Living on Campus FAQs

Campus Move-In Dates & Times

First-year student move-in is on Wednesday, August 17, 2022 from 8:30 am-3:30 pm. First-year students will move-in during an assigned time period based upon their neighborhood community and building. Details regarding check-in times will be provided in the housing assignment letter and available on the housing portal beginning July 18th. Check-in will take place in the University Center atrium. Additional details regarding move-in will be emailed to students the first week in August. The following are the move-in times by building for first-year students on Wednesday, August 17, 2022:

  • Moll Hall & Sharples Hall: 8:30am-11:30am
  • Howell Hall & Thayer Hall: 11:30 am-1:30 pm
  • Kapelski Hall & Grasselli Hall: 1:30pm-3:30pm
  • All other residential communities-Boettner Hall, New Hall, Metropolitan Hall, 505: 2pm-3pm

Please note that students are asked to move-in during the assigned times as move-in assistance may not be available outside of the assigned times.

Returning student move-in will take place on Saturday, August 20th and Sunday, August 21st. Check-in is in the Residence Life Office located on the first floor of Cann Hall. Students can check in to their residential assignments from 10 am-3 pm and 8 pm-10 pm either day of the semester. Students arriving after Sunday, August 21st can check into their residential assignment in the Residence Life Office in Cann Hall during business hours Monday-Friday 9 am-5 pm, or during the Resident Assistant office hours in the office 8 pm-11 pm nightly.

All residential students must be in compliance with the university’s vaccination policies before they are permitted to check into the residence halls. Please see the Coronavirus page of the website for the university's vaccination policy and the Coronavirus FAQs page for more details. 

What Can I Expect During Move-In?

During first-year student move-in day, a group of Widener University community members volunteer to welcome and assist students to move into their rooms. The office will also have a variety of large carts and hand cart available to assist with moving into the halls. Please note that none of the first-year communities have elevators. Throughout the day, students and the support systems are welcome to stop by our Ask Me Booths where a hydration station, first aid support, and university representative will be present to support answering any questions. Residence Life staff will also be available in the residence halls, University Center Atrium, and in the Residence Life Office in Cann Hall throughout the day to help support students.

Dining Services

Meal plans for first-year residential students go into effect on Wednesday, August 17 starting at 4:00 p.m.

Meals for our commuter students will be provided during the Orientation Program for the lunch and dinner periods on August 17, August 18, and August 19 only. Meals are optional for commuter students.

Meal plans for returning residential students go into effect on Saturday, August 20 starting at 9:00 a.m. Returning and graduate students who are permitted to move into the residence halls prior to this time are responsible for their own meals.

Stay up to date with what dining services facilities are open through the Widener Dining Services website. 

If you have additional questions regarding move in, please email residencelife@widener.edu and a member of the Residence Life team will respond to you as soon as possible.

Important Housing Policies

Widener University’s 2-Year Residency Program requires all full-time undergraduate students in their first and second years to live in on-campus housing. Students who qualify for commuter status are not required to live on-campus. To qualify for commuter status, first- and second-year students must reside at their permanent, legal residence within 25-commutable miles from campus with a parent or legal guardian. Additional exceptions for full-time students to qualify for commuter status include:

•    You are married.
•    You are the custodial parent of a child.
•    You are a veteran with at least 2-years of active military service
•    You are 24-years of age or older
•    You have attained junior class status (57 earn credits towards your degree program)

Students not meeting the above criteria and failing to actively participate in housing selection will be assigned housing and a meal plan by the Office of Residence Life. Please note that on-campus housing agreements are for the entire academic year unless a student is studying abroad or there is a change to part-time status. Exemptions will not be provided to students entering an off-campus lease regardless of the time of year if they have not met the 2-Year Residency Program requirements indicated above. As a result, they will be charged for housing and dining costs. 

Our housing policy is designed to support the success of our students. Living on campus provides students with unmatched access to resources and activities leading to better grades, higher graduation rates, and more time with friends.

Students who live on campus must understand that the housing application and agreement they sign is binding for the upcoming academic year. The effective date of your agreement is the date you sign your housing agreement.

Please review the Residential Student Handbook section of the Student Handbook for more details.
 

Students who qualify for commuter status are not required to live on campus. To qualify for commuter status, you must live at home with parent(s) or legal guardian(s) and within 25 miles from the university or from your co-op, internship, or student teaching location. . Students are expected to indicate their intent to commute by submitting the Housing Intent Form. Please note that any students that enter into a Housing Agreement after June 15, 2022, for new students and April 15, 2022 need to submit a housing release request and meet criteria released in their housing agreement regardless of their status to commute.

Smoking Policy

In July 2010, the university implemented a tobacco-free policy that prohibits the use of tobacco anywhere on campus.

