Community Policies


Respect in Residential Communities

Students will respect the right of all community members to cleanliness, security, privacy, space, quiet hours for study and sleep, equal use and access to room/suite and hall facilities and generally to an environment conducive to learning and undergraduate college life.

All roommates/suitemates have the responsibility to provide and the right to expect: a living spaces that is free of any actions or behaviors that interfere with the roommate’s privacy, study habits, or sleep; the ability to enter the room/suite whenever one would like unless other provisions are agreed upon in advance by all parties; an environment free of physical and/or emotional harassment; the ability to speak openly; an environment where one is treated considerately and thoughtfully; to address problems and concerns in a mature manner.


Residents are expected to act in accordance with all Barnard College policies while in the residence halls. Residential Life & Housing staff are responsible for ensuring the safety and security of the residential community, and will document and respond to incidents in which a policy is alleged to have been violated.

The Residential Life & Housing staff reserves the right to confiscate items that are prohibited in the residence halls; confiscated items will not be returned to students.

I. Alcohol and other Drugs

In accordance with New York State law and Barnard College policy, the following behaviors are prohibited in the residence halls:

  • Possession or use of alcohol, or possession or use/misuse of illicit drugs, prescription medication, synthetic substances or other intoxicating substances in violation of the college Drug and Alcohol Policy (;
  • Being in the presence of a Drug and Alcohol Policy violation;
  • Possession of empty alcoholic beverage containers;
  • Public intoxication (regardless of age);
  • Possession or use of common source beverage containers (i.e. kegs, beer balls, punch bowls) and/or devices or mechanisms that facilitate rapid consumption (i.e. funnels);
  • Participation in activities that facilitate or promote the rapid, dangerous, and/or forced consumption of alcohol (i.e. drinking games);
  • Possession of drug or smoking devices and/or paraphernalia including (but not limited to) pipes, bongs, vaporizers, electronic cigarettes, and hookahs.
  • Distribution of alcohol, drugs, or other intoxicant (this prohibition includes, but is not limited to, distribution of alcohol to any person under 21 years of age, cash bars, events to which admissions tickets are sold or fees are charged, and parties at which alcoholic beverages are served and for which contribution or donations to offset the costs of the party are sought, providing alcohol to);
  • Delivery of alcohol to a residence hall or to a student’s Barnard mailing address (
  • Any evidence of use of illicit drugs off campus (lingering odor of marijuana, drug residue on clothing, etc) may be considered a violation of this policy.

Residents 21 and older may possess and consume alcoholic beverages (referred herein “alcohol”) within residence halls in accordance with the following:

  • Students of legal drinking age who bring alcohol into or possess alcohol in a residence hall are responsible for its legal use and must take reasonable precautions to prevent the possession of available alcohol by underage students and guests.
  • In suites where some but not all residents are age 21 or older, if it is unclear which resident is responsible for alcohol found in a common area, all residents may be required to participate in the disciplinary process to resolve responsibility for violations.
  • Alcohol may only be consumed within assigned rooms or suites by those who are of legal drinking age. Open containers of alcohol are prohibited in common spaces such as hallways, stairwells, and lounges, in public areas such as lobbies, or in outdoor areas adjacent to residence halls, except as outlined in the College’s alcohol policy.
  • Each resident over 21 may be in possession of no more than (1) 12-pack of beer, or (2) standard bottles of wine or (1) 1-liter bottle of liquor at any given time.

The health, safety, and welfare of Barnard College students and our community are of primary concern. In addition to making healthy choices, students are encouraged not only to look out for their own health and safety but also for that of their peers. See the Responsible Community Action Policy regarding help seeking for individuals under the influence. Students found to be excessively intoxicated on campus or in a residence hall or who receive emergency medical attention (i.e. CU EMT or FDNY) for excessive intoxication may, as appropriate, be subject to medical or psychological assessment.

II. Guest Policy

Please see

III. Community Standards

Discrimination And Harassment

All students are required to act in accordance with Barnard College’s Policy against Discrimination and Harassment.


