Campus Living Guidelines

The Office of Residence Life is dedicated to providing students with a safe, comfortable, affordable and stimulating living environment in which residents can explore value structures, personal responsibility, interpersonal relationships and community development and awareness. Students are offered opportunities to interact with faculty, staff and peers in order to promote well-rounded, holistic development on an individual and community basis.

Residential living is an integral part of the collegiate experience. Students are encouraged to take advantage of the opportunities offered by campus housing. National studies have found that students who live on campus participate in a greater number of co-curricular activities, interact more frequently with faculty and peers in informal settings, illustrate higher graduation rates, and are more significantly satisfied with their institution and collegiate experience. The University of Tampa offers a variety of housing options to meet the needs of all student populations.

Only full-time students may reside in campus housing. Any student who drops below full-time status must receive written permission from his or her area coordinator to remain in the residence halls.

Alcohol Free Residence Halls

Austin Hall, Boathouse, Brevard Hall, Howard Johnson, McKay Hall, Morsani Hall, Smiley Hall and Vaughn Center (floors 3-8) are alcohol-free residence halls. No resident or guest, regardless of age, is permitted to consume or possess any alcohol or alcohol containers in these residence halls. This includes individual rooms and public areas. The commitment of all residents to maintain an alcohol-free environment forms the basis of a respectful and safe community.

Application Procedures (for new students)

The $500 admissions deposit is required along with the housing application when a room is requested. Since residence hall space is limited, students submit a housing application before the May 1 housing deadline for the fall semester and Oct. 1 for the spring semester. The housing application will not be considered unless the deposit is received. Once the new student occupies the space, $200 of the Admissions deposit will serve as the student's damage deposit. Receipt of an application will be acknowledged. Deposits are non-refundable after May 1 for the fall semester and Oct. 1 for the spring semester.


Each resident signs a housing agreement for the entire academic year (August - May). This agreement is in effect once the space is occupied. The housing agreement contains essential information including terms, conditions, responsibilities, policies for payment of fees, cancellations, conditions for release from the agreement, and University regulations. Since the housing agreement is a legal and binding document, all students, parents and guardians are encouraged to read the document carefully before signing it.

Cancellation Before Occupancy

A continuing student who notifies us by June 1 in writing shall be released from this agreement. The $175 deposit is non-refundable. A continuing student will not be released from this agreement after June 1 to move off campus. To do so will result in forfeiture of deposit and all room and board costs and possibly additional fees.

Cancellation After Occupancy

This agreement terminates 24 hours after the student's last class/exam or at the end of the spring semester of that academic year, or upon withdrawal from the University. The student shall be granted release from this agreement within the sole discretion of the University during the academic year if: (a) student graduates from the University, (b) student withdraws from the University, or (c) student receives academic suspension.

A student officially released from this agreement for one of the aforementioned reasons will be refunded prorated weekly housing and meal plan charges calculated from the week following notification. A student desiring to be released from this housing agreement once the academic year has begun, for reasons other than the aforementioned, must initiate an appeal to the dean of students through the Office of Residence Life.

If a student exhibits inappropriate behavior according to University standards and constitutes a detriment to orderly community living, the director of the Office of Residence Life may, within the sole discretion of the University, change the room assignment or cancel this agreement immediately without refund. A student that is judicially removed from housing or is suspended or expelled from the University for disciplinary reasons will forfeit the semester's room and board charges.

Any student who drops out or withdraws from the University must cease use of the University's dining facilities and vacate the assigned residential room within 24 hours or be held liable for room and board charges beyond his or her last date of attendance and be subject to removal.

Care of Room and Facilities

  1. Posters, pictures and other decorative objects (with the exception of dart boards) may be attached to interior surfaces of rooms with the understanding that students will be financially responsible for resulting damages.
  2. Furniture and equipment in residence halls are inventoried and may not be relocated from a designated area, temporarily or permanently, without prior authorization from the head resident/area coordinator.
  3. Waterbeds are not allowed in residence halls.
  4. Students are not allowed access to other students' rooms without their explicit permission.
  5. No one may use personal property belonging to a student without the owner's explicit permission.
  6. Students are not allowed to tamper with window mechanisms, open windows, remove window policy clings or remove screens.
  7. Throwing, bouncing or kicking of any object in or from a window ledge, roof, stairwell, balcony, hallway or any other common area is prohibited. Students are prohibited from residence hall roofs and ledges.
  8. Holiday decorations are permitted if Tampa city fire codes and Office of Residence Life guidelines are followed. Live trees are not permitted.
  9. Apartment, suite and room trash must be disposed of in the appropriate designated outside receptacles.
  10. Lofts are not permitted in residence-hall rooms unless issued by the University.
  11. Residence hall exit doors are to be locked at all times. No student or guest is permitted to prop open any building or floor door.
  12. Residence hall keys are not to be duplicated or loaned. Students are prohibited from placing their own locks on individual doors.
  13. Balconies are not to be used for cooking, smoking, storage or to dry/display clothing, signs, etc. Furniture of any kind is not allowed on balconies. Balcony doors should remain locked when not in use. Balconies should not be used for room access.
  14. Anything in or on windows that can be seen from outside the building are not permitted in residence hall windows/sills.
  15. Students are required to abide by other regulations duly imposed by the Office of Residence Life, by the Dean of Students Office, and by information distributed or posted on bulletin boards.
  16. Bottle walls or pyramids are not permitted. 

