Housing Contract

Mount Holyoke College
Office of Residential Life

I. Parties

This is a contract between Mount Holyoke College (“the College”) and the student who is assigned to live in college housing during the current academic year.  It sets forth the responsibilities and privileges of both parties with respect to on-campus housing.  

II. Terms of Occupancy

  1. Occupancy License.
    The student will occupy their assigned space only during those times that the College is officially open.
  2. Occupancy Schedule.
    The residence halls will remain open during the following breaks:  October, November, spring and Intersession. Any student who chooses to remain in the residence halls for any portion of a break must complete a "Break Notification Form" prior to break.
  3. All residence halls will be closed during December Break, with the exception of Creighton Hall. Dickinson Hall will remain open to the FP students who reside there. Creighton will remain open for international students whose permanent residence is abroad.  Safford Hall will be used if overflow housing is needed during December Break. The College reserves the right to permit others to occupy any space in Creighton Hall during December Break. The College intends to give as much notice as possible to all students whose rooms will be occupied. Any student who wishes to reside in Creighton Hall or Dickinson Hall during December Break must complete a “December Break Registration Form” on MyMountHolyoke.

Mount Holyoke College residence halls close at 12 noon the day after MHC exams end.  All students must vacate their rooms by noon unless approved through the Office of Residential Life to remain beyond this deadline, including students taking 5-College exams. It is the student’s responsibility to make necessary arrangements to vacate the building and adhere to this policy.

In the event of a fuel shortage or some other emergency not within the control of the College, the College reserves the right to close temporarily its residence halls and/or dining facilities without making any adjustments in the charge. If such an emergency should arise, the College will honor its residential commitment for the duration of the academic year.

III. Conditions of Occupancy

  1. Liability. 
    The student is responsible for the loss or theft of or damage to both College and personal property caused by the student or the student’s guest. The College assumes no responsibility for loss of or damage to the student’s personal property, including belongings stored in residence hall trunk rooms. Each student is encouraged to take appropriate steps to safeguard and insure their property. The College is responsible only for damages caused through the direct negligence of its agents or employees.
  2. Policies and Procedures.
    The student agrees to abide by all policies and procedures of the College pertaining to residence in college housing. These include, but are not limited to, those policies and procedures in the Student Handbook, Live and Learn, and the agreed upon community standards of the floor. Please note that candles, incense, and halogen lamps are not allowed in residence halls. Pets are also forbidden in college housing with the exception of service animals, approved comfort animals as an accommodation for a disability and aquatic animals that can be safely and humanely contained in a tank/bowl of five gallons or less. All Mount Holyoke College residence halls are 100% smoke-free. Smoking is not allowed on residence hall porches or balconies or within 20 feet of the residence hall.

    The College reserves the right to adjust policies and procedures at any time. All students should read the online Student Handbook and the Policies and Procedures section on the Residential Life webpage.

    If a student does not abide by the College’s policies and procedures, they will be held accountable by disciplinary action through the Office of Residential Life, the Honor Code Council, or the Office of the Dean of Students. Disciplinary action may include, but is not limited to, social probation, community service hours, loss of participation in the housing lottery, or loss of housing privileges.

  3. Trespassing on College Campus. The College, as the lawful owner of the buildings and premises of the Mount Holyoke College campus (“the Campus”), has the right and obligation to control or limit access to the Campus by any individual. If an individual has been excluded from any College building or facility or from the College premises by the College Administration or Department of Campus Police, whether or not a formal trespass notice is served on an individual, no student may authorize or permit such an individual to enter upon or remain on College premises contrary to such instructions. A trespass notice or other order excluding an individual from a part or all of the Campus may be withdrawn or modified only by the authorized College Administration office from which it was issued.
  4. Right of Entry. College staff (including but not limited to: Campus Police, the Professional Staff On Call, Residential Life, Facilities Management, and LITS personnel) may enter a student room to perform services and maintenance or respond to an emergency. Please refer to the Student Handbook for the complete Entry Policy.
  5. Adjustments to Room Assignments. The College reserves the right to relocate housing assignments as deemed necessary. This includes relocating a student to another room/hall or assigning a new roommate to any open space. All room changes must be cleared through the Office of Residential Life.
  6. Going on Leave/Withdrawing Mid-Semester. If a student goes on leave/withdraws at any point during the semester, they must vacate their housing assignment within 3 days and is responsible for removing all of their possessions from college housing. The student must also return their keys before going on leave. The college reserves the right to reassign this space on the student’s registration and or housing status has changed. Fees will be assessed for failure to turn in keys or damage and custodial services need to attend to rooms left in a substandard condition.
  7. Property of Keys and One Cards. Keys and One Cards are the property of Mount Holyoke College and are on loan to the student. Keys and One Cards are not to be duplicated, loaned, or transferred. Should keys be lost or stolen, contact the Office of Residential Life or Campus Police immediately. If a students One Card is lost or stolen, they should contact Auxiliary Services or Campus Police immediately. A student’s failure to return the keys at the end of your semester/year in residence at Mount Holyoke College or in the event they change rooms will result in a charge of at least $75.00.
  8. Room Damage.  Residential Life and Facilities Management assess the condition of each room at the beginning of the academic year.  This assessment indicates the physical state of the room and all of its contents at the time of the student's arrival in the fall.  Any missing furniture or change in the state of the room or its facilities beyond reasonable wear will be billed to the student.  Students will be charged for actual labor and replacement costs for major repair to a room.  A $150 cleaning fee is assessed if personal belongings or trash are left behind in the residence hall room when they vacate at the end of your Contract Period.  Any painting of student rooms or College furnishings is prohibited.  There will be a minimum $400 fee for any painting in a student room or on College furniture.

IV. Personal Safety/Safety of Others

Students are expected to assist in keeping outer doors locked and to admit only those who have proper form of identification or their own personal guests. The outer doors of all residence halls will be locked at all times. Students are also expected to keep their room doors locked at all times.

Students are responsible for their personal safety.  Failure to follow reasonable safety precautions may lead to an increased risk to student safety. Be aware that most sexual assaults are committed by an acquaintance of the victim, and it is possible that fellow students could commit crimes against you or others. Read Safe & Sound, a College publication designed to assist you with reasonable safety precautions.

V. Renewal

In order to participate in the spring lottery process a student must be financially cleared and have no other holds from other administrative offices (Health Services or Residential Life, etc.).

VI. Termination of License

The student’s right to reside in college housing shall be forfeited upon failure to return at the beginning of any academic term or upon ceasing to be a registered student at the College. If the College is notified that illness or other extenuating circumstances will delay the student’s return, exceptions may be made by the College

The College reserves the right to terminate this Contract for breach by the student or for violation of the College’s policies and procedures, including but not limited to those in the on line Student Handbook and Policies and Procedures section on the Residential Life webpage. If the contract is terminated, there will be no refund of room charges.