Event Support Team

The Event Support Team at the University of South Florida helps support the success of events and activism on all USF campuses.  You will often see members of the team at on-campus protests, vigils, demonstrations, and at programs with speakers with controversial material or other risk factors.  The Event Support Team is a trained group of USF staff who are focused on:

  1. Supporting free speech rights and student activisim
  2. Educating organizers and bystanders on their rights and responsibilities
  3. Maintaining the university's ability to meet its academic mission
  4. Responding to events in order to ensure a safe living and learning environment

When planning activities please contact the event support team coordinator to discuss safety planning and coordinating support team members.

Activism on campus

The University of South Florida's efforts are designed to support student democratic engagement and civic learning within a healthy campus climate. A healthy, democratically engaged environment at USF is driven by USF’s Principles of Community and leadership and civic engagement concepts (e.g. controversy with civility, conversations across difference, community engagement, and active citizenship) all within the bounds of community conduct expectations.

Student Success staff and students from across all three campuses offer resources and events to support a healthy community. We encourage all USF Bulls to engage as active citizens while managing your health and wellness needs.

Information on planning activist events and attending activist events can be found on the Center for Leadership & Civic Engagement (CLCE) website.

Free Speech at USF

  • Campuses are open forums for first amendment activities
  • Time, place, and manner can be managed
  • USF has policies on amplified sound and events
  • Hate speech: speech has to reach a level of threat or intimidation to be considered hate speech
  • Some speech is protected, some is not

Attending a Protest

Before you engage as an active citizen, you should educate yourself on relevant issues and evaluate the event in relation to personal, group, and community values and beliefs. If you choose to attend, make a plan that considers your safety, health, and wellbeing. You should know, in advance, what to do, what not to do, what to wear, and what to bring. You can find a variety or online resources that can help you develop your plan.

You should also know your rights, responsibilities, and limits. The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) Know Your Rights explains your basic rights under the U.S. Constitution and civil rights laws. The website will help you learn more about what your rights are, how to exercise them, and what to do when your rights are violated. One section specifically focuses on Protestors’ Rights and provides information or organizing and attending a protest, including what to do if stopped by the police.