Timeline for Conference Planning

Each conference and event is different in scope and size.   Below is a suggested timeline when considering your event here at NDSU.  Our conference staff will help remind you as deadlines approach.  All conference requests are due to the conference coordinator by March 31 the year of your conference. 

1-2 years before conference
  • Discuss with us what potential housing, facility, meal needs your group may have.
  • Come take a tour with us!
  • Research past conferences for your organization and share notes with us about your budget, past rates & fees, facilities used and other needs. 

9-12 months
  • Finalize dates and sign a conference agreement for facilities to be used.
  • Work with your insurance provider to prepare insurance certificate
  • Start advertising and registration for your conference.  Be sure to share our website with all your attendees so they're prepared!
6-9 months
  • Think about size of sessions (keynote, breakout sessions and of course food!), so we can help choose the best space for your experience.
  • What do you have planned for fun?  There are many great options on or near campus.  Hint: Look at our Recreation Options.
  • Have your travel accommodations ready.  We're located right next to an airport, have plenty of parking on-site and are accessible via ride share.
4-6 months
2-4 months
  • Submit catering orders and preliminary attendance numbers for housing.
  • Plan housing with careful attention to check in, check out, and available options
1-2 months
2-4 weeks
  • Finalize your dining arrangements, times, and accommodations for special diets.
  • Finalize your housing arrangements and room assignments.
  • Finalize all other logistics (transportation, parking, etc..). 
Conference/Event Week
  • Prepare for arrival on campus and where participants will check-in for registration.
  • Stop in our office in the Memorial Union and feel free to ask us for any help!
  • You might need an extra boost, so be sure to check out our new Caribou Coffee in the Memorial Union.
If there is any thing that we can help with, especially if your a first-time conference planner, don't hesitate to email us at ndsu.conference@ndsu.edu.

Conference Host Responsibilities

As a conference or event chair, you play an important role in helping us make sure that we are meeting your expectations.  Some of the roles of the conference chair include:

  • Planning the conference agenda.
  • Submitting required paperwork to NDSU in a timely fashion.
  • Communicating information to your participants.
  • Serve as the liaison and primary contact between conference guests and NDSU.
  • Help ensure that attendees comply with NDSU rules and regulations.
  • Serve as the contact for speakers, participants and special guests.

Policies & Planning Guidelines

Policies and Procedures from the Office of Conference Programs, Memorial Union and the Departments of Residence Life and Dining Services are provided below.  Careful review of this information provides an important foundation for the planning of a conference. 

NDSU Policies that apply to conference planning include:

Policy 153 - Smoke Free Facilities

Policy 155 - Policy on Alcohol and Other Drugs

Policy 170 - Guides NDSU Staff in the Planning of Events for Staff and Guests (NDSU Departments Only)

Policy 407 - Provider of Services on Campus/Auxiliary Exclusive Services



Helpful Links & Internet Access

Top of page