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Housing

Policy
Recognizing the educational advantages of both classroom instruction and co-curricular experiences, and the great extent to which residence hall living can contribute, the Board of Trustees of the University has adopted a policy which requires that entering students and soph-omores be housed in University residence halls. Refer to the Code of Student Conduct for specific expectations, and for specific residency information.

Housing Assignments
The Housing Assignment Office, 235 Whitmore Administration Building, is responsible for all assignments for undergraduate and graduate students to on-campus housing. It also facilitates processes for assignment changes both during and between academic semesters and manages the rent refund process.

To reside on campus, each student must sign a housing contract that remains active for as long as the student lives in the residence halls. Upperclass resident students have the opportunity to select rooms in the spring of the preceding year. Notification of assignment for entering students is made in early August (or late January for the spring semester).

Students interested in living on campus should contact the Housing Assignment Office, tel. (413) 545-2100, or visit www.housing.umass.edu.

Exemptions
Exempt from this policy are married students; veterans of the U.S. Armed Services; members of fraternities and sororities who have been authorized to reside in their respective houses (within approved maximum capacities); juniors and seniors; and students who live in and commute from the home of their parent(s) or court-appointed guardian(s) within a 40-mile radius of the campus.

All non-exempt students requesting permission to live off campus are to submit requests to the Housing Assignment Office, 235 Whitmore, tel. (413) 545-2100.

The First-Year Experience
The First Year Experience facilitates and supports a smooth transition to the academic and residential aspects of the university. New students live in designated first year residence halls located throughout the campus, participating in co-curricular and academic living and learning communities designed to enhance their success and satisfaction. The First Year Experience gives students increased opportunities for academic success, leadership, and service learning. For more information, visit the New Student Orientation website at www.umass.edu/newstudent/studentlife/livingoptions.

Living Options
The university provides a variety of living arrangements. The five basic systems are “traditional” residence halls, suite-style residence halls, apartment-style residence halls, nine-month, and family housing. All plans offer opportunities for intellectual, cultural, and social activities and include coeducational, single-sex, and alcohol-free units.

Residential Areas
The Central Residential Area is located at the very center of campus and consists of nine residence halls housing approximately 2,000 students. Central is home to special housing options such as the Nuance Multicultural Student Program, the Wellness Program, the Alcohol-Free Hall, and Kanonhsesne, the Native American Student Program. First-year Experience Residence Halls, Residential Academic Programs, and offerings from Commonwealth College are also available.

The North Residential Area houses 864 students in four separate five-story buildings. Each apartment is air-conditioned, with four single bedrooms, two full bathrooms, and shared living room and kitchen. The apartments feature independent living with campus resources close at hand.

The Northeast Residential Area consists of nine traditional buildings housing approximately 1,300 students. Northeast features special housing options such as the First-year Experience, Thatcher Language Program, the Lewis International House Program, the Asian/Asian American Students Program, and several floors of Residential Advancement Programs in Engineering.

The Orchard Hill Residential Area accommodates approximately 1,300 students in four coeducational residence halls. Orchard Hill features many special housing options such as the Wellness Program, First-year Experience Residence Halls, and Residential Academic Programs. Offerings from Commmonwealth College are also available.

The Southwest Residential Area houses 5,300 students in five 22-story high-rise towers and eleven low-rise residence halls. Southwest features special housing options such as First-year Experience, Harambee, the African Heritage Student Program, and Residential Academic Programs.

The Sylvan Residential Area is adjacent to North Residential Area and accommodates 1,350 students with suite-style living. Each suite is single-sex, houses six to eight students, and includes both double and single bedrooms, a common bathroom, and a common lounge.

Maintenance and Operations
Staff are responsible for the management of buildings in specified residential areas. Operations Managers coordinate facilities work in each residential area. Maintenance and Opera-tions staff work collaboratively with Residence Life staff in the coordination of maintenance and custodial activities, and on such matters as interior design, residence hall openings and closings, furniture replacement and inventory, key control, recycling, and project planning.

Furnishings
Students are assigned furnishings for use during the period of occupancy. These furnishings may vary from hall to hall, but include at least a bed frame and mattress, desk unit and chair, and wardrobe or closet.

All residence halls are served by a University telecommunications system that includes local calling service, access to long distance telephone service, voice mail, and high-speed data. Residents are required to provide their own telephones. Information regarding telephone service may be obtained by calling the Telecommunication Services Office, tel. (413) 545-2171.

Campus Security
The University of Massachusetts Amherst is committed to maintaining a safe and secure campus, with professional police officers from the university’s Department of Public Safety providing 24-hour security.

Residence halls are secured and only accessible with proper identification. During the academic year, more than 200 students are employed as Security Monitors to regulate access, check residents’ identification, and register guests. During vacation periods, security is also provided in the occupied nine-month and year-round halls.

Campus Security strives to ensure a safe environment for study, teaching, research, and recreation through problem-solving partnerships with faculty, staff, and students, as well as with state and local governmental bodies, and community neighbors.

Insurance
It is not possible for the university to carry insurance to compensate students or their families for losses suffered on the campus due to such hazards as fire, theft, or water damage. For most families, insurance covering potential loss is highly desirable, either as a rider to their current home insurance policy or as an independent contract.

Room Rent
The halls are managed by the Housing and Residence Life Office, which provides for the daily maintenance and cleaning of all facilities. Rents are set so as to provide a fund sufficient to pay operating costs and capital repair costs. In order to ensure the minimum possible room rent, the university endeavors to maximize hall occupancy. This requires that a student be held financially responsible for room rent once registering for and occupying a room in a residence hall.

Family Housing
The university owns and manages two apartment complexes for eligible students. Apartments in North Village are unfurnished. Lincoln Apartments feature a small number of furnished studio and one-bedroom units. These units would typically include a table/desk unit, several chairs, a couch, a dresser, a bed and mattress. The additional monthly charge for a furnished studio is $25 and $30 for a one-bedroom apartment. All Family Housing apartments are equipped with a stove and a refrigerator. Utilities are included in the rent except for phone service. Assignment of apartments is made through application (earliest application date given first consideration). A tenant is expected upon commencement of the lease (one year) to pay the first month’s rent in advance, and a security deposit equal to one month’s rent. Applications and specific information may be obtained from Family Housing, Wysocki House, 911 North Pleasant Street, tel. (413) 545-3115.

Off-Campus Housing Referrals
Housing and Residence Life offers an online resource of area rental listings for students eligible to live off campus. The online resource also features student profiles for those seeking compatible housemates. For additional information, contact the Housing Assignment Office, 235 Whitmore Administration Building, tel. (413) 545-2100.