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We hope that the coming year in your new home will be exciting, challenging, and rewarding. Housing & Residence Life staff members strive to provide a supportive living environment that encourages students to succeed in the classroom and grow as individuals. You have voluntarily agreed to live in and become part of the South Alabama residential community. By signing a Residence Hall Contract, you have acknowledged and agree to follow Housing & Residence Life’s community standards as outlined in the expandable menus below. These community standards have been established in the best interest of the residential community at large in accordance with other University policies, local, state, and federal laws, as well as input from previous residents. For more information, please contact your Residence Assistant (RA), Community Director (CD), or Area Coordinator (AC).

We encourage you to review all the community standards below before you move-in to help prepare you for the coming year. For additional information regarding USA’s Policies and/or Code of Student Conduct, please visit and review the Lowdown found within the Dean of Students' page. 
 

I. University & Housing Standards

    I.1. BICYCLES AND OTHER NON-MOTORIZED VEHICLES

All bicycles must be registered with the USA Police Department (251-460-6312). Bicycle registration may be completed without charge by taking your bicycle and student ID to the USA Police Station. All bikes should be locked to a bike rack outside.  All bicycles that are not properly registered with USAPD and/or bicycles that are locked to anything other than the provided bike racks are subject to immediate removal and disposal by Housing & Residence Life Staff. Bikes that are subject to immediate removal may be held up to ten (10) days.  A bicycle may only be stored in a resident’s room if it does not block the exits and it is acceptable to the resident’s roommate(s). Bicycles remaining on the bike racks more than ten (10) days after the end of spring semester may be considered abandoned and are subject to removal and disposal, unless registered to a summer resident. If you believe your bike has been removed, please contact 251-460-7655 immediately.

    I.2. CAMPUS MAIL BOX
At the time of check-in or shortly after, residents have an opportunity to establish a campus mail box located in the Post Office on the ground floor of the Student Center. Payment for this box is included in the Residence Hall contract. Students must visit the Post Office in order to activate their box and receive a PO Box number. Packages will need to be signed for and picked up at the Post Office. Post Office window service is open Monday - Friday, 8:00AM - 4:00PM except holidays. The window is closed on Saturdays and Sundays. Lobby hours are from 7:00AM - 10:00PM seven days a week.
    I.3. EMAIL

All students at the University are automatically assigned an official University e-mail address (JagMail), which is the official communication plan and the primary channel for receiving official University and Housing information by students. It is the obligation of each student to activate his or her e-mail account and to routinely check it for new messages.

The University and Housing & Residence Life will use e-mail to send official communication to students such as reassignment details, important dates and reminders, information regarding your room (i.e., maintenance), as well as all urgent notices. For more information about your University e-mail account, please contact Academic Computing by phone at (251) 460-6161 or email helpdesk@southalabama.edu
    I.4. GARBAGE
Residents are expected to dispose of all garbage and trash (this includes cigarette butts and trash from vehicles) in the dumpsters located in the parking lots or in the appropriate receptacle. 
    I.5. INFORMATION AND MEETINGS

Residents are responsible for any information covered in or announced at community, building, and floor meetings as well as all posted and emailed information. Some of the informational meetings are necessary to relay vital Housing information and are planned in advance, so please watch for notices via University email.

    I.6. INTERNET

USA provides student access to computer resources through the email systems, University system web servers, and departmental labs located throughout campus. Students using these resources must adhere to all policies of the University of South Alabama, as well as the Alabama Research and Education network, and state and federal laws regarding the use of computers and computer networks. Students found in violation of these policies are subject to University disciplinary action and/or criminal charges. Internet privileges can be denied to anyone using University equipment or services for illegal or unethical purposes. Any illegal behavior observed will be reported to appropriate University officials or law enforcement agencies. Additionally, wireless routers are prohibited in all residence halls and residential areas. Anyone who violates University policies regarding internet usage or uses the University internet services in an inappropriate manner will be subject to disciplinary action. Please see the USA Student Computer Policy and Student Code of Conduct in The Lowdown. For more details about internet usage and connections, contact the Office of Academic Computing at (251) 460-6161.

    I.7. LAUNDRY FACILITIES

Washers and dryers are located in the Beta/Gamma Commons, the Delta Commons, at the end of Delta 3, 4, and 6; as well as on the first floors of Stokes Hall, New Hall, and Epsilon 1-2. These facilities are for current residential students only. Be prepared to show your student identification card if asked by a University official. Use of or access to these facilities by individuals who are not currently assigned to the residence halls for the current semester may be subject to non-academic disciplinary charges and/or criminal charges. Any resident found responsible for allowing a non-resident access to the laundry facilities will be subject to the Housing Judicial Process.

Please remember that all students are expected to remain with their laundry at all times when using the laundry facilities, as Housing & Residence Life is not responsible for lost or stolen items. Any laundry items left unattended may receive daily relocation to a lost and found bin in the laundry room.  Items from this bin will be removed once a week by Housing staff members and discarded. Please also refer to our Laundry Services page for more information.

    I.8. MAINTENANCE

To report maintenance issues or concerns, please contact the Housing Maintenance Call Center at (251) 460-7655.  If you are experiencing any type of maintenance issue, please call as quickly as possible. Housing Maintenance can be reached between 8:00AM and 5:00PM, Monday-Friday; excluding University holidays (see Academic Calendar). Maintenance emergencies after 5:00PM and on weekends or holidays can be reported to the RA On-Duty by calling your Community Office (click here to locate your Community Office phone number/location).  If there is a maintenance emergency (i.e. flood, power outage, no heat, no air conditioning, etc.) or you are unsure what to do, please contact a Resident Assistant or the Community Desk/Office immediately.