  • The College is a smoke-free campus, including all residence halls.
  • Smoking of any substance is prohibited in student bedrooms and suites, all common areas, balconies, and within 15 feet of any residence hall building.
  • Students may not possess any smoking devices or paraphernalia, including but not limited to, pipes, bongs, vaporizers, electronic cigarettes, and hookahs.
  • Evidence of smoking within the residence halls (ashes, cigarette butts, and burnt tobacco) or evidence of use of illicit drugs off campus (lingering odor of marijuana, drug residue on clothing, etc) may be considered a violation of this policy.

Care for Self and Premises

All residents are required to maintain acceptable standards of personal hygiene, self-care, and room cleanliness to a level that does not interfere with the general comfort, safety, security, health, or welfare of any member of the residence hall community. Students are to act responsibly and not interfere with the comfort or safety of their roommate(s)/suitemates or other residence hall students.

This includes employing basic safety practices when cooking or preparing food in a residential space. Residents are not permitted to leave cooking food unattended.

Residents are required to possess their room key when leaving their residential space. Excessive use of the emergency key is prohibited.  Students who borrow the emergency key more than twice in one week, three times in one month, or six times in one semester may be required to meet with their Hall Director and/or Associate Hall Director.

Common Areas

For the purpose of this policy, common areas include any space within the residence hall not assigned to an individual resident.

The following behaviors are prohibited in common areas:

  • Removal of furniture from common areas (except when approved by the Disability Housing Committee);
  • Sleeping;
  • Engaging in sexual contact;
  • Engaging in any other Residential Life or College Policy violation

Although facilities staff members regularly clean lounges and common areas in the residence halls; it is the responsibility of all residents and guests to dispose properly of their own trash or recycling, and to keep common areas clean and in order.

Common areas, such as building lounges, are for use by residents of that building may not be reserved for group gatherings.

Disruptive Behavior & Noise

Behavior that limits students’ rights of equal use and access to room/suite/hall facilities is prohibited.

Residents must monitor their volume (i.e. voices, music) and comply with requests to maintain reasonable levels of noise within the residence halls. Noise that can be heard outside of one’s room is considered unreasonable. Quiet hours are in effect 11pm-9am Sunday through Thursday and 1am-10am Friday and Saturday. The use of amplified sound instruments or equipment is prohibited in the residence halls.

Fire Safety

All residents are required to familiarize themselves with and abide by the Fire Safety Information available on the Residential Life & Housing website.

All persons are required to evacuate the residence hall when an alarm sounds; failure to do so is a violation of this policy. Causing a fire or a false fire alarm within a residence hall is prohibited.

Residence halls are equipped with fire safety equipment, including but not limited to fire extinguishers and smoke detectors. It is a violation of this policy to tamper with any fire safety equipment in the residence halls. If found responsible for tampering/improper use of Life Safety equipment, a fine of $100 may be charged to a student’s account.

Obstruction of Access

Preventing entrance to or egress from any room or building is prohibited.


Pets (except for fish in a 5 gallon tank or less) are prohibited*. Pet visitors are not permitted in the residence halls.

* Service and Support Animals are not pets. Service and Support Animals may be permitted with approval through the Disability Housing Request process, and as described in such accommodation. Support Animals may not be brought to housing without prior approval. Support Animals are only permitted within the student’s on-campus housing assignment. Please visit Disability Services for information about Support Animals.

Posting Policy

All students are required to comply with the College Posting Policy. Residential Hall bulletin boards are for use by Residential Life & Housing staff and/or other offices as designated. Altering or damaging any materials posted within the residence halls is prohibited.


Commercial activities, including conducting a business or solicitation of any sort in or from the residence halls is prohibited. Solicitation is defined as recruitment for membership, subscription, polling, posting, canvassing, or commercial sale of products, services, or tickets in person, door to door, via voicemail, email or print.

Theft & Damage

Theft or intentional damage to residence hall furnishings, college property, or the property of others is prohibited and will result in disciplinary action and/or repair or replacement charges.

Students are not permitted to remove any non-disposable Dining Services from any campus dining location. This includes, but is not limited to, silverware, plates, bowls, cups, and trays.

While students are encouraged to personalize their living space, they may not alter the physical space of the room, drill or nail holes into any surface, or affix tapestries and similar decorations to the ceiling, light fixtures, or doorways. Painting any part of the living space or college supplied furniture is also prohibited.

