Residence Hall Policies, Procedures And Services

Each student in the residence halls is expected to exercise self-discipline and to respect the rights and privacy of other students. In a community living environment, certain rules and policies must be observed by everyone in order to maintain the operation of the residence halls, as well as the personal and academic success of all residents.

If a student engages in behavior that violates residence life or university policies, an incident report can be filed. Any student or staff member may file an incident report. Students and staff members should inform the involved parties when they are being documented for an incident. Residence hall policy violations will be subject to the student conduct process.

Alcohol

Consumption of alcohol is permissible for students of legal drinking age. Any alcohol brought into the residence halls must be placed in a bag or covered. Buying or supplying alcohol to anyone under 21 years of age is against state law and university policy. No alcoholic beverages can be brewed, created, and/or distributed anywhere on campus. The consumption or possession of alcoholic beverages and containers is not permitted in common areas. In addition, the possession/ distribution of alcohol from common source containers (kegs, alcohol bongs, etc.) is not permitted. Any common source containers will be confiscated and will NOT be returned to the student under any circumstances. All empty and full containers that are holding or have previously held alcohol may be confiscated upon documentation of a policy violation. Students may not display empty containers, including but not limited to, shot glasses, empty alcohol containers, etc. and/or alcohol logos/advertisements in any way.

Under 21: If all assigned residents to a residence hall room are under 21, the possession or consumption of alcohol is prohibited within that room at all times regardless of the age of any guest. Further, any person (student or guest) under 21 may not be present in a room where alcohol is being consumed, unless it is the student’s place of residence.

Over 21: If only one of the assigned residents of a room is of legal drinking age, that resident must be present if others of legal drinking age are drinking in the room. If underage drinking is taking place while an assigned resident of legal drinking age is present, that resident will be held responsible for university policy regarding buying or supplying alcohol to anyone under 21 years of age.

Appliances and Electrical Equipment

Students may not cook in their room. Electric skillets, broilers, hot plates, toasters and other equipment normally used to cook food are not allowed. For safety reasons, halogen lamps, space heaters, candle warmers, electric blankets, electric sheets or mattress pads, soldering tools and sun lamps cannot be used in student rooms. Students will be held financially responsible for damages caused. Other small appliances, such as coffee makers and popcorn poppers, can be used if the heating element is completely enclosed. Incandescent and fluorescent study lights are allowed. Small refrigerators and small microwaves are allowed. The electrical requirement limits are 120 volts, 60 hertz, 2.5 amps.

No antennas of any type are to be attached to the outside of the residence halls. This includes CB antennas and satellite dishes outside windows of student rooms.

Air conditioners are not allowed in the public areas or private rooms of residents. The buildings are not equipped to handle the electrical needs of such items. Anyone needing a window unit A/C must submit proper documentation to the Dean of Students office. The Dean of Students office will consider any documented, confirmed medical need for an accommodation. Anyone approved for a window-unit A/C is subject to a $100 fee for extra A/C use.

Check-In/Out Procedures and Dates

All residents must officially meet with a member of the Residence Life staff when checking into a room, when checking out of a room or when changing rooms. Failing to check in and check out is a violation of residence hall policy. Improper check-out will result in a significant fine of $150 or more. Damages or missing items will result in additional charges to the students’ account.

When moving into a room, students must fill out and sign a room condition report indicating necessary repairs, along with a checklist indicating the general condition of the room. When students check out of the room, students will fill out and sign the same room condition report. Students will be held responsible for damages to their rooms during the time they lived there or any missing furniture.

Students may also elect to do an express check out, in which case they return their keys and ID in an envelope provided by Residence Life. By selecting this option, students agree that any charges that may be applied at check-out cannot be disputed.

Students must check out either 24 hours after their last final or by noon on the Saturday of winter closing, or 5 p.m. the Friday of spring closing. If students are not returning to live in the residence halls the following semester, they must turn in their resident ID card. If not returned, students will be charged $35. Students will have until June 15, 2016, to return their ID cards to have the $35 charge reversed. Any belongings left in the students room after the official date of closing becomes property of the university and will be disposed of appropriately.

