HOUSING and RESIDENCE LIFE

Housing

Who is eligible to live on campus?

To be eligible for on campus housing a student must meet the following conditions:
  • Be enrolled as a full-time student with 12 or more credit hours.
  • Pay a Housing Deposit and return a signed Housing Contract that was received and accepted by the Department of Housing & Residence Life.
For more detail and current information regarding eligibility, please contact the Department of Housing & Residence Life at 410- 704- 2516.

If I decide not to live on campus, can I get my housing deposit back

The annual $350 Housing Deposit is a non-refundable fee. If you canceled before you check into the residence halls, your room and board fees can be refunded.

Can I move out of housing after I check in?

No, once you pick up your room key, you are obligated to live on-campus for the entire academic year. Refer to your Housing Contract for the reasons that you can be released from your contract.

If I am academically dismissed, may I live on campus?

No, you are not eligible to live on campus. However, if you are reinstated, you can contact our office to have your name placed on the waiting list. Students placed on the waiting list will be offered a space if an opening occurs. There is no guarantee of Housing.

Can I stay on campus over the summer or during minimester?

Minimester housing is optional and is not included as part of the Housing Contract. A limited amount of space is available during minimester in a separate residence hall. Students who are attending Minimester and would like Housing must apply at the Housing & Residence Life Office in the West Village Commons (Suite 309) and pay an additional fee. Summer School Housing is handled in the same way as Minimester Housing.

Can I leave something in my room over breaks?

During all breaks (except Summer), you may leave your belongings in the room (if you do not live on a discounted room floor) but you must physically vacate the building. Tenants of Towson Run Apartments and the International House should refer to their building supervisor for additional information.

Are there any special housing options?

Yes. Housing options include Residential Learning Communities, Honors housing, Alcohol-Free housing and Gender Neutral housing. For more housing options, please refer to the housing options page listed below.

Gender Neutral Housing

What is gender neutral housing?

Gender Neutral Housing (GNH) communities focus on creating an inclusive environment where students can live in the same room with any student - regardless of sex, gender, gender identity, or gender expression.

Why are we doing this? Why now?

A growing trend for colleges and universities is a shift toward gender neutral housing and restrooms. Within the last several years, Housing & Residence Life has collaborated with the Center for Student Diversity on the viability of bringing gender neutral housing to Towson University.

Housing & Residence Life researched best practices and hosted focus groups in Fall 2011 to discuss the interest and viability of offering Gender Neutral Housing as a new housing option. The feedback provided insight into the benefits and potential obstacles facing those who would most appreciate this housing option. A pilot proposal was drafted and a planning committee was formed to establish criteria for developing Gender Neutral Housing at Towson University.

How will this compare to Residential Learning Communities (e.g. Honors Housing, Global Village, and STEM)?

Gender Neutral Housing is a housing option rather than a Residential Learning Community. While intentional programming may permeate the communities that house Gender Neutral Housing, the primary purpose is to provide a space for people of all genders to live comfortably and without judgment.

Residential Learning Communities require either academic or interdepartmental partnerships to guide learning and engagement within the residence halls. Whether connecting Honors College to Honors Housing or the International Student Scholars Office to Global Village, Residential Learning Communities are purposed toward co-curricular programming and learning for resident students.

Who is eligible for Gender Neutral Housing?

Gender Neutral Housing is open to all students. Students will also have to complete the application process according to deadlines and qualify for on-campus housing. Students will also be required to sign an agreement of understanding; noting their compliance to community standards.

First year students and returning students with 59 credits or less who indicate an interest in Gender Neutral Housing will be assigned within university housing. Questions can be directed to Housing & Residence Life at 410-704-2516.

Returning residents with 60 credits or more and transferring students who have an interest in Gender Neutral Housing will need to contact Millennium Hall at Towson University by visiting the Millennium Hall website listed below and selecting Application/Forms questions should be directed to 410-704-6455.

What are the dates and process to indicate an interest in Gender Neutral Housing?

Incoming first year students can indicate an interest during the online housing contract process, from February 1st May 1, 2013.

The proccess for returning residents interested in Gender Neutral Housing will be outlined in the housing contract process information emailed to all current university housing residents by the middle of February.

Returning and transferring students can indicate an interest during the Millennium Hall contract process from February 11 February 22, 2013 and after based on availability.

When will Gender Neutral Housing be available as an option?

Gender Neutral Housing was a pilot program for the 2012-2013 academic year and will continue to offered as a housing options going forward.