Unauthorized Access

Entering without permission into another student’s residence hall room, or any space designated for specific use (including, but not limited to, staff offices, facilities closets, or dining services space) is prohibited.

Students are never permitted to be on the roof or fire escape of any college owned or operational facility with the exception of the designated roof terrace at Cathedral Gardens during which time the location is appropriately staffed, or in the event of a true emergency. If found responsible for tampering with or removing any window stoppers, a fine of $100 may be charged to a student’s account.


Weapons, ammunition, and simulated weapons are prohibited in the residence halls.

Windows & Window Stoppers

New York City ordinance forbids sitting and/or standing on, placing articles of any kind on the sill of an open window or outside the window, as well as throwing or projecting anything out of a window. This includes, but is not limited to, allowing or causing liquids, lights, or laser pointers to be projected out any window.

Window stopper devices that have been installed in residence hall windows are a required safety precaution; students may not remove or alter them in any way. Students who recognize that these devices are missing or damaged are expected to promptly report this to their RA or HD, and complete a facilities work order to expedite the repair/replacement.

IV. Community Safety Policies

Community Safety policies are designed to create and support a safe environment in our residence hall community. Community Safety Inspections (CSIs) will be conducted by Residential Life & Housing staff at least once each semester.


Bicycles must be stored in student bedrooms or suite room areas. They may not be stored or left in lounges, stairwells, or other residence hall common areas. Students are responsible for cleaning any dirt or mud their bike brings into the building; failure to do so may result in a cleaning fee. Bike racks are available for student use on campus.

Candles, Incense, and Open Flames

Candles (including decorative & religious candles*, or candles with the wick removed) are prohibited in the residence halls. Incense, oil lamps, alcohol lamps, and open flame burners are also prohibited in the residence halls.

* Students wishing to burn candles or incense for religious observance may only do so in monitored public areas with prior permission from Residential Life & Housing.


Attaching paper shades or any other decorations to light fixtures is prohibited. Electric lights must be plugged into a surge protected power strip, and should not be left on when the student is not present. Students may use indoor holiday lights, but larger holiday lights labeled as “outdoor” lights are not permitted. No electrical lights or other decorations may be used or displayed outside of a student’s room or suite.

Electrical Equipment and Appliances

All permissible electrical equipment and appliances* must be UL approved and in good working order. The College recommends that appliances with an automatic on/off feature be used. Appliances used for the purpose of cooking foods may not be kept or used in individual student bedrooms except for coffee makers, popcorn poppers, hot pots, and refrigerators of 3.5 cubic feet or less.

* Please see for additional information about items that are not permitted in the residence halls.


All College provided furnishings must remain in their designated location. It is a violation of policy to move student room furniture to another location or into the hallway. The College will not move student furniture from a room or suite. If furniture is discovered in a space where it does not belong, it will be relocated at the student’s expense. Residents are not permitted to bring any outside furniture into their rooms/suites except as outlined below.

Outside Furniture

Barnard maintains a strict furniture policy to ensure fire safety, maintain cleanliness, and prevent exposure to pests in student rooms. All rooms are furnished by the College for its assigned occupants with a bed, desk, dresser, and wardrobe/closet.

Students are permitted to bring only the following personal furniture items into the residence halls:

  • Lamps (only non-halogen bulbs)
  • Media stand*
  • Bookcase*
  • Night stand/bedside table*
  • Set of drawers*
  • Desk chair
  • Single-seating chair weighing less than 30 lbs (such as a stool, ottoman, camping chair, butterfly/bungee chair, bean bag chair, folding chair, papasan chair, etc)**

* The total dimensions of each piece must not exceed 80 inches. Total inches can be calculated by adding the longest width, the longest height, and the longest depth together when fully extended (such as legs or sides)

**Aside from a desk chair, limit of one single-seating chair per room (regardless of room occupancy) and two single-seating chairs per suite-style living rooms. Example: in a double occupancy room, residents may have up to two additional desk chairs and one single-seating chair.

Students are prohibited from bringing large furniture items, unless they receive approval from Disability Services. Large furniture items include, and are not limited to:

  • Multiple seating units such as couch, futon
  • Mattress
  • Bed Frame
  • Dining table / dining set
  • Large single-seating units weighing more than 30 lbs, such as recliners, armchairs, etc.

