Columbia College | Columbia Engineering

Step-by-Step Borrowing Guide

Please review the steps needed to check out and/or reserve items through the Props and Costume Cages.  For questions, please email blackboxrentals@columbia.edu. For information, details, and policies regarding these steps, as well as late, broken, missing, damaged or stolen items, please see the Borrowing Agreement page

If this is your first time visiting the Props and Costume Cages:

1. Make an Appointment

  • Sign up for an appointment with Nina Lam, the Black Box Theatre Manager, via Google Calendar here. Appointments must be made at least 24 hours in advance and confirmed by Nina Lam via email. If none of these times work, please email Nina Lam at nal2143@columbia.edu.

  • Plan on this first appointment lasting at least 30 minutes, as it will include an overview and signing of the Borrowing Policies and Agreement, a tour of the cages, as well as any tagging you wish to do.

  • All appointment slots for all types of visits are blocked off in 30 minute segments and will be limited to 30 minutes unless you email Nina Lam to receive special permission for a longer appointment.

  • For more information on hours and appointments, please see the Costumes and Props Cage page.

2. Sign the Student Group Borrowing Agreement 

  • Each group checking out items from the Props or Costume Cages is required to have at least one e-board member (preferably the president or vice-president), sign the agreement during Club Refuel. If you are not the e-board member who has signed the agreement, please check in with your e-board before visiting the Props or Costume Cages. If someone on the e-board has not already signed the agreement, please have an e-board member attend this initial meeting.

  • Each additional group representative who wishes to individually visit or have access to the Props or Costume Cages must also sign the agreement.

  • The group’s adviser will be notified the group is checking-out or reserving items. 

  • All policies on the Borrowing Agreement will be reviewed at the start of an initial appointment. See the agreement here. 

If this is not your first time visiting the Props or Costume Cages, you may visit for a couple of different purposes:

A. Tagging (Optional)

  • Since items are available on a first come first served basis, some student groups prefer to sort through the props and costumes in advance to secure the items they want. This is called "tagging".  

  • Tagging can be done following an initial appointment (after the Borrowing Agreement has been signed), or you may make a separate appointment.

  • Students will be brought to the Props and Costume Cages by the Black Box Theatre Manager, and given access to the cages they wish to look through.

  • If students are tagging costumes, they will be given a hanger divider which they will label with the group’s name, event date, and dates of reservation. This hanger divider will be hung on the tagging rack (located in the front of the Costume Cage) and all reserved items will be placed on the rack beside it.  All shoes, hats, or other accessories that cannot be hung on a hanger will be placed on the shelf below the rack.

  • If students are tagging props, they will be given a roll of blue painter’s tape. Please place a piece of blue tape on each item you would like to tag, and label it with the group’s name, event date, and dates of reservation. 

  • When deciding on a date range, please allow 2-3 days of buffer after your final performance or the conclusion of your event so that you will have ample time to wash or clean the item and make an appointment to return it to the Cages.

  • Tagging an item gives the group first priority during that date range. However, other student groups are able to use the item before or after those dates.  

    • Items cannot be double tagged for the same date range. The group that tags the item first has priority.

  • It is the responsibility of the group to coordinate and pick-up the items with the Black Box Theatre team.

B. Checking-Out

  • An appointment must be made to check-out and/or pick-up items, regardless if they are already tagged.  Walk-ins will not be assisted.

  • If students have not tagged items previously, they may still make an appointment to look through the cages and immediately check out the items they wish to use, as long as those items are not already tagged.

  • If students have previously tagged items, they may make an appointment to be let into the cages to check out their tagged items. They may also check out additional items at this time which were not previously tagged. 

  • Once the items are selected, each item will be inspected, recorded, and signed-out in the Props and Costume Inventory spreadsheet with the Black Box Theatre Manager.

  • The Black Box Theatre Manager will review all the rules, policies, and expectations of use and will designate an agreed upon return date. 

  • An email will be sent to the student, e-board, and adviser outlining all the checked-out items and due date.

C. Check-in and Returns

  • An appointment to check-in/return items must be made at least 24 hours in advance, and all students are encouraged to arrange this appointment during initial check-out of items. Walk-ins will not be taken.

  • Each item will be inspected upon return by the Black Box Theatre Manager to assess if the items are in the same condition as they were upon check-out. 

  • Once the items are approved, they will be checked back into the system using the inventory spreadsheet.

  • Each item must be returned to their designated area in the cages in an organized manner by either the student group or Black Box Theatre Manager.

  • When the items are returned the process is complete. The group member will receive an email outlining the list of returned items and date returned.  Unless otherwise stated, no further action from the group is needed.

  • Please note: Student Groups’ continued ability to use the items in the cages is dependent upon their return of all items on the designated return date, with proper cleaning already completed and no damages done.

Late, Broken, Missing, or Damaged Items

For information regarding late, broken, missing, damaged or stolen items, please see the Borrowing Agreement.

 

Student Engagement

Visit

515 Alfred Lerner Hall
2920 Broadway
New York, NY 10027

Call: 212-854-3612

Fax: 212-854-6972

Office Hours
Monday–Friday
9:00 a.m.–5:00 p.m.