This policy explains how commercial entities may advertise or place sponsorship announcements in University publications and materials including but not limited to its websites, digital media, computers, telephone-related systems, through the ITS campus mail system, and within the facilities controlled and operated by UNC Greensboro.



This policy applies to all University students, student organizations, employees, departments, units, and divisions.


This policy does not pertain to merchandising on campus or fundraising activities of student organizations. Such activity is governed by the University’s Merchandising Policy Guidelines, and the Solicitation by Affiliated and Unaffiliated Groups Policy. Both permanent and event signage policies are covered in the University Policy on Event/Announcement Signage.


This policy does not apply to advertising in The Carolinian, (the University student newspaper), or the campus radio station. It does apply to all other publications/printed materials produced by the University and its colleges, schools, divisions, departments, and units.



“Advertising” is any advertisement, signage, label, logo, packaging, imprint, sales promotion activity or device, public relations material or events, merchandising or other activity or communication that has the intent of promoting or marketing a non-university product, service, event, or organization. Advertising includes messages that contain qualitative or comparative language, price information, an endorsement, or an inducement to purchase, sell, or use the non-university advertiser’s products or services. Advertising is separate and distinct from sponsorships.


“Sponsorships” are announcements that meet IRS guidelines and are exempted from unrelated business income tax assessment.  Sponsorship of school, college, department, unit, or registered student organization activities, programs, or events by non-university entities are beneficial to the sponsored school, college, department, unit, as well as to the sponsoring entity, to the University community, and to the state.   In exchange for the use or acknowledgment of the sponsor’s name, logo, or product lines in connection with the activities of the University, the University receives payment from the sponsor without any other expectation of substantial return or benefit. The support, or sponsorship, may be provided in the form of a gift of money or a gift-in-kind of goods and/or services

3.3University Publications

University Publications” are publications, including those in electronic format and print publications, published by or on behalf of the University, a department, division, school, college, program, or unit.



4.1.1Commercial Purposes

Advertising by businesses, organizations, entities, or individuals not associated with the University is prohibited. Products or services may be offered to faculty, staff, and students in appropriate channels (i.e. University publications or websites) or through appropriate channels when sponsored by a University department or organization. Exceptions (such as magazine advertising or other publications) may be granted by the Vice Chancellor of Strategic Communications or designee, following review and consultations by appropriate entities to ensure no conflict of interest among parties involved.

4.1.2Prohibited Commercial Activity

Promotion for the sale or consumption of alcoholic beverages, tobacco-related or gaming  products (such as lotteries, gambling, bingo and raffles) on campus or in University publications is prohibited.


4.2.1Acceptable Sponsorships

Any corporation, organization, or individual that offers and provides support or underwriting for University events or activities may be considered a sponsor.  University entities (defined as a school, college, department, unit, or registered student organization) may choose whether to accept or decline a sponsorship offer based on an assessment of its overall benefit or impact for the University entity. When the University entity considers entering into a sponsorship relationship, it should consider the compatibility between its mission and image and that of the sponsor. The Vice Chancellor for Strategic Communications, or designee will review and approve all sponsorship requests to ensure alignment with the mission of the University .

4.2.2University Marks

Sponsorship of a University or registered student organization activity or event itself does not automatically give the sponsor the right to use any University trademarks, names, or logos. In limited circumstances, a sponsor may be granted permission to use University trademarks, names, or logos after receiving written approval from the Vice Chancellor for Strategic Communications or designee.

4.3Distribution of Fliers of Literature


Advertising fliers and other commercial information may not be distributed in classrooms unless it is directly related to the educational nature and purpose of the class. Fliers may not be placed on windshields of vehicles parked on University-owned or leased property or in any University parking lot.


Distribution of literature through the campus student mailbox system or within residence halls is subject to guidelines that may be issued by the Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs. 


Advertising may not be posted on University bulletin boards unless approved by the University department or unit responsible for that bulletin board.


