Intersession Housing

Please visit the Break Housing page for updates regarding Intersession Housing for Intersession 2021. Information on this page is not current and will not be updated.

What is January Intersession?

January Intersession is the break period between winter break and the start of spring classes. This is the time in which there are no academic courses offered and many offices and services work on a reduced schedule. Intersession housing begins at 9 am on January 1.

Can I stay for Intersession?

All students who wish to return to campus for any portion of Intersession must register AND provide a valid reason for being here. There are several reasons established to be eligible to stay on campus:

  • Taking a course with the Professional and Graduate Education program
  • Taking a course within the 5 Colleges
  • Independent/course study work with a faculty member (must list faculty name)
  • Off-campus employment
  • On-campus employment
  • Required athletic commitment
  • International Student
  • Hardship (could include hardships caused by travel, strained financial resources, personal emergencies, etc.)

On the registration form, you must select your reason for staying on campus and provide the necessary details, such as your employer or faculty’s name. We will use the details provided to verify your need to stay. Registration for a Mount Holyoke Professional and Graduate Education class or 5-College credit class is, in most cases, one of the approved criteria for residing on campus during Intersession. For information on MHC PaGE courses offered in January, please visit the PaGE Current Course Listings.

You will also note we have criteria that allows for a hardship consideration. This is the place where students can make requests based on financial need, travel hardship or other unforeseen circumstances. A committee of people from offices across campus will review all hardship requests. The group will notify you on your eligibility to stay.

Can I return to campus any time on or after January 1, if I am registered?

You may request to be here for any portion of or all of Intersession. We will activate your card access and meals for the dates you request so make sure you overestimate rather than underestimate the time you will be here when registering.  For example, if you think you will return on either January 10 or 11, register to stay starting on January 10 so you’re sure your card access and meals will be working when you return.

What do I need to do to register for Intersession?

The registration form is available to all students via my.mtholyoke. Log onto my.mtholyoke and click on the January Registration link. The registration form will be open until December 4, 2018.

Can I cancel my registration once I’ve submitted it on my.mtholyoke?

Yes, you can. Up until when the form closes on December 4, you can go in and delete/cancel your request and we will not consider your request to stay. If your plans change after December 4, please email to let us know so we know who is on campus and who is not for safety reasons.

Who decides who is approved?

A small committee is formed to review and decide on all hardship request cases and the Office of Residential Life verifies all on-campus employment and research that names faculty. The Office of Residential Life then emails all students with an approval or lets them know if they are not approved.

When will I find out if I’m approved?

We will do our best to notify on a rolling basis, but there is some time involved in verifying and all hardship cases will be reviewed in batches.  It is possible you might not know whether you are officially approved until after the December 4 deadline, but we will try to get you the information sooner if we can. If you know for a fact you fit one of the criteria – international student, on-campus employment, etc. — you should plan as though you are approved as we very rarely do not grant permission for these cases. If you have a hardship case, we will do our best to notify you as quickly as we can but you can feel free to contact the Office of Residential Life and speak to Director Rachel Alldis if you have questions about your eligibility for staying.

How much does Intersession housing cost?

There is no fee for Intersession. The College will fully underwrite the cost for this again this year.

Where do I stay for Intersession?  In my own room?

Yes! If you are approved to stay for Intersession, you will stay in your own room. Only students approved to stay for December Break must move to another building.

Are there meals during Intersession?

Please check out Dining Services opening and closing schedule to find out more information on when meals will be offered during intersession.

If I am going on leave or returning from leave, may I stay or return early for Intersession?

Unfortunately, no. Students who are going on any kind of leave, including academic and non-academic, study abroad, etc. are not eligible to stay for Intersession.  Students who are returning from leave (including study abroad) are also not eligible to stay for Intersession. December graduates are not eligible to stay for Intersession. The reasoning for this is one of simple logistics – students who are leaving must move out of their rooms at the end of the fall semester because we use those rooms to house the returning students and incoming Spring Admits. We need time to clean those rooms and get them ready for the students returning in the spring, as well as completing the room change requests we get from students. If you have questions about whether you are eligible to stay for Intersession based on your personal circumstances or have additional questions, please contact Residential Life and we will gladly help you think through your eligibility and potentially about alternative housing options.

What about commuter students?

Commuter students will continue to have uninterrupted access to College buildings and resources such as the Library and Kendall Sports and Dance Complex. Registration is not needed for commuter students.

What if I just want to move in a day or two early before the beginning of the spring semester to get settled in?

For students NOT on leave who are continuing from the fall to the spring semester on campus, registration is not needed if you plan to return on or after January 19. If you wish to be here earlier, you need to register and fit one of the criteria listed on the registration form. This means you can return at any point in the weekend prior to the spring semester starting without registering or worrying – all student card access will go on starting on the 19th.

For students who are returning to campus for the spring after being on a leave or Spring Admits, you are not eligible to move in early.  You should plan to arrive when the residence halls open for all students. Housing requests are processed during the first week of January. Your housing assignment will not be confirmed to allow you to move into your Spring room assignment early. You may stay on campus as a guest of another Mount Holyoke Student but you will not have access to the residence halls or meals.  We need your contact information in case of an emergency, please email it to

What is different during Intersession?

There are limited services on campus. Your Community Advisor and Senior Community Advisor are not on duty, some campus services are limited and classes are not in session. Meal service is reduced to certain hours. Students are expected to continue to adhere to College policies. This is especially true of the guest, noise, alcohol, and drug policies.

In service to those students residing on campus during Intersession, the Office of Student Programs coordinates a special Intersession program of activities, trips and local shuttles. See the Student Involvement Intersession webpage for more information, including the Calendar of Events.

Help! My question isn’t answered here!

Feel free to contact the Office of Residential Life if you have questions, we would be glad to help with anything we can! Any questions that are relevant to all students will be added here as well.