Housing Policies

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Break Housing

During the academic year, the College officially closes for Thanksgiving, Winter, and Spring Breaks. Residence halls close for Winter Break at noon the day after the last day of exams and re-open the weekend before Spring semester classes begin. Notices of specific times and dates are publicized on the College's website and communicated to students before each break. Students are reminded to make travel arrangements accordingly.

All students must vacate the residence halls during the Winter Break. Break Housing for students who cannot return home or leave campus over break may be provided. Should a student need break housing accommodations during any portion of the break, the student must complete and submit the online break housing request form. The online request form can be found by logging into CNAV, choosing “My Housing” on the first drop-down menu, and then clicking on “Application.” The dates for the online request form will be announced approximately one month prior to the beginning of break.

When the residence halls close for break, students are expected to take out trash and perishable food, unplug items in the room, turn out the lights, shut and lock the windows, and lock all bedroom doors. Apartment doors should be closed and locked. A list of complete closing procedures will be distributed about one week prior to break closing. Residents may leave personal items in their room during all breaks, except for the summer. However, due to the “unoccupied” status of the campus during breaks, it is suggested that students take valuable items with them to ensure their safety.

Any student requesting access to their residence hall room during the Winter Break period can contact Campus Safety to see if access is permissible. Campus Safety officers have full discretion in determining a student’s legitimacy to enter the closed residence hall based on the information provided.

Hall Closings

Fall Semester

At the end of the fall semester, all students must vacate their rooms within 24-hours after the completion of their last exam or by the designated closing time (whichever comes first). Students who are not returning for the spring semester must remove their belongings and return their room key(s) to the Office of Residential Education prior to departure. A fee may be assessed if appropriate action and/or paperwork is not completed. Students returning to their same room for the spring semester may leave personal items in their room at the end of the fall semester during Winter Break. However, due to the "unoccupied" status of the campus during Winter Break, it is suggested that students take valuable items with them to ensure their safety.

All residential spaces must be left in "move-in" condition prior to students leaving for Winter Break. At the close of every fall semester, many room changes occur and, in some cases, students make decisions not to return for the spring semester. As a result, it is possible that when students leave for break, their space does not have a vacancy but one is created during the break. The Office of Residential Education will need to be able to use all vacancies to house students returning from off-campus study, readmission, or room changes.

“Move-In” Condition:

  • Residential space must be cleaned, including kitchens, living rooms, and bathrooms.
  • All trash must be removed.
  • All furniture must be present, assembled, and available for use.

At the conclusion of the fall semester and during Winter Break, room inspections will be conducted by staff in order to assess whether rooms and common spaces are prepared for occupancy. Students are asked to set their spaces to “move-in” condition before leaving for break because the new resident(s) who move into their space may arrive on campus before they return in January. If the living spaces are not in "move-in" condition, students will be asked to return to campus to clean the space and/or be subject to a cleaning fee.

Spring Semester

At the end of the spring semester, all students are required to vacate their residence hall rooms and remove all belongings within 24-hours following the completion of their last exam or by the designated closing time (whichever comes first). Students who do not depart the residence halls by closing time and do not have approved late departure are subject to late departure fees. Students who wish to request an exception for late departure must do by submitting an online request through CNAV/My Housing/Application at least five days prior to the halls closing. Residential Education staff will review all requests and determine whether students will be granted permission for a late departure. If approved, students may be subject to a late departure fee.

Before departing campus for the summer, students must clean their entire room and/or apartment and remove all non-college furniture and trash. All furniture that was dismantled must be reassembled.

At the end of the academic year, students should return keys to the Office of Residential Education. In the event that students are departing campus outside of published office hours, students should return their key(s) to a key box located at Campus Safety. It is the student's responsibility to return their room key by the published deadline to avoid an unreturned key charge.

Unreturned Key Charges

Charges (per key)

No key returned, no previous lock changes

$150

No key returned, one previous lock change

$250

No key returned, two or more previous lock changes

$350

Students may be charged for keys that are returned with paint or nail polish on them. Unreturned key charges are billed automatically to student accounts and may not be credited for any keys mailed back to campus after the halls close.