4.4.1Sponsorship Announcements

Sponsorship announcements may be solicited and placed in programs, publications, newsletters, magazines, and other printed materials when the purpose of such announcements is to defray the cost of producing the material and/or supporting the related program, department, or unit of the University.


  1. Advertising is acceptable in publications that are prepared by a commercial vendor and made available at no charge to the University for its faculty, staff, and students under sponsorship of a University agency or organization.
  2. Publications that are provided to the University as a result of the University, or a University department or unit, sponsoring the external organization’s publication may be distributed on campus by the sponsoring University unit or department who purchased the sponsorship. An example of such a publication is “Discover Greensboro,” a city-produced publication which is sponsored by the University.
  3. Advertisers, sponsors, or agencies reserving space in publications for the first-time must pre-pay for space.
  4. The amount of payment may not be based on a volume of sales of any merchandise or other services resulting from the placement. When an agent is used to place announcements or advertisements, royalties or income may be determined on a percentage basis.

4.5University Websites and Campus Email System

The University’s online presence, defined as external-facing platforms, and use of the campus email system are governed by the Web and Mobile Operating (WAMO) Committee. General questions about web administration should be directed to the Associate Vice Chancellor for Learning Technology and Customer Success or the Associate Vice Chancellor for Integrated Marketing Communications, University Communications.

4.5.1Sponsorship Announcements

  1. Sponsorship announcements may be placed on University websites provided they do not comprise more than ten percent of the area of any single screen.
  2. Sponsorship announcement placements, sponsors, and financial arrangements for such announcements are to be approved by the Vice Chancellor for Strategic Communications or designee, in consultation with the Vice Chancellor for University Advancement, Vice Chancellor for Finance and Administration, and the Office of General Counsel, as necessary.
  3. Announcements may contain links to other websites or web pages that provide additional information about the sponsor or the sponsor’s products or services.
  4. Approval of links to web pages of commercial entities and organizations does not convey or imply approval to use University marks, logos, or other images without specific permission, nor does it constitute an endorsement of the entity or organization.

4.5.2University Computers

Pursuant to the University’s Acceptable Use of Computing and Electronic Resources Policy, University computers and information systems, which includes websites or web pages, may not be used for personal advertising or other activities or endeavors that will result in personal gain.

4.6Refusal of Advertising and Sponsorships

The University has the right to and will refuse any advertising or sponsorship that it considers unacceptable. Unacceptable advertising or sponsorship includes but is not limited to that which:

  1. conflicts with University policies; 
  2. adversely affects the University’s reputation;
  3. appears to create an endorsement by the University of a particular company, product, political candidate, or position regarding public policies; 
  4. is considered to contain obscene, indecent, or profane material; 
  5. ridicules, exploits, or demeans persons on the basis of their age, color, creed, handicap, national origin, race, religion, sex, or sexual orientation;
  6. or promotes alcohol, tobacco, or gaming products (such as lotteries, gambling, bingo and raffles).


Revenue received from sponsors for announcements or advertisements, where permitted, will be used to defray the costs of the sponsored item or program, or to support activities of the University entity.

5.Compliance and Enforcement

This policy is administered by the Vice Chancellor for Strategic Communications, in consultation with communications leaders throughout the university.


Exceptions to this policy may be requested in writing, summarizing the program desired and the reason for the exception. Such requests will be directed to the Vice Chancellor for Strategic Communications.


Any violation of this policy by a University student is subject to the Student Code of Conduct in the Student Policy Handbook. For employees, violation of this policy may be subject to consideration as “misconduct” under EHRA policies (faculty and EHRA non-faculty) or “unacceptable personal conduct” under SHRA policies, including any appeal rights stated therein. If violation of the policy also results in a violation of law, the violation may also be referred for criminal or civil prosecution.


Revision Date Revision Summary
01/25/2021 Revised; Approved by the Chancellor
01/12/2023 Non-substantive edits made after initial review

- Advertising Policy. Retrieved 07/23/2024. Official version at https://policy.uncg.edu/university_policies/advertising-policy/. Copyright © 2024 The University of North Carolina at Greensboro.