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Stanford Student Gatherings and Parties

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*Last updated 10.8.2021

Autumn 2021 Policies and Guidelines

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Community is important and we realize some of you may be eager to meet and socialize with each other. We are phasing in autumn quarter student gatherings in the residences and with student organizations. Consult our COVID-19 guidance for students, Overview of Gatherings and Meetings, and Stanford Health Alerts for the most up-to-date guidelines and policies. We will continue to monitor current conditions and work to align with state and county laws, and public health orders.


House Meeting/Residentially Sponsored Meeting: A meeting sponsored and run by residential staff open to only members of the House/dorm/graduate residence and where staff are present for the duration of the meeting.

Private Residential Gathering: A social event or meeting contained within a private residence such as a dorm room, suite or apartment that does not exceed 4 times the occupancy of the room/apartment in attendance (e.g. a 2-person double may host up to 8 people or a 4-person apartment may host up to 16 people as a private residential gathering, not to exceed capacity limits set by fire code). 

Registered Gathering: An event that is academic, intellectual, cultural, performative and/or social in nature sponsored by student organizations. 

Registered PartyAn event held primarily for the purposes of student socializing, any event where the students hosting the event serve alcohol, or any gathering in a residential setting that will exceed the occupancy limit set forth for a private residential gathering.

Palo Alto colored divider line.


Quick reference

  House Meeting/Residentially Sponsored Meetings Private Residential Gathering Registered Gathering/Party
Prior to Oct. 1 Yes, no food or drink Yes Yes, for graduate/professional students, outdoors only

No, for undergraduates
Beginning Oct. 1 Yes, no food or drink Yes Yes, outdoors only
Beginning Oct. 8  Yes  Yes Yes, indoors or outdoors
Registration Required (Applies to all dates) No No Yes
Face Covering Required (Check for updated policy after Oct. 8) Yes Yes, when people who do not live in your room/apartment/suite are present Yes, indoors
Recommended outdoors when distancing not possible

Details: Requirements for All Gatherings and Parties

Private Residential Gatherings and House Meetings/Residentially Sponsored Meetings

  • No registration is needed for private residential gatherings in your room/suite/apartment.
  • Private residential gatherings must have consent of all occupants, not migrate to common spaces (including corridors/lounges) and not disrupt the rest of the building. 
  • Private residential gatherings must be contained to your assigned living space (room/suite/apartment), and must not exceed four times the occupancy in attendance. Gatherings exceeding this limit must be registered as stipulated below.
  • You must follow all university policies, including but not limited to the Residence Agreement, Non-essential Visitors Policy, Student Alcohol and Other Drugs Policy, and local policies for use of common spaces in undergraduate residences and Row houses.
  • In-person house meetings/residentially sponsored meetings run by residential staff (RAs/CAS) without food or drinks are currently permitted. Houses may begin serving food and drinks at house meetings beginning Friday, October 8.

Voluntary Student Organizations (VSOs), Fraternity and Sorority Life, Residences 

Registered Gatherings & Parties

  • Registered in-person gatherings and parties hosted by undergraduate VSOs, FSL, and residential groups in undergraduate dorms and all Row houses will be permitted outdoors beginning Friday, October 1 and permitted indoors beginning Friday, October 8. Individual spaces, including in residences, will determine locally when they welcome indoor gatherings.
  • Registered in-person gatherings and parties hosted by graduate/professional school VSO’s are currently permitted outdoors and will be permitted indoors beginning Friday, October 8. Individual departments/schools may set more restrictive policies.
  • In-person gatherings/parties during Autumn Quarter must be:


If you have any questions about registered gatherings for student organizations, please contact the Office of Student Engagement. For registered parties, please contact Substance Use Programs, Education & Resources.