Published on Rhodes College: Rhodes Handbook (

Residence Hall Policies

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Bottle and Can Collections

Cans and/or bottles may not be stored, collected, or used as decorations in a resident’s room. Violations of this policy will result in a $50 fine for the first violation. Subsequent violations may result in additional disciplinary action. Students are encouraged to recycle cans and bottles using one of the recycling centers on campus.

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Common Area Damage

Common areas include but are not limited to hallways, door exteriors, bathrooms, stairwells, lounges, laundry rooms, study rooms, utility rooms, storage rooms, kitchens, and TV rooms. Students are expected to help maintain these community areas. Furnishings in common areas must not be removed or rearranged. Roofs, ledges, and balconies of residence halls are always off-limits. For security reasons, outside hall doors may not be propped open. All residence hall space is non-smoking. The College will make every effort, within reason, to discover the individuals responsible for any damage or loss in the common areas of any residence hall. However, when the damage or loss cannot be attributed to specific individuals, the cost for damages or loss occurring in the common areas of the building will be shared equally by all students of that facility. Students can be held accountable for building damage if a connection can be made back to a particular residence hall facility.

When intentional and deliberate damage occurs in a common area (hallway, communal bathroom, social room, etc.) and no one claims responsibility for such damage, the RAs of the building will notify the residents of an impending Common Area Damage charge. If the individual(s) responsible cannot be identified, then the charge is equally distributed among the community members.

Each resident should feel as though they have an intrinsic investment in the residential community. As such, residents should feel motivated to hold each other accountable for their actions. If a student damages college property, they are bound to accept responsibility and report these actions to their RA. Damage to public areas often goes unreported. Failure to take responsibility for our actions and allowing members of the hall to pay for damage is a serious breach of our Honor System. If damage occurs accidentally, the student still holds the responsibility to report the incident to their RA honestly and promptly.

If damage occurs to an area outside of the residence hall, but can be connected back to a particular residence hall, the damage charge may be assessed to the residents of that residence hall.

Charges will often be assessed based on a standardized fine. Situations that require additional work from sources outside of the College will result in the fine plus the cost of the outside contractor. Damage fines can be incurred for the following but are not limited to: Vomit, excessive trash, damage to exit signs, damage to ceiling tiles, cracked or broken window panes. etc. Additional fines may be assessed for deliberate contamination of recycling bins. 

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Semester/End of Year Closing

Students must remove all their belongings within 24 hours after their last exam and check out appropriately. Only graduating seniors and students associated with an official College function will have permission to remain past the official closing. Students (non-Seniors) must be approved to stay past official closing by the Director of Residence Life. When extenuating circumstances exist, students must agree to be relocated (along with all their possessions).  Failure to abide strictly by these time limitations may result in a fine of $250 per incidence/per day and/or other disciplinary action.

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Fire Extinguisher, Fire Alarms and Fire Related Activities

By State and Local Codes, the College strictly prohibits tampering with any fire safety equipment or the starting of fires of any sort on the campus. Disciplinary action and/or civil prosecution may be taken against those found tampering with fire alarm mechanisms (including room or hall smoke detectors) and fire extinguishers and/or refusing to vacate a building in the event of a fire alarm. In addition, the residents will be assessed a monetary penalty, individually or collectively, if the College is reasonably unable to determine the individual(s) responsible for false fire alarms and/or damage to alarm mechanisms or fire extinguishers.

Falsely pulling a fire alarm or discharging a fire extinguisher, possession of fireworks on campus, and burning items (e.g., paper on doors or walls, paper in bathrooms, etc.) is prohibited. Minimally, first-time offenders will be fined $100and the Community Standards Council may take other appropriate action. If the person responsible cannot be identified, the charge may be divided equally among residents of the floor. Clean-up fees may also be charged.

Any student who willfully fails to exit the residence hall after the fire alarm sounds will be subject to disciplinary action that may result in removal from the residence hall.

Rhodes is required to conduct fire drills each semester to ensure that fire safety systems are in working order.

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Fire Prevention and Safety

The residence halls are private residences owned and maintained by the College. They are subject to the Memphis Fire Code, and are regularly inspected by the Fire Marshall's Office.