Dates for check-in are as follows: August 28, 2015, for new students and August 29, 2015, for returning students for the fall semester. Halls close for the winter break at 12 p.m. on December 19, 2015. Halls re-open on January 10, 2016 at 12 p.m. for the semester. Halls close for the year on May 7, 2016, at 5 p.m. Students involved with Candle and Rose must be checked out of their rooms by 5 p.m. on May 8, 2016.

Common Areas

Commons areas are available for studying, socializing, meetings and programs. The lounge furniture is not to be removed for use elsewhere. If furniture is missing from a lounge or damaged or unusual cleaning is needed, the hall, floor, cluster, suite and/or wing will be held financially responsible. A charge of $25 per day will be assessed for unauthorized university furniture found in a student’s room. Resident students may not leave any furniture from their rooms or any other personal belongings in any common area of the university. Residence Life may conduct searches for missing common area furniture at any time.

A kitchen is available for student use adjacent to the Coughlin Commons. Students must supply their own cookware. Any damages in the kitchen will be included in the resident’s damage billing. Residents choosing to use it are expected to maintain the cleanliness of the kitchen. The kitchen may be closed down due to lack of cleanliness.

Computer Usage (See Information Technology section)

Any personal computer used on the Dominican University network will be required to login with a Dominican ID and the system will be checked for a valid anti-virus software and up-to-date Windows updates, prior to gaining access to the network resources, including the Internet. All users of Dominican University technology resources are responsible for abiding by the current IT policies, a copy of which can be found at: http://duit.dom.edu.

Disruptive Behavior

Students are expected to respect each other and Residence Life/university staff. In addition, students who infringe upon the rights of others or violate policies will be reported and sanctions may be imposed. Actions which are disruptive or potentially harmful to other people, in or around the residence halls, are prohibited. Students are responsible for their behavior and its consequences.

Students are not allowed to use any type of sporting equipment in the residence halls, including student rooms, hallways, lounges, stairwells and restrooms. Wearing cleats, roller blades or skates is not permitted in any building. Dribbling, kicking, or other playing of balls/athletic equipment is also prohibited.

If, in the opinion of a university official, the number of people entering or occupying a room exceeds a reasonable number and a disturbance to the community is imminent, the university official may disband the people gathered in a room.

Email, Cable and Voicemail (See Information Technology section)

Dominican University provides personal email and voicemail accounts that all students are required to set up and maintain daily. Students are responsible for information communicated through these services. Concerns with any of these services should be directed to Information Technology, x6888.

Fire Safety

Residents must evacuate a building immediately upon the sound of a fire alarm. It is each student’s individual responsibility to: evacuate when a fire alarm sounds, encourage others to leave the building, assist those in need, exit the building completely, and keep a safe distance. Students and guests should wait for an “all clear” signal from university staff or the fire department before entering the building.

Failure to exit during a fire alarm or causing a false alarm may result in a significant fine. False alarms will result in a $25 charge per resident if the person(s) responsible do(es) not come forward. Charges may be differentiated by building if warranted.

Smoke detectors are installed in each student’s room. Removing, disarming or tampering with the detector or battery seriously jeopardizes the safety of all residents and is a violation. University staff may go room-to-room during an alarm to ensure compliance with the evacuation policy.

Any open flame or any substance like incense or candles are not allowed in the residence halls.

Furniture

University-owned furniture may not be removed from residence hall rooms or lounges. Furniture may not be altered, taken apart or added to in any way. Please see the Common Area section for more clarification. Students will be held responsible for any missing or altered furniture in their rooms and lounges.

Residence hall rooms are furnished, but you may bring additional furniture. You may move furniture as long as windows and doorways are not blocked. Because of storage constraints and accountability concerns, university furniture cannot be removed from your room. Any university furniture not in the room at checkout will result in charges for replacement, even if it is located somewhere else on campus. Students may not swap or trade university furniture.

Students must return their furniture to the original configuration at check-out, or face an improper check-out fine of $100 or more.