Alcohol Policy

It is our policy that all freshmen residence halls are alcohol-free residences. This means that the possession and/or consumption of alcoholic beverages by anyone regardless of age is prohibited. The vast majority of our freshmen are under age 21, so we believe that this policy will help to improve students’ living experiences in freshman residences. 

Please see the Student Drug and Alcohol Policy in the Student Handbook for a complete description of Widener's rules and regulations covering alcohol.

With the exception of fish tanks under 10 gallons, all animals—except for service and assistance animals—are not permitted in residence halls or other university facilities.

Review the Service and Assistance Animal Policy in the Student Handbook for more details.

  • Alcohol, including empty containers
  • Pets, unless specified above in the Pet Policy
  • Weapons, firearms, or explosive devices

Electronics & Electrical Appliances

  • Broilers, electric frying pans, hot plates
  • George Foreman™ grills, toaster ovens, griddles, or any open exposed heating elements
  • Power cords without a multi-plug power strip with an internal circuit breaker
  • Microwaves outside of a micro fridge unit
  • Any type of air conditioning unit

Decorations & Room/Furniture Modifications

  • Candles (including decorative ones)
  • Cinder blocks 
  • Furniture without fire retardant material 
  • Halogen lamps or decorative lighting (string lights, etc.)
  • Live Christmas trees
  • Nails, hooks, double-faced adhesive tape, or other items that damage walls 
  • Power tools
  • Water beds

Housing Applications & Assignments FAQs

Housing applications are submitted through the Housing Portal. Here, we'll ask you questions about your living preferences with a roommate and other interests; this questionnaire helps to place you with another student with similar interests.

To log into the Housing Portal, use your Widener credentials. 

Housing applications are accepted on a rolling basis until the residence halls reach capacity. Please note that requests for specific accommodations such as single and apartment-style communities may not be met with request submitted after June 1st.

If you submit your application after this date, we may not be able to honor specific room or roommate requests.

The Housing Portal is powered by StarRez, a world-leading software that provides the most intuitive and easy-to-use system for students to apply for housing and find or select their own roommate.

Of course, you can! Students are welcome to select a preferred roommate. Every effort will be made to accommodate this request, as long as both students indicate a wish to room with one another and their housing applications are submitted by the deadline. 

We have an open room change period in the beginning of the semester. During this period, students can meet with their area coordinator and talk about the room change process. If there are vacant spaces available and the area coordinator approves the room change, the students may change rooms.

Steps to Select a Preferred Roommate

Directions to select an intended roommate are part of the Housing Application. You will be directed to create a group with your intended roommate. Please note that once the group is created, requests need to be accepted by the individual who created the group in order for residence life to honor the request.

Once a student occupies his or her assigned room, the roommate assignment may not be changed unless the Residence Life office gives approval. 

What happens if you don’t select a roommate?

Students who do not select a preferred roommate are assigned roommates by the Residence Life office based on responses to the roommate matching questions within the housing application so that we can match compatible students.

What do I do if I want to change rooms?

After July 1st, the Office of Residence Life is unable to accommodate room change requests until the open room change period starts after the University census date the third week of the semester. After the University census date, students will have the opportunity to participate in the open room change process for up to two weeks where they can submit a room change request through the housing portal. The office considers requests in the order in which they are received followed by academic standing.

Outside of the open room change period, students can request a room change through the housing portal. However, students may need to meet with their Area Coordinator or participate in a roommate mediation before a room change may occur. During the last 3 weeks of fall semester, a room change freeze period is in place with only room changes for emergency situations processed until the University census date takes place the third week of the spring semester. For more information regarding room changes, please email residencelife@widener.edu.

Getting Along with Your Roommate

Once you move in, you and your roommate will meet with your Resident Assistant (RA) to complete a roommate agreement. This agreement opens up the lines of communication to discuss living preferences and talk about any differences you might have.

The Residence Life office reserves the right to reassign any student to a different room at any time. While every attempt will be made to notify the resident student of a change in room assignment prior to his or her arrival on campus, situations may arise that make this impossible.

The Student Accessibility Services Office is here to help accommodate individual needs that necessitate special housing accommodations. 

Please forward your requests and all documentation to:
Widener University, Student Accessibility Services
c/o Rebecca Ross, Director
One University Place
Chester, PA 19013
610-499-1266
rross@widener.edu

If you've submitted your housing application by the deadline, you should receive an official letter correspondence from the Residence Life office via your Widener email by July 18th indicating your housing assignment information.

Can't find the email? No worries!

Log onto the Housing Portal using your Widener credentials and select “Housing Application” this will provide you with housing assignment information.  

Please note, this information is not visible until letters have been officially sent to all residential students.

Here at Widener you will find a welcoming, inclusive, and supportive residential community with housing options that suit a variety of interests, living styles, and specific needs or wishes. For more information about specific residence halls, including room and window dimensions, lighting, furniture included, etc, visit the Residence Halls page. 