  1. Students should test their battery operated smoke alarm regularly to assure proper operation of the alarm. Service requests for malfunctioning alarms or new batteries should be submitted through the work order system. Smoke alarms must not be tampered with or covered.
  2. No upholstered furniture that has significant cuts or ruptures in the upholstery will be permitted in the residence halls. Students may be asked to remove items on walls that create a fire hazard. No items are to be hung from ceilings, covering lights, or covering smoke detectors.
  3. Students may be asked to remove appliances to avoid overloading the circuits and to avoid fire hazards. All electrical appliances should be turned off when not in use.
  4. Refrigerators in residence halls must be no larger than 33” high or 19” wide. Only one refrigerator per room.
  5. Any appliance with an open flame or burner, including but not limited to candle warmers, hot plates, electric skillets, toaster ovens, toasters, counter top style grills, sandwich makers and woks are prohibited.
  6.  Halogen and other exposed bulb lamps are not permitted.   
  7. “UL Approved” power-strips with surge protectors not exceeding 15 amps must be used. 
  8. “UL Approved” Christmas tree lights designed specifically for indoor use may be used. No other forms of extension cords or multi-outlet extenders can be used.
  9. Neon lights, beer signs, fireworks, flammable liquids of any kind, and open flame devices, including but not limited to candles and incense, are not allowed in residence halls.
  10. Residents are prohibited from installing air conditioners or ceiling fans in their rooms. Students are prohibited from plugging air conditioner units into any other outlet not designated specifically for the unite.
  11. Space heaters are prohibited.
  12. All residence hall spaces are non-smoking.

Failure to comply with any of these fire safety requirements will minimally result in a $50 fine for first offense. Subsequent offenses may result in suspension or expulsion from the residence halls.

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Housing Contract

All students who reside in campus housing sign the Housing Contract and agree to abide by the policies and regulations contained therein. Students have a responsibility to know all College policies in general, and specifically all residence hall policies contained in the Housing Contract and The Student Handbook.

All non-summer Rhodes College Housing assignments are made for the entire academic year. Concerning Rhodes College Housing, the academic year begins on the day residence halls open at the beginning of the fall term (August 18, 2023 for first years, and August 20, 2023 for returning students). The academic year ends on the day following the last final examination of the spring semester (May 5, 2024). Concerning Rhodes College Housing, the Fall semester begins on the day residence halls open (August 18, 2023 for first years, and August 20, 2023 for returning students) and ends on the day following the last final examination (December 14, 2023). Concerning Rhodes College Housing, the Spring semester begins on the day residence halls open (January 7, 2024) and ends on the day following the last final examination (May 5, 2024). Concerning Rhodes College Housing for graduating students, the academic year ends the day after Commencement (May 12, 2024).

  1. Students required to live on campus (see “Residency Requirement” in the Student Handbook) agree to reside in College housing for the number of semesters indicated by the residency requirement policy. They are responsible for room and board charges for each of those semesters.
  2. Students not required to live on campus but who choose campus housing are financially responsible for the room and board charges for each semester of campus residency. For billing purposes, the Student is considered a resident if they have personal property in the residence hall room on or after the day residence halls open at the beginning of the semester. In addition, any student who remains enrolled but withdraws from campus housing during the contract period will be assessed a $750 contract termination fee. Exceptions may include graduation, study abroad, etc.

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Housing Registration

All current resident students must register online by the date determined by the Office of Residence Life to become eligible for the Rhodes College Housing lottery and selection process for the following academic year. 

It is the student’s responsibility to know the eligibility requirements of the housing selection process. 

Students who cancel their registration or housing after the selection process begins are subject to a progressive cancellation fee. 

If a student cancels before May 15, there is no cancellation fee. 

Students who cancel between May 16 and June 30 will incur a $250 cancellation fee. For students who cancel between June 30 and July 15, the cancellation fee is $500. 

Cancellations after July 15 will incur a $750 cancellation fee. For the Student required to live on campus, the College will assign a room in Rhodes College Housing even if the Student does not meet the designated registration deadline.