    I.9. MEAL PLANS

All students who live in the residence halls are required by the University to purchase a South Alabama Dining meal plan. During the Fall and Spring semesters, Freshman and Sophomore residents are required to purchase an All-Access Meal Plan.  Likewise, Junior, Senior and Graduate residents are required to purchase a minimum of seven (7) meals per week during the Fall and Spring semester. Also, all summer semester residents are required to purchase a minimum of seven (7) meals per week. Students may upgrade to a different plan by emailing housing@southalabama.edu. For further information concerning the meal plan, please contact Housing at 251.460.6185 or visit our Rates page (then select Meal Plan Rates).

    I.10. MOTORIZED VEHICLES, PARKING, AND TRAFFIC

If you bring a motor vehicle to campus, you must obtain a proper University parking permit during the registration process from Parking Services. You are responsible for violations involving motor vehicles which are registered in your name and/or that display parking permits issued to you. Traffic/Parking Rules & Regulations are available when you purchase your permit.

No parking/driving is allowed on the grounds/grass around the residence hall buildings. Parking is only allowed in the parking lots. Please do not pull up on the grass to unload or load items.Individuals parking on the grounds or sidewalks in the residence hall areas are subject to being towed and/or parking fines. Additionally, driving/parking on the grass in the residential areas may damage your vehicle or the University sprinkler system. 

Excessive noise, loud music, loitering, or “cruising” through parking lots is prohibited. No parking is allowed on any red or yellow painted curbs or pavement. Students must comply with all campus traffic regulations. Visitors must obtain a visitors parking permit from the USA Parking Services.

Motorcycles and other gasoline powered vehicles are not allowed within ten (10) yards of the buildings. Motorcycles must be parked in the paved parking lots adjacent to the buildings. Motorcycles may not be parked in walkways, chase ways or stairways; violators will be ticketed.

    I.11. PEST CONTROL

Pest control services are performed upon request. Residents who notice the presence of pests should call the Housing Maintenance Call Center at (251) 460-7655 to request service.  Service should be rendered by the end of the following business day.

Residents must notify the Community Desk/Office in writing if a medical problem exists and they do not want their room sprayed. Students must allow maintenance and service personnel to enter their room for spraying purposes unless prior medical exceptions have been filed.

    I.12. REFRIGERATORS/MICROWAVES

Students are responsible for cleaning their room/apartment refrigerator/freezer and microwave (if applicable). Please do not use a sharp object when cleaning or defrosting. Students will be financially responsible for the replacement costs of damaged or missing refrigerator-freezers and microwaves. 

    I.13. SECURITY

Tampering with, or modifying, any equipment used for security purposes (i.e. security cameras, doors, card access hardware) is strictly prohibited. Residence Life staff members are responsible for monitoring security and assisting students in the event of an emergency. Please note that students are expected to keep their doors and windowslocked at all times. If you see anyone tampering with the security equipment, please contact the RA, Community Desk/Office, or USAPD immediately.  Any residence hall student who is found responsible for violating this policy will be subject to the Housing Judicial Process.

    I.14. UTILITIES

All utilities in the residence halls are maintained by University personnel. Keep in mind that, like in a home, there may be an occasional interruption in electrical power, air conditioning, heat, hot water, and/or cable TV due to mechanical failure, necessary repairs, and/or forces of nature. Maintenance crews will work as quickly as possible to restore utilities. Should an interruption take place in your room or apartment, please notify your Community Desk/Office or RA immediately.

In order to keep utilities working at an optimum level, please do the following: keep all heating and cooling vents uncovered; in rooms with individual heating and cooling units, do not block the vent (above, front, and below) with bedding, furniture or other items; do not tamper with the cable television jacks or wiring; do not tamper with electrical fixtures or plumbing fixtures; please refer to the Services tab on the Housing website for reporting procedures (see above #8. "Maintenance”).

    I.15. VISITORS

While in the buildings, all visitors must be escorted by the resident they are visiting. The escorting resident must reside in the building being visited.  It is encouraged for visitors to remain escorted throughout all residence hall areas.  Residents and guests must be able to provide picture identification if asked by a University official, including but not limited to the Resident Assistant.


II. Respect for Persons Community Standards

    II.1. BEHAVIOR AND CONDUCT

Student behavior is expected to be lawful and in accordance with all published rules affecting one’s status with the University specifically included within the Housing Community Standards, The Lowdown, the Residence Hall Contract, and the Student Code of Conduct. Housing regulations and standards are applicable to residence hall students and their guests. Residents are responsible and will be held accountable for the behavior of their guests and visitors at all times.