Housing Contract and Application

The residence hall contract is a legal agreement binding for the entire academic year. The resident will be assessed a $375 contract breakage fee if the student decides to cancel after signing between June 1, 2015 and August 28, 2015, or between the Fall 2015 and Spring 2016 semesters. Once a semester starts, the housing/dining refund policy mirrors the tuition refund policy. Please see the housing contract for more details. The date when all the student’s belongings are removed from their assigned room and keys are turned in will be the date used for application of the refund policy.

Students removed from the residence halls for disciplinary reasons may still be charged the $375 breakage fee. Students released from their agreement may still be responsible for the costs of housing and/or associated charges. Refunds and/or credits are given only in accordance with the university housing contract and application.

The residence halls are to be occupied by undergraduate students enrolled in 12 credit hours or more. Any student falling below full-time status will be referred to the Dean of Students office.

Illegal Drugs

Dominican University is committed to providing a safe, healthy and comfortable living environment for all residents. Students, who illegally use, sell, create, possess, distribute or provide controlled substances will be subject to disciplinary action as outlined in the student code of conduct. Any drug or drug paraphernalia will be confiscated from the student and NOT returned. This includes, but is not limited to, roach clips, scales, bowls, baggies, hookahs, bongs, etc. When adjudicating any case involving drugs, physical evidence of drug use is not required for a finding of responsibility in a case. Scent or smell of drug use, or other behaviors and/or observations made by students and/or university officials and personnel, may be used in determining the outcome.

Keys and Identification Cards

Residents are provided with a key and a student ID card allowing entry into the buildings. Residents are not permitted to duplicate or transfer use of a key or ID card. Lost keys should be reported to campus security immediately. Students are financially responsible for lock and key replacement in the event of a lost key; key replacements cost up to $500. The ID card replacement fee is $35. If a student is a victim of theft and produces a valid police report upon request, Dominican University will cover any replacement costs.

Students are required to carry their keys and ID cards at all times. Students will be charged $25 for a lockout. These fees will be charged to the students’ accounts. Students must present their student ID when entering the residence halls and to university officials upon request.

Mailbox keys are given out by the mailroom. All mail and mailbox questions should be directed to the mailroom, located on the lower level of the library.

Maintenance and Repairs

Any maintenance problems are to be submitted to the physical plant at http://apps.dom.edu/repairs/. Be sure to include your name, the type of problem your room has, and the specific location and the nature of the problem. Students are restricted from repairing university property. Maintenance staff or approved contractors are authorized to enter student rooms to complete work orders in the absence of the residents.

Meal Plans

Meal plans are required for all residential students living on campus: main and priory. All meal plans consists of a set number of meals and plan dollars that expire at the end of each semester. Students can use meals in the main dining hall (all you care to eat) or the cyber café (grab & go) – use plan dollars or the meal exchange program. Students should choose the meal plan that best fits their academic, co-curricular and social schedule. Students can change their meal plan at the beginning of each semester. Additional information about the residential meal program and DU dollars is available on the dining services website and in student accounts.

Also, review the dining calendar on the dining services website for a listing of special dining hours, location changes, reduced hours or dates when the meal plan program is not in service. For more information please contact dining services at: diningservices@dom.edu or 524-6446.

Noise

Students who live in the residence halls are responsible for their living environment. Please maintain courtesy and consideration for others at all times. Amplifiers may not be used in the residence halls. As residents are always expected to keep sound equipment at a level conducive to community living, speakers and other sound equipment must be kept out of the windows. Residents who enjoy loud music are encouraged to use headphones. Warnings for noise violations are a courtesy, and are not required.

Quiet Hours

Quiet hours are in effect from 10:00 p.m. to 7:00 a.m. Sunday through Thursday and midnight to 7:00 a.m. Friday and Saturday. During these hours, residents are expected to reduce their noise level, both inside and in the vicinity of the residence halls, to a level that will not disturb other residents. During final examinations, the Residence Life staff will institute a strictly enforced 24-hour quiet hour policy.