Checking In

When moving in or when changing rooms, a student must have on file a housing agreement, a room condition inventory (RCI) with emergency contact information, and room keys. Students may not swap rooms, except during designated room change and consolidation periods, or without written permission from the Office of Residence Life.

Checking Out

When moving out of a residence hall or when changing rooms, a student has two options for checking out.

The first option is to use our express checkout system. An express checkout envelope is available from your RA, at your hall desk, and the Office of Residence Life. By using this method, you will not have to do a walk through with the RA. The RA will complete the RCI after you leave. Students completing an express checkout waive their right to appeal any damage charges. The second option is to make an appointment with your RA at least 24 hours in advance for check out using the room condition inventory sheet.

You will be required to return your keys to the Office of Residence Life before you leave campus. A charge will be levied for lost or stolen keys. Changing a lock will cost a student $100 plus $15 per key cut. Rooms are to be kept clean and orderly at all times and must be clean upon departure.

Communication Tools

Residents are responsible for information sent through campus e-mail and campus box. Thus, please be sure to check all forms of communication on a daily basis.

Damages

Damages occurring in the public areas of the residence halls are charged to the individual or group responsible when that can be determined. When this is not possible, all residents of the hall or floor will become collectively responsible for the costs involved. Common damage bills are assessed to student accounts at the end of each semester. If you wish to anonymously report common damages please e-mail us at commondamage@ut.edu.

For a detailed list of possible charges, please see the damage fees web page.

Deposit Refunds

Refunds of the damage deposit are given after you leave University housing or do not return to the University for the following semester and after it has been determined that no charges are pending. This generally takes 30-60 days after the end of the semester. To request a refund, a special form must be completed and signed. This form may be obtained from the Office of Residence Life, Vaughn Center, Room 213 or from the Bursar's Office, Plant Hall 428.

Food Service

Residents of all halls are required to participate in the University's meal plan. The 7-meal plan per week option is only available to students living in an apartment with a kitchen.

Guests

You may have overnight guests with prior authorization from your roommate(s). Guests will not be allowed in a room unless all occupants in that room are in agreement. Residents are asked to notify their RA when they will be having overnight guests. All guests are subject to University regulations and residence hall policies.

Residents are responsible for the actions of their guest(s) and must be escorted at all times. Guests, including family members, may stay a maximum of three days in the residence halls. If a student feels his or her roommate(s) are not abiding by this policy, it is his or her responsibility to notify an Office of Residence Life staff member.
 
The Office of Residence Life discourages students from having overnight guests during orientation and the first week of classes. During the first weeks students are just getting to know their roommates and suitemates. Please respect the other students who share your space and allow everyone the opportunity to get settled before bringing guests to your shared space.

Insurance on Personal Belongings

Since UT is not responsible for loss or damage to personal property from any cause, students should check to see if their belongings are covered under their family's homeowner's insurance policy.

If this is not the case, students may wish to buy renter's insurance, which is reasonably priced. For more information on purchasing rental insurance, please visit www.nssi.com/. Regardless of coverage, it is a good idea to engrave personal items such as stereo, TV, camera, VCR, refrigerator, computer, etc. for identification purposes. Engravers are available at each residence hall desk.

Laundry Facilities

Laundry facilities are located in each hall. It costs $1 to wash and 75 cents to dry. It usually takes 45 minutes to dry an average load of clothes. The machines work on a card system. Laundry cards for new students will be given out at check-in. Continuing students needing to replace lost or stolen cards should go to the Spartan Card Office in the Vaughn Center. Machines to add money to the card are located in the library, Frank and Carol Morsani Hall and the Vaughn Center.

Repair problems on washers and dryers and refunds should be reported to the Office of Business Communications at (813) 253-6242.

