• First Year Live On Campus

Policies & Procedures

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  • First-Year Live-On Campus Policy

    Custodian of Policy: Vice President for Enrollment Management & Student Affairs
    Relevant McSCU Policy: 2.10 Student Housing
    Effective Date: Fall 2015
    Last Review: New Policy
    Next Review: TBD

    Policy

    MSU Moorhead is committed to providing a comprehensive educational experience for students. In accordance with this commitment, data indicate that first-year students who live on campus earn higher grade point averages and are more likely to persist at MSU Moorhead. As a result, for the 2015-2016 academic year, all New Entering Freshman (NEF) as well as any student who received a high school diploma on January 2015 or later, including those students who transferred to MSU Moorhead in the Spring Term after attending one semester at another institution, are required to live on campus their first year. A New Entering Freshman is defined as a student attending any institution for the first time at the undergraduate level. This includes students enrolled in the fall term who attended college for the first time in the prior summer term. This also includes students who entered with advanced standing (college credits earned through PSEO or Advanced Placement programs).

    Exemptions

    Students may qualify for an exemption to the policy if one or more of the following conditions exist. Decisions will be made by Director of Housing and Residential Life, or designee, or referred to the Housing Exemption Review Board:

    1. Students who live with their parent(s) or guardian(s) in their primary residence within a 50 mile radius of campus.
      • Proof of residency will be required.
       

    2. Students enrolled in 9 or fewer credits during both the fall and spring semesters.
      • Should a student with fewer than 9 credit hours add a class making him/her a full-time student, the student will be expected to move on campus or apply for an exemption under a different category.
       

    3. Students with custody of a minor child.
      • Proof of custody may be required.
       

    4. Students who are married.
      • A copy of a Marriage Certificate may be required
       

    5. Students who are 21 years or older on the first day of classes of their entering term.

    Extenuating circumstances may be considered for the following situations. Supporting documentation will be required. Decisions will be made by the Housing Exemption Review Board.

    1. Severe medical condition or disability that cannot be reasonably accommodated in a residence hall facility.
      • Prior to requesting an exemption, students must first contact Disability Services to request an accommodation. The written recommendation from Disability Services will be considered when making a decision about the exemption request.
       

    2. Financial hardship for which there is no financial solution
      • Prior to requesting an exemption, students must apply for financial aid.
       

    3. Other extenuating circumstance that may warrant an exemption that does not fit into one of the above reasons for exemption. Examples that may be considered include, but are not limited to, serious illness of parent, or sibling requiring assistance from student on a regular basis.
      • Documentation will be required
       

    Students who believe they qualify for an exemption based on one or more reasons must submit the Housing Exemption Request form to Housing and Residential Life. The completed form must be received by Housing and Residential Life no later than 30 days prior to the first day of classes. Providing false information to MSU Moorhead is a violation of the Student Code of Conduct; violators will be subject to disciplinary action. Students who are found to have provided false information will be required to move into an on-campus residence hall. Students are encouraged not to make any other commitments for housing until they receive a written response to their request for exemption, as having already signed a lease with an off-campus landlord or purchasing a home will not be considered reason for an exemption.

    Definitions

    New Entering Freshman (NEF): a student attending any institution for the first time at the undergraduate level. This includes students enrolled in the fall term who attended college for the first time in the prior summer term. This also includes students who entered with advanced standing (college credits earned through PSEO or Advanced Placement programs).

    Procedures

    Admitted students will receive materials from Housing and Residential Life that include a Housing and Dining Contract as well as information about the on-campus living experience. A link to the First-Year Live-On Campus Policy on the Housing and Residential Life website will be noted in a cover letter that introduces the enclosed materials. Students interested in applying for an exemption will be able to download and a Housing Exemption Request form. As noted in the policy language, exemption requests will be reviewed and decided either by the Director of Housing and Residential Life, or designee, or by the Housing Exemption Review Board. The Housing Exemption Review Board will be comprised of individuals able to assess extenuating circumstances such as the ability to accommodate medical conditions and disabilities, financial hardship, and special needs. Those applying for exemption will receive notification of decision regarding their request in writing.

    Rationale

    National data shows that students who live on campus during their first year earn higher grade point averages and are retained at higher levels. This trend also applies at MSU Moorhead.

    NEF GPA Comparison

    The following table shows term grade point averages for new entering freshman who lived on campus (Resident NEF) compared to those who lived off-campus (Non-Resident NEF):

    Term Resident NEF Non-Resident NEF
    Fall 2009 2.66 2.41
    Fall 2010 2.58 2.26
    Fall 2011 2.67 2.56
    Fall 2012 2.82 2.22

    Retention Rates of Resident NEF

    The following table shows retention rates for Resident NEF, indicating the number who enrolled in the spring semester, their second year, third year, fourth year, and fifth year (as applicable):

    NEF Term N Spring Enroll. Year 2 Enroll. Year 3 Enroll. Year 4 Enroll. Year 5 Enroll.
    Fall 2009 842 89.43% 69% 55.7% 47.86% 26.13%
    Fall 2010 963 90.76% 70.61% 56.18% 48.91%  
    Fall 2011 910 90.33% 68.58% 58.13%    
    Fall 2012 886 91.87% 70.88%      

    Retention Rates of Non-Resident NEF

    The following table shows retention rates for Non-Resident NEF, indicating the number who enrolled in the spring semester, their second year, third year, fourth year, and fifth year (as applicable):

    NEF Term N Spring Enroll. Year 2 Enroll. Year 3 Enroll. Year 4 Enroll. Year 5 Enroll.
    Fall 2009 177 82.49% 59.32% 46.33% 37.85% 19.77%
    Fall 2010 250 80.4% 56.4% 39.2% 36.8%  
    Fall 2011 163 84.05% 64.42% 52.15%    
    Fall 2012 168 70.83% 50%      

    NEF Retention Rates Comparison

    In all cases, retention rates of Resident NEF were higher than those of Non-Resident NEF. The following table shows the percentage difference between Resident NEF retention and Non-Resident NEF:

    NEF Term Spring Enroll. Year 2 Enroll. Year 3 Enroll. Year 4 Enroll. Year 5 Enroll.
    Fall 2009 6.94% 9.68% 9.37% 10.01% 6.36%
    Fall 2010 10.36% 14.21% 16.98% 12.11%  
    Fall 2011 6.28% 4.15% 5.98%    
    Fall 2012 21.04% 20.88%      

    Although the proposed policy does not suggest requiring second year students to live on campus, data indicates students who live on campus for two years earn higher grade point averages and have higher retention rates than students who live on campus for only one year.