Rules and Regulations
Each resident is issued a key to the exterior doors, a key to his or her room, and a mailbox key at the beginning of the semester. Keys must not be kept on a ring which might identify them as belonging to MCPC and must not be duplicated.
The loss of any key must be reported immediately to the Director of Community Life for security reasons. Lost keys present an immediate security risk, and must be taken care of as soon as possible. Loss of keys results in a $75 fee per key.
You will not use your Messiah ID card much on campus. The only card swipe on campus is connected to the copier machine, which is $.05/copy whether you use your card or cash. Your Temple ID card will suffice for anything on Temple's campus which requires identification.
Answer a knock on the door if you hear it. If the visitor is unknown to the one answering the door, that person should call the person requested, and remain with the visitor until the Messiah College person comes to both identify and meet them. The person answering the door is "the face of Messiah College" for visitors and is responsible as a host.
Messiah College students are expected to exercise a cautious and considerate Christian hospitality at all times. In a city the size of Philadelphia, it is easy to "entertain angels unawares." Anyone from the former mayor (Mayor Wilson Goode has been a frequent guest) to Grantham students (several were mistakenly turned away in the past) may show up at any time.
Exterior doors to campus buildings, room doors, fire escape doors as well as all windows are to be kept locked at all times. The exterior door of the 2026 building is kept open during business hours while the interior glass door remains locked at all times.
Easily accessed windows and doors are equipped with either burglar bars or burglar alarms. These doors and windows are internally posted as fully alarmed. To help avoid embarrassing and costly false alarms (where full cost is deferred to the violator), students should be aware of all posted alarm locations.
At the beginning of each semester, all students should be aware of the locations of the fire call boxes, fire extinguishers, and fire bells nearest your room. In addition, plan an exit route and an alternate route for use in the event of a fire. If possible, students should exit to the Broad Street side of our buildings. Fire drills will be held periodically, in keeping with city regulation, to give you practice in following these routes. Your full cooperation is always expected. Fire extinguishers are located in all public areas. Use them in the case of a real fire. The fine for tampering with a fire extinguisher or other fire equipment is up to $500, according to Messiah College policy.
To prevent the potentially tragic and costly consequences of a fire, the following guidelines and restrictions exist.
- Candles, incense, halogen lamps, and flammable substances are not permitted in student rooms.
- Fireworks, smoke, cherry bombs, and other explosives are strictly prohibited.
- Electrical appliances used for food preparation (microwave, hotpot, etc.) are not allowed in student rooms. Food lounge areas are available for preparations requiring electronic appliances.
- Extension cords and electrical connections must be approved by maintenance staff because of the fire hazards posed by improper cords. Consult with the Facilities Manager about the acceptability of your use of outlets and cords. Proper cords will be provided at cost.
- All room entrances and exits must be kept clear of obstructions of any kind.
Public areas such as the chapel, lounges, classroom, library, café, basement, and backyard are everyone's responsibility to keep clean and maintain. Though common rooms are cleaned regularly, everyone's cooperation is needed to keep them in good living condition. Newspapers and magazines in the lounge and cafeteria should be returned to their racks and are not to be taken from the room.
Roof areas are relatively fragile and are not designed for foot traffic. Since roofs are damaged by people walking on them, no one except maintenance personnel is permitted to walk on the roofs, no matter how easily accessible. Only those areas with metal walkways, concrete or wooden decks are open to foot traffic.
Because of the delicate nature of community relations, students are not permitted to throw anything from the roofs or windows of MCPC. Incidents in the past have caused severe backlashes and must be avoided. Violators for any of these actions will be fined $50. If you have any questions about this policy, please talk to the Director of Community Life.
Storage space is very limited on campus. Thus, any items not kept in student rooms must either be sent home or authorized to store (on a limited basis) by the RA. No facilities exist at the Philadelphia Campus for the inside storage of bicycles. Bicycles may be stored in student rooms or in the backyard. Bicycle storage either inside or outside must not block an emergency escape route.
