Theme House Application

New Theme House Application Process

The selection process for new theme houses begins with an idea or brainstorm from a group of students. These ideas then take form in a theme house application, a proposal written by group members outlining the goals and direction for the theme house.

Theme house applications are reviewed by the Office of Residential & First-Year Programs and select groups are interviewed by the review committee. Theme house selection is based on the quality and strength of the application, the commitment and organization of the house members, the needs of the college community served by the theme house, and the group interview.

Information for Spring 2015 Application Period

Information for Spring 2016 will be available in January 2016.

The application is web-based and is now available. Please read the information below before beginning your electronic application.

When is the deadline?

The deadline is Friday, February 6 at 5:00 PM.  All materials must be submitted by that time in order to be considered.

What are the requirements for application?

Students applying for a theme house must have a minimum 2.33 GPA and be in good standing with the College.  Students applying for a theme house are subject to a review of academic and conduct records.

Is there a minimum or maximum number of residents?

Due to the residential spaces available for theme houses, each applying team must have at least five and no more than ten prospective residents.

What will be expected from theme houses?

House leader attends a training before the start of the school year
Plan and execute three programs each semester

  • At least one must be hosted in the group's residential space
  • One must be a partner program with a Spark House

Create one bulletin board in a first-year residence hall
Meet with House Mentor two times each semester

What should I prepare before starting my application?

  • Decide on a name and mission for your house
  • Determine your house leader (House Leaders are hired as Residential & First-Year Programs staff members and serve as the main contacts and coordinators for the group)
  • Talk to a faculty member or administrator and ask them to serve as a House Mentor
  • Assemble your roster of housemates, be sure to have their seven-digit Gettysburg ID numbers
  • Instruct all applicants to send the reference form link to their RA/CA/HL
  • Prepare 5-7 sentence responses to the following prompts:
  1. Why is your group interested in creating a theme house?
  2. What is the statement of purpose of your theme house?
  3. What are the goals and objectives of your theme house?
  4. How will living in a theme house enable your group to achieve its purpose, goals, and objectives?
  5. With what campus and/or community resources will your theme house partner? How will Gettysburg College and the local community benefit if your group is selected?
  6. Outline programming ideas for your first semester as a theme house; include as many details as possible.
  7. List any special needs regarding potential housing assignment like accommodations for mobility, health, or dietary needs.

What is the selection timeline?

Online Application Deadline: Friday, February 6 at 5:00 PM
Selected Applicants Invited to Interviews: Wednesday, February 11
Interview Scheduling: Thursday, February 12 & Friday, February 13
Interviews: Monday, February 16 and Tuesday, February 17
Theme House Placement Announced by Friday, February 20
Rosters and Contracts Due to Residential & First-Year Programs: Friday, February 27

Placement of theme housing is concluded prior to spring break, so if you are not selected to participate in theme housing, you will receive a lottery number for online housing selection beginning in March.

What is expected in the interview portion of the process?

After reviewing the applications, Residential & First-Year Programs will invite select groups to participate in a group interview/presentation. 

Groups will be asked to prepare a 15-20 minute presentation that addresses the application questions (see above) and makes a convincing case for this group to become a theme house, mainly why the group needs a residential space.  Specific attention will be given to the group's clarity of purpose, programming plan details, and intended connection to the Gettysburg campus community.

The House Leader, House Mentor, and two-thirds of the group must be present.  Group members with academic and co-curricular commitments (classes, rehearsals, practices) are exempt from the interview.

Where should I direct questions?

Julia Collett

Application Links (Currently Inactive)

Main Theme House Application
House Mentor Form

(send to prospective House Mentor)

Applicant Reference Form

(send to each applicant's student staff member (RA/CA/HL))

All components are due Friday, February 6 at 5:00 PM.