Once the Student checks into their Rhodes College Housing at the appointed time for any given semester, this Housing Contract may only be canceled if expressly provided herein. There are no refunds of room/board charges once students move into Rhodes College Housing, irrespective of cancellation, for the following reasons:

  1. If the Student fails to register for classes;
  2. If the Student is not a full-time registered student in any given semester;
  3. If the Student is required to live in non-Rhodes College Housing by participating in an academic program officially sanctioned by the College. The College does NOT guarantee Rhodes College Housing to students returning from an officially sanctioned year or semester off-campus. Students who participate in an approved off-campus program may return to Rhodes College Housing on a space-available basis only;
  4. If the Student marries or gives birth during the period of Contract;
  5. If the Student takes a leave of absence from the College for any reason;
  6. Upon completion of graduation requirements by the Student, unless the Student continues to be enrolled full-time;
  7. If the accommodations assigned to the Student are destroyed or become otherwise unavailable and the College does not furnish substitute accommodations; and
  8. If, in the opinion of the Vice President for Student Life, the Student fails to meet the full terms and conditions stated herein or if the Student violates any College or residence regulations as stated in the Student Handbook or the College Catalogue, which are both, incorporated herein by reference, or if, in the opinion of the Vice President for Student Life, the Student poses a threat of substantial harm to persons or College property.
  9. If the Student is convicted of a felony, a misdemeanor involving assault or non-consensual sexual contact, or a crime requiring registration as a sex offender.

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Keys and Key Fobs

Individual room keys will be issued to each resident student by the Office Residence Life  upon arrival on campus. Students will have access to the outside doors of residence halls via electronic key fob. It is the responsibility of each student to protect all other students by taking care neither to lose residence hall keys and key fobs nor lend them to others. Lost keys and fobs should be reported to Campus Safety. A new fob and room key can be requested via the campus work order system. Residents must return keys to the Residence Life Office when leaving campus or at the end of the year. Students who fail to report a lost or stolen key are jeopardizing the safety and security of their fellow students. The cost for a replacement key fob is $25 Lost or unreturned keys will result in a $10 charge. Students are to keep their key fob unless they withdraw or graduate from the College.

Due to the serious compromise to the security of all residents, exterior doors should never be propped. A $50 fine and a possible referral to the Community Standards Council will be assessed for individuals found violating this policy.

In the interest of personal security, residence hall rooms must always be locked. Room keys and access devices (key fobs) are NOT to be duplicated under any circumstances. All keys must be turned in to the Office of Residence Life during room check-out. The student may not lend their residence hall keys to anyone at any time (whether a student or non-student). The College will issue replacement keys if the Student loses their residence hall key only after paying the $20 replacement fee. The College reserves the right to assess the cost of changing locks depending on the circumstances involved with lost keys.

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Laundry and Vending Services

Laundry and vending services are available in many of the residence halls. Refunds for lost money may be obtained from Rhodes Express. See section on Physical Plant for reporting broken machines. The Office of Residence Life will remove remaining clothing items at the end of the semester.

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Official Recesses

Residence halls will remain open for Fall, Thanksgiving, Spring, and Easter recesses. Either the Refectory or the Lynx Lair will be open during Fall, Thanksgiving, Spring, and Easter recesses with the exception of Thanksgiving Day, however, the meal plan will not be in effect. Normal operating services are not available during break periods. Residence halls and dining venues will be closed during Winter Break. All students must temporarily vacate their assigned Rhodes College Housing during winter break and may not return until the published College opening date. Failure to abide strictly by these limitations may result in a fine of $100 per incidence/per day and/or other disciplinary action. Students who believe they are unable to leave campus due to extreme circumstances (e.g. homelessness, emancipated foster youth, inability to return to home country) may petition to reside on campus during the Winter Break. The petition form will be made available late in the fall semester. Submitting a petition to remain on campus during Winter Break does not guarantee a space will be available or that the petition will be approved.

Students who remain in the halls after the posted closing times or who arrive prior to halls opening may be asked to leave immediately, may be fined a fee per day, and may face disciplinary action.

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Personal Property

The College does not insure or assume any legal obligation to pay for the loss of or damage to the student's personal property that may occur on Rhodes College Housing property or in leased buildings. Students and their families and supporters are encouraged to carry appropriate insurance to cover such losses. Bicycles must be locked in a designated rack when not in use. 

