New rule for incoming SHU students

Havey Hall is a residence hall located on the main hilltop. Photo courtesy of H.Carnahan.

Havey Hall is a residence hall located on the main hilltop. Photo courtesy of H.Carnahan.

“We want to continue to ensure that the Seton Hill experience is a meaningful one for students that has a lasting and powerful effect on the rest of their lives,” said Seton Hill University (SHU) President Mary Finger.

SHU has new plans in mind for the upcoming fall 2016 semester that will stay in place for years to come. As of next year, SHU will be implementing a new rule where all full-time undergraduate students are required to live in the residence halls for six semesters (not counting summer or January terms) or until they achieve senior status, before they can move off campus.

This new rule will allow for more unity on campus as the campus continues to expand.

“After significant discussion and planning, we determined having freshmen, sophomores and juniors reside on campus would enable students to have the opportunity to be fully immersed in Seton Hill’s culture,” said Finger. “We know that when students live on campus, they tend to achieve greater academic success and benefit from stronger networks with faculty, staff and peers.”

However, the Office of Residence Life can grant permission to avert this rule for a full-time undergraduate student who qualifies under certain conditions. These include if the student is 24 years of age or older, served and/or is discharged from the Armed Forces, currently living with family commuting within a 50-mile radius of the campus and if the student is married with one or more dependent children.

“From our Office of Student Engagement, we recognize students living on campus also participate more frequently in University activities such as academic support offerings, Campus Ministry programming, social and academic clubs as well as athletics and intramural offerings,” said Finger. “However, we do recognize and accept that for some students who commute, living at home is the most viable and practical option.”

With this ruling passed, a lot more students will be living on campus. This will account for more funds and resources that will be generated to SHU, since all resident students are required to purchase a meal plan along with their room and board costs.

“Nothing would change my mind about coming to SHU even if I had to live on campus for three years because of the reassurance I get from knowing that I have a roof over my head,” said freshman dietetics major Lauren Tronolone. “But I do believe that if this is the case, room and board prices should be reduced since students have no choice but to stay on-campus.”

Graduated SHU student-athlete, resident assistant and SAAC leader Christian Carter had this to say about the new ruling: “I can see it creating a huge spatial problem on campus, especially inside the residence halls. Unless they make the changes to accommodate the students who will be on campus it will be difficult to implement this policy.” Carter also lived off-campus his junior year at SHU. “However, I am sure there is reasoning and research behind the decision that supports it.”

As for any new projects in the near future, Finger said, “Projects under examination include a renovation and expansion of Lowe Dining Hall, a new residence hall and a coffee bar and lounge space in Maura Hall.”

This policy is effective with students entering SHU for the Fall 2016. If anyone has any questions or concerns be sure to view the Campus Life section on our SHU website (https://www.setonhill.edu/campus-life/).

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