All residents are responsible for informing Housing staff (ex. Area Coordinator, Community Director, or Resident Assistant) of any community standard violation(s) occurring in their room or in their presence. Aiding and abetting any violation of Housing and/or University policy, meaning to incite, assist, or encourage in the violation of Housing and/or University policy is prohibited.  Prohibited conduct also includes failure to comply with an administrative request or sanction and failure to evacuate a hall when an alarm sounds. Please also refer to the Student Code of Conduct, “Failure to comply with directions from University officials...” (7. o.).
    II.2. COMMUNICATION
In an effort to provide our students a safe, secure and comfortable environment to achieve success, Housing & Residence Life endeavors to educate students on the responsibilities associated with “free speech.” Freedom of speech does not absolve a student of the responsibility to respect other individuals. Therefore, disruptive profanity, hate speech, or verbal intimidation will not be tolerated and will be subject to disciplinary action. All residents will be expected to maintain a sense of civility towards each other and the staff.Please also refer to the Student Code of Conduct, “Conduct which is disorderly or indecent” (7. h.).
    II.3. ENTRY BY STAFF
USA Housing & Residence Life reserves the right to enter a resident’s room with or without the resident’s consent and/or presence in order to provide services, to make necessary repairs, inspect rooms for health and safety purposes, inspect for damages, and if necessary, to check for compliance with University rules, regulations, and policies. The Housing & Residence Life staff will conduct any necessary room entries with as little disturbance as possible.
    II.4. GUESTS

A guest is defined as any person who is not assigned to your room.  Residents are expected to talk with their roommate(s) in advance and agree on guests, overnight stays, and other visitation issues (see “About Roommates”). The Residence Life staff is available to assist residents with these conversations and to support residents in maintaining their safety and comfort. Guests, including residents from other residence hall rooms, are permitted during the approved University visitation hours: Sunday-Thursday 10:00AM-12:00AM (midnight), and Friday-Saturday 10:00AM-2:00AM.  A maximum of three guests are allowed per resident per visit at any time during visitation hours.

A residential student is permitted to have a  guest of the same gender stay overnight in his/her room for a maximum of 48 hours if that guest is registered with and approved by the Community Director in advance. Only one guest is permitted per room per overnight stay and excessive numbers of requests by the same resident may be denied. A resident must have written consent from his/her roommate prior to permitting an overnight guest and prior to use of the roommate’s bed for a guest.

Click here to download your Overnight Guest Request Form.  Children under the age of 17 are not allowed to remain in the residence halls overnight except under special circumstances and with the approval of the respective Area Coordinator. Students with unregistered guests may be subject to the Housing Judicial Process and assessed a per-night charge for the guest; likewise, the guest may be removed from the residence halls.

All guests/visitors are required to have official photo identification (i.e., driver’s licenses, state id, University id) with them at all times and present it to University officials uponrequest.  While in a residence hall, guests must comply with all University and Housing policies and community standards, as well as all applicable federal and state laws. Residents are responsible for the conduct of their guests and may be subject to financial and other sanctions through the Housing Judicial Process and/or University judiciary system, as well as the legal system if the community standard for guests is violated. Furthermore, residents are encouraged to be with/escort their guest(s) the entire time they are within the residential community. Guests may not be left unattended in a room without prior written permission from the Area Coordinator.  Guests who violate visitation hours may be subject to trespass warrants or other action taken by the USA Police Department. Guests may also lose the privilege of visiting the USA residence hall communities.  Housing & Residence Life reserves the right to amend or revoke visitation within each residence hall community.

All Residence Hall lots are closed to non-resident vehicles when visiting hours have ended: Sunday-Thursday, 12:00AM (midnight), and Friday-Saturday 2:00AM. Non-resident vehicles found in the residence hall lots after hours, including Gamma and Fraternity/Sorority lots, are subject to towing unless the guest is registered and approved by the Community Director.
    II.5. HARASSMENT
Actions of harassment, as defined by the Student Code of Conduct (7. b., c., and d.) are strictly prohibited in the residence halls and throughout the University.  Behavior which attempts to force a roommate to move out of the room and/or behavior toward a current roommate / newly assigned occupant which violates the University’s discrimination/harassment policy will be sufficient grounds for reassigning the existing occupants.  The offending resident will be required to move upon request or to pay additional charges for an unoccupied space. Failure to accept a roommate, create a positive roommate relationship, or meet any of the above criteria may subject the resident to disciplinary action. Those found responsible for violation of the community standard for harassment in the residential community may be immediately administratively relocated or removed from the residential community pending a Housing Judicial Conference or referral to the University Disciplinary Committee.   Sanctions for violating this standard include, but are not limited to financial restitution, relocation, and housing removal.
    II.6. NOISE
All persons who are present in the residence hall areas should conduct themselves in such a manner as to allow others the quiet enjoyment of the residence halls. Students are expected to uphold and support daily Quiet Hours between the hours of 8:00PM and 8:00AM (7 days a week).  During this period, students and visitors are expected to keep noise levels at a minimum and respect the rights of others. Also, please note that each residential community endorses and affirms 24-hour Quiet Hours beginning on the last day of classes through the last day of finals. In an effort to attain enjoyment of the residence halls, twenty-four hour Courtesy Hours will be enforced daily throughout the entire academic term to ensure a pleasant living environment for all residence hall students, free from unnecessary distractions or disturbance; please note that you may be asked to use a headset or to remove stereos, TVs or musical instruments from the room if the use of such equipment is causing a disturbance to other members of the community.
    II.7. SOLICITATION

Solicitation is prohibited in the residential areas. This includes, but is not limited to, door-to-door marketing or recruiting for business purposes, organizations, or events. In addition, vendors are not allowed to go to students’ doors to offer their product or service. (Written permission is required from the Vice President of Student Affairs for the only exception, campus-wide student elections). Call your RA or your Community Desk/Office immediately to report solicitors.


