On-Campus Residency Policy

Because residential living is fundamental to the mission of the college and the experience of a Goucher student, all full-time undergraduate students are required to live on campus and participate in one of the college meal plans. Students must retain full-time academic status to live on campus. Exceptions for students taking fewer than 12 credits may be made on a case-by-case basis by the Director of Residential Life.

Residency requirement exceptions may be made for students who meet any of the following criteria, and provide supporting documentation:

  1. Students who choose to commute from their permanent home address within 30 miles of Goucher's campus, and are residing with an immediate family member. The Office of Residential Life defines "immediate family member" as a parent, legal guardian, or sibling. Exceptions will also be considered for students residing with an individual who has stood in loco parentis to the student for one year or more, immediately prior to a student's date of first matriculating at the College. In loco parentis is commonly understood to refer to a relationship in which a person has put himself or herself in the situation of a parent, by assuming and discharging the obligations of a parent to a child with whom he or she has no legal or biological connection. It exists when an individual intends to take on the role of a parent. Persons who are standing in loco parentis include those with day-to-day responsibilities to care for or financially support a child.

  2. Students who are at least 23 years old.

  3. Students who are married.

  4. Students who are legal guardians of minors who reside with them on a permanent basis. (The college does not provide housing for non-matriculated minor children.)

  5. Based on projected space availability by the Office of Residential Life, a limited number of junior and senior students may apply to live off-campus. This number varies from year to year, depending on enrollment numbers and housing availability. Applications to live off-campus must be submitted to the Office of Residential Life before March 16 of the spring semester proceeding the academic year in which the student desires to reside off campus. Decisions to approve such requests are made based upon projected space availability, class standing (as determined by earned academic credit hours), and the order in which applications are received. Priority is given to students who have demonstrated high financial need, as verified by the Financial Aid office. Submission of an application does not guarantee an exception from the residency requirement. The Office of Residential Life will review all applications and communicate whether or not an application has been approved. Students should not secure off-campus housing before being informed of the decision regarding their application, as this alone will not except them from the residency requirement, and may result in financial obligations to both the college and an off-campus landlord/agency. Students who desire to live off campus as an accommodation for a documented disability, should submit a request to the Office of Accessibility Services.

Students who reside off-campus without meeting one or more of the aforementioned criteria and receiving the appropriate approval will be held responsible for all room and board costs for the semesters in which they are enrolled without such an approval.

The vice president and dean of students may authorize exceptions to this policy, based upon space availability needs.