Events with Food, Alcohol, and Off Campus Venues with Alcohol

Events Involving Food

Any time an organization wishes to sell or give-away prepackaged food and/or beverages not provided by University Catering to students, faculty, staff, and/or visitors a Temporary Food Facility Permit must be submitted with a completed Event Registration Form at least 10 business days prior to the scheduled event to CSI. 

Here are some questions to determine if the organization should complete the Temporary Food Facility Permit for an event:

Is the organization…

  • Planning an event on campus with food and/or beverages not provided by University Catering?
  • Giving away or selling candy on campus?
  • Selling bottled water or canned beverages for a proceeds to benefit transaction on campus?
  • Giving away or selling any food not provided by University Catering on campus?

If the organization members answer “yes” to any of these questions, a Temporary Food Facility Permit must be submitted with the Event Reservation and Registration Form at least 10 business days prior to the event.

If the organization wishes to prepare/cook/BBQ food themselves, in addition to the Temporary Food Facility Permit, insurance must be obtained, and the members must attend a required Food Handling Workshop.  Information is provided on proper food handling, required safety measures, and restricted items that may not be sold on campus. Please contact CSI for more information on the workshop and how to purchase special event insurance.  

Additionally, the organization agrees to read, understand, and comply with the Cal State LA Temporary Food Facility Guidelines governing food sales and service.  Failure to comply with the rules may result in the loss of food and/or beverage selling/serving privileges and possible disciplinary action. 

Food Permit Process

After completing the Temporary Food Facility Permit form  a student organization member must submit the permit for approval in the following order:

  1. Center for Student Involvement  (University-Student Union Room 204)
  2. University Auxiliary Services, Inc. (The Golden Eagle, 3rd Floor)
  3. Health and Safety Coordinator (Environmental Health & Safety Office, Corporate Yard Bldg., Room 244). 

CSI can also scan and send Food Permits to all of the other corresponding offices for your convenience.  Please see the CSI front desk for more information on this service. 

Organizations that prepare food on campus must obtain insurance for their event.  Contact the Center for Student Involvement for more information.

Food Trucks 

How to Schedule a Food Truck Fundraiser in the U-SU Plaza

  1. Complete a Temporary Food Permit and attach the following documents:
    1. Copy of Food Truck's Menu
    2. Copy of Food Truck's Tax Registration Certificate/ Business License 
    3. Copy of the Food Truck's Public Health Operating Permit
    4. Copy of Food Truck's Seller Permit
    5. A certificate of liability insurance in the amount of one million dollars or more.  The vendor's liability insurance must include the University-Student Union, Cal State LA, UAS,the California State University, Los Angeles, the Trustees of the California State University, the State of California, and their officers, employees, and volunteers, are named as Additional Insured.
  2. Obtain the necessary signatures for the Temporary Food Permit from the Sponsoring Organization Chairperson, the Center for Student Involvement, University Auxiliary Food Services, and Environmental Health & Safety.
  3. Submit a completed Event Registration Form, along with the completed Temporary Food Permit and all other accompanying documents, to CSI at least 10 business days prior to your event date. 
  4. Visit Information & Event Services (U-SU 107) to check for availability and make a reservation. Bring your copy of your submitted Event Registration Form, approved Temporary Food Permit, and other pertinent documents with you. Pending availability, you'll be issued a Reservation Confirmation to sign and confirm the event.
  5. Take a copy of the signed Reservation Confirmation to Public Safety to purchase an Inter-Campus Permit. This permit is required to gain access to Plaza North (the designated space for food trucks) on the day of your event.

Food Truck Guidelines

  • Student organizations are allowed to submit 2 requests per semester and a maximum of 2 trucks per event.
  • Food Truck Fundraisers can be scheduled in the U-SU Plaza from 11am - 5pm Monday through Saturday.
  • Only 1 Food Truck can be hosted by a club/organization per week.

Catering/Food Service:

In the event that an outside caterer or food service provider must be used, the sponsoring organization must obtain from the off-campus caterer the following three documents, to be attached with a Temporary Food Facility Permit:

  • A copy of the caterer’s Los Angeles County Health Permit.
  • A copy of the caterer’s business license
  • A copy of the caterer's sellers permit. 
  • A certificate of liability insurance in the amount of one million dollars or more naming California State University, Los Angeles and Cal State LA. University Auxiliary Services, Inc. as additional insureds.