Early Arrivals and Late Departures

Gettysburg College establishes dates and times for the opening and closing of the residential facilities at the beginning and end of the academic year and for Winter Break. This information can be found on the calendar on the Residential Education website.

Students should make travel plans accordingly and well in advance. If a student has extenuating circumstances that does not permit them to arrive on campus accordingly, there is an approval process to request housing outside of when the halls are open for the academic year. Office staff review requests and determine whether an exception can be accommodated.

Early Arrival Requests:

Any student who wishes to move in before the designated check-in/hall opening dates must have their requests approved by the Office of Residential Education.

Group Requests

Students participating in any College-sponsored activity which requires early arrival (practices, trainings, meetings) are granted permission to move in early. If students fall under this category, the group’s coordinator will arrange for their early arrival. The student does not need to submit an individual request. There is no early arrival fee for group early arrivals as long as students do not arrive prior to their group’s scheduled date.

Individual Requests

Any individual upperclass student that has extenuating circumstances that require early arrival must complete an online early arrival application by the deadline. Instructions and deadlines will be communicated to students prior to breaks and the start of each semester. Emails or phone calls to the office will not be accepted in place of this application. Residential Education office staff will review individual requests and determine whether students will be granted an exception to move in early. Individual requests that are made by the deadline and are approved will be automatically billed a $100 early arrival fee. Approval decisions will be communicated to each applicant via email within five business days of receiving an application. Early arrival requests submitted after the deadline may be approved but will be automatically billed a $200 early arrival fee. Students who arrive on campus early without prior approval may not be granted access to their space. If early arrival access is granted, the student will be automatically billed $200.

Please note that dropping off personal belongings prior to the official check-in dates will constitute an early arrival and the above policy, deadlines, and fees will apply.

Late Departure Requests

Students who do not depart the residence halls by the published closing date and time for Winter Break or at the end of the academic year are subject to late departure fees. Students who wish to request an exception for late departure must complete an online late departure application by the deadline. Instructions and deadlines will be communicated to students prior to semester closings. Emails or phone calls to the office will not be accepted in place of this application. Residential Education office staff will review individual requests and determine whether students will be granted an exception for late departure.

Graduating seniors who remain on campus through commencement must vacate their senior week housing by 2pm the day after commencement.

ALL students who do not request prior approval for a late departure are subject to a late departure fee. Students approved for late departures may be charged a late departure fee.

Room Changes

The Office of Residential Education strongly encourages students to sit down with their roommates early in the year to discuss issues important to living together. Students with specific conflicts are encouraged to seek counsel of their Assistant Residential Life Coordinator (ARLC), Residence Coordinator (RC), Resident Assistant (RA), Community Advisor (CA), or House Leader (HL). If a mutually satisfactory solution to the conflict is not reached, students wishing to pursue a room change must meet with a Residential Education professional staff member. Students are reminded that all room changes must be officially requested in this manner. Room changes can take place any time after the first two weeks of the semester and up until the last two weeks before final exams. Exceptions to this procedure may be granted only by the Office of Residential Education.

If wishing to change your room, you should contact your ARLC, RC, RA, CA, or HL to discuss a room change. A referral to a professional staff member may occur. Prior to any room change, an official request and key exchanges must be completed with the Office of Residential Education. Failure to complete the official request may result in conduct action. When searching for a new space, the person wishing to move is encouraged to have an informal meeting with the prospective roommate(s) prior to moving into the space.

Vacancy Policy

The Office of Residential Education reserves the right to use any available space to house any of our students. Residents pay only for a portion of the room in which they live and do not have exclusive rights to the entire room in which they reside, unless they reside in a single occupancy room. The College also reserves the right to use any vacant space as temporary housing for other Gettysburg College students during break periods, if needed. If at any time, a resident’s roommate should move out, the remaining resident has two days to find another roommate and begin the necessary paperwork or move to another vacancy on campus. If the remaining resident does not find another roommate within this timeframe, the space becomes available to other residents on campus.

