Freshmen who are enrolled as full-time (12 credits) are required to live on campus and are automatically billed for room and board.
Any student who does not fall under the category of being required is not guaranteed housing. If a student is not required but lives on campus, they will be able to retain housing provided that they follow the on-time deadlines for reserving an assignment for the upcoming semester.
You are exempt from the residency requirement if you are:
• A sophomore, junior, senior or graduate student
• A married, divorced, or separated student who has notified Residential Life of your status
• A parent of dependent children who has provided documentation to Residential Life
• A veteran of the U.S. Armed Forces who has submitted a DD214 form to Residential Life
• A commuting student living with your parent(s) or court-appointed guardian(s) within a 40-mile radius of the Amherst campus who has filed a Commuter Card at Residential Life
How to Apply for a Housing Exemption
The Housing Exemption Committee meets on the third Friday of each month to review requests for housing exemption. Requests are considered from students who complete a Housing Exemption Application indicating a compelling reason for their request and providing appropriate supporting documentation. Within this, the student must compose a personal statement explaining why on-campus housing does not meet their needs, which should be at least one page in length. Decisions are made based on such criteria as supporting medical documentation, severity of circumstance, and quality of written request.
Applications received by the Thursday before the third Friday of the month will be reviewed on the third Friday of the month. Applications received after 5:00pm that Thursday will not be reviewed until the next cycle. Please visit the assignment calendar for exact dates of upcoming committee meetings. A decision letter is mailed to the student on Friday afternoon, after the exemption committee has met. Applications may be mailed, faxed, or hand delivered to the Residential Life Student Services Office, 235 Whitmore Administration Building; fax number 413-545-1241.
Please Note: If an exemption application is approved, you will become a non-required student. Any reserved assignment/preference application will be cancelled. You are NOT guaranteed on-campus housing if your plans for off-campus housing change. Therefore, if you are planning to submit an exemption, be certain that your off-campus plans are secure.
How to Apply for a Commuter Exemption
Who Qualifies as a Commuter?
Commuters are defined as required students who are living at home with a parent or legal-guardian within a 40-mile radius of campus.
All freshmen commuting from home must file a commuter card with Residential Life Student Services. Once students have submitted a commuter card, they will no longer be required to live on campus and will no longer be guaranteed an on-campus housing assignment if they wish to return to campus in the future. Upon submitting a commuter card, the Base Room Fee and OIT Residential Services Fee will be removed from the Bursar Bill in approximately 7 - 10 business days. The submission of a commuter card to cancel a housing assignment is subject to the cancellation fee schedule.
Associated Fees and Charges
Students who apply for a housing exemption or commuter status are subject to cancellation fees and a rent refund based on the Housing Fee Refund Schedule. The date of cancellation is based on the date the exemption application or commuter card is received by the Residential Life Student Services.
For information about the cancellation fee schedule click here.
For additional information, contact the Residential Life Student Services Office at (413) 545-2100.
Meal Plan Consideration
If you receive a housing exemption or commuter status, you have the option of keeping or canceling your meal plan. For more information, contact the Meal Plan Office at 545-1362.
Note: Your meal plan is NOT automatically canceled when you receive a housing exemption or commuter status.