III. Respect for Health, Safety, & Welfare

    III.1. ALCOHOLIC BEVERAGES AND CONTROLLED/PROHIBITED SUBSTANCES
Alcoholic beverages and controlled/prohibited substances (other than prescription medications for which a student has a valid prescription) are strictly prohibited in the residence halls.  For more information, please refer to the Student Code of Conduct #7. s., t., u., and v. (please also see the following standards concerning additional alcohol related issues: II.1. "Behavior & Conduct” and IV.18. “Room Decorating”).  Any residence hall student found responsible for violating the University policies for alcohol or controlled/prohibited substances will be subject to disciplinary action and may be removed from the residence halls for the first offense. Residents are held accountable for improper activities which take place in their room and/or apartment. Note: Students removed from the residence halls due to disciplinary infractions are not entitled to a credit refund of fees and/or charges already paid or payable; no cancellation fee will be charged.
    III.2. CLEANLINESS
Each student is responsible for the cleanliness of his/her own room or apartment. Rooms must be left reasonably clean upon check-out; failure to do so will result in assessment of a cleaning fee (please see III.6. “Health & Safety Inspections” for more details).
    III.3. CONFISCATION OF PROPERTY

If Housing & Residence Life staff or other University officials view an item in a resident’s room that violates Housing community standards or other University policies or applicable laws, an incident report will be submitted to authorities. Depending on the nature of the violation, the item may be confiscated, the student may be obligated to remove the item immediately, the student may be subject to the Housing Judicial Process and/or the student may be referred to the Dean of Students Office or other appropriate authorities.

These items include, but are not limited to, the removal and discarding of alcohol and/or empty alcoholic beverage containers; confiscation of illegal pets which may be turned over to the local humane society or animal control; removal and discarding of candles; the removal of unauthorized appliances; and the confiscation of weapons, toy weapons, replicas of weapons and/or illegal substances or paraphernalia which will be turned over to the USAPD.
    III.4. COOKING

Conventional cooking (including toaster ovens, electric fryers, or electric grills, and all other appliances, even those with auto shut off) is limited to the following residence halls: Beta, Gamma 5-9, Delta 6 apartments and Greek chapter houses in the kitchen facilities only. Do not leave items unattended on the stove or oven at any time.

All Residents in suites/rooms without kitchens are permitted to use the following appliances so long as the appliance has an automatic shut-off feature: pop-up toasters, rice steamers, crock pots, electric kettles (without an open element), and coffee pots. A $50.00 fine will be issued to anyone with appliances which are not permitted and/or the student will be instructed to remove the item immediately.

Gas grills are prohibited, as is the use or possession of lighter fluid. Charcoal barbeque grills must be used at a minimum distance of 25 feet away from all buildings. Grills may not be stored in the rooms, chase ways, stairways, walkways, or any other interior space of the residence halls. Outdoor grills are available in many residence hall communities. 
    III.5. FIRE AND SAFETY EQUIPMENT

The misuse or vandalism of any fire safety equipment or devices is a violation of state and city laws. Use of fire alarms and/or fire extinguishers at unauthorized times is prohibited. In addition, smoke detectors are located in every room for your protection. Occasionally the detectors are activated by interior or exterior room conditions. Although the alarms are sometimes an inconvenience, the value of the system to human life is immeasurable. Do not attempt to tamper, disconnect, or vandalize the smoke detectors or sprinklers; students found responsible for such tampering will be subject to the Housing Judicial Process. Please report any problems or concerns regarding fire safety equipment to the Community Desk/Office as needed.  The cost of damages and repairs due to misuse and/or vandalism of fire safety equipment (i.e., smoke detectors, fire extinguishers, etc.) will be charged to the responsible student. Also, the cost of damages and repairs due to careless acts and/or community standard violations will be charged to the responsible student. Please also refer to the Student Code of Conduct (7. g).

In the event of a fire alarm or drill, all persons in the building must evacuate immediately to the designated location. Failure to comply with Housing or University officials will result in disciplinary action.Space heaters, halogen lamps, and live-cut Christmas trees are not permitted in students’ rooms, suites, apartments or common area spaces. Laptop/Notebook computers should not be left unattended when charging the batteries; unplug when charging is complete. Candles, candle warmers, incense, or any other flammable materials are also not permitted in the residence halls. Unlit candles used as room decorations are not permitted and must be removed immediately. Burning substances, in any form, create both a fire and health hazard for you and the other residents. All students must adhere to the state fire code as well as all Housing and University fire policies. It is vital to keep doors, windows, walkways, and chase ways clear of items that may block your escape route in an emergency; failure to do so may result in disciplinary action.
    III.6. HEALTH & SAFETY INSPECTIONS

The residence life staff will conduct Health & Safety inspections approximately twice a month to ensure that minimum health, safety, and facilities standards are being maintained. If standards are not met, the student is required to meet with a Residence Life staff member to address the concern(s) and complete corrective action within 24 hours of notification of the violation. A follow-up inspection will take place to ensure the issue has been resolved. If the issue(s) still exists, the student will be subject to the Housing Judicial Process.