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Pest Control

The College contracts with a pest control company to provide service to control insects and rodents. Service is requested by submitting a work order to Physical Plant by Sunday or Wednesday of each week. If it is found that unsealed food, excessive trash, or improper storage of belongings has led to extra treatment, the resident(s) may be charged the total cost incurred by the College. Do not use your own pest control products. Use of such chemicals can pose a serious health risk to you and the other residents who live near you.

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Physical Plant and Maintenance

Routine maintenance may be requested via the Rhodes webpage. For emergency requests, call Physical Plant at 901-843-3870; if no answer or after hours, call Campus Safety at 901-843-3880. 

Students are responsible for cleaning assigned room. Housekeeping staff will clean community bathrooms/showers, laundry rooms, and common space. Residents in apartment-style units (East Village, West Village, Spann, and Parkway Hall) or suite style unit bathroom (Glassell, Blount, Robinson, Voorhies, and Voorhies-Townsend) or rooms in unit, are responsible for cleaning the suite, including common areas, bath/shower rooms, and kitchens.

Students are responsible for notifying Physical Plant directly or by the Work Order system of any items needing attention/repairs. These items include but are not limited to furniture, lighting, electrical, plumbing/leaks, HVAC, keys/locks, pest control, etc.

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Quiet Hours and Noise

Quiet hours are times when no noise should be heard in the hallways or outside of the building. Courtesy hours are times during which the noise level may be higher than during quiet hours. As the term implies, students are expected to be courteous to one another and respect the rights of other residents. Quiet hours begin at 10:00 p.m. and end at 8:00 a.m. the following morning Sunday through Thursday. On weekends (Friday and Saturday), these hours begin at 1:00 a.m. and last until the following morning. Courtesy Hours are in effect at other times. During final exams and reading days, quiet hours are extended to 24 hours.

Violations of the noise policy may result in a $25 fine and possible disciplinary action.    

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Residence Hall Property

  1. All residence hall furniture in students' rooms at the beginning of the academic year must remain in their rooms throughout the academic year.
  2. Beds may not be stacked on other beds, dressers, or desks. Bed risers may not be used. 
  3. Students are responsible for removing trash and debris and for cleaning their residence hall room when moving out of a room. Failure to do so is subject to a fine. No items may be stored on campus during the summer. Anything left behind will be discarded and the expenses incurred will be charged to the owner(s).
  4. Social rooms serve as a place where residents can gather as a community. Thus, priority for reservation is given to residents of the hall and Residence Life sponsored programs. The primary use of social rooms should allow for maximum availability and access to hall residents. Social rooms are not intended to serve as sleeping or storage spaces for residents or their guests. 
  5. Personal furniture or equipment must not be placed in the halls or lounges. Any items of furniture found missing from a residence hall room will be charged to the residents of that room. A student who leaves personal furniture in a room after checking out will be charged a disposal fee. Social Room furniture must remain in social rooms at all times. Removal of furniture is considered a violation of the Honor Code. Additionally, any costs involved and a fine of up to $100 will be assessed in such matters. Screens must not be removed from windows. Student-made or individually purchased lofts of any kind are not permitted in residence halls. Students with lofts will be fined no less than $100.00 for any offense. Use of bed raisers is prohibited. Marring and destruction of furnishings and defacement of walls, doors and woodwork, breakage of windows, etc., is not tolerated. Compensatory damages will be assessed for any violation, and disciplinary action will be taken against those responsible.
  6. Students are prohibited from being on the roof or other unapproved spaces.  Violation of this policy may result in $50 fine and housing probation or removal. 
  7. Tampering with, opening or removing window screen is prohibited.
  8. Residents may not install radio, television, satellite or other telecommunications equipment outside of the room or apartment.
  9. The uses of the residence hall space and/or individuals’ room for business purposes is prohibited. 
  10. Students are not permitted to play sports or ride bicycles or skate boards in residence

College-provided furnishings must remain in the room. Student(s) will bear the cost of repair or replacement for damaged or misplaced furnishings. Refer to the guidelines for students’ personal property in the Student Handbook. Any non-College property left in the student's assigned room at the end of the term of this Contract will be discarded, and the student (s) of the room will be charged for the expense involved in discarding such property.