Courtesy Hours

Courtesy hours are in effect at all times, 24 hours a day. Any student or university staff member can ask an individual to alter the sound that is disturbing at any time. Excessive noise will not be tolerated.

Pets

Fish are the only pets allowed in the residence halls, with all roommates’ permission. Spot inspections will be made if there is a probable cause to believe that animals other than fish are living in the residence halls. Aquariums must be removed from the residence halls during all breaks. Students who are found to have animals other than fish living in their rooms will be referred to the student conduct process.

Room Changes

Room changes are not encouraged and are not allowed until the third week of the semester. After this time, a room change is warranted only after both residents of the room have attempted to work out any differences. Any resident wishing to change rooms should contact his or her RA who will mediate a conflict resolution meeting. If a room change is still requested, Residence Life staff will meet with the students involved to determine a resolution and/or room change. Students must follow proper check-out and check-in procedures when changing rooms. If a student changes a room without authorization from the Office of Residence Life, he/she is subject to a $50 fine.

For room changes that are mutual swaps and agreed upon by all parties, students need to fill out the room change form from the Residence Life website. For students whom are unhappy with their current room and would like to change rooms, they can go on the wait-list, also available on the Residence Life website. Residence Life will review the wait-list periodically each semester. For any students switching rooms at the semester break, all rooms must be completed prior to leaving campus in December.

Room Condition

Rooms should be in the same general condition when residents move out as when they moved in. Residents should be careful not to cause any permanent damage to their rooms. Rooms must be returned to their original condition at the end of each year.

If a resident damages his or her room, the Office of Residence Life will bill the resident’s account for the damage, replacement and labor cost. The Office of Residence Life has discretion with regard to billing students for damages and improper check out. Final charges for damages will be assessed after check-out and cannot be disputed after June 15, 2016.

Students may not make permanent structural changes in their rooms. This includes painting, wallpapering, wallpaper borders, attaching loft panels and paneling. Residents are asked to use masking tape to fasten pictures and posters to the walls. Glued picture hooks, nails, and/or scotch tape are not permitted. Waterbeds are not permitted. Lighted signs, alcoholic beverage signage, alcohol container displays, and street or public works signs are not permitted and will be considered stolen property. Window screens must remain in place and closed at all times. Residents may be charged for screens that are not in place.

The outside of a room is considered a common area. This includes the door. Displays offensive to others or decorations that are a fire hazard are prohibited. The same policy applies to windows.

Room Consolidation

The Office of Residence Life has the authority to move a resident into a double room that is being occupied by only one person. Freshmen are rarely allowed to occupy single rooms. Freshmen will be consolidated into double rooms if at all possible. Any student who has been assigned to a double room as a single may be assigned a roommate at any time. Advance notice will be given to those students, when possible.

Room Entry and Search

The university reserves the right to inspect residential rooms and regulate the use of these premises in accordance with university rules and regulations consistent with the student’s constitutional rights to be free of unreasonable search and seizure.

University officials may enter rooms without the consent of the residents in the following circumstances:

• When the staff has reasonable cause to suspect violations of health or safety regulations or of university or residence hall policy.

• When the staff has reasonable cause to believe an emergency exists involving immediate danger to life, safety, health and/or property.

• When the staff has reasonable cause to suspect that a particular item or piece of information (such as medication or telephone number) is located in the room and would be useful in responding to an emergency involving immediate danger to life, safety, health or property.

• When a disturbance exists in the room (i.e. continual alarm sounding, telephone ringing or loud stereo playing).

• When the staff has reasonable cause to suspect illegal use of drugs or alcohol or evidence of another crime or policy violation.

• When the staff has reasonable cause to think some act of vandalism has occurred or is occurring.
• For periodic environmental checks (i.e. furniture inventory, engineering/cleanliness concerns). These will be conducted during fall, winter and spring breaks and at the discretion of the university.

Room Inspections

Scheduled room inspections occur before breaks and after the halls have closed. These inspections are conducted to ensure that building maintenance, safety, sanitation and property control requirements are being followed. The Director of Residence Life and/or his/her designee will notify students of a room inspection explaining how to properly prepare the room. Failure to prepare one’s room is considered a violation of policy.