Lock-Out Policy

If you are locked out of your room, you may borrow a loan key from the Vaughn Center information desk. You will have 24 hours to return the loan key; failure to do so will result in your account being billed a late fee or lock change.

Residents are expected to keep their keys with them at all times. You will be able to sign out a loan key at no cost for the first time. Thereafter, you will be responsible to pay $10 the second time a key is checked out, $15 for the third and $20 for a fourth. Upon the fifth check out, locks will be changed and you will be assessed the charge of a lock change. This amount will be billed to your bursar account at the end of the semester.

Lost Keys

If you lose your key, you must report the loss to the Office of Residence Life or to the information desk at Vaughn Center. There is a charge of $100 to change the lock (safety and security reasons) and $15 for a new key. The total amount will be billed to your account.

Maintenance and Custodial Services

The University employs custodial workers to clean bathroom areas, lounges, lobbies, hallways, laundry rooms, study lounges and TV lounges. You are responsible for cleaning your room. RAs and DAs have vacuum cleaners that may be signed out with your ID card.

If you have a maintenance problem in your room, please complete a maintenance request on SpartanWeb. Please report repair problems before they become desperate emergencies. Maintenance personnel try to fix things in the order that requests are received. They are, however, unable to predict the exact day and time the repair will be done to your room. There are limited services on the weekend.

Network Access

High-speed access to the University's campus network is provided to each student residing on campus. This network provides students access to the Internet, e-mail, library and other services. The Office of Information Technology (IT) HelpDesk provides assistance to students who have computers and want to connect to the Internet from the residence halls, studenthelp@ut.edu.

Noxious Odor

A noxious odor is ANY aroma of such intensity that it becomes apparent to others. Any odor can become noxious or offensive when it is too strong. Some examples are perfume, trash, dirty laundry, or the smell of cigarette smoke. When a noxious odor can be localized to a particular room, the resident(s) and or guests of that room may be required to meet with their area coordinator.

Occupancy

Students may begin occupancy of the residence halls on the date designated for the official opening of the residence halls for new or continuing students, whichever applies. Students must vacate the residence halls 24 hours after their last class/exam or at the end of the spring semester of that academic year, or following withdrawal from the University. The residence halls will remain open during thanksgiving and spring vacation.

Pets

Pets are not allowed in residence halls, except fish contained in aquariums no larger than 10 gallons. Only one 10-gallon container per room is permitted. Fish must be removed from the premises during semester break. If a student does not abide by this policy, the student will be asked to remove the pet and sign a pet contract for the first violation. If further violations occur, the student may be in jeopardy of losing his or her housing and may be asked to move off campus.

Quiet Hours

Quiet hours are in effect from 10 p.m.-10 a.m. on weeknights and 1 a.m. -10 a.m. on Friday and Saturday so that you and your neighbors may study and sleep. If other students in your hall are making enough noise to bother you, you have the right (at any time of day or night) to ask them to be quieter. If trouble persists, feel free to notify your RA, who has the option and authority to set disciplinary procedures in motion. Students are encouraged to keep their stereo volume low. As determined by the Office of Residence Life, 24-hour quiet periods are in effect during the examination period of each term and at other times as announced.

Refrigerators and Microwave Ovens

Refrigerators must be no larger than 6 cubic feet, 36 inches high, 24 inches wide, and 26 inches deep, or exceed 1.8 amps and 110 volts, with the exception of ResCom, Straz and Urso apartments (which already have full-sized refrigerators). In the interest of fire prevention, electrical outlets must not be overloaded.

No devices for the purpose of cooking are allowed in the residence hall rooms, with the exception of the following: pop-up toasters (not toaster ovens), blenders, can openers, coffee makers and juicers. Microwave ovens are permitted in students' rooms provided they are UL approved and do not exceed 700 watts. If you live in a Urso Hall, ResCom or Straz apartment, you may keep a toaster oven in the kitchen area. George Foreman type grills are not permitted in any residence hall.

Urso Hall, ResCom and Straz apartment residents are responsible for cleaning their own stoves and refrigerators and are expected to make sure these appliances are clean at check-out time.

For your convenience the Office of Residence Life has arranged with a reputable company where you can rent a small refrigerator, microwave oven or a combination unit which includes a microwave, refrigerator and freezer. These units comply with the University's voltage requirements. For more information please visit www.collegefridge.com/tampa.

Room Changes and Consolidations

It is the philosophy of the Office of Residence Life that room changes are not the answer to all roommate problems. An important aspect of the collegiate experience is living and learning with different types of people with varying interests and traits. Residents working together, with the assistance of their RAs, can help solve problems. This experience can benefit everyone involved. In the end, residents will be better equipped to work with different types of people.