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Residency Requirement

Living on campus is a vital part of the college experience and aids the student’s adjustment to college. Room changing/moving to a room not approved by a Residence Life Staff member may result in a $50 fee for each offense. In addition, students may be charged the cost of occupying an additional room if they move into a space that they are not assigned to. Therefore, all first-time, first-year students at Rhodes must live on campus for their first three full academic years. Transfer students must live in College housing until they have completed three full academic years; previous enrollment at other institutions counts toward fulfilling this requirement. Exchange students must reside in College housing for the duration of their enrollment at Rhodes. 

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Room Changes

The Office of Residence Life must preapprove all room assignment changes during this contract term. Students can email to initiate the room change process. A student may not change rooms during the first or last two weeks of either semester during the academic year. The Student making an unapproved room change without proper notification and approval will be fined $250 and may have the preferred room assignment revoked.

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Room Condition Report

Residents are responsible for the condition of their assigned rooms, furnishings, and common areas. All students will review the state of the room with the Resident Assistant when they begin occupancy, at which time any existing damage and missing furnishings will be noted. Damages occurring during the period of occupancy, normal wear, and tear excepted, are the student’s responsibility, and damages will be assessed to the individual(s) responsible, as will any unusual cleaning charges. Upon request of the College, students will promptly reimburse the College for all damages to the room and any fixtures, furnishings, or other furnished properties (including the interior of doors, windows, walls, ceilings, floor, furniture, etc.) provided under this Contract. Any student responsible for such damage or destruction will also be subject to additional disciplinary action. Students must return their keys to the Office of Residence Life when moving out of the room.

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Room Searches and Safety Inspections

The Dean of Students or the Dean’s designee, in consultation with the Director of Campus Safety and/or Director of Residence Life, may authorize a search of a student's premises if there is reasonable cause to believe that a violation of college policy is occurring or has occurred. Students who refuse to permit or seek to delay a search of their dorm room or locker will be subject to disciplinary action.

Authorized personnel of Rhodes have the right to enter student rooms at any time for purposes of maintenance and repair, inspection of health and safety conditions, and investigation of violations of College regulations. Resident Assistants conduct routine checks of battery-powered room smoke detectors. At least once a semester a representative of the Office of Residence Life and/or a representative of Physical Plant or Campus Safety will conduct safety, sanitation, and maintenance inspections. Rooms are expected to be livable and in good sanitary conditions.

On-Site Inspection and Assessments. Room conditions must be the same as at the beginning of the term at check-out, except for ordinary wear and tear. At the end of every academic term, an onsite inspection is conducted by the College, at which time the cost to restore the room to its original condition will be assessed against the student (s) of the room. The cost of discarding non-college property, excessive cleaning, repairing any damage to the room, and replacing missing items will be divided equally among room residents unless the College determines the fees should be assessed otherwise. If students feel they have received a residence hall charge in error, they may appeal it to the Office of Residence Life. All appeals must be made within 30 days of the notification of the charge.

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Storage of Personal Property

The College does not provide storage for students. Please contact the Office of Residence Life  for recommendations for local off campus storage facilities.

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Rhodes permits twenty-four hour visitation if the Student first secures the verbal approval of his or her roommate(s) and/or suite-mate(s) before the arrival of any visitors.    

A roommate's right to free access to the room/apartment at all times, privacy, study time, or sleep must not be deprived because of a guest. Any student wishing to entertain a guest, whether of the same or opposite sex, must have the permission of the roommate(s). The College does not allow cohabitation and cannot ignore any infraction of this policy that comes to its attention. Cohabitation is defined as a guest spending the night more than three consecutive nights. Failure to comply with these requirements may result in disciplinary action. Guests are expected to remain under the auspices of the host student and the host bears the responsibility for the guest's behavior in compliance with campus policy. Host responsibilities for a guest should not be transferred from one student to another. When it appears that guests have been abandoned, they will be asked to leave the campus. Guests are not permitted during finals and senior week.

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