Reasonable standards of cleanliness are encouraged while inspecting each of the categories below; however, largely the residence life staff is focusing their attention on possible maintenance, health, or safety related concerns (i.e. mold development, light bulbs that need replacing, etc.). While searching for community standard violations is NOT the goal of an inspection, violations will be addressed as they are found. Areas of inspection will include, but not be limited to the following:

  • Exterior Area / Doors
  • Floors
  • Windows / Blinds
  • Air Conditioner / Heater
  • Bathroom Sink / Counter
  • Kitchen Sink / Counter
  • Toilet / Tub
  • Walls/Ceilings
  • Closet
  • Smoke Detector
  • Fire Extinguisher/Sprinkler Heads
  • Lights
  • De-Humidifier
  • Cooking Appliances
  • Extension Chords
  • Trash
  • Overall Condition
    III.7. LOSS OF/DAMAGE TO PERSONAL PROPERTY

Door opening/closing mechanisms and locks are not to be tampered with in any way. Residents should report any problems or concerns to your Community Desk/Office. The University assumes no liability for personal property damage or loss. Residents are advised not to keep valuables, expensive items, or large sums of money in their rooms. Residents are encouraged to take out renters insurance if they are not covered by a personal insurance policy. Please also refer to the Student Code of Conduct (7. f.).

    III.8. PETS
The only pets permitted in the residence halls are harmless varieties of fish.  No other pets are allowed on either a permanent or visitation basis (i.e. no cats, dogs, hamsters, lizards, etc.). If a pet is found in the residence halls, it must be removed immediately; otherwise it may be removed by the local animal control authorities at the expense of the student.
    III.9. POTENTIAL THREAT TO SELF OR OTHERS

Establishing a safe campus environment is paramount for Housing & Residence Life; therefore, if an individual engages in threatening behavior, the University reserves the right to remove that individual from Housing on a temporary or permanent basis as the facts warrant, and to take other actions as University officials deem appropriate for the safety of the resident and the residential community. 

    III.10. SMOKING

All University buildings, including the residence halls, are designated as smoke free. Smoking is prohibited within twenty-five (25) feet of any University building, including the residence halls. All smoking devices are prohibited in the residence halls, surrounding walkways, grounds, and in the parking lots. Cigarette butts are considered trash, must be disposed of properly, and are not to be discarded on the chase ways, sidewalks, grounds or areas around the residence halls. Students who violate this community standard may be subject to the Housing Judicial Process

    III.11. WEAPONS

All weapons are prohibited in the residence hall buildings, parking lots, and on University property. This includes, but is not limited to, bullets, ball bearing bullets, bullet balls, pellets, firearms, guns, knives (see below III.12. “Knives”), paintball guns, air guns, hunting bows, archery bows, swords, martial arts weapons, and replicas of such weapons. Toy and water guns are prohibited. In addition, fireworks and pyrotechnic devices and materials are prohibited on University property. Students who violate this community standard may be subject to the Housing Judicial Process. Please also refer to the Student Code of Conduct (7. g.).

    III.12. KNIVES

Kitchen knives are allowed in residence hall rooms with kitchens only.  Non-kitchen knives with a length of more than three (3) inches are prohibited. No decorative knives are allowed in the residential community.    Also, note the following prohibited items: any blade that does not fold, automatic folding knives, box cutters, throwing stars, and butterfly knives.

    III.13. WINDOWS / RAILINGS / BALCONIES / ROOFS

All residents are encouraged to keep their windows closed and locked. Residents of the Beta / Gamma Community are required to keep their windows closed at all times due to central heating and cooling; if one window is open the internal thermostat will misread the temperature and offset the temperature of the entire building.

Sitting, standing on, climbing, or hanging from a window, ledge, railing, or roof is prohibited. Clothes, bikes, or personal items should not be hung from balconies, railings, roofs, and/or windows. Furniture is not permitted on balconies, stairways, or second floor walkways.  Throwing, dropping, or pouring of anything from windows, balconies, ledges, and/or railings is prohibited. Students are responsible for damages and/or cleaning charges that result from such actions.

 
IV. Respect for Residence Hall Operations

    IV.1. ABANDONMENT
Abandonment of personal belongings occurs when a student vacates his/her University Housing but fails to remove his/her property. Abandoned property may be removed from the residence hall room/area and discarded after 24 hours.
    IV.2. ADMINISTRATIVE REMOVAL
A residential student may be administratively removed for reasons including but not limited to non-payment, non-enrollment, inappropriate behavior, violating the University Substance Abuse Policy, or behavior that threatens the health or welfare of members of the University community. Once official notification of Administrative Removal is sent to a student’s University e-mail account, the student may be given 48 hours to complete the check-out procedure and vacate the residence hall. If a student fails to properly check out and vacate the residence hall within that time the locks of the student’s room will be changed at the student’s expense. All of the student’s belongings in the room will be considered abandoned and will be removed and discarded unless arrangements are made to pick them up within 10 business days of the lock change. The student(s) may be charged associated fees, which may include but are not limited to cancellation fee, improper check-out fee, lock-change fee, cleaning fee, and storage fee. Please note that communication by e-mail to the student’s University e-mail account is the University’s official form of communication with the student; the student is responsible for monitoring that e-mail account for such communication. Failure to respond to official notices by e-mail or informal notifications by phone calls, etc. will not alleviate the student’s responsibility for compliance. Please note that Administrative Removal from Housing due to non-payment does not release the student from his/her obligation to pay for fees and/or charges already paid or payable.
    IV.3. ASSIGNMENTS

All residence hall students should keep a copy of their residence hall contract and read it carefully. Under the terms of the housing contract, the University will consider the information and requests provided on the application when assigning living accommodations, but there is no guarantee of a specific assignment. The University will not alter or cancel the resident’s assignment except where deemed necessary by the University for reasons including but not limited to: disciplinary reasons, catastrophe, closing of facility, consolidation of vacancies, unavailability of space, or unresolved incompatibility of roommates. The University reserves the right to administratively move residents for the purpose of room, apartment, building, or area consolidations. 

