Residential Life and Housing One VCU: Responsible Together

Due to the health and safety precautions related to COVID-19, Residential Life and Housing has altered certain practices and policies. Please review the changes below.

FAQs

What happens if VCU decides to close the campus, will my housing be refunded?

Should the university decide to close campus then a decision will be made about which, if any, residence halls will remain open. This decision will be made in concert with the Public Health Response Team. If Residence Halls remain open and students choose to return home then refunds/credits will not be issued. If residents are not allowed to stay on campus refunds/credits will be determined based on time remaining in the semester and other fixed costs including personnel, debt and operations of Residential Life and Housing not on a daily prorated basis.

How can I cancel my Housing?

If you wish to submit a request to cancel your contract, please utilize the request to cancel form by July 31 at noon by visiting the Housing cancel contract website . All requests will be reviewed and responded to within 10 business days.

What are the requirements to move in and when will I be notified?

Residential students must complete and submit an at-home COVID-19 test and receive negative results before moving into their residence hall. They also must complete the Return to Campus Training. Students. Once these steps are completed, students will receive notification. More details on move in requirements can be found on the Residential move-in requirements .

Do you know when students are to get the at-home test via mail?

After a residential student visits the signup website  and input a physical mailing address where the test kit can be mailed, they should receive their test kit within two days of registration. Students will input a pin that has already been assigned to them via an email sent on July 17.

If a student moves in during one of the earlier move-in dates, will they be able to leave everything and come back to the campus closer to when classes begin?

Yes, a student has an option to return home. Students are encouraged to minimize contact with others as much as possible and practice safe behaviors according to CDC and VCU health and safety protocols including wearing a face covering, practicing physical distancing, and hand washing.

What can I expect during my move in?

Residential Life and Housing is taking a variety of precautions as we are committed to the safety of our residents, their guests and our staff during move-in. Those included staggered times, a limit of two guests that can provide assistance, wearing face coverings and practicing physical distancing.

If a student chooses to cancel their housing contract and they later apply for spring housing?

Spring housing is not guaranteed and will be processed based on room availability and the date the student completes their Spring housing application. If a student chooses and is approved to cancel their 2020-2021 Housing Contract, they are not guaranteed the same room or residence hall of their original assignment. The Spring only application usually opens in early November for Spring housing.

Will students move out all their belongings before Thanksgiving break or can they leave their belongings in the residence halls for return of the spring semester?

Residents will be encouraged to remain home after Thanksgiving Break. As it currently stands, residents in all halls will have the opportunity to return to their residence hall if that is needed for them to complete their Finals. RLH will reach out to students in the Fall to ensure those that need access after Thanksgiving Break will have access.

What type of parking and moving equipment will be provided so move in can be done efficiently?

Residents will receive a parking pass in their VCU email 2 days prior to move-in. This parking pass is only valid for your specific move-in day. There will be unloading zones parking signs around each residence hall. You are asked to unload your items at the curb and then immediately move your vehicle to the designated parking deck. Residents should bring a cart, dolly or hand truck to assist with their move-in. Residential Life and Housing will not be providing carts.  

What is Residential Life and Housing doing to minimize the spread of COVID-19?

Residential Life and Housing is working with partners across VCU to assist with the transition back to campus. Every resident will receive a welcome kit that includes starter samples of helpful resources, such as cloth face coverings, hand sanitizer and disinfectant. Sanitizer stations are being installed throughout the halls. Housekeeping staff will be cleaning common areas, bathrooms, and other high traffic areas more frequently. This is a team effort and we ask that students do their part on keeping these areas clean. Students in traditional style halls will be assigned their own shower stall, toilet stall and sink for the duration of the academic semester. For example, students should wipe down any surfaces in common areas before and after touching them. Some common areas will be closed off and other common area spaces may be modified to allow for appropriate physical distancing. For example, plexiglass barriers will be installed in certain high traffic areas. This will allow for closer interaction between residents and staff through the barrier. Residential Life and Housing is setting aside approximately 50 rooms for potential isolation and quarantine needs.