Residents are responsible for keeping their own rooms clean. Suite-style rooms with personal bathrooms are also the responsibility of the resident while floor bathrooms are cleaned by maintenance personnel. Vacuum cleaners are provided in each building and are available from the RAs. Custodial supplies are available for student use, and are located in the closets near the Library in the 2024 building. Supplies must be returned to the closets immediately after use. Other supplies, such as toilet paper, are also located in this same closet to be taken when necessary.
Personal trash accumulated in each room should be bagged and taken directly to the trash cans in the outside alleyway between the 2028 and 2030 buildings. Recycling bins for paper, plastic, aluminum and cardboard are available for student use. The trash cans in the hallways are to keep public areas free of trash, and are not intended to be drop spots for personal trash. Residents are encouraged to be considerate of others and place waste that may generate odors in the trash containers outside.
Furniture is placed in the rooms for the benefit of the students and is to remain in the room. Furniture may not be stored in public halls since this creates a fire hazard. In addition, furniture in rooms must not be arranged in such a way that it blocks the fire exits. Personal furniture is your responsibility whenever you graduate or leave campus. Students will be assessed a $75 removal fee by the college for each item of furniture left at the end of the semester.
Students are not to tamper with the thermostats located in student rooms or public areas. Adjusting temperature controls is permissible, but students tampering with the internal workings of the thermostats will be fined $25.
Because of health and sanitation, animals may not be kept in college residences with the exception of non-carnivorous aquatic species in standard size aquariums.
All students are encouraged to practice hospitality. Guests are the responsibility of the student and it is not appropriate to expect other students or the Receptionist to handle guest hosting. While hosting guests, students must be aware of the following procedure:
- As a courtesy, guests should not be invited to reside overnight on campus without the permission of all roommates.
- Students must notify their RA of guest visits.
- In the event of an extended visit (i.e., weekend +) the Director of Community Life should be notified.
- Overnight guests of the opposite sex must make arrangements with friends of the same gender at MCPC.
The following additional details apply to all guests:
- All visitors must be the guest of a specific current student or employee during each and every visit to campus. The "host" must be present with the guest at all times unless the guest is a registered overnight visitor. No student or staff member has the authority to grant unattended or unlimited access to the campus for their friends or acquaintances. Likewise, no visitor may assume that a relationship with a member of the community permits them to have unattended access to the facilities.
- The MCPC Dining Services program serves the needs of boarding students. Guests are welcome to eat of the food available in the Caf, but must pay a $5.00 fee to cover expenses. Payment should be made to the RA on-duty. Guest meals may be paid for with cash or diamond dollars for a meal purchase at Johnson and Hardwick cafeteria.
- MCPC Residents are not permitted to lend building keys to guests since guests may not be familiar with campus policies on safety and security.
Because of the uniqueness of our small campus, we are able to keep the 2026 Caf open 24 hours a day, seven days a week (except during official College breaks). Students are required to comply with these guidelines in order to maintain the quality of the 24-hour Caf:
- Bring all dishes to the dish washing area in the evening when finished eating. Throw away trash in the trash cans and put silverware in the silverware container.
- Replace lids on containers, put tops on jars, and return refrigerated items to the refrigerator.
- Close cabinets.
- Shoes and a shirt must be worn at all times in the cafeteria. This is a Health Department Law. Shoes, sandals and flip-flops are acceptable. Socks without shoes are not acceptable.
- Books, laptops or homework are not to be left unattended on cafeteria tables.
- Messiah College does not allow food and/or drinks to be given to panhandlers or homeless people. This policy is strictly enforced so as not to create dependency on Messiah College. There are numerous organizations that can provide help for people who need food or shelter.
Please address any questions regarding these guidelines to the Director of Community Life.
The chapel piano is available to all students. In order to care for the piano so that it is enjoyed by all, please observe the following guidelines:
- No beverages or food should be placed on the piano.
- No objects other than music should be placed on the piano.
- For the consideration of residents above and beside the chapel, please use headphones between the hours of 10:00 p.m. and 8:00 a.m.
- Do not move the piano without prior approval.
- You may use the output jacks, but not the input jacks without special permission.
Please talk to the Maintenance and Custodial Coordinator if you have any questions.