Orientation and Welcoming Activities

Policy Category: 
Student Related
Approved By: 
Provost and Vice-President (Academic)
Effective Date: 
August 1986 [Revised April 2002; March 2010]

 

To ensure that orientation and welcoming activities organized by student clubs and student associations are positive experiences and that due diligence is being carried out so as to minimize risk to individuals, student clubs, associations, and the University, the following policy and associated protocol is put into place.

Policy

All orientation and welcoming activities organized by student organizations or clubs of Lakehead University are subject to review as per the protocol and procedures outlined below and must receive final approval in advance of the planned activities from the Office of the Vice-Provost (Student Affairs) in Thunder Bay or the Assistant Dean (Student Affairs) in Orillia.

Protocol

  1. All orientation and welcoming activities should be conducted within four weeks of the start of the respective academic term.
  2. No later than 10 Working Days prior to a planned event, all orientation and welcoming activities must receive preliminary approval from the First Year Experience, Leadership & Special Programming Coordinator (FYEC), in Thunder Bay and the Assistant Dean of Student Affairs (ADO) in Orillia.
  3. The scheduling of any orientation and welcoming activities in conflict with scheduled lectures, seminars or laboratory periods must be approved by the professors involved and the School/Department Chair/Director/Dean (as applicable).
  4. Final approval of all orientation and welcoming activities must be obtained from the Vice-Provost (Student Affairs) in Thunder Bay or the ADO in Orillia after preliminary approval has been received (see number 2 above) and the "Orientation and Welcoming Activities Form" has been completed.
  5. The promotion, consumption or distribution of alcohol is strictly prohibited from any orientation or welcoming activities.
  6. Participation in orientation and welcoming activities is strictly voluntary and no student shall be coerced, pressured or intimidated to participate.
  7. "Hazing" of students - i.e. harassment, humiliation, compulsory participation in demeaning activities is strictly forbidden. Any allegations of such behaviours will be investigated and appropriately dealt with. (Refer to the Code of Student Behaviour and Disciplinary Procedures for a comprehensive definition of hazing.)
  8. Individual students, the student organizers, and/or officers of student associations are subject to the sanctions of the Code of Student Behaviour and Disciplinary Procedures for acts that are in breach of University regulations. Legal charges may be laid for actions in breach of the law.
  9.  Any unauthorized orientation and welcoming activities not approved as per items 2, 3 and 4 above are subject to being cancelled.
  10. Organizers of unauthorized orientation and welcoming activities (including those activities that have not been appropriately approved as per items 2, 3 and 4 above) that do occur will be subject to the full sanctions of the Code of Student Behaviour and Disciplinary Procedures and will be held responsible for activities and any resulting ramifications of all such unauthorized events.

Procedures

  1. The "Orientation and Welcoming Activities Form" must be completed and submitted to the FYEC in Thunder Bay or the ADO in Orillia no later than 10 Working Days prior to the beginning of the planned event (as per step 2 above). The form must be completed in its entirety.
  2. The FYEC in Thunder Bay or the ADO in Orillia, will assess whether the planned event is appropriate or needs modifications. If modifications are required, a revised submission must be presented to the FYEC or ADO as applicable
  3. If applicable, approval must be sought by professors and the School/Department Chair/Director/Dean for any planned events that are in conflict with scheduled lectures, seminars or laboratory periods.
  4. Once preliminary approval is obtained and any modifications and revisions have been made as directed, submit the completed "Orientation and Welcoming Activities Form" with the necessary signatures to the Vice-Provost (Student Affairs) in Thunder Bay or the Assistant Dean (Student Affairs) for OFFICIAL and FINAL approval.
  5. For informational purposes, a copy of the approved submission will be distributed:
    In Thunder Bay, to:
  • Director of Physical Plant,
  • Manager of Security Services,
  • Appropriate School/Department Chair/Director/Dean, and
  • Office of Communications
In Orillia, to:
    • Assistant Vice-President of Finance and Administration
    • Dean of the Orillia Campus
    • Orillia Campus Coordinating Committee

    Review of this Policy

    The Vice-Provost (Student Affairs) will ensure that this policy and the requirements and procedures are reviewed within 3 years and will recommend any changes deemed necessary to the Vice-President (Academic).

    Additional Notes and Considerations in Planning Orientation and Welcoming Activities

    In planning orientation and welcoming activities:

    • Contact the FYEC in Thunder Bay or the ADO in Orillia to discuss planned activities well in advance. It is much easier to modify plans at an early stage if necessary; moreover, these individuals are able to assist the organizing association/individuals with any process-related questions.
    • Overall, the atmosphere surrounding orientation and welcoming activities is one of excitement and enthusiasm. Activities that under normal circumstances would be considered "low risk" have potential for greater risk during orientation and welcoming activities.
    • Risk management and precautions (i.e. protective clothing, first aid resources, and appropriately trained student supervisors) can make a big difference to a positive orientation or welcoming activity.
    • Remember that the University and legal courts view the officers of the association (or organizers of the events) as being responsible for the activities and the behaviour of the students involved in the event. Risk management and precautionary actions are critical!
    • Consider that orientation and welcoming activities can be used to raise funds or complete work projects for your association and or a community organization. Your event may be an opportunity to link your association with the community!
    • Associations and Clubs that wish to engage in any type of fundraising activities (e.g. for prize solicitation, sponsorships, etc) must consult with University Advancement FIRST to ensure an organized and appropriate approach is taken. Moreover, University Advancement is solely responsible for any receipting and can assist with recognition.
    • The public-at-large and the business community (including future employers) view your association, your school/department/faculty, and the University as a whole according to the image you create through the orientation and welcoming activities you plan and way these activities are executed.
    • Remember to call 8911 for on-campus emergencies or 911 for off-campus emergencies
    • If the planned event requires an event specific waiver, the Director of Risk Management (DRM) can assist with the wording of this and explain best practices in employing waivers
    • If the event requires that you collect money for some reason, please remember that you should have a "float" to provide change. Consider how you will handle and keep the money and how to provide receipts.