Will students be required to wear a face covering in their residence hall room?

Students will be required to wear a face covering while navigating residence halls outside of their room, suite or apartment.

What is the guest policy for residence halls?

The standard guest policy has been suspended for the 2020-2021 academic year. This includes any individual who does not live within the residence hall they are intending to visit. This includes VCU students, faculty, and staff who do not live in on-campus housing, residential students visiting other residence halls and individuals who are not affiliated with VCU.

Will the revised Guest Policy be in effect for the entire year?

The revised Guest Policy will be in effect for the fall 2020 semester. The Public Health Response Team will meet in January to make a determination on the Guest Policy for the spring 2021 semester.

How can parents and family members view the residence halls prior to move in?

Virtual tours are available on the Housing website .  

Who will be allowed to assist residents when moving into their residence hall?

Residents will be allowed two guests to help with move-in. These two guests should be limited to people needed to assist with the moving of items. Guests will not be able to stay beyond the 3 hour time slot. Residents and their guests should arrive on time as we cannot extend time slots or begin time slots early.

How is self-quarantine and isolation in on-campus housing occurring?

Quarantine is used to keep someone who might have been exposed to COVID-19 away from others. Quarantine helps prevent the spread of disease that can occur before a person knows they are sick or if they are infected with the virus without feeling symptoms. Students who are determined to be contacts of those who are sick will self-quarantine in their assigned room, separate themselves from others, monitor their health, and follow directions from their state or local health department for no less than 14 days from last contact https://www.vdh.virginia.gov/coronavirus/local-exposure/ Student Health will notify Residential Life and Housing when a resident is required to begin self-quarantine.

Students who are sick with COVID-19 or presenting symptoms associated with COVID-19 will be moved to isolation housing, a temporary room in Gladding Residence Center III (GRC III) to isolate for no less than 10 days . Student Health will notify Residential Life and Housing when a student needs isolation housing. Residential Life and Housing will arrange for the student to be transported from their assigned residence hall to Gladding Residence Center III. During isolation students should remain in their specific “sick room” and use only the bathroom in their suite. Student Health will notify Residential Life and Housing when a resident is cleared to leave isolation.

In both cases residents will receive a health kit, a 3-day meal kit, and 3 meals per day delivered from Dining Services and Residential Life and Housing staff. Residents who are in isolation housing will receive a full linen set with a pillow in their isolation room at Gladding Residence Center III.

Can students visit other students in their residence hall? On their floor?

Residents may visit with other residents in their residence hall community. However, residents will need to wear face coverings in all public spaces and should maintain appropriate physical distancing.

How is Residential Life and Housing Preparing for students to return?

Please visit Preparations for Student Return to Campus page for more information.

What are students expectations for residential living?

Please visit the Student Expectations page for more information.

How will students become and stay connected to campus while physically distancing?

Please visit the Student Connection page to learn more.

What happens if a residential student needs tests positive for COVID-19 or is exposed to someone with COVID-19?

To support our on-campus residential community, VCU Residential Life and Housing has created a response plan for residents who become infected with or potentially exposed to COVID-19. Visit the Resident Planning Guide for Isolation and Quarantine to review this plan. 


Break Housing Update for Gladding Residence Center and Gladding Residence Center III 

Gladding Residence Center and Gladding Residence Center III will close during Thanksgiving, winter and spring breaks. 

Are there break housing options for students?

Since none of the first-year halls are designated to be open over breaks, Residential Life and Housing is exploring options to provide limited break housing to residents who choose to remain on campus to complete their coursework. More information about break housing will be sent to residents VCU emails after the semester has started. 

Housing Inventory Changes 

The Honors College

The Honors College Residence hall will not be available as a housing option for the 2020-2021 academic year. This residence hall will be used by VCU Health System to house low acuity patients this academic year.

Where will Honors students be housed?

We intend that the residential component of The Honors College program will be housed in Gladding Residence Center and Cary & Belvidere.

