Bard College Student Handbook

General Information

General Information
First-Year Housing 
All first year students are required to live on campus. The only exceptions are those students whose permanent residence is within 50 miles of Bard, those who are over 21 years of age, are married or have appropriately documented extenuating circumstances as approved by appropriate College officials.
First-year students are assigned housing based on the timely submission of housing profiles found on the Admissions Office website. Although it is often difficult to fulfill specific requests, every effort is made by the Office of Residence Life & Housing to do so. Students are typically notified of their placements by mid July. Students are generally housed for Language and Thinking and Citizen Science in their permanent room assignments.   
All first-year students are required to live with at least one roommate. Some first-year students may be placed in triples. Some triples are permanent and others are temporary. Students placed in temporary triples will be relocated to a double as soon as appropriate space becomes available, as determined by the Residence Life & Housing staff.
Transfer Student Housing On-campus housing requests are granted when space permits and based on the timely submission of housing profiles.  Notification of placement will occur as soon as housing becomes available.
Upper College Housing 
Provided they are financially cleared, returning students choose their rooms for the following academic year through a selection process (Room Draw) held each spring semester. Room Draw class level is based on accumulated credits while a matriculated college student. Within each class level randomly assigned numbers determine the order for room selection.
Sophomores and upper-college students who have not moderated (with the exception of transfer students) are required to live on-campus, as students approaching moderation benefit from ready access to faculty, facilities, advisers, mentors, and peers. Unmoderated students may petition prior to Room Draw for an exception to this policy based on a significant and severe extenuating circumstance.
Off-Campus Housing
 All moderated students (or those in the process of moderating) who are requesting to move off campus must complete a form/application and follow all established guidelines and deadlines associated with this process. Bard College is a residential campus, and as such, reserves the right to limit the amount of students approved to live off campus each academic year in order to fulfill occupancy goals and requirements.
Students receiving financial aid should be aware of the possible affects that moving off campus may have on their aid package and consult with the Office of Financial Aid before pursuing this option.
Students living off campus are responsible for their own housing and food. Students who reside off campus must register their local address and phone number with the Dean of Student Affairs Office. Students must inform the Dean of Student Affairs Office if contact information should remain confidential.
Off-campus students are strongly encouraged to register for the College’s emergency alert system for shuttle notifications and other emergency issues.
Intersession Housing
 When classes are not in session, residence halls are closed. Certain residence halls are designated for student use but they must be approved by the Office of Residence Life & Housing during this timeframe. Before the end of each term, the Office of Residence Life & Housing determines the residences that will remain open during the upcoming intersession period. This information is provided on the department website and includes deadlines and eligibility for housing during intersession periods.
The College reserves the right to assign conference attendees, faculty and/or intersession residents to residences when classes are not in session. During winter intersession students must make modest adjustments to their rooms before they leave, and it is recommended that they not leave any valuables in their rooms.
During the period of Citizen Science, which begins in early January, residences are closed. Only first-year students, approved students and Citizen Science faculty are in residence. Citizen Science faculty reside in upper college student rooms and residence halls.
Any student not approved to be in residence during intersession periods, will be fined $100 per day or any part of a day they stay. No student is permitted access to a closed residence hall during intersession breaks, inclusive of Citizen Science and Language and Thinking participants. Students who are not approved to be on campus during an intersession break are not permitted to access their room without prior approval from the Office of Residence Life & Housing.
Please note the guest policy during intersession periods may be altered as noted in the intersession housing information from the Office of Residence Life & Housing.
Credit Hour Requirements
 When applicable, priority for on-campus housing is given to full-time students. Taking fewer than 12 credits in a semester does not automatically void the housing agreement. Students are responsible for paying full room and board for the entire academic year. NOTE: Changes in credit hours may impact Financial Aid Packages. Before reducing credit hours, students should consult with the Financial Aid Office.

Housing Fees and Responsibilities
 Once a student signs the Facility Use Agreement, the student is bound by that agreement unless there is a withdrawal/transfer or an approved leave of absence from the College.
If a student selects a room during Room Draw and then requests to move off campus, the student must notify the offices of Residence Life & Housing and the Bursar in writing prior to May 31st.  Upon review of the request, the student may be released from the Facility Use Agreement with a $1,000 penalty assessed to their account by this date. After May 31st a student will remain responsible for the full cost of the housing agreement.
Students remain responsible for paying room costs if they decide to move off campus after having resided in a residence hall for all or part of the fall or spring term.
A spring semester room fee may be levied, if a student takes a leave of absence or withdraws from the College for the spring semester without timely notification. Please refer to the Bursar’s Office for specific refund schedules.
Students returning from a leave of absence must notify the Bursar and inform the Office of Residence Life & Housing of their housing preferences prior to return.  
Property Insurance 
Students’ possessions are not insured under any College insurance policy. The College does not accept responsibility for any thefts or losses from students’ rooms or anywhere else on campus at any time, either during semesters or breaks. This applies to damages from water, steam, soot, smoke, fire, or other destruction. Students who wish to have property insurance should make individual arrangements through a homeowner or renter policy or purchase an insurance policy written expressly for college students living in residence halls.
Information about this type of insurance is available at the Office of Residence Life & Housing. Students should record serial or model numbers of items such as cell phones; laptops; stereo equipment, other electronics, bicycles and musical instruments. Reports of stolen property should be filed promptly with the Office of Safety and Security, and the student should keep a copy of this report to be submitted to an insurance company with a claim.
There is no on-campus storage. Storing items (inclusive of shoes and bicycles) in hallways or stairwells constitutes a fire hazard and will result in a fine.  A list of local storage companies can be found on the Office of Residence Life & Housing’s website
Garbage Disposal 
Recycling and re-use containers are color coded and centrally located in each residence hall. Students are responsible for collecting, separating, and placing their own recyclable, reusable materials and waste in the proper containers. Compost receptacles are also available in many common area kitchens.
Room Entry 
The College reserves the right to enter and inspect any room when, at the discretion of a staff member, it is deemed necessary for security, safety, maintenance repairs or policy enforcement. This specifically includes the right to inspect rooms to confirm compliance with College policy and room use, recover College property (such as residence hall furniture), preservation of clean and sanitary conditions, fire prevention, or personal health and safety. The College respects its students’ right to privacy; however, it reserves the right to enter any room when necessary. If a student refuses to cooperate with a staff member, in the interest of health/safety issues and/or pursuing an investigation, the staff member has the authorization to enter the student’s room without permission.
Whenever a room is entered without the student’s prior knowledge, every effort will be made to alert the student that his/her room was entered, and the reason for room entry will be made clear.
Room Furnishings The College provides each student with a desk, desk chair, bedframe, mattress, dresser(s) and/or wardrobe/closet. An inventory of the general condition of these items takes places each academic year and as needed when room changes occur or the room is completely vacated during this time frame. A student may not remove any furniture from a room or place items outside their room, in corridors, stairwells or other common areas. The College does not provide storage of college owned furniture. In addition, placing furniture in a common space creates an obstruction of egress and is deemed a fire safety violation. Any costs associated with missing furnishings will be the responsibility of the student(s) residing in the room.

If a student brings in additional furniture from another source other than the College, they are responsible for the removal or any costs associated with the disposal of the item(s) at the end of the academic year or the time period in which they occupy a space.