General Housing FAQs

Most residence halls have the following basic amenities: an XL twin bed, desk, study chair, wardrobe, and one dresser for you and your roommate to share.* Cable television, wired and wireless Internet access, and laundry facilities are also included.

*Please note some residence halls vary in furniture type. Refer to the Residence Halls page for more details. 

Items for Move-In Day

For move-in day, you might want to bring cold drinks, a hand cart, and a towel. It is also highlight recommended that you label all boxes with the student’s hall and room number.

Recommended Items to Bring to Campus

Roommate Tip: Avoid Doubles! We encourage new students to contact their roommate before move-in to coordinate who is bringing what to campus. It’s a good idea to check with your roommate to avoid duplicating certain items like a TV, microwave, or refrigerator.

Bathroom Essentials

  • Hair dryer
  • Personal care products 
  • Rubber shower shoes
  • Shower caddy to transport items from room to shower 
  • Towels & washcloths 

Room Essentials

  • Alarm clock
  • Cleaning supplies
  • Desk lamp & light bulbs
  • First-aid kit 
  • Flashlight & batteries
  • Iron & ironing board
  • Laundry supplies & clothes basket
  • Pillows & linens for extra-long bed
  • Plates, mugs, cups, & silverware
  • Radio
  • Refrigerator (5 cubic feet or smaller) or micro-fridge unit 
  • Room fan
  • Study lamp
  • Surge protectors
  • Television
  • Wastebasket

Quiet Hours: Sunday – Thursday 9pm to 7am

Quiet hours in all residence halls and apartments will be from 9 p.m. to 7 a.m., Sunday through Thursday, and midnight to 10 a.m. on Friday and Saturday during normal school session. In addition, 24-hour/day quiet hours go into effect prior to final exam week and continue through closing. 

Residents are expected to be considerate of others at all hours and are expected to act in a manner conducive to effective study.

Review more information about Quiet Hours in the Student Handbook for more details.

Residence halls are co-ed by floor, wing, or suite depending on the style of the building.

If keys are lost, you must report the lost key to the Office of Residence Life, the lock will be replaced and new keys will be issued. 

Students will be charged a fee to cover the cost of having a lock replaced. If a key is damaged or broken the student will not be charged any fees as long as all parts of the key are returned to the Office of Residence Life.

All maintenance requests can be submitted through SchoolDude.

If this is your first time submitting a maintenance request, you must register for a SchoolDude account.

The university does not assume responsibility for lost or damaged personal property by any means or for any cause. Please see the Student Handbook under Residence Life: Program Policies, Procedures, and Regulations section F 7 Personal Property Insurance Coverage.

The safety of your belongings is important to us, and having insurance is the sure way to be safe. You are strongly encouraged to see if you are covered under your parents' or guardians' homeowner policies or take advantage of special insurance programs available for college students. Student personal property insurance can be purchased from companies such as National Student Services, Inc. This is something that you and your parents/guardians should discuss at length.

The staff members in the Office of Residence Life are committed to your success during your time living on campus. Our live-in staff includes several area coordinators and resident assistants. The office also has student office assistants available to answer questions in the Residence Life Office in Cann Hall. They serve as valuable resources and are trained to assist you in a variety of situations. 

  • Resident Assistants (RA): RAs are student staff members responsible for creating a feeling of community among their residents by establishing community standards, advising roommate agreements, enforcing university policy, and being a resource to campus services and activities.
  • Area Coordinators (AC): ACs are full-time professional staff members whose primary role is to assist students in building an inclusive community to enhance personal and academic growth. The AC's work is performed within the framework of the Residence Life mission and includes intentional efforts to interact with students, assess their needs, and promote community growth and development. Supervision of RA staff and undertaking various leadership areas are also central to the AC role. 

Meet the Residence Life Team

The university's post office is located in the University Center, lower level. Your address is:
Your Name
Widener University, Box #
One University Place
Chester, PA 19013

For more information, visit: https://sites.widener.edu/postoffice/

An ATM can be found in the lobby of Old Main and TD Bank is located in University Crossings at 1410 Providence Ave, Chester, PA 19013. 

For hours and services offered, visit TD Bank

Each residence hall has laundry facilities. These services are included in your housing fee and are available to all residential students.

To request housing to accommodate a disability, please visit the website for the Office of Student Accessibility Services. Accommodation requests are reviewed once all documentation is received. Please note that all deposit and application deadlines for housing must be met. Late requests will be considered on a space available basis. 

Information for driving directions, public transportation, campus maps, parking permits, and shuttle information can be found on our Maps & Directions page.

Yes! However, since parking is at a premium at Widener, students without a specific need are advised not to bring a vehicle to campus. Both university and public transportation provide access to the entire university and surrounding areas every day.

If you choose to bring a car to campus, parking permits are required to park in campus lots. For more information, visit our Maps & Directions page.

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