We encourage people who are requesting a room change to talk with a potential new roommate in order to increase the likelihood of a good match between the students involved. However, students are not required to meet with prospective roommates and, after the two-day waiting period, the space is available for immediate occupancy. The Office of Residential Education will make an attempt to notify the occupant(s) of the room/apartment into which a new roommate is planning to move. However, under some circumstances (such as emergency moves or late admits) this notification may not be possible. The College reserves the right to re-assign students immediately for safety reasons, i.e. COVID-19.

Students with a vacancy in their room should keep the following three important notes in mind:

  • Any residence hall room with a vacancy must be maintained in such a way that a person can move in immediately and live comfortably with the closet, bed, desk, shelf, and dresser available for use.
  • Any attempt on a student's part to discourage, refuse, or intimidate a potential or newly assigned roommate is a violation of Residential Guidelines. If a Residential Education staff member receives information that a student is discouraging prospective roommates, that student will be contacted by a member of the staff.
  • By violating this policy the student risks conduct sanctions, including the loss of the student’s housing lottery number.

Consolidation Policy

Due to its residency requirement, Gettysburg College guarantees housing for all full-time students. Therefore, the Office of Residential Education must efficiently and effectively utilize all available spaces in its housing inventory and reserves the right to utilize the following consolidation policy.

Prior to the fall academic semester, at semester break, and in emergency situations, the Office of Residential Education reserves the right to move students from their current room assignment. All students within a room may be moved to another location, multiple groups of students in separate rooms but on the same floor/building may be relocated, and students residing alone in multiple occupancy rooms may be consolidated. This means that a student, upon notification, will need to vacate their room and move into another space on campus. This is an effort to use each room/floor/building to its capacity. We will work with all students involved in a consolidation to make the transition as smooth as possible.

Senior Week Housing

During the week prior to graduation, certain residence halls will be designated for senior week housing. These accommodations are exclusively for graduating seniors. The Office of Residential Education reserves the right to consolidate students and move students to different housing.

All graduating seniors will be required to vacate their senior week housing by 2pm on the day after commencement. Students who vacate later than 2pm on the day after commencement may be subject to a late departure fee. Students must return their room key(s) when they depart campus to avoid being billed for an unreturned key. See “Hall Closings: Spring Semester” for check-out instructions and unreturned key billing rates.

Summer Housing

Students interested in and eligible for summer housing will need to apply for housing during April of each academic year. Information specific to summer housing will be shared with all students in the Spring semester. Students are assigned to summer housing based on class year and assigned lottery number.

Access to College Property by College Officials

As a private educational institution, Gettysburg College reserves the right to enter and inspect all College residence hall rooms or other areas that are used for student residential living in order to protect the health, safety, and wellbeing of any or all students, enforce College policies and regulations, and/or to protect and preserve College property and the educational process. Furnishings provided by the College within College residence hall rooms or other areas that are used for student residential living remain the property of Gettysburg College are subject to inspection under this policy. This means that when it is necessary to enforce this policy, the College may enter a residence hall room or other areas used for student residential living without prior notice to the occupants and conduct an inspection of the room or area and any College property within it, including (but not limited to) closets, beds, desks, dressers, bookshelves, microfridges, and refrigerators.

The College shall try to give the student(s) involved prior notice of the need for entry and the opportunity to be present during any entry into their residence hall room or other area used for residential living unless there is an immediate risk of harm to the health, safety, or wellbeing of any student, including violations of College policies and regulations.

Where federal, state, or local law enforcement officers are involved in an investigation of a possible violation of any applicable law, any search of a student residence hall room or other areas used for student residential living shall be conducted in accordance with legal standards applicable to police searches of private residences.

Administrative Moves as a Result of Student Behavior

There are a number of reasons that may require a student to move due to their conduct or behavior on campus or within the residential community. The need to move would be communicated to the student through the conduct process, and the student would work with their hearing officer in that process to arrange for any necessary change in residence hall room.

Leave of Absence or Withdrawal from the College

When a student takes a leave of absence or withdraws from the institution, the student must vacate their room and return their key(s) within 48-hours of the effective date of their leave or withdrawal. The College does not provide storage services for the belongings of students on a leave of absence or withdrawn from the College.