When personal furniture is brought into the residence halls, it must fit into the bedroom or suite. Residents are discouraged from bringing items from third-parties (such as Craigslist, flea markets) into the residence halls as this increases the potential of exposure to pests. Residents may be charged for any personal furniture that causes pest problems.

Barnard-owned furniture belonging to the suite or room may not be removed under any circumstances and must remain in the assigned bedroom or suite.  Residents should take proper measurements of the room prior to acquiring any new furniture to ensure it fits and does not present an egress issue.

Residents are responsible for removing personal furniture from their room when they move out of the building. Failure to do so will result in a fine.


Recycling is required by New York City law. All students must adhere to recycling guidelines in their residential area. Information is posted on each floor with specific details for that location. Residents within the first-year area are expected to utilize and maintain the recycle container provided in their room.

Prohibited Items

  • Window or portable AC units, window fans, space heaters
  • Halogen lamps, lava lamps, ultraviolet/infrared lamps
  • Deep fryers, hot plates, open coil heaters, toasters toaster ovens, rice cookers, charcoal or electric grills
  • Extension cords, multi-receptacle outlet adapters (UL listed power strips with surge protectors are permitted)
  • Flammable materials (including, but not limited to, propane, gasoline, paint thinner, charcoal, lighter fluid)
  • Live trees, wreaths, swag, live cut pine or wood (fake trees that are fire-retardant are permitted)

For a full list, please visit


Failure to Comply

All students are required to comply with any official directives issued to them by College staff. This includes but is not limited to directives to do or be responsible for something, directives to allow staff access to room or suite, directives to refrain from certain acts or behaviors, or sanctions imposed through the conduct process.

Student Rights and Responsibilities

In coordination with the Associate Director for Community Standards and Investigations, Residential Life & Housing professional staff have responsibility for enforcing regulations governing conduct of students within the residence halls. Incidents of repeat or severe violations may be referred to the Associate Director for Community Standards (or other conduct officer designated by the Executive Director for Equity).

The conduct process is an educational process intended to support the development and well-being of students in the spirit of integrity, respect, and responsibility. Outcomes and sanctions shall become part of the student’s disciplinary or conduct record.
The residential conduct process typically occurs as follows:

A REPORT IS FILED: Student and professional staff members in Residential Life & Housing document incidents and behaviors that may involve a violation of policy. Reports include information about what the staff member observed, heard, smelled, or otherwise became aware of at the time of the incident. Any person may file a report or discuss a concern with Residential Life & Housing staff.

INVESTIGATION: Staff will review each report to determine necessary next steps. The staff member may choose to: close the case if no disciplinary action is deemed necessary, engage in conversation with the student or professional staff member or the student involved to gather additional information; or conclude that a potential violation may have occurred and convene a student conduct hearing.

HEARING: If a student conduct hearing is deemed necessary, the student will receive a notice to meet via their Barnard e-mail account. This notice will include the alleged violations and date of such incident, as well as the date, time, and location of the conduct hearing. The meeting provides the student an opportunity to learn of and respond to information that is available regarding the alleged policy violation(s), and for the student to present information on their behalf. The student is permitted to bring a written statement that describes their perspective on the incident. If the student chooses not to attend this meeting and does not contact the hearing officer in advance of the date to reschedule, a decision may be made based upon the information available.

During final exam periods, students may be offered the opportunity to respond to allegations in writing as an alternative to attending a hearing. After the hearing is complete, the charged student will be notified in writing of the outcome, including any sanctions imposed.

If a student accepts responsibility or is found responsible for a violation of policy, the hearing officer will determine appropriate sanctions. Sanctions that may be issued at the residence hall level include, but are not limited to:

  • Written warning
  • Educational project, program, or research
  • Room reassignment
  • Restriction of privileges
  • Charge for repairs or clean up
  • Residential probation
  • Hall Persona Non Grata (banned from access to specified space)
  • Loss of room selection status
  • Dismissal from housing
  • Counseling and/or mandatory evaluation
  • Alcohol/drug education
  • Mandatory health referral (IMPORTANT: Students failing to abide by the terms of a mandatory health referral sanction may be subject to suspension from housing)
  • Interim measures may be taken, up to or including removal from housing, pending investigation of significant incident, or where there is potential threat to health or safety