A. The Office of Conferences operates a 24/7 hour reception desk. Participants can call (615) 343-8699, ext. 1, 24 hours, 7 days a week to reach a staff member. Staff is on duty around the clock to respond to any problems which may arise. The Office of Conferences is open from 8:00 a.m. until 5:00 p.m., Monday through Friday.
Q. If I drive my car to campus, is there a place for me to park?
A. A limited number of parking permits/hang tags are provided, arrangements need to be made prior to the event through your group organizers. Vanderbilt University is a residential campus, parking spaces are very limited. Parking hang tags are $10 per day, per vehicle and are to be hung on your rear view mirror. We will do our best to accommodate your parking needs in specific designated areas of campus close to the residence halls.Please let us know if your group will have buses and large passenger vans. We can make special arrangements in advance for parking options to accommodate large buses and vans.
Q. What happens if I get sick while attending a conference?
A. There is a CVS Pharmacy which has a ‘Minute Clinic,’ located off 21st Ave on Scarritt Place. Board-certified practitioners are trained to diagnose and treat common illnesses, flu, cold, strep throat, bronchitis, ear, eye and sinus infections. Open 7 days a week. No appointment is necessary, most insurance accepted. An ambulance will be called for all major medical emergencies and injuries.
Q. My plane was delayed and I missed the designated check-in time, what do I do?
A. Just call our 24/7 Conference number (615) 343-8699 and someone will assist you. Whatever your special needs may be, we will be happy to assist in making your stay comfortable and rewarding.
Q. What does the Office of Conferences do to ensure our safety while on campus?
A. The Office of Conferences takes your safety very seriously. All buildings are controlled by an access security card system. Cards are pre-programmed specifically for your participants based on zoned areas and where we have agreed to specific areas of access in advance. Reception desks will be staffed and Allied Barton Security personnel will be on duty. Security cameras record all activity at all the entrances and hallways of all residence halls.
Q. Is there wireless access in my room?
A. Yes, Vanderbilt University has wireless network is available to our guests at no additional charge. Wireless setup instructions are available at check-in. All participants with a computer must sign a Computer Usage Agreement. Participants are required to abide by all local, state, and federal laws including all copyright laws.
Q. I’ve fallen and I can’t get up.
A. If someone becomes injured and they are not able to ambulate on their own, we will make arrangements, at the expense of the group conference, to rent a motorized wheelchair. We will make arrangements for the pick-up and return of such equipment as long as it is needed.
Q. My access card won’t work, what do I?
A. Call the 24 hour Conference Phone Number (615) 343-8699 to let someone know and they will contact the proper authorities.
Q. The air conditioner in my room is not working properly.
A. Our air conditioning systems are zoned. We ask that our conference participants not open the windows as it takes quite some time for the systems to realign themselves such that the buildings are kept at a comfortable temperature. Please contact the Conference Office at (615) 343-8699 to report the problem. We will contact the necessary departments to initiate a service call.
Q. What is the Alcohol and Drug Policy?
A. Alcohol and all illegal drugs are not allowed in the residence halls. In order to have alcohol for special events/functions on campus, permission must be received from the Director of Conferences well in advance.
Q. What is the Smoking Policy?
A. Smoking is not permitted on Vanderbilt premises, except for special designated areas. At Vanderbilt, smoking paraphernalia includes, but is not limited to, cigarettes, tobacco, and devices such as e-cigarettes, pipes, vaporizers. A map of designated areas is available here, and a copy of the full Smoking Policy is available here.
Q. I need a ride to the library, Student Recreation Center, etc.
A. We do not arrange for personal transportation to various locations in and around campus. However, arrangements can be made in advance by contracting with InShuttle through other various means of transportation. Conference participants are allowed access to all libraries on campus by utilizing their access card. Our Student Recreation Center features a lap-pool, basketball courts as well as exercise equipment, racquetball court, tennis court and all the amenities to make you feel right at home.
Q. What happens if I lose my access card or key?
A. If you lose your access card or key while attending a conference, report such loss to the Office of Conferences. Another access card/key will be provided to the participant. Lost card fee is $35 and lost keys are $50. If a conference participants happens to find the lost access card/key after they have left the campus, please call our office for instructions as to the return of such property.
Q. Where do conference participants eat?
A. Conference meals will be served in the Rand Dining Center. Food service is an extremely important aspect of our conference programs and the Vanderbilt Dining staff is here to help. Arrangements are made in advance such that dining staff knows in advance the number of participants to expect, as well as any special catering requests or dietary restrictions.
Q. What if we did not book enough meeting space?
A. Space availability on campus during the summer is at a premium. Not every request (especially those on short notice) will be able to be granted. Be sure to let us know your needs as soon as possible and we will do everything possible to meet your needs. Any change in the schedule could result in additional charges.
Q. Are buildings handicap accessible?
A. It is the responsibility of the group coordinator to communicate any special needs to the Office of Conferences about physically challenged participants and their particular needs. Some of our rooms are handicap accessible, but not all. Please alert the Director of Conference’s, and we will address work to meet the needs of these individuals.
Q. What do I need to bring to campus with me?
A. If your group did not opt for linen service, you will need a pillow, blanket, sheets, a sleeping bag, bath towel, wash cloth and bathrobe, shower slippers.
Q. Are linens provided and, if so, what exactly is provided?
A. Linens are provided for those groups who request a linen packet in advance for a nominal fee. The linen packets consist of two towels, one washcloth, two sheets and a pillowcase, one pillow and a blanket.
Q. Will my Conference Coordinator have a cell phone or other means to communicate while our conference is in session?
A. Conference Coordinators have two-way radios by which we all communicate with one another during conference season. Our radios are programmed such that we can communicate with one another even if someone is at the airport. For large groups, radios will be supplied to key personnel making communication very easy with one another.
Q. How are rooms assigned?
A. The Office of Conferences enters information into Conference Programmer, a software program designed specifically for event coordination. As your group coordinator gears up for a conference, the Administrative Assistant sends an Excel spreadsheet for your group coordinator to complete. Once filled out, your group coordinator returns the spreadsheet to the Administrative Assistant and the information is uploaded into Conference Programmer. Your group coordinator works with the Director and Assistant Director of Conferences regarding any special needs that may surface, (e.g., handicap accessibility, etc).
Q. When will we be billed for our conference?
A. All conference invoices are sent usually within 20 days after departing campus. We send out invoices one we receive all internal invoices from our other campus partners such as dining, catering, plant operations, traffic and parking, VUPD, and reservations & events office.
Q. Are there recreational spaces for conference participants to use when not in session?
A. The Student Recreation Center is made available to conference participants during normal operating hours for a nominal fee. This privilege includes the basketball courts, walking tracks (indoor and outdoor), racquetball and handball courts, aerobic areas, and a pool. No more than 50 participants from any one single group may utilize the Rec Center at one time. All participants must be accompanied by an adult chaperone at no greater than a 10:1 ratio. The conference participant access cards permit access to the Rec Center. Groups can rent all or portions of the Rec Center after normal business hours.