After the third week of each semester, after we have verified all vacancies, residents will have a chance to move or swap rooms during an open room change period. On the first day of this period, students who know where they want to move will be required to obtain signatures from their new roommates. On the next day, signatures will not be required.

Immediately after the room change period, the consolidation process will begin. Students who are living by themselves and/or have a vacancy will be required to move in together or can decide to keep the space vacant for the current semester at an increased rate. Thus, students who have a vacancy in a triple can for the current semester buy out this space for the double rate. This will be completed based on seniority or a student's housing deposit date. Not all students will have this option, which depends on availability and overflow housing.

If it is determined by the Office of Residence Life that residents are rejecting all potential roommates regardless of compatibility, student will either be billed an increased rate, reassigned, or some other sanction determined by the office.

As the year goes on, if you feel a room change is the best option, you will need to meet with your area coordinator for assistance in finding an alternate space, or you may be able to swap with someone you know.

Students who do an illegal room change may be subject to a $100 fine and/or will be asked to return to the original room.

For the first three weeks of each term, no room changes will be granted while vacancies are being confirmed.

Room Entry/Search and Seizure

Except by invitation, students' rooms may be entered by a staff member only for the purpose of routine inspection and maintenance, when it is reasonably believed that a violation of University regulations or local, state or federal laws is occurring, or when it is feared that there is imminent danger to life, safety, health or property.

Your resident assistant will complete a health and safety inspection at least once a semester. You will be notified 12 hours in advance of this inspection. Any items confiscated during room inspections (i.e. alcohol containers, candles, toaster ovens, grills, etc) will be disposed of immediately.

Room Rates, Deposits and Payments

Payment in full for room and board is due before the beginning of each academic term. All students pay a $200 damage deposit as part of their $500 admissions deposit. Students are billed for damages to their rooms or its contents and for lock changes because of lost or stolen keys. They will be billed for cleaning if the room is left in an unacceptable condition.

Charges are automatically deducted from student accounts; therefore, the damage deposit needs to be maintained at the appropriate level at all times. This deposit is refunded upon request when a student leaves campus housing, provided there are no charges pending on the student's University account.

Continuing students are required to pay a $175 deposit during housing selection to hold their assignments for the next year. That deposit is credited to the student's account in the fall.

Smoking and Fire Safety

  1. Smoking is prohibited in all areas of residence halls. All residence halls are smoke free. There are designated smoking areas around each residence hall. This will be reviewed by the Residence Hall Association (RHA) each academic year.
  2. No student is allowed to store or ignite combustible materials in the residence halls. Candles and incense are prohibited. Halogen lamps are strictly prohibited in residence hall rooms.
  3. Barbecuing is permitted only in designated outdoor areas. No barbecue grills may be stored in residence hall rooms, apartments, patios or balconies.
  4. In the interest of fire prevention, electrical outlets must not be overloaded. No devices for cooking, including George Foreman-type grills, are allowed in the residence hall rooms, with the exception of pop-up toasters (not toaster ovens), blenders, can openers, coffee makers and juicers. These regulations may vary in Urso Hall, ResCom and Straz Hall, where kitchen areas are available. Students living in these halls should check with their RA for more details.
  5. Fire drills are conducted periodically to familiarize students with emergency evacuation procedures. All residents must evacuate immediately. Residence hall staff members will enter rooms to ensure cooperation. Tampering with fire equipment (i.e. smoke detectors, fire extinguishers, fire pull stations, etc.) or failure to evacuate will result in a fine and termination of the housing contract. Physically challenged students needing special assistance during fire alarms or emergencies are requested to notify their area coordinator in the beginning of the academic year.
  6. Residents must not tamper with or ride the top of any elevator at any time. Passengers must maintain orderly conduct.
  7. Students are responsible for restitution of any damage to personal property, facilities or grounds owned by the University.

Smoking Policy

As of Aug. 1, 2013, the use of tobacco products is prohibited on The University of Tampa's campus and other UT properties, except in designated smoke zones. All forms of tobacco/nicotine, including cigarettes, chew tobacco, electronic cigarettes, bidis, cigars, cigarillos, shisha and hookah are to be confined to the four designated smoke zones. The zones are identified on the smoking zone map.  

Questions about this smoke zone policy can be directed to wellness@ut.edu or (813) 257-1877.

Soliciting and Advertising

Soliciting (by persons not affiliated with UT) is not permitted in the residence halls. Ask salespersons to leave your building if you are approached. If they refuse, call Campus Safety and Security to have them removed.

Advertising is prohibited in all residence halls.