Johnson and Rhoads

Double and triple rooms in Johnson and Rhoads will be converted to single occupancy rooms. Incoming first-year students who have selected double or triple rooms in these buildings can change their preferences to other room types through the Housing Application.

Housing Rates

Please visit the 2020-21 First-year Student Housing Rates to view the first-year housing rates. Please visit the 2020-21 Upperclass Students Housing Rates to view the upperclass housing rates.  

Eligibility to live on-campus

Students taking on-line classes and/or in-person classes are both eligible to remain on campus. Taking only virtual classes is not grounds for an automatic release from your housing contract. 

The contract does outline instructions on how a resident can request a housing cancelation. If you wish to submit a request to cancel your contract, please utilize the request to cancel form. Submitting a request to cancel form does not guarantee a resident will be released from their contract, all requests will be reviewed and responded to within 10 business days.

Housing Assignments

To receive a housing assignment, a student must complete a Housing Application, pay the $250 prepayment and register for Orientation. Please note that due to limited housing capacity, VCU cannot guarantee housing assignments to all applicants, and assignments are based on the date of application. 

Operational Changes

Campus living this year may look different to help minimize the spread of COVID-19. The University has highlighted its plan at One VCU: Responsible Together. 

What COVID-19 protocols do students have to follow? 

All residents must follow the VCU's protocols, including the following: 

  • Monitor your health daily. 
  • Wear a face covering or mask in common areas.
  • Apply physical distance guidelines to all settings.
  • Clean and disinfect personal and shared spaces before and after use. Cleaning supplies will be available in numerous locations.
  • Report symptoms associated with COVID-19 to VCU Student Health Services. A call center hotline will be available later in the summer.

What is Residential Life and Housing doing to minimize the spread of COVID-19?

Residential Life and Housing is working with partners across VCU to assist with the transition back to campus. 

  • Every resident will receive a welcome kit that includes starter samples of helpful resources, such as cloth face coverings, hand sanitizer and disinfectant. 
  • Sanitizer stations are being installed throughout the halls. 
  • Housekeeping staff will be cleaning common areas, bathrooms, and other high traffic areas more frequently. This is a team effort and we ask that students do their part on keeping these areas clean. For example, students should wipe down any surfaces in common areas before and after touching them. 
  • Some common areas will be closed off and other common area spaces may be modified to allow for appropriate physical distancing. For example, plexiglass barriers will be installed in certain high traffic areas. This will allow for closer interaction between residents and staff through the barrier. 
  • Residential Life and Housing is setting aside approximately 50 rooms for potential isolation and quarantine needs.

Guide to Residential Living 

Our Guide to Residential Living for 2020-2021 will be available later this summer on the resource page. Currently, you can find the 2019-2020 document that gives you an idea of what to expect as a residential student. Next year’s version will outline your responsibilities for following precautions related to COVID-19. Important updates include temporary suspension of the guest policy (see below), responsibility for following COVID-19 directions provided by the University; and wearing a face covering while navigating residence halls outside of your room, suite or apartment.

Guest Policy

The standard guest policy has been suspended for the 2020-2021 academic year. VCU will continue to monitor public health conditions with a plan to resume the standard guest policy as soon as conditions warrant it. This change is to help maintain physical distancing guidelines on campus and to help keep the VCU community healthy as we return to campus during the COVID-19 pandemic. Resident Assistants will be working with residents to create physically distant interactions for the hall communities to connect and support one another during this time. We also encourage residents to find virtual ways to socialize with friends.

How is a housing guest is defined?

A guest is any individual who does not live within the residence hall they are intending to visit. This includes VCU students, faculty, and staff who do not live in on-campus housing, residential students visiting other residence halls and individuals who are not affiliated with VCU. 

Can on-campus residential students visit residence halls they do not live in?

No. Residential students will only receive access to their residence hall through their VCU ID card. Residential students may visit and congregate with other residents of their own residence hall, if all other Residential Life and Housing expectations and all applicable requirements regarding health and safety are met at all times (physical distancing, face coverings, size of gathering limitations, etc.).

Move-in

For move-in information please visit housing.vcu.edu/move-in. 

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