Residence Life Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently Asked Questions

Are students required to live in the residence halls?

Saint Mary's College believes that living on campus gives students the opportunity to be fully engaged in academic and student life and to exercise adult freedoms responsibly with professional and peer support. A diverse community full of various viewpoints, goals and styles prepares students for future relationships, diverse careers and living in a dynamic global society.

As a women’s private, Catholic, residential, undergraduate college, Saint Mary's College requires all students--starting with the Class of 2011--to reside in college-owned housing (including housing provided during study abroad programs) for six (6) semesters, unless the student meets one of the following exceptions:

  1. Resides with a parent or guardian within 30 miles of the campus.
  2. Has resided in a college residence hall for at least six (6) semesters prior to making a request for exception.
  3. Has reached the age of 23 prior to the term(s) for which the request for exception is made.
  4. Is married.
  5. Is enrolled in eight (8) or less credit hours.
  6. Has received written permission from the Director of Residence Life & Community Standards for special circumstances.

Students must request permission to live off-campus by submitting the circumstances and documentation for request, in writing, to the Office of Residence Life & Community Standards. This includes all students living with a parent or guardian within 30 miles of the campus. Please note that a request for an exemption must be submitted each year.

NOTE: Eligibility for Opus Hall is contingent upon six (6) semesters of on-campus residency.


What type of security is provided in the halls?

The four (4) traditional residence halls--Le Mans, Holy Cross, Regina and McCandless--have front desks that are staffed 24 hours a day. Doors not in view of the desks are secured by a card access system and are also monitored via closed-circuit cameras.

Opus Hall does not have a front desk, but is secured by a card access system 24 hours a day.

Are members of the opposite sex allowed to visit?

Yes. All male guests--including family members--must be escorted by a Saint Mary's student hostess at all times. Males are allowed into the residential areas of the buildings duing the following hours:

  • Sunday-Thursday: 10a-12a (midnight)
  • Friday-Saturday: 10a-2a

In each hall, there is also one area near the front desk designated as a 24-hour coed lounge for studying and socializing.

How do students receive mail?

Each student is assigned a mailbox in her residence hall. Mail is delivered Monday - Saturday to the residence halls. Packages and deliveries will be held at the front desk for students to pick up.

Mail should be addressed as:

Saint Mary's College
Jane Smith
1301 Holy Cross Hall 
Notre Dame, IN 46556

(Please note that the student's MAILBOX number should appear, NOT her room number. Do not use "Box" or "PO Box" in the mailing address, as this could delay the delivery of mail to students.)

Can I bring my car to campus?

All students may bring their car to campus. Vehicles must be registered during the first week of the school year. 

What size bed will I have?

All beds at Saint Mary's College are STANDARD LENGTH TWINS. Extra long sheets are unnecessary.

About Roommates...

• How do I get a roommate?

First Year students are placed with roommates based on preferences indicated on the Housing Preference Form. First Year students can request to live with another student, however both students must make that request before the end of June.

Upperclass students go through the room selection process to choose rooms and roommates each spring for the following academic school year.

• How do I know my roommate(s) and I will "get along?"

As noted above, our office places roommates together based on preferences indicated on the Housing Preference Form. Successful matching cannot be guaranteed due to variations in individual personality, lifestyle and interests. That said, we encourage students to connect with new roommates as soon as possible to start getting to know each other and begin talking about expectations of the roommate experience.

During the first few weeks of school, First Years roommates will meet together with their RA to complete a Roommate Agreement. At this time, roommates will have a chance to talk with each other and put down in writing their expectations of some of the more particular elements of life with a roommate (ex: study time and habits, cleaning chores, borrowing of items/ sharing of food, etc). The Roommate Agreement is a living document and roommates are encouraged to adjust it together as they see fit.

Residents--First Year or otherwise--are encouraged to seek out their RA or Hall Director if they have any questions or concerns about their rooming situation.

When will incoming students be notified of their housing assignment?

Housing assignments are mailed mid-July. Students acknowledging after the mailing date will receive housing assignments within three (3) weeks of acknowledgement.

What if I prefer a different room than my assignment?

We wish we could accommodate everyone's preferences, but we know that some students will be disappointed. There will be a room change date in the fall semester for students who wish to switch rooms/roommates. We cannot accommodate any changes before or after the room change date. During the periods when room changes are not permitted, hall staff (RA, Hall Director) will be available to help students rework Roommate Agreements and make other adjustments in the room.

Can I move in early?

Generally speaking, no. Some students do, however, receive permission from the Director of Residence Life & Community Standards to move in early due to Athletics, campus employment, and/or student government obligations.

Please contact our office if you have any questions regarding your particular situation.

What items should I bring--or not bring--for my room?

Each residential room comes furnished with a standard twin size bed with mattress, dresser, wardrobe or closet, desk, chair, and window coverings. Students may also rent a loft, which is a popular space-saving option for some, and information regarding loft rental will be included in the housing assignment materials.

Students will often supplement those basics--popular additions include futons, area rugs, and shelving units--and it is up to roommates to decide who is bringing what, if anything. All appliances must meet the Underwriter Laboratory inspection (UL) seal. Due to fire regulations, candles, halogen lamps, incense, toasters, hot plates/pots, microwave ovens and cooking appliances are not allowed in your room. However, each hall has limited kitchen and microwave facilities available.  Refrigerators must be no bigger than 4 cubit ft.

The College does not offer furniture/ appliance rental