An unscheduled room inspection may happen at any time. Students should be aware that any items prohibited by law or residence hall policy may be confiscated. Disciplinary action will follow such instances. The university will conduct room inspections at least twice a semester.

If a student leaves belongings in their room after they move out of the residence halls, those items become property of the university.

Safety

Exterior and interior doors are locked for security purposes. Doors leading into the residence halls are always locked. If a false alarm is sounded or a door is used inappropriately, every resident is subject to a fine of at least $25 unless the individuals responsible come forward. Students must show Dominican University ID upon entering the residence halls. Failure to do so may result in a referral to the Dominican University conduct process. The exit and entry point for all the residence halls on the main campus is the Coughlin Commons.

Smoking

Dominican University is a smoke-free institution; therefore, smoking is prohibited in the residence halls including restrooms, hallways, stairwells and offices. The residential smoking area is the Coughlin Commons Patio (east of the CCMPR). Hookahs are not permitted and will be confiscated and become the property of Dominican University. There is no smoking in the mini-quad, nor anywhere but the designated smoking areas.

Theft

Thefts should be reported to campus safety and security staff immediately. Doors should be locked at all times and personal belongings should not be left unattended. Dominican University does not accept any responsibility for loss or theft occurring in the halls. Residents are financially responsible for all damage and loss of university property. Students are encouraged to obtain renters’ insurance policies.

Vacation and Break Housing

Residents are expected to vacate the residence halls during break periods. Some dining, recreational and other university services may not be available during university break periods. Students who receive permission to stay during school breaks may be assessed a housing charge and may be required to participate in a university meal plan. At the end of each semester, all students must officially check out of the residence halls within 24 hours after completing their last final examination or by the time the residence halls officially close, whichever occurs first.

Since students receive the university schedule at the beginning of each year, travel plans must be made accordingly. Extensions to arrive prior to the start of a semester or stay after will not be given readily. Early arrivals or drop-offs will only be made in special situations.

All students must move out by May 7, 2016, at 5:00 p.m. Graduating seniors and those participating in the Candle and Rose Ceremony must be out of the residence halls by May 8, 2016, at 5:00 p.m. No exceptions will be granted.

Vandalism

Vandalism in the residence halls is not tolerated at Dominican University. For each occurrence of vandalism in the residence halls, there is a minimum fine of $500 per student, room, floor and/or building, depending on the place and nature of the vandalism. This fine may be altered as necessary.

Individual(s) may come forward and claim responsibility for the vandalism and the fine may be altered or eliminated at that time. Common area damages will also be charged to the residential students as appropriate.

Visitation and Guests

The visitation policy allows for 24-hour visitation on all floors in the residence halls. All main campus guests must check-in at the Coughlin Commons Resource Desk. Both hosts and guests must have a valid government-issued picture ID, which will be left at the Resource Desk until they exit the residence halls. The host student must escort his/her guest(s) at all times. Guests under 16 years of age are exempt from showing ID, but must be checked-in. University officials, members of law enforcement and/or other approved personnel are allowed in the residence halls without checking in or having a host. Hosts are financially responsible for their guests’ passes if they are lost/damaged.

The 24-hour visitation policy has several conditions:

• A resident must have the agreement of his/her roommate in order to host a guest.

• No cohabitation is allowed. Individuals not assigned to the room may not live in the room. Members of the opposite sex are not allowed to “live” or stay as overnight guests.

• Guests may stay in the residence halls for a maximum of three nights per three-week period. Residents and guests abusing this policy will forfeit the privilege of having guests.

• No one under the age of 12 is allowed in the residence halls after 8 p.m. and before 8 a.m.

• Residents must acquaint the guests with all university and residence hall policies. Residents will be held responsible for the actions of their guests and/or anyone checked in under their name.

• Residents must escort their guests at all times. This includes escorting guests in and out of the building. Guests who are not escorted by their hosts may be asked to leave the hall. Guests must carry their guest pass at all times and surrender it upon request by a university official. A resident student may have no more than three guests at one time.