Parents and Guardians

Independence and structure go hand in hand at Student Housing. We are home base for residents and we provide a space where they can grow academically, socially and emotionally.

In the this section, you will find information about your student’s moving essential items and important Student Housing dates and events. We have also included an explanation of the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) and community standards for living.

When deciding what your student should bring to Student Housing, refer to the following checklist: 

  • Bedding (extra-long twin):
    • Mattress pad
    • Sheets
    • Blankets
    • Pillows
  • Task light, towels, washcloths and other bathroom items
  • If your student has a kitchen:
    • Pots
    • Pans
    • Dishes
    • Silverware
    • Glasses
  • If your apartment does not have a kitchen:
    • Small refrigerator
    • Microwave

Please note that your student must purchase one of the available meal plans.

  • Cleaning supplies:
    • Broom
    • Mop
    • Toilet plunger
    • Non-abrasive cleaner
    • Soap
    • Laundry detergent
    • Ironing board
    • Vacuum
    • Trash containers
    • Trash bags
  • Clothing and personal items
  • Recreational items:
    • Computer
    • Stereo
    • Television
    • Sports equipment
    • Bicycle

After determining how much space your student has and what your student can share with his or her roommates, your student may wish to bring additional items or have the items sent to them.

We strongly encourage all residents to maintain personal property insurance, such as renter’s insurance. Your student can obtain a renter’s insurance policy from most major insurance companies.

The following items are NOT permitted:

  • Pets other than small fish
  • Clothes washers or dryers. Please note: Coin-operated washers and dryers are located on the first floor of each hall.
  • Waterbeds
  • Pianos, organs, drum sets and other large musical instruments. Please note: The music department has practice rooms available to students.
  • Firearms, weapons (e.g., swords, bow, arrows, etc.), ammunition, paintball guns, fireworks, explosives and dangerous flammable chemicals
  • Halogen lamps

The Housing Calendar contains important dates and events for residents, including move-in and move-out days.

For more information about your student’s housing needs, visit the following pages.

The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) is a federal law aimed at protecting the privacy of student education records. FERPA allows parents rights in respect to their student’s academic records. When your student reaches the age of 18 and seeks higher education those rights are transferred to them. Find detailed description of those rights on the FERPA page.

Student Housing wants to work with parents and guardians to encourage them to take part in their students’ living and learning experience. There may be times when your student will call you in a state of distress. You care about your student’s happiness and Student Housing cares too. We would like to enlist you as partners in this process.

Think of a challenging time or situation in your life and ask yourself:

  • What was the situation?
  • How did I get through it?
  • Did I learn anything from it?
  • Did I take part in resolving the situation? 
  • Were there people around who supported me as I got through the situation?

If your student calls you and is upset, partner with us to help your student get through the difficult time the right way—independently. We're sure you’ll agree with us when we say that the best lessons and growth takes place when an individual is empowered to solve problems and conflicts on his or her own.

What are community standards?

Community standards allow residents who share a floor community to define standards or rules for how they treat each other, live together and hold each other accountable when standards are violated.

While community standards can be seen as a product, a list of agreements and expectations, it’s also an ongoing process by which students begin forming a healthy community through dialogue, compromise and commitment. Community standards constantly evolve; therefore, the process is never finished. Community standards should not be thought of as a task to be completed, but as a means by which interactions occur.

An important aspect of community standards is discussing and deciding how students will hold themselves accountable for agreements and expectations. Discussing the issue of responsibility and accountability of each resident can be difficult. Many students believe that someone else (e.g., a housing staff or public safety member) is responsible for making sure that they get exactly what they want. Many students do not want to stand up for themselves; therefore, the thought of holding a peer to a standard can be equally difficult.

Why have community standards?

In Student Housing, we believe that college students are maturing adults. Students make choices and learn from the outcomes of those choices. The young adult years are perceived as years of freedom, experimentation, limit finding and testing. If experiences during these years are to lead to an increased ability to make mature judgments, then students must have the opportunity to make decisions so that he or she can experience the result of those decisions. An important area of decision-making for college students concerns lifestyle and personal conduct.

Traditional college-age people typically reject rules imposed from the outside. Students may reject authorities that appear to be trying to deny his or her freedom or independence. At the very same time, students may become angry with authorities who don't meet his or her needs at the time when they want their needs met. Community standards provides a means by which your student’s expectations of the authority to meet his or her needs are shifted to a recognition that the individual and the community must work together to create an environment that best meets everyone's needs. The authority (in this case, a resident advisor) is a person who helps this process happen, instead of someone who fixes things for your student or someone who always punishes behavior not in line with expectations.

If every student lived in perfect isolation, he or she could choose any manner of conduct. In reality, we exist in a tightly networked society. This means our behavior impacts other people and other people's behavior. We are affected by one another's behavior and tend to have expectations about what we consider acceptable for others to do. We may or may not realize that our behavior affects others or we believe that everyone has the same expectations that we have. This last concept extends to a point where we believe that everyone has the same expectations at the same time (e.g., since I want to listen to music now, everyone else must want to listen to music now).

If we are to live together in reasonable harmony, we must have the opportunity to express our expectations of how we want to be affected by others. By discussing these expectations you hear the range of expectations and therefore have a harder time holding on to the belief that everyone does X or that everyone wants the same thing you want. Out of an awareness of expectations, students can discuss your different expectations and come to agreement on ways that you can live with the differences or compromise around the differences. This process may not be easy because it requires many people to achieve new understandings and new behaviors quickly. One of these is the ability to consider another's point of view as being valid thus needing to be taken into consideration in one's own point of view.

The context of learning created by the community standards discussion is a powerful tool to encourage student development and a healthy community. It encourages students to build self-esteem through declarations of self, assertive interactions and empowerment that comes from group agreement. By establishing community standards and shared responsibility, students are empowered to deal with problems before they occur.

What about residence life and university policies and procedures?

We still will have policies and procedures by which all residents must abide. They represent the basic safety and management issues necessary to assure reasonable quality of life for all residents. Primarily, they establish minimum behavioral expectations and are in agreement with local, state and federal laws. Community standards do not replace these nor may violate these laws. The policies and procedures are of such basic nature that they should not impede a community's ability to create the standards they desire.

How are community standards developed?

Community standards are developed through group discussion and consensus. Residents are afforded the opportunity to assert their point of view. An underlying tenet of this system is the belief that in order to have one's needs met, one must accept responsibility for participation in the system designed to negotiate one's needs. Through implementing the community standards model, we are providing the opportunity for students to learn that they are responsible for their experience and they are not simply passive recipients of your experience. Recognition of this concept can lead to personal empowerment.

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