Office of the President

Campus Policy on Campus Commercial Underwriting

Executive Memorandum 94-050 September 27, 1994


The purpose of this policy is to establish procedures and guidelines for entities of the university community desiring to produce programs and publications with assistance from commercial businesses. The policy recognizes that extramural resources are important in providing quality academic and co-curricular programs and publications. It also recognizes the sensitive nature of such relationships and the need to protect institutional integrity and the image of the University.


This policy applies to all university units and auxiliary organizations when they propose to engage in an activity or publication underwritten by a commercial business whether wholly or in part. Recognized student organizations must adhere to this policy for all activities or publications proposed to be underwritten by a commercial business and held, promoted, or distributed on the campus. Grants and contracts administered by the Office of Sponsored Projects and the Research Foundation under university policy are exempt. While operating in their regular sites, the Associated Students Wildcat Enterprises and KCHO are exempt from these regulations. The Orion continues to operate by special standards reflecting the unique legal relationship between universities and the student press

Commercial Underwriting Defined

Commercial underwriting is defined as "any relationship between a campus entity and a commercial (for profit) business that includes promotional consideration by the campus entity in exchange for financial or in-kind support or donation." Promotional consideration includes any mention of a commercial enterprise or product included in the promotion or execution of a campus entity's activities or publications.

Approvals for Underwriting

The Associated Students and recognized student organizations shall submit written proposals for commercial underwriting to the Student Activities Office. All other university units shall seek approval from the vice president to whom they report.

Proposals should include

  • Name of the program or publication
  • Time, duration, and venue of program
  • Name of campus sponsor
  • Nature and amount or market value of underwriter's support (dollars donated, in-kind donated, benefit derived from commercial relationship)
  • Samples, replicas, or precise description of logos and slogans to be used in the promotion and execution of the event or publication, including a precise description of the manner in which these will be used (in print on banners, announcements, etc.)
  • All proposed written contractual agreements must be attached

Guidelines for Approval

The activity or publication must be sponsored by and fully under the control and authority of the campus sponsor. The amount and appropriateness of the financial contribution, donation, or in-kind support will be evaluated. All written contracts will be reviewed. Appropriate signatories from the campus will be determined.

The primary focus of the promotion of the activity or publication must be on the University approved program and not on the underwriter. The display of the name of the underwriting company included on promotional materials or the publication shall not to be the primary visual, or in the case of broadcast media, auditory-focus. The name or logo of the underwriting company may be used, but not the name or representation of a product of the company, unless they are one and the same. In any case, alcoholic beverage and tobacco products may not be advertised, promoted, or referred to in promotional materials.

Proposed permanent signs attached to University property promoting a commercial underwriting must be referred to the Campus Planning Committee for recommendation to the president.


It is the responsibility of the University Cabinet to maintain consistency in the approval of these guidelines

Use of University Name or Logo

Use of the name of the University, its marks, and logos on promotional material of any kind is regulated by the university licensing agreement. All uses must receive prior approval of the University President's Office.

Commercial Sales on Campus

Commercial sales and solicitation on campus fall under policies contained in the guidelines for speech and advocacy and the operating agreement with the Associated Students.

Commercial Display By Lessees

Lessees of university venues may display temporary commercial signs inside the facilities they rent and during the time they have the facilities reserved. Signs must not be visible from outside the facility.