Student life at Messiah University

Life on campus

College is more than just going to class and studying. You’ll receive an outstanding education during your time at Messiah--but you’ll also experience fun, excitement and make lifelong friendships. As an undergraduate residential or commuter student, you’ll realize Messiah’s campus is buzzing with activity and that there’s always something to do. In fact, many of these experiences become meaningful traditions for our students and make Messiah a really hard place to leave when you graduate.

Student life profile

60+ Clubs and organizations

2,586 Undergraduate students

78% of students live in on-campus housing

What’s there to do?



Campus Traditions

Fan Experience

Sport-Related Activities

Clubs and Organizations

There’s no place like home.

At Messiah University, “home” is a universal term to students and alumni. From the very first moment you drive onto campus as a new student, volunteers are ready to help you settle into your residence hall. You’ll quickly become familiar with faces and spaces that will make Messiah feel like home.

I love Messiah because when I first visited I knew it would be my home for the next four years. Messiah has everything I'm looking for...

Living on campus

Living on your own for the first time can be a big adjustment. Residence Life is here to make that transition as smooth and fun as possible. As a first-year or transfer student, you’ll have access to an intentional environment that helps you build lasting relationships with peers who are experiencing the same things as you. Your resident director and resident assistants work hard to host events and activities to help you get to know other students and form a sense of “home.”

First-year residence halls


Frequently asked questions—you asked, we answered!

Are there specific behavioral guidelines I will be required to follow while enrolled at Messiah University?

Yes, as a Christian university, Messiah communicates behavior expectations for students that focus on our relationship with God and each other, and the practical implications of community life. Before coming to Messiah, students are asked to review these expectations and agree to live by them if they choose to join the Messiah community. You can learn more about Messiah's community standards in our student handbook to see if Messiah University is a good fit for your values and the way of life you want during your college experience.

Can first-year students have cars on campus?

Yes, first-year students who live on campus are permitted to park a car on campus. Parking is available on a first-come, first-serve basis as designated by a student’s enrollment deposit date, and participation in the parking lottery.

While the University strives to offer parking to all first-year students who would like it, the demand for on campus parking spaces may exceed the number of available spaces.

After the first year, any student may have a car on campus. Complete information about parking regulations at Messiah is available from the Department of Safety website.

How many students are enrolled at Messiah University?

Messiah enrolls nearly 2,500 undergraduate and more than 700 online graduate students each year.

Do I have to live on campus my first year?

All single, full-time students under the age of 23 are required to live on campus. Campus housing is generally limited to students who are registered for at least 12 credit hours. Exceptions to the residency requirement are granted to students who meet the commuter criteria and have signed a commuter housing contract. Commuters are those students who meet one of these criteria:

  1. The student is living locally with parents.
  2. The student is living locally with family members (i.e. grandparents, aunts/uncles).
  3. The student is classified as having independent status by the Office of Financial Aid and is living locally.
  4. The student has non-traditional status (23 years of age and over or married).
  5. The student is married.
More FAQs


Good food: an essential for college students. Messiah University provides a wide variety of great-tasting and nutritious foods in enjoyable environments to socialize, study and of course, eat. Our award-winning program offers fresh, tasty foods at each of our different locations. We take food very seriously here, which is why we have four different meal plan-approved locations. Bon Appétit!

View Dining Services Website

Dining Facilities

Lottie Nelson

With a wide range of fresh foods and menu options, Lottie Nelson Dining Hall, located on the second floor of Eisenhower, provides options for each meal of the day! A fruit and yogurt bar, create your own omelet station, make your own salad, made-to-order specialty sandwiches, homemade soups and other fresh and healthy menu options are available.

The Falcon

On the go? The Falcon is the perfect choice for you! Located on the ground floor of Eisenhower, the Falcon offers freshly made food choices. From the popular pre-chapel breakfast sandwiches, toasted flatbreads, rice bowls and more, each option is freshly made ready for you within minutes (you can even order ahead!). Operating from 7:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m, the Falcon serves as a quick and delicious alternative for breakfast or lunch.

Union Cafe

In the mood to order pizza? The Union has a great variety of options such as pizzas, strombolis, salads, burgers, wraps, ice cream and more. Filled with booths and tables and cozy fireside seating, the Union is the ideal location to grab dinner and catch up with a friend after a long day of class. You can pre-order here, too!

Cafe Diem

Love coffee shops? Then stop by the Murray Library to pick up a good book and a fresh cup of coffee at Cafe Diem. Offering coffee, specialty drinks, pastries and additional grab n’ go items, it’s the perfect place to stop for that pick-me-up in between classes.

A diverse community

Messiah’s goal is to bring together students from racially and ethnically diverse backgrounds who reflect the variety and richness within God’s kingdom. We continually learn from each other—through both our similarities and differences—which promotes an important intercultural educational experience. Multicultural and international students are an integral part of Messiah’s community and campus life.

Diversity programming

Programming through Messiah’s Agape Center for Local and Global Engagement creates safe, transformative learning environments and opportunities for students to engage the world as reconcilers and servant leaders. As a Messiah student, you’ll experience multiple views, customs and perspectives that will help you to respond with discernment and a deeper understanding of the complexities of our contemporary world.

We’re here to support you!

Messiah offers a safe environment that enhances your overall well-being and encourages a holistic learning experience through academics, spiritual formation and a strong emphasis on physical and emotional care. Because safety; emotional, physical and spiritual care; and an accommodating learning environment are so important to the Messiah University community, you’ll find plenty of resources and caring faculty who make our campus a welcoming place to live and learn.

Safety Counseling Health Services First-year Experience

Sub-categories of Student Life