*Room preference is based on date of application, receipt of payment and approved registration status by the registrar. All of these must be done for the application to be complete and for a room to be assigned.

Students who reside in University housing in the fall are automatically assigned to their same room for the spring semester. Students’ personal belongings can remain in the room during the winter break.  Students may request a room change online during the designated reassignment period. Room changes are not guaranteed and will be made according to space availability and in the order the request is submitted.  The request is submitted by the students online in PAWS. Please also refer to our Assignments Changes page for more info.

    IV.4. BUSINESS SERVICES
Residential students are prohibited from starting, managing, or operating any kind of business enterprise inside, around, or near housing facilities which involves the coming and going of customers, clients or any other persons into and out of housing facilities.  This includes, but is not limited to babysitting, hair-styling, and tattooing services.
    IV.5. CANCELLATION & WITHDRAWAL

Any current resident who wishes to cancel his/her contract or who is considering withdrawing from classes should complete the process online in PAWS (see “Request to Cancel Housing”) and immediately meet with his/her Community Director to discuss the cancellation request (see “Housing Offices”). Please also refer to our Cancellations & Withdrawals page for more info.

    IV.6. CHECK OUT PROCEDURES
At check-out, students must schedule an appointment with their RA a minimum of 24 hours prior to conducting a check out inspection, unless he/she has completed an "Express Check-Out". A successful check-out includes the following: schedule an appointment with your RA a minimum of 24 hours prior to the check-out inspection, clean your room/apartment/suite (including the bathroom, kitchen, appliances, floors, drawers, closets), remove all of your belongings and trash, and turn in your key to your RA or Community Desk/Office when you check-out. A $50.00 lock change charge may be assessed if the room key is not returned at check-out. Failure to follow the check-out procedures may result in a $75.00 assessment fee for improper check-out. Moreover, the resident may be assessed fees for room damages. Student belongings left in a room at the time of check-out may be considered abandoned and discarded within 24-hours of staff becoming aware the student has vacated the unit. Contact your Resident Assistant or your Community Desk/Office for details. Or view the Moving Out page for more information on proper check out procedures.
    IV.7. CONSOLIDATION
Housing & Residence Life may choose to consolidate residence hall rooms to full capacity when vacancies occur and may move residents to another residence hall room when such consolidations become necessary. Under limited conditions and with written approval from the Housing Business Office, residents who have not contracted for a private room, that do not have a roommate and have been selected to consolidate may have the opportunity to request a roommate or room change, if the same room type is available. All room changes must be approved by the Assignments Coordinator/Housing Business Office. All consolidations must be completed within 48 hours after notification of the consolidation; if not, the resident may be administratively relocated or automatically charged and held financially responsible to pay the private room rate.
    IV.8. DAMAGES / ROOM CONDITION FORMS

Prior to check-in, the Residence Life Staff completes Room Condition Forms for each room/suite/apartment noting the current condition and existing damages. Students should check their rooms/suites/apartments using this form and notify the RA or Community Desk/Office of any problems or discrepancies within 24 hours of his/her checking-in to the room. Residents are charged for damages which occur while they have possession of the room. When students check-out or vacate, they may be charged for any damages not listed on the original Room Condition Form. Needed repairs should be reported to the Resident Assistant or Community Office/Desk while a student is residing in the room.

During a student’s check-out room inspection, his/her RA will use this form to assess the condition of the room or apartment (see above IV.6. "Check-Out Procedures"). If unclaimed damages occur within common areas (i.e. hallways, lobby areas, etc.) all students who are found to have caused the damage or witnessed the causation of the damage and failed to report it may be subject to disciplinary action and held financially responsible for the repairs. 

    IV.9. FURNITURE
All residents are responsible for the loss of or damage to furniture and other equipment that is assigned to their room or apartment. Housing furniture must remain in the room in which it was originally placed (Housing does not have storage facilities for furniture.) Residents must keep Housing furniture in their rooms at all times. Common area furniture is not permitted in the residents’ rooms. A $100.00 fine may be issued for violations. The actual cost of replacement for broken or missing furniture, i.e., mattresses, beds, frames, chairs, will also be charged to the responsible resident(s). Any personal furniture, draperies, tapestries, etc., must be fire proof and display the manufacturer’s label signifying that the material will not support flames. Cinder blocks, lofts (other than those leased from University contractor), or waterbeds are not permitted in any of the residence halls. All Housing beds (mattresses and frames) must remain in the room or apartment. Please also refer to our Room Furniture page for more information.
    IV.10. FRATERNITY & SORORITY MOVE-OVER

Fraternity and Sorority residents assigned to non-Greek communities who wish to reside in his/her respective chapter house may submit a “Move-Over” request during designated Move-Over periods by visiting the Housing Business Office (Delta Commons Room 100). Requests to move to a Greek house may be considered outside of the designated move-over periods only in limited circumstances, such as replacing a graduating Greek resident or election of a student to a fraternity or sorority office which requires the student to reside in the associated Greek house.

