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Residence Life at Messiah College

Off Campus Housing



Messiah College is primarily a residential campus. All single, full-time students under the age of 23 are required to live on campus. Exceptions to the residency requirement are granted to students who live locally with family. Junior and senior students may apply for an exception to the residency requirement.  Exceptions are very limited and are generally granted when living on-campus is prohibitive to a student’s enrollment.  Some examples of reasons include: financial hardship as verified by the financial aid office, medical reasons, special diet, etc. In order to be considered for this exception, junior and senior students must complete the following process:


Application Procedure

1. Meet the minimum credit hour requirement (57 credits not including AP or CLEP by the end of your 4th semester) prior to deadline/application

2. Attend an off-campus housing orientation after approval

3. Submit a completed off-campus housing application to the Office of Residence Life.

4. Provide a letter of support from parent or guardian (unless classified as and independent student by the Office of Financial Aid).

5. Maintain good standing with the College. Good standing is defined as not being on academic, chapel, probation or on disciplinary probation within the six months prior to application. In addition, previous alcohol or drug violations may prevent a student from being approved to live off-campus.

6. Confirm with the Financial Aid Office that aid package is not affected by living off campus.  Director of housing will check with Financial Aid about level of financial need for students who list finances as a reason to live off-campus

7. Sign off-campus housing agreement.

8. Students should NOT enter into a lease or rental agreement until they have received official approval from the Office of Residence Life.  Signing a lease or rental agreement without having received approval, may result in being liable to the landlord for rent even while being required to live on campus.



All students (both traditional and nontraditional) who have been extended the privilege of living off campus remain members of the Messiah College community. They are obligated to honor their commitments to Messiah’s community standards as outlined in the Community Covenant, Off-Campus Agreement, chapel requirements and the current student handbook. In addition to these College standards, off-campus students are also required to abide by the local laws and ordinances of their communities. It is expected that students living off campus will be good ambassadors of Christ and Messiah College. In addition to representing Messiah College, as members of this Christian community, we are called to be “salt and light” in the world—this includes our local communities. As such, it is expected that off-campus students will be good neighbors, respectful and considerate of the rights and needs of neighbors, always being sensitive to issues regarding noise, parking, guests, upkeep of dwelling, etc. With regard to these and other “courtesy issues,” it is expected that students living off campus will always defer to the needs of their neighbors in addition to obeying all state and federal laws and local ownship ordinances. The use, possession, and/ordistribution of illegal drugs or alcohol are prohibited for Messiah College students living on or off campus while enrolled during the academic year. (See Alcohol Policy). Off-campus students are responsible for the behavior of their guests. It is also expected that off-campus students will abide by visitation standards outlined for students living in on-campus apartments. (See VisitationPolicy in student handbook).


Loss of Off-Campus Housing Privilege

Students determined to be responsible for violating College standards and/or federal, state, or local laws will have the privilege of living off campus revoked.  This will result in the student’s mandatory return to on-campus housing.  Any students who return to live on campus after being approved to live off campus will forfeit their off campus approval and will need to reapply in order to move off campus again.


Late Application Exception

If a deadline is set for applications, late applications may still be approved, but a $200 fee will be assessed. 


Off-Campus Housing Manual






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