What will happen to the remaining roommates/apartment-mates in the event that a vacancy occurs?

If a vacancy occurs, the remaining student(s) will be allowed two weeks to request a new roommate from the pool of applicants for Gender Neutral Housing. After two weeks, Housing & Residence Life staff will review the list of Gender Neutral Housing applicants to find a suitable room assignment.

What if a parent or guardian does not want their student(s) to live in gender neutral housing?

We encourage students to maintain an open dialogue with their families so that they can be supportive of a student's housing preference.

Will you prevent people who are romantically involved from living together?

Gender Neutral Housing is not intended for romantic couples. However, we respect the privacy of our students.

Rooming

What if I have a disagreement with my roommate(s) and do not get along?

First, try to avoid making snap judgments. You should attempt to work out the problem by talking with your roommate. If residents are unable to agree or come up with a workable solution, contact your RA for assistance. No room changes will be considered once assignments have been made, until two weeks after the semesters begins. After that, room changes will be made on a space-available basis and are not guaranteed to occur. The dissatisfied roommate is the one who is responsible for moving.

If I request a roommate, am I guaranteed that person

Room assignments are made in the order that housing deposits are received. Roommate requests will receive first priority and must be mutual. All roommate requests made by May 1 will be honored if space is available.

How can I request a single room?

New Freshmen must complete the online housing request process and select the single room option in order to be considered for a single room. Single rooms are assigned on a space available basis.

Current students must pay their housing deposit and fill out a single room request card by the housing deposit payment deadline, in order to be considered for a Single. Students will be assigned in order of credit hours (starting with the highest number of credits). All students will be notified after spring break and prior to room sign-up the status of their single room request. Those students not assigned a Single will need to participate in Room Sign-up.

What is included in each room?

Student rooms are furnished with bed(s), desk(s), desk chair(s), closet(s) or wardrobe(s), wall-to-wall carpeting, blinds or drapes and a micro-fridge (a combination microwave and refrigerator). The rooms also come equipped with free basic cable television (34 channels), unlimited Internet, and wireless internet (bring your own coaxial cable, television, and computer). Most buildings are air-conditioned.

What about the bathroom situation?

Traditional residence halls with community or quad style bathrooms are cleaned daily by housekeeping staff. In suite-style rooms or rooms with private bathrooms, the residents are responsible for cleaning the bathrooms.

What about my laundry?

There are washers and dryers in each residence hall. Students can use their One Card (points) or quarters to use the laundry machines.

Can I bring my car?

Freshman resident students (29 or less credits) are eligible to purchase a parking permit. Only West Village Garage resident permits will be available to Freshmen residents, regardless of where their housing is located on campus. Parking for West Village residents will be on the upper levels of the West Village Garage. Please go to the Parking & Transportation Services website for additional information.

Online Housing Request

What is my Net ID and Password?

Your Net ID is the first part of your email address at Towson University (example@students.towson.edu).

What if I have forgotten my Net ID or Password?

You will need to contact Student Computing Services at 410-704-5151.

Why does the screen look off-center or have images overlapping some of the words?

Your screen resolution should be set to 1024 X 768 to get the proper page layout. This screen resolution is the default resolution for Windows. You will need to use Internet Explorer or Firefox for Windows and Firefox for Mac.

When I try to login to the Online Housing Request my screen closes?

This probably means that you are blocking pop-ups from the gateway. You will need to configure your browser to allow pop-up from the gateway. There is a configuration guide located directly below the login field on the first page of the Online Housing Request.

What credit cards can I use to pay my online housing deposit?

You can use Visa, Master Card, and Discover.

What if I don't have a credit card?

You can call Housing & Residence Life at 410-704-2516 and request a contract packet to be mailed to you.

Can I use any other forms of payment to pay my online housing deposit?

At this time, we can only accept credit card payments online.

Why can't I read the Tutorials or download the Housing Accommodations Form?

You will need a PDF reader such as Adobe Acrobat Reader. This is a free program that you can obtain from Adobe's web site( http://www.adobe.com).

Dining

Where are My Dining Options (on-campus residents are all apart of the meal plan)?

No matter where you go on campus, you can find something good to eat! We have 12 dining locations, and offer a variety of meal plans. Menus include standard American, vegetarian and kosher cuisine as well as a-la-carte dining.

To learn more about dining on campus, please visit the Dining Services web site:

Meningococcal Meningitis: Information for Students and Parents

What is meningococcal disease?

