizers who want to hold an event at a college- or unit-managed facility should submit the Unit-Managed Submission Form to Vice Provost Randy Smith
    • University event organizers who want to hold an event at an off-campus (third-party) venue should work with their director to obtain approvals. Once approved, event organizers should submit the Off-Campus Venue Event Approval Application to the Events Review Committee.  

An event is defined as a planned activity, other than academic classes scheduled as part of the university curriculum, that is held in a university building or outdoor space on a university campus or with a community partner. A gathering is defined as a formal or informal assembly of people that is either planned or spontaneous.

These restrictions do not prohibit gatherings for the purpose of the expression of First Amendment-protected speech.

Current Guidance

Mask requirements

For fully vaccinated people, masks are no longer required on Ohio State’s campuses except for in Wexner Medical Center facilities, Student Health facilities and on public transportation – in accordance with public health guidelines. Fully vaccinated individuals are also no longer required to physically distance. Individuals who are not vaccinated are required to continue wearing masks indoors and physically distancing at all times.


As of June 2nd, indoor venues may operate at full capacity. 

Education of staff and guests

Program leaders must have a plan in place to ensure appropriate distancing for participant registration, drop-off, pick-up and other aspects of the program. All staff must be educated on proper masking requirements, sanitation, cleaning, and social distancing. Summer programs that involve minor participants must follow all university policies related to staffing, education, and background checks. 

Cleaning and sanitation expectations

Clean equipment and other high-touch spaces regularly throughout the day. All spaces are also be cleaned and disinfected nightly. Leaders of summer program that are taking place on The Ohio State University property must work with Facilities Operations and Development to determine who will be cleaning spaces and any associated costs. Programs should appoint one staff member who is responsible for the ongoing monitoring of safety protocols.


Pre-packaged meals are preferred when possible. Self-serve options should be limited and serving utensils must be regularly cleaned.

PPE (personal protective equipment) – including hand cleaning stations

Hands should be washed frequently with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after touching common surfaces. If soap and water are not available, 70% alcohol-based hand sanitizer should be used. Programs should allow for regular hand washing.

COVID19 Testing

University staff and faculty are encouraged to continue to participate in weekly testing if they are coming to campus. Ohio State students will be subject to mandatory testing under the Student Testing Program. The university does not plan to test participants.

Contact tracing

All programs must maintain accurate participation and attendance logs for use with potential contact training.  When grouping participants in cohorts (10 or fewer), programs must maintain logs of the members of each cohort group.

All units should continue to consult with the Office of Legal Affairs on contract terms regarding cancellation and postponement.

We can do this!

Even with limitations to keep our Buckeye community healthy and safe, there are many ways to experience being a Buckeye. Visit for ideas of things to do on campus and around Columbus while still doing your part to protect others.

Accountability measures

Accountability measures are in place for those who choose not to abide by required health and safety guidelines. These accountability measures may range from additional training and informal coaching to formal disciplinary action based on existing structures for students, faculty and staff.

Please reference this website for the most up-to-date guidelines. The university’s COVID-19 Transition Task Force’s Safe Campus and Scientific Advisory Subgroup will continue monitoring changing conditions and consult with local and state health authorities. Recommendations and requirements will be refined as needed.