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Frequently Asked Questions

  1. What are my housing options?
  2. How do rooms get assigned?
  3. May I choose where I want to live? May I choose my roommate?
  4. What happens when I arrive in the fall?
  5. What will I find in my room when I arrive?
  6. How can I decorate my room?
  7. Are there quiet hours in the residence areas?
  8. What services are available in the residence areas?
  9. May I bring my car to school?
  10. How can I get around if I don't have a car?
  11. May my friend visit me and stay overnight?
  12. What does my meal plan provide?
  13. Are the residence areas safe?


What are my housing options?

Berkshire Towers is a suite-style, twin-towered residence area that houses returning students, transfers and freshmen. Each floor of the Towers has three suites. Each suite has three to five bedrooms, a bathroom and a lounge. The majority of rooms in the Towers are doubles, however, a limited number of single rooms are also available. Berkshire Towers is smoke-free and alcohol-prohibited. 

Hoosac Hall houses the majority of freshmen and is ideal for students who prefer living in a traditional residence hall setting. Each of the seven student floors has eighteen double rooms, two single rooms, three bathrooms and two lounges. Hoosac Hall is smoke-free and alcohol-prohibited.

The Flagg Townhouse Apartment Complex is reserved exclusively for transfers and returning students who prefer apartment-style living. Five to six students share an apartment with a full kitchen, a living/dining area and private bathroom facilities. Rooms within each apartment are designed to accommodate from one to three students. The Flagg Townhouse Apartment Complex is smoke-free and alcohol consumption is limited to apartments where all residents are 21 years of age or older.

How do rooms get assigned?

The new student housing assignment process materials for the 2014-2015 academic year will be available on the College website beginning on Friday, June 13th.  

The new student housing assignment section of the website contains information about the housing assignment process, our three residence areas, our new theme housing communities, room decorating tips, a packing list and links to the various vendors who sell items to enhance your room. Most importantly, you will find copies of the Residence Area Occupancy Agreement (RAOA) and the Housing Assignment Preference (HAP) Form. The RAOA form indicates that you agree to the financial and behavioral responsibilities involved in living on campus. The HAP form allows you to specify your preferred room type, roommate and any special housing needs you may have.

Both the HAP and RAOA forms will be due to RPS no later than Wednesday, July 9th. If you return your forms by the due date, you will receive your housing assignment and other important information about the check-in process during the week of August 4th. When we send your assignment to your FirstClass e-mail account, we will also provide the name and e-mail address of your roommate. Students are strongly encouraged to make contact with their roommates prior to arriving on campus.

May I choose where I want to live? May I choose my roommate?

The Housing Assignment Preference (HAP) Form provides the option of identifying a specific roommate. We do our best to accommodate these requests. Assignments are completed in order of the date you pay your enrollment deposit to the Office of Admission. You can increase the chance of receiving your ideal housing assignment by submitting your enrollment deposit as early as possible and, if you are trying to live with a specific roommate, by making sure you and your roommate request each other on your Housing Assignment Preference Form and that you both submit your paperwork by the Wednesday, July 9th deadline.

What happens when I arrive in the fall?

Check-in for new students takes place at the front desk of the residence area to which you are assigned. In Berkshire Towers and Hoosac Hall, residents gain entry to the building by swiping their ID card outside the front door. Room access is provided with a key. In the Flagg Townhouse Apartment Complex, residents are issued two for the apartment door and one for the bedroom door. ALL residents, regardless of their assigned residence area are required to carry their MCLA ID and key(s) at all times.

Immediately following the check-in process, all new students participate in the First Days Program. You will receive additional information about this program at a later date.

What will I find in my room when I arrive?

Each student room contains a bed with an extra-long mattress (36" x 80"), dresser drawers, desk with desk chair, bookcase or bookshelf and closet per occupant. In Hoosac Hall and Berkshire Towers, each student room also comes equipped with a complimentary MicroFridge, an innovative multipliance that combines a microwave and refrigerator. (Stand-alone microwaves are not allowed in Berkshire Towers or Hoosac Hall.) While each room contains overhead lighting, students are strongly encouraged to bring a desk and/or floor lamp. All windows in student rooms are equipped with shades. All residence area bedrooms have tile floors. You are welcome to bring your own throw rug or area carpet.

How can I decorate my room?

