Student Life

Residence Life

Policies & Procedures

HOUSING SELECTION is the time where current resident students choose their room assignment for next year. The housing selection process will be conducted via the web, much like class registration. All of the selection “rules” will be the same as previous years (e.g., in regards to filling a room to capacity).

Guidelines for the Housing Selection

  • SJU has a 2 year residency requirement, as such, all 1st and 2nd year students are required to live in housing owned, managed, and/or operated by SJU. 
  • Resident students must fill a room to capacity in order to select it. Therefore students have the option of “pulling in” another housing eligible resident student(s) as  roommate(s) during the time seletion.
  • Failure to log on at during one's scheduled selection time will result in the process progressing without them. A student may log in and select a room any time after their assigned day and time until the last date of the selection process.
  • Residence Life reserves the right to close halls to current resident students in order to provide space for incoming students.
  • In order to maintain a specific male-female ratio in the housing areas that are “not designated” at some point during the selection process, some rooms may be turned over to one gender or another once those ratios have been met.
  • Anyone found lying, cheating, falsifying information or in any way trying to circumvent the housing lottery and/or selection process will lose their priority and will be subject to the discipline process.
  • All final interpretation of policies and procedures will be made by the Associate Director of Residence Life.
  • FLEXIBILITY AND PREPARATION - Students should go on-line well in advance of their selection time, so that they can be prepared with several housing options/choices. Be aware that at any given time, the room configuration and building choice that one most prefers may no longer be available. Therefore, alternative plans will need to have been determined, such as regrouping (i.e., three instead of two or breaking from a four-person into two pairs). If one does break up into different groups, only those students who are "accepted roommates" may be selected as a roommate.
  • For current Freshmen & those upperclassmen offered housing via the Housing Selection Process... WE GUARANTEE HOUSING ONLY. We do not guarantee you will sign into your first housing choice.

PLEASE NOTE: No room changes will be permitted until the second week of fall semester (during Open Room Change Process).

Top Five Student Mistakes made in the Housing Lottery & Room Selection

1. Not Getting to know your roommates before the housing selection process
The formula that students utilize to select roommates can often be more complex than Einstein's theory of relativity.   You may select future living arrangements based on a variety of characteristics, such as friends from the past, similar social habits & groups, proximity to your academic department, or anxiety of being left by yourself.  Regardless of the motivation for selecting next year's roommate(s), you are encouraged to get to know them before selecting to live with them. Use the roommate matching questionnaire to find a compatible roommate(s).  Being thorough now can save you many hours of disappointment in the future.

2. Selecting roommates based on who has the earliest housing selection date & time
In an effort to increase one's chance for a premium housing option, some students choose roommates based on one's housing selection date & time. In the short-term, this seems like a great solution for someone with a later selection time slot.  However, more-often than not, these situations take a turn for the worse and unfortunately feelings get hurt. So again, please get to know your future roommates, because you will be spending a lot of time together throughout the next academic year.

3. Abandoning a friend, without any notice at the last minute, in order to live elsewhere
Although this sounds harsh, the reality is that it does happen. Usually, students have it all planned out. "The five of us are going to move into Merion Gardens and everything will be great."  Then minutes before the first student's selection time comes up, it happens.  "Well...Ah....What had happened was we didn't think any of the apartments in the new building were going to be open.  And you know only four people can sign into those apartments, so... I'm sorry, good luck with your housing selection." Nothing is worse than the feeling of abandonment caused by the angst of "friends" at the last second during the housing selection process.  The odd person out is often left feeling alone, with nowhere to live and no one to live with.  Be considerate of others' feelings and emotions when making housing choices. Furthermore, be open and honest with one other; if there are other possible living arrangements, then all parties involved should be made aware of these potential scenarios.  Finally, if all else fails and you have been left out, there's still hope, as you will certainly not be alone.  Remember you can always use the roommate matching questionnaire to find a new compatible roommate(s) match. 

4. Attempting to contract and then trying to get an off-campus apartment
This commonly affects rising juniors that will soon be eligible to live off-campus.  Some students attempt to get "two bites at the apple."  First they "contract and deposit" with Saint Joseph's University.  Later, after not getting a favorable housing selection date and time or finding out that friends will be moving into a local off-campus apartment, students attempt to withdraw from university housing.  However, under the terms of the "Housing Contract" this is not allowed, except in extraordinary circumstances.  Therefore, your parents may be left paying for two housing contracts or large contract release fees.  In an effort to prevent this from happening, make a list of the pros and cons to living both on-campus and off-campus.  Finally, once the decision is made, honor the contract you have signed and stick with it.  Remember, a signed contract is a financial obligation you will be expected to honor.

5. Not having a couple of housing options in mind
As it was aforementioned, there are pros and cons to living anywhere.  However, students have a tendency to look only at one particular location (i.e., because it has single apartments or hardwood floors).  During the Housing Selection Process you will be able to use the "Housing Search" screen as often as you wish to keep track of what is still available.  The reality of the situation is that no one is guaranteed to get their first choice.  Therefore, you are highly encouraged to have a couple of options on different floors, in different buildings, and even in different areas of campus.  If you are contracted and deposited you are guaranteed university housing, but are not guaranteed placement into a specific housing assignment until you have completed the housing selection process.