Students who are approved and processed to move to the Greek community will be charged their current room rate (rate of room prior to move) for the entire semester in which the move is processed; no credit will be issued for any amount by which the previous non-Greek Housing assignment’s room charge may exceed the new Greek Housing assignment’s room charge.  Residence Hall room rent charges are due when assessed on the student account or when University fees are due for the semester. All other terms and conditions of the current Housing Contract will remain in effect. Fraternity and Sorority residents wishing to request a room change within the Greek House in which he/she currently lives must submit this request during the traditional Room Change period (see Assignment Changes).
    IV.11. KEYS

Lock Out Procedures: If a student should get locked out of his/her room, he/she may check out a key from the Community Desk/Office during regular business hours (8:00AM to 5:00PM Monday – Friday). This key must be returned within 24 hours of the time that it was checked out. If the key is not returned in the allotted time, the lock will be changed and a cost of $50.00 may be added to the student’s PAWS account. If a student should get locked out of his/her room after office hours, he/she should contact the RA On-Duty for the community. There may be a $5.00 Lock-out fee assessed anytime an RA has to let a student into the student’s room, and students should be prepared to show University identification or otherwise verify identity prior to being given access. Students are expected to deadbolt/lock their doors at all times. Students should always carry their room key and their university/student identification card.

Lost Key Procedures: Each resident will be issued a key to his/her room. If that key becomes lost or stolen please report it to the Resident Assistant or Community Desk/Office, and Housing & Residence Life can replace it. There will be a $50.00 cost to replace lost or stolen keys; Students assigned to buildings with exterior door card access will receive access through their student ID (Jag Card). In the event your Jag Card is lost, you may sign for a temporary access card by contacting your Community Office. This temporary access card will need to be returned to the Community Office after receiving your replacement Jag Card. There will be a $5.00 fee to replace lost or stolen temporary access cards. These fees will be billed through your PAWS account. There is a $150.00 service fee for emergency lock-changes requested after hours; these charges are not refundable. It is paramount that students do not duplicate room keys or possess unauthorized keys.


Please remember that it is the resident’s responsibility to return the room key at the time he/she checks-out of their room to their respective Community Office. Additionally, remember not to give your room key to another person. Please note that it is imperative not to add supplementary locks to your door as this may slow response times during an emergency. Housing & Residence Life does not accept returned keys via mail; therefore, any student who does not return the key at hall closing, check-out or as otherwise required will be billed a minimum of $50.00 for the cost of the lock change.
    IV.12. NON-ENROLLED / WITHDRAWAL FROM THE UNIVERSITY

In order to be eligible for University Housing, a student must be enrolled at the University of South Alabama. At the point a student is no longer enrolled in academic courses, or if a student who is allowed to move in to housing prior to the first day of residence hall check-in fails to enroll by the first day of classes, he or she will have a maximum of 48 hours from the time of notification of non-enrollment to enroll in courses at the University or check out of the residence hall. If the student fails to enroll or properly check-out within the 48 hour period, he/she may be Administratively Removed from USA residential facilities. A nightly rate may be charged from the first day of occupancy to either check-out or the completion of the Administrative Removal process. Participants in other approved courses of study at the University of South Alabama may be admitted into University Housing at the discretion of Housing officials. Please also refer to our Cancellations & Withdrawals page for more information.

    IV.13. NON-PAYMENT OF HOUSING AND / OR MEAL PLAN BALANCE
Residential students who fail to pay their housing balance in full by the University payment deadline may be subject to Administrative Removal. Additionally, residential students who fail to pay their meal plan balance in full as outlined by the University payment deadline may have their meal plan suspended. Please note that neither Administrative Removal from Housing nor suspension of a meal plan due to non-payment releases the student from his/her obligation to pay for accrued charges. 
    IV.14. OCCUPANCY

Please note that in the event that a room loses an occupant, the remaining resident(s) must keep the room in the appropriate condition to accept a new roommate at any time. Students may not reject a roommate assignment. Any behavior directed toward an assigned roommate that is considered by Housing & Residence Life and/or the University as inappropriate, including but not limited to unsuitable room condition, discouraging communication, harassment, or intimidation will result in immediate relocation of the alleged offending resident pending a Housing Judicial Conference. Prior to a new roommate assignment, if the remaining resident desires to maintain a private room, he/she may request to contract that room at the private room rate. The request for a private room will only be granted as space is available and with written approval from the Housing Business Office.  If the request is granted, the private room rate will be prorated based on the date of approval.Residents found violating the housing contract by occupying additional space in their room, suite, or apartment may have their items moved by the staff or be held financially responsible for the occupied space up to the cost for a private room. 

*All overnight guests should be registered according to the community standard for guests (see above II.4. “Guests”). Excessive numbers of requests may be denied.
    IV.15. CONTRACTUAL OBLIGATIONS

All students are obligated to the Residence Hall Contract which they have signed.  Students who move off campus while enrolled are still contractually and financially obligated.

Students may request to check out of their assigned space without an approved cancellation of their housing contract, with the understanding that their contractual and financial obligation will continue.  The process should begin with the resident speaking with his/her designated Community Director regarding their plans to check out. After speaking with the necessary persons, an email will be sent to the resident via his/her university email and a letter will be mailed to their last updated mailing address as a follow up.

If at any time during the designated academic year the resident wishes to move back into the Residence Halls, he/she is required to go to the Housing Business Office and speak with the Business Manager and Assignments Coordinator where he/she will be assigned a new space.
    IV.16. REFUNDS

If a student withdraws from the University within the requisite time for a full or partial refund,the following steps (or conditions), which are also outlined in the Residence Hall Contract, must be completed according to the timeline in the Academic Calendar:

Option 1 – To be eligible for a 100% refund: A student can withdraw from the University during the 100% Refund Period, complete the cancellation process online in PAWS, pass the check-out room inspection, vacate the room, promptly return the room key, and pay the $150 cancellation fee.