Read From Dorm Room to Your Home Away from Home: A Packing & Decorating Guide for MCLA Resident Students. This publication contains a helpful packing list with items you should definitely bring with you when you come to campus (and a few things you should definitely leave at home!). It also contains floor and window dimensions and ideas on how to make your room into your home during the year to come. U.L.-listed coffee pots and hot pots with a safety "shut off" mechanism are the only cooking appliances allowed in Berkshire Towers and Hoosac Hall. Other types of cooking appliances may be used in the kitchen area of the Townhouses. Many students bring a television, MP3 player or other small sound system, wall decorations and other small items for their room.

Residential Programs & Services (RPS) works with OCM, a company that sells extra-long bed linens and other useful room accessories. You can visit their website to find out more about the products they sell. 

As of the fall of 2014, all beds in the MCLA residence areas will be adjustable to a variety of heights. There is no need to purchase any product to raise the height of the beds.

Are there quiet hours in the residence areas?

There are both quiet hours and courtesy hours. Quiet hours begin at 11:00 p.m. on weeknights and 12:00 midnight on weekends. They end at 9:00 am the following morning. Courtesy hours are in effect 24-hours a day. Students are expected to keep noise levels to a minimum at all times in order to ensure the most conducive atmosphere for studying and sleeping.

What services are available in the residence areas?

Every room on campus is equipped with one telephone jack that provides unlimited local calling access and voicemail. All you need to do is plug in your own touchtone phone (without an answering machine, please!) to access these services. You may use a calling card or cell phone to access long distance service from your room.

All three residence areas have WiFI. Each room is also equipped with a hard-wired computer port per student. The exact hardware and software requirements to access this service is available in the Computer Help Desk section of the MCLA website. Cable TV service is also provided in each room. Students must provide their own TV to access the 60+ network, cable and campus stations.

As of the Fall of 2014, all laundry rooms in the residence areas will operate with a credit or debit card. Food vending machines in the residence areas require cash. With your ID card, you can borrow a vacuum cleaner, DVD player, iron & ironing board, recreation equipment or board games at the front desk in your assigned residence area.

May I bring my car to school?

Resident students are eligible to apply for an on-campus parking permit. The cost of a resident student parking permit is $100 per semester. Some returning students receive their parking permits through the spring housing assignment process. All other resident students (including freshmen and transfer students) participate in a parking permit distribution process which takes place during the first week of each semester. Students awarded a parking permit must register their vehicles with the Department of Public Safety. Students who do not receive a parking permit through this process are placed on a waiting list and notified if a permit becomes available.

How can I get around if I don't have a car?

MCLA runs a free shuttle service to local stores, the nearby mall, movie theatres, the local bus depot and other local attractions. The shuttle service schedule is available on the RPS website. RPS also runs a series of bus trips to the Boston area on long weekends and mid-semester breaks.

May my friend visit me and stay overnight?

Overnight guests must be 18 years of age or older. With prior permission from your roommate and the residence area staff, a student may apply for an overnight guest pass. Overnight guests are limited to a two-night stay within any seven day period. (Overnight guests between the ages of 16 and 18 are allowed guest privileges under special circumstances. Please see your Residence Director for more information.) 

What does my meal plan provide?

The College dining facility, the Centennial Room, offers a wide variety of menu choices including pizza, a pasta bar, hot entrees, grilled foods, international favorites, vegetarian dishes, a salad bar and more. "All-you-care-to-eat" meals are available at all meals.

Students with a residency requirement must participate in the College-designated meal plan. Seniors living on campus (without a residency requirement) may choose any of the dining options offered. You will receive more information on the College's 2014-2015 academic year meal plans at a later date.

Are the residence areas safe?

Residence area policies and residence area staff serve to maximize safety in each of the residence areas. Locked main doors and main area desk staff assure that only residents and their visitors are able to enter the residence areas. The residence areas also have state-of-the-art fire alarm and sprinkler systems with a direct connection to the local fire department.

The College's Public Safety department is staffed by full-time professionals 24-hours a day, 7 days a week. Upon request, Public Safety officers will escort students around campus and the surrounding vicinity. If an emergency need does arise, MCLA is conveniently located two miles from the local emergency room and one mile from the fire station.

Ultimately, your personal safety and the security of your belongings is up to you. Remember to lock your room, to refrain from letting strangers into your residence area and to always use common sense when walking both on- and off-campus.