Meningococcal disease is a serious illness caused by the meningococcal bacteria. It is a leading cause of bacterial meningitis in children age 2-18 in the United States. Meningitis is an infection of fluid surrounding the brain and the spinal cord. The meningococcal bacteria also cause an infection in the blood stream that can lead to septic shock and death.

How is meningococcal disease spread?

It is primarily spread through close, prolonged exposure to shared airspace, such as sleeping in the same room. A secondary method is through mouth-to-mouth contact such as kissing or sharing a toothbrush or drinking glass. The incubation period is generally 3 to 4 days, to a maximum of 10 days.

About 2,600 people get meningococcal disease each year in the U.S. 10-15% of these people die, in spite of treatment with antibiotics. Of those who live, another 11-19% lose their arms or legs, become deaf, have problems with their nervous systems, become mentally retarded, or suffer seizures or strokes. Anyone can get meningococcal disease. But it is most common in infants less than one year of age and people with certain medical conditions, such as lack of a spleen. College freshman living in dormitories have an increased risk of getting meningococcal disease.

Meningococcal infections can be treated with drugs such as penicillin. Still, about lout of every ten people who get the disease dies from it, and many others are affected for life. This is why preventing the disease through use of meningococcal vaccine is important for people at highest risk.

Why are college students at greater risk for meningococcal disease than the general population?

While the reasons are not yet fully understood, studies from previous college outbreaks suggest that college students are more susceptible because they live and work in close proximity to each other in dormitories and classrooms. Behavioral and social aspects of college life appear to be risk factors as well, with smoking, exposure to second-hand smoke, alcohol consumption, and bar patronage all increasing the chance that one will contract meningitis from an infected individual.

Is there any way for college students to protect themselves against the threat of meningococcal disease?

Yes. Safe, effective vaccines can provide protection against meningococcal disease. Meningococcal polysaccharide vaccine (MPSV4) has been available since the 1970s. Meningococcal conjugate vaccine (MCV4) was licensed in 2005. Both vaccines protect against meningitis caused by 4 of the 5 common strains ofthe bacteria (serogroups A, C, Y and W-135), including 2 of the 3 types most common in the United States (C, Y and W-135) and a type that causes epidemics in Africa (serogroup A). There is currently no available vaccine against the 5th strain, serogroup B, and the vaccine does not prevent other causes of meningitis (e.g. other bacteria or viral meningitis).

Both vaccines protect about 90% of those who get immunized. MCV 4 (brand name Menactra) is expected to give better, longer-lasting protection than the older vaccine, MPSV4 (known as Menomune). MCV4 should also be better at protecting the spread of the disease from person to person by eradicating the meningococcal bacteria that reside in the nose and throat. Since people can be asymptomatic carriers, this is a big advantage of the newer vaccine.


Why should college students consider preventive vaccination with the meningococcal vaccine?

In the past, vaccination has been delayed until an outbreak of meningitis occurs. The problem with this strategy is that because outbreaks, while rare, are clustered in time, and because onset of symptoms is extremely rapid, for many students post-exposure vaccination may be too late to provide real protection. In addition, immunity after vaccination can take 12 weeks to develop. Pre-exposure vaccination also eliminates the fear of not being vaccinated in time.

In light of these facts and the growing number of outbreaks on college campuses in recent years, the American College Health Association and CDC's Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices recommend that all college freshmen be immunized. Maryland law requires all college students living in on-campus student housing be immunized or sign a waiver indicating they understand the risks of the disease and choose not to take the vaccine.

What are the side effects of the vaccine? How safe is it?

The meningococcal vaccine has an excellent safety profile. The risk of death or serious harm is low. Side effects are usually mild, consisting primarily of redness and swelling at the site of injection lasting up to two days. A vaccine, like any medicine, could possibly cause serious problems, such as severe allergic reactions. However, the risk of serious harm, or death, is extremely small.

Meningococcal immunization should be deferred during any acute illness. The vaccine should not be administered to pregnant women or individuals sensitive to thimerosal or any other components of the vaccine.

Can college students do anything else to reduce risk of contracting meningococcal disease?

Maximize your body's own immune response. Eat a balanced diet, and get adequate sleep and exercise. Avoid cigarettes and excessive use of alcohol. In particular, do not make a habit of sharing drinks or cigarettes.

Can students receive their meningococcal vaccination on campus?

Yes, call the Dowell Health Center at (410) 704-2466 for more information and appointment times.

How much does the vaccine cost?

MPSV4 (Menomune) -$75; MCV4 (Menactra) -$95


 

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