Student orgnizations should review the California State University, Los Angeles Temporary Food Facility Guidelines.  The following are examples of potentially hazardous foods and beverages prohibited from being prepared or sold:

  • Pastries filled with cream or synthetic cream, custards, and similar products
  • Sandwiches or salads containing meat, poultry, eggs, fish or seafood: i.e., potato, macaroni, chicken, ham, tuna deviled egg, or similar salads
  • All home prepared foods: i.e., home canned foods, home cooked fish, meats, poultry including salads, casseroles, or sauces containing such products, homemade cakes, pies, or pastries which have a cream, whipped cream, or custard filling or icing.
  • Beverages containing raw eggs or raw egg substitute.      

Use of Alcohol at Student Organization Events

University Administrative Procedure 019, Use of Alcoholic Beverages, explains the restrictions beyond City and State laws that govern the possession and use of alcohol at University events.  Student organization events are considered University events because organizations are affiliated with Cal State LA.  An organization must submit a Request to Serve Alcoholic Beverages Form for any event held on or off campus where alcohol may be served or available for purchase/consumption.  

Written permission to use alcoholic beverages shall be subject to the following restrictions:

  • The event shall not be open to the general public or to the general University community except when the event takes place within the Luckman, Fine Arts Complex, or the Golden Eagle.  The event shall not be advertised or publicized as an event where alcoholic beverages are to be served.
  • The chair of the event and the sponsoring organization are both responsible for compliance with applicable law, regulations, and University policies.  No person under 21 years of age shall be in attendance, and no such person nor obviously intoxicated person shall be furnished, served, or given an alcoholic beverage.
  • The sponsoring organization shall cease serving or consuming alcoholic beverages at the request of an appropriate University official.
  • Safety and risk management are primary concerns for events with alcohol.  If approved your organization will also be required to meet the following requirements:
    • At least two organization members must be TiPS certified and must attend the event from start to finish. (See below for more information.)
    • The use of professional bartenders only at the event venue
    • Non-alcoholic options and/or food options 
    • Presence of your faculty/staff advisor during the entire duration of the event 
    • A devised plan for safety developed by your board and advisor

How to request permission to serve alcoholic beverages 

  1. Complete a Request to Serve Alcoholic Beverages Form and submit to the Center for Student Involvement along with a completed Event Registration Form
  2. The request will be submitted for review to the Office of the Dean of Students and for approval to the Associate Vice President for Administration and Finance/Financial Services no later than ten business days prior to the proposed event.  
  3. After the request has been reviewed, the Office of the Associate Vice President for Administration and Finance/Financial Services will notify the event chairperson of the status of the request.
  4. No contracts with venues or caterers should be signed prior to the Request to Serve Alcoholic Beverages Form being approved. Organizations are advised that the review process takes at minimum 10 business days and are encouraged to submit these form in advance of the minimum 10 business days.  
  5. If approved, a copy of the signed Request to Serve Alcoholic Beverages form and Event Registration Form must be provided to the Department of Public Safety prior to the event. 

For more information on this procedure, please contact the Center for Student Involvement.  Student organizations violating this procedure will be subject to administrative action ranging from probation to removal of University recognition.  Individual students who violate University Administrative Procedure 019 are subject to institutional disciplinary action.  

Off Campus Venues Where Alcohol is Available

Organizations can hold events at off-campus venues where alcohol is available but is not a component of their event.The event contact/planner should initial on the Event Registration Form indicating that NO guest/member attending the event will consume alcohol regardless of their age/ability to do so since they are participating in an organizational event.  All organization event guests and participants must comply and abide by this acknowledgement during the entire duration of the event. Examples of these venues and events include but are not limited to:

  • Fundraisers at restaurants/venues that serve alcohol where organizations receive a percentage off of food sales
  • Banquets or ceremonies at restaurants where alcohol is available but will not be served 
  • These events will also require the TiPS training requirement (see below).  

Training for Intervention ProcedureS (TiPS) Training 

Student organization events at venues where alcohol is available or events that have been approved to serve alcohol will require at least two student organization members to attend a University-led Training for Intervention ProcedureS training prior to the scheduled event date. Both trained members should be in attendance for the full duration of the event and must pass the certification test. Previous TIPS certification will be recognized while valid. TIPS trainings will be scheduled throughout the semester.  Events that meet these criteria are subject to cancellation pending the successful completion of the training requirement. 
For more information on TIPS and to RSVP for a training please contact CSI at 323-343-5110.