Storage of Belongings

The University does not have adequate facilities to store personal belongings for students during the summer. Items may not be left in student rooms, since the rooms are used for conference housing over the summer. There are many storage facilities in Tampa that will store your belongings inexpensively. You and your roommate or friends may decide to store belongings together to save money. 

No students will be allowed to have a portable unit delivered to campus to load or unload at any time. Unfortunately, we do not have enough space on campus to allow this. If you have any questions, please contact Residence Life at reslife@ut.edu or (813) 253-6239.

Student Housing Agreement

Each resident has completed and signed a housing agreement. This document is a formalized, legal and binding agreement between you and the University. By signing the agreement, you are saying you understand and will abide by all terms set forth in the agreement. Housing agreements are effective for one academic year (August to May), provided the resident has been accepted to the University.

Most of the terms, conditions and responsibilities of this agreement are discussed here, but you should thoroughly read the agreement itself and be sure you understand it. The agreement is subject to change from year to year, so please consult your own copy for pertinent information.

The Office of Student Conduct section of the website contains additional information and policies for which you are responsible. Please consult a staff member if you have questions.

Theft

If something has been taken from your room, please notify your RA, HR or AC. Together, you will make a report to Campus Safety and Security.

Remember to keep your door locked whenever you are out of the room, even for a very short time. It is also a good idea to keep your door locked whenever you are in your room while you are napping during the day, and particularly at night while you are watching TV, studying or showering, and especially when you retire for the night.

Vacancies

If after the room changes and consolidation period, you still have a vacancy, the Office of Residence Life may have to use that space at any time. It is imperative that you keep that space clean and available at all times. The Office of Residence Life may not have time to notify you that you will be getting a new roommate or suitemate. Any residents involved in deliberately discouraging a fellow student who is officially applying for or attempting to occupy a legitimate vacancy will be held in violation of their housing agreement and maybe billed an increased rate or reassigned.

Visitation

All residence halls have 24-hour visitation seven days a week. Your roommate(s) must consent to your having guests and overnight visitors in the room. Guests, including family members, may stay a maximum of three days in the residence halls per academic year. Remember, overnight visitation is not to be confused with co-habitation. Cohabitation is illegal in the state of Florida and therefore is not permitted in the residence halls.

Residents are responsible for the actions of their guests and guests must be escorted at all times.

Rights and Responsibilities of Residents

As a member of the residential community, you possess certain individual rights and responsibilities that must be held in high regard. This document outlines the minimal requirements of your community. You should become familiar with the standards of conduct that are outlined in your housing agreement and student handbook and discuss them with your resident assistant.
Rights
As a valued member of this residential community, you have the right to:
  • Read and study free from undue interference, unreasonable noise and other distractions inhibiting the exercise of this right.
  • Sleep without undue disturbance from noise and other distractions.
  • Have your personal belongings respected by others.
  • Have a clean environment in which to live.
  • Have free access to your room and to the facilities provided in the residence hall.
  • Enjoy personal privacy within limits of the residential setting.
  • Host guests, with the expectation that you will explain accepted behavioral standards and that guests will respect the rights of your roommate(s) and fellow residents.
  • Consult Office of Residence Life staff in settling conflicts.
  • Be free from fear of intimidation and physical or emotional harm.
  • Expect that these privileges will be respected.
Responsibilities
As an important member of this residential community, you have the responsibility to:
  • Verbally express your views to the person(s) involved, should you feel your rights have been infringed upon.
  • Treat other residents with respect and consideration and guarantee them their individual rights.
  • Understand all policies and regulations necessary for the hall and University communities to function and to abide by those rules.
  • Be responsive to all reasonable requests of fellow residents.
  • Be cooperative in all dealings with residence hall staff members.
  • Accept responsibility for personal and community safety; refrain from misusing safety equipment, propping security doors open or losing or forgetting room keys.
  • Recognize that public areas and their furnishings belong to everyone and that abuse of these areas violates the rights of the community.

Enforcement of University Housing Policies

Residential students are expected to abide by all rules and regulations established by the University. Residential students who fail to meet their responsibility as outlined in the housing agreement may be subject to disciplinary action.

Disciplinary action for housing violations may result in a range of sanctions including, but not limited to, counseling, mediation, warning, probation, revocation of guest and visitor privileges, restitution, reassignment to another accommodation, termination from housing, and denial of future housing agreements. Multiple violations of housing or conduct policies may result in the termination of the housing contract.

If a student's behavior is disruptive to the housing community, that student may be immediately suspended from housing for no more than 24 hours or until Monday, if the situation falls on a weekend, pending a meeting with a Office of Residence Life staff member and an evaluation of the incident.