Life in the Residence Halls- Spring 2022
Housing and Residence Life (HRL) is committed to fostering engaging residential communities where students will learn and grow as they pursue their academic degrees. We are also committed to creating environments that follow best practices regarding community health during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. Below are responses to some important questions you may be asking about what to expect when you join us on campus.
What responsibility do I have in keeping our communities safe and healthy?
- Every Niner has a community, social, and personal responsibility to help keep our residence halls as healthy as possible. New or different expectations may be asked of students to uphold this responsibility as guidance from health officials evolves. HRL will work to keep students informed of these expectations via email, guidance from HRL staff, and through posted signs and publications (e.g. the Resident Handbook).
- You are expected to clean and maintain your assigned room, suite or apartment as recommended by Housing and Residence Life staff.
- Adherence to health and safety requirements applies to all residents and their guests, and extends to all aspects of life in the residence halls, including bedrooms, bathrooms, community kitchens, lounges, courtyards, and other common spaces.
- Staff may remind residents to follow community expectations and meet their responsibilities. Students who choose not to comply with community expectations may be asked to meet with a professional staff member to discuss what it means to be a Niner living in community.
- You should plan to participate in a facilitated conversation with your room/suite/apartment-mates and Resident Advisor in order to develop a roommate agreement that outlines responsible health practices, in-room guest permissions, cleaning expectations, and sharing of items within your living space. These conversations may be difficult and uncomfortable as you navigate through different perspectives on these community health practices. All residents are expected to remain civil and respectful as they work to find ways to compromise and collaborate with their peers.
- When hosting guests, residential students must always do so with respect to their room/suite/apartment-mates and the agreements made with one another. Your opportunity to host guests is a privilege that may be suspended if you do not follow policy or infringe on their roommates’ primary rights for sleep, study and privacy.
What are the Mask Requirements in the Residence Halls?
- As stated in the Feb. 17 NinerNotice, the University has updated its guidance regarding mask requirements. The University will continue requiring masks in specific, limited areas — classrooms, Atkins Library, the Student Health Center, on NinerTransit and at indoor gatherings. Masks are no longer required in other locations (outside of indoor gatherings) on campus effective Saturday, Feb. 26.
- Masks are required during formal and informal gatherings of 5 or more residents in all public common spaces in the residence halls. Specifically, formal gatherings include RA-sponsored programs, floor meetings, scheduled study groups, game nights, etc. Informal gatherings include unscheduled or spontaneous meetings of 5 or more residents in lobbies, hallways, lounges, common kitchens, or laundry rooms.
- Please note: This updated protocol will be revisited the week following Spring Break.
Will I be required to participate in COVID-19 testing?
- The University strongly encourages all members of the community to complete the vaccination protocol to reduce the number of COVID-19 cases on campus and the need for continuous testing protocols.
- Unless you are fully vaccinated and have received an exemption, you are expected to comply with the University’s COVID-19 testing requirements, including re-entry testing, mitigation and/or surveillance testing.
I’m vaccinated, but my roommate is not, what can I do?
- Your first step is to complete a roommate agreement that outlines your shared expectations regarding mask wearing, cleaning responsibilities, and how you will work together to keep each other healthy. Your Resident Advisor is available to help you with this process.
- If you have friends or neighbors interested in completing a bedroom swap so that vaccinated residents are sharing the same room, you can coordinate the room exchange with Housing and Residence Life. Please note that the room swap must be by mutual agreement, agreed to in writing, and submitted to HRLMailbox@uncc.edu by August 1. After move-in, you may coordinate your room swap through your Residence Education Coordinator. No student should feel bullied into switching rooms and inappropriate behavior will be referred to the Office of Student Conduct and Academic Integrity.
- The residence halls are anticipated to be full at the start of fall semester so there will be limited ability to complete a room change when classes begin. If unoccupied space is available after classes begin, HRL will open a Scheduled Room Change process for students interested in moving to a different room.
What if I don’t get along with my roommate or prefer to move to a different room?
- Students are expected to complete a roommate agreement outlining expectations for living together in their shared space. If conflicts do arise, students should ask their Resident Advisor (RA) or Residence Education Coordinator (REC) for support to help mediate any concerns.
- If unoccupied space is available after classes begin, HRL will open a Scheduled Room Change process for students interested in moving to a different room.
How will students and HRL staff connect and build community?
- Residence hall programming will be offered in-person whenever possible and virtually when necessary to comply with the current University requirements for gatherings and events.
- Students will receive direct support from their Resident Advisor (RA) and other hall staff. RAs will host community building events to check in on individual residents and to assist with their transition or continued experience in the halls. Professional staff also reside in each hall and are available to assist students. Each hall Residence Education Coordinator (REC) can be found on our website and contacted to schedule an appointment.
What additional practices does HRL maintain to keep our communities safe and healthy?
- HRL staff clean public spaces, such as community bathrooms, in each residence hall daily, including high-touch and heavily-trafficked areas such as main pathways, front doors, elevator buttons, etc.
- Plexiglass shields are installed at reception desks.
- Hand sanitizing stations are posted at the exterior entrances of all residence halls in addition to stations currently installed at the main doors.
What should I do if I am sick or believe I have been exposed to COVID-19?
- While only unvaccinated residents who have not been exempted by the University are required to complete the Niner Health Check each day, all residential students should complete the Niner Health Check and contact the Student Health Center if they experience any COVID-19 symptoms or if they learn that they have been exposed to COVID-19.
- If quarantine or isolation is needed, you will be contacted by University staff with instructions about appropriate next steps. If you are required to quarantine or isolate, you will be provided with a temporary residence space, linens, and meal delivery in an area separate from the general housing population.
What else do I need to know to prepare for living on campus?
- At any time, the University may request or require a resident to leave on campus housing when the resident’s continued presence in the residence halls poses a health or safety risk for community members.
- Not all residential spaces are appropriate for quarantine or isolation, and in those situations where a student is required to quarantine or isolate, students may not be permitted to continue residing in their assigned residential space. If a student chooses not to return to their permanent or off-campus residence, alternative housing arrangements will be provided.
- Residential students are required to comply with requests from Housing and Residence Life to leave their assigned space due to COVID-19 or other public health emergencies. Failure to do so is a breach of the Contract for Residential Services and may subject a student to emergency removal from their assigned space.
- A student’s temporary relocation from their assigned residence hall to isolate or quarantine does not constitute a termination or violation of their housing contract.
- In the event Housing and Residence Life must relocate students as part of a community health strategy to mitigate the spread of disease or infection for an extended period of time and alternative housing is not available, the University and/or UNC System will provide guidance regarding students’ eligibility for reimbursement of any housing charges.