Passport Events: How To Get Your Event an Official Wellness Stamp of Approval

The Special Events committee hosted a Political Debate this fall just days before the 2012 Presidential election. Our committee felt that the debate would be eligible for a passport event request because of its educational content and informative structure. Applying for a passport event is a simple task and has the potential to greatly increase attendance at your event.

As the Communications Chair, I am the designated liaison to contact the office of Student Wellness and Outreach (SWO), who organizes all of the passport events at JMU. Prior to contacting the SWO office, be sure that your event will fit into at least one of their wellness “dimensions” which include: emotional, environmental, intellectual, occupational, social or spiritual.

Once you establish that your event meets a wellness dimension criteria, contact Veronica Jones, the Passport Liaison for co-sponsorship submissions. When applying for a passport submission be sure that you have submitted the form at least ten days prior to the date of your event. You can find Veronica’s contact information on the SWO website.

After your event has been approved, you will need to go to Veronica’s office and fill out an official document with the title of your event, a brief description of the event, and your contact information. The co-sponsorship form also holds you and your organization responsible for picking up and returning the official SWO passport stamps. Once the form is complete, Veronica will submit it to the GHTH office. Within two days, you are responsible to check the GHTH passport site to confirm that your event is posted to the event calendar. If your event is not posted on the passport website, be sure to contact Veronica and she will tell the person responsible for the website content.

Schedule a time on the day of your event to meet with Veronica and pick up the official SWO stamps. Because there can be a large number of passport events going on within a week, you will not be able to access the stamps until the day of your event. The stamps are very valuable and it is the sole responsibility of your organization to pick them up and return them promptly the next day.

Keep in mind that passport events are not supposed to last for longer than 90 minutes, unless there is a film and/or a discussion afterwards. It is also prohibited for events to be advertised as passport events. Make sure that whomever is creating your flyers, posters, or web banners does not post that the event can be used for passport credit.
-Catherine McNally, Special Events Communications Chair

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