Option 2 – To be eligible for a 50% refund: A student can withdraw from the University during the 50% Refund Period, complete the cancellation process online in PAWS, pass the check-out room inspection, vacate the room, promptly return the room key, and pay the $150 cancellation fee.

If the room is not vacated and the key returned within 48 hours of your cancellation, any refund will be based on the later of these two dates:

  1. Date you vacate
  2. Date that the key is returned

Lastly, if you withdraw from the University after the last day of the 50% Refund Period, you will not be entitled to a refund of any of your room charge. You must complete the cancellation process online in PAWS, complete check-out room inspection, vacate the room, and promptly return the room key to avoid additional charges. Refund period dates can be found on the Academic Calendar.

    IV.17. ROOM CHANGES

For current Residence Life residents, there is a designated room change period during the first two weeks of fall semester.  An additional room change period is offered prior to Fall Move-In in anticipation of any desired changes.There are no official room change periods for Spring at this time, but will be announced via University email (JagMail) if they are determined at a later date. Please see your RA or Community Director with immediate room/roommate concerns.

Room change requests are submitted online in PAWS and are processed in the order they are submitted. Housing & Residence Life will provide formal communication about the room change period via the Housing & Residence Life website and via email at the start of each semester. All room changes must be approved by the Housing Assignments Coordinator.

Students should not change rooms without written consent from Housing & Residence Life as this may violate the terms of the Residence Hall Contract. After the student is notified that a room change is granted, he/she will be expected to complete the move and return the key to the previous room in twenty-four (24) hours; failure to do this will forfeit the original room change request. Please contact your Community Director with any questions or concerns. Fraternity and Sorority residents currently living in Housing & Residence Life who wish to complete a room change into a chapter house must submit their Move-Over request during the designated Move-Over period (see above IV.10. "Fraternity & Sorority Housing Move-Over").
    IV.18. ROOM DECORATING

Students are encouraged to personalize their rooms. All decorations should adhere to University policies, Housing & Residence Life community standards, procedures, State laws, and City ordinances. Moreover, decorations must be able to be removed without causing damage to the residence hall room. Painting of rooms, apartments, or furnishings is not permitted. The use of bumper stickers, lofts, decals, nails, staples, screws, or other objects that may mar, damage, or remove the surface of walls, ceilings, doors, furniture, floors or other items in the room, is prohibited. Door frames and doors may not be painted or decorated at any time. Students are discouraged from posting, taping, or hanging anything from their room door; those who fail to adhere to this community standard will be asked to remove the item immediately and may be charged for the cost to restore the door to its original state. Any student, organization, or vendor who places postings on room doors will be financially responsible for all costs associated with repair or replacement of the door. All modifications to any room or space are prohibited unless pre-approved by an Area Coordinator.

Approved announcements may be posted on designated bulletin boards. Students may not display advertisements of any kind or decorate the interior or exterior portion of a room window. Alcohol is not permitted in any residence halls at the University; therefore, empty beer or other alcoholic beverage bottles and cans are prohibited in any residential student room.  Students who violate this community standard may be subject to the Housing Judicial Process. Please keep in mind that you are responsible for all items in the room that appear on the Room Condition Form; additionally, it is important to remember that residents may be charged for any damages to the room or furnishings that occur during their contractual time of residency.

FURTHER NOTES: While we recognize the personal enjoyment created from decorating your room as you choose, USA Housing has been unable to find a decorating product (i.e. tape, command strips, etc.) that is guaranteed not to leave damage behind upon removal. Adhesive products (variety of brands) when removed tend to tear layers of sheetrock away from the wall and/or leave adhesive residue behind.

Be mindful that each student will ultimately be responsible for the cost to repair any damage to their room and its furnishings. When decorating we encourage you to consider what's more important: the value gained by decorating or the value lost in repair costs at the end of the year.
    IV.19. ROOM REGISTRATION: FALL/SPRING & SUMMER
Housing & Residence Life encourages all current residential students to participate in the Room Registration process in February.  This is a process that affords current residents the opportunity to reserve a space in the residence halls for the upcoming academic year prior to new assignments being made for incoming students. Housing & Residence Life will communicate details about Room Registration via University email and will post information on the website each January.
    IV.20. SPRING-SUMMER BREAK
At the end of Spring Semester all residents who have not contracted for summer housing will be required to check out of the residence halls and completely vacate their residence hall space within 12 hours after their last final exam and no later than Friday, May 08, 2015 at 2:00PM. Students who are graduating or have a University related need to stay for the commencement ceremony must check out of the residence halls and completely vacate their space no later than Sunday, May 10, 2015 at 12:00 noon. If a resident has contracted a summer space he/she will be required to stay in their current residence hall room until Tuesday, May 12, 2015, at which time the student will be required to move into the designated summer Housing assignment. Students who vacate their rooms without checking out properly may have their belongings discarded from the room.
    IV.21. UNFORESEEN CHANGE OF CIRCUMSTANCES / EXEMPTIONS

The Housing & Residence Life staff will be available to help students with any problems or difficulties they may have during their stay in the residence halls. Occasionally, serious unforeseen events or problems can affect a student’s ability to live on campus. These circumstances would need to be documented to show that there has been an unforeseen event that has changed your circumstances significantly enough to prevent you from residing on campus. In this situation you should immediately visit the Housing Business Office (Delta Commons Room 100) to discuss your situation and options. Students are encouraged to complete this process before moving out or sign a lease agreement, as moving out or signing a lease will not release a resident from his/her contractual obligation to the University.