Residential Guidelines

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Quiet & Courtesy Hours

Residential communities are intended to provide an environment that is conducive to studying and sleeping. In order to maintain an acceptable noise level, staff and students are expected to be respectful of others and should confront noise problems when they occur.

Quiet Hours

Sunday through Thursday nights from 10 p.m. – 8 a.m.

Friday and Saturday nights from 12 a.m. – 8 a.m.

During quiet hours all noise (e.g. music, TV, conversation) should be contained inside a student room with the door closed. Noise in the hallways, stairwells, and lounges should be kept to a minimum. Students are encouraged to talk with those violating quiet hours before requesting the assistance of a staff member. Students violating quiet hours may be given a warning and further violations may lead to other conduct action and/or fines.

Outside of quiet hours, courtesy hours are in effect. During courtesy hours students should be especially respectful of others in the hall. If you are trying to study or sleep, you may ask people to be quiet. If you are asked to turn down your music or quiet down, you are expected to comply.

As members of the Gettysburg College community, students are expected to adhere to the Borough noise policies by refraining from the production of loud volumes of noise. All audible noise outside the halls must cease by 10 p.m. during the week and midnight on weekends. Violators may be subject to College conduct action as well as Borough fines.


College housing is provided for the exclusive use of Gettysburg College students as assigned by the Office of Residential & First-Year Programs. Visitors may be allowed to use residential facilities within the following guidelines:

  • In order for a student to host a guest in the room, the student must ask all other roommates for permission to host a guest. Students are not able to host a guest unless all other roommates agree to allow the guest into their space.
  • Visitors are permitted for only three consecutive days and totaling no more than 8 days in a one month period. No student is authorized to permit extended use of College housing facilities (including rooms) to any visitor, either student or non-student, when such use, because of its duration or frequency, constitutes a de facto sub-contracting of College facilities to an unauthorized person.
  • No student is authorized to permit use of College housing facilities (including rooms) for any visitor, either student or non-student, when such use becomes a source of complaint to the roommate(s), members of the floor/residence hall, or College staff.
  • The host student has complete responsibility for all visitors. Students accused of violating this policy may be subject to conduct action. If visitors violate College policy, the host student will be held responsible and is subject to conduct action. The visitor, either student or non-student, will be removed from College housing and may be prohibited from returning to campus.
  • Guests must register their vehicle at the Department of Public Safety.

Pet Policy

Gettysburg College does not allow pets in residence halls, even as guests of family or friends. College residences are not conducive to appropriate pet ownership. While pets can be a source of much enjoyment, they can also pose a threat to the health and safety of the campus community. Many individuals suffer from allergies related to pet dander and pet hair, and it is important to provide a healthy environment for all our students, employees, and visitors. In addition, pets pose a significant liability risk to the College. As such, pets are not approved for students living in College-controlled residential properties.

With the exception of non-carnivorous fish, certified service animals, and approved emotional support animals, the presence of animals in buildings is prohibited. Fish must be maintained in a bowl or tank that does not exceed 20-gallons. The College will not be responsible for the care of fish during breaks.

If a pet is discovered in a student's residential space, the student(s) will be fined $250 and given one week to remove the pet from campus. If the pet remains in the room after one week, the students will be fined an additional $250 per week until the pet is removed, and the student could face additional financial penalties. Failure to remove the pet from the residence in a timely manner may result in removal by animal control services. Violation of the pet policy may result in damage billing for the replacement and/or refurbishment of carpeting, furniture, or other affected areas of the facility.

Members of the professional staff who live in residence halls controlled by the College may request permission from the Director of Residential & First-Year Programs to have a pet(s) reside with them. If approval for a pet is granted, these pets will not be permitted in administrative or classroom buildings unless they are certified service animals.

Dogs and other animals are permitted on campus roads, walks, and grounds, as they are in the local community, when they are on a leash and controlled by the owner. It is the owner's responsibility to clean up after the animal. All pets must be tagged, registered, and vaccinated in accordance with Pennsylvania state law.

Service and Emotional Support Animals

Students with disabilities who use trained Service Animals should contact the Office of Academic Advising and Student Support Services to discuss housing and other related accommodations.

Students seeking to bring Emotional Support Animals to campus as an accommodation should fill out and return to the Office of Academic Advising and Student Support Services the Student Housing Accommodation Request Form and the Student Housing Accommodation Acknowledgment Form. Requests are reviewed on a case-by-case basis. If approved to bring an Emotional Support Animal to campus, students will meet with a staff member from the Office of Residential & First-Year Programs to discuss their rights and responsibilities. See the College website for the complete Emotional Support Animal Policy.

Life Safety Inspections and Violations

DPS’s Life and Fire Safety Unit performs residence hall and fraternity full-scale Health and Safety (H&S) Inspections three times a year, once during winter break, once during spring break, and once during the summer months prior to the start of each fall semester. Life and Fire Safety building inspectors conduct regular inspections of residential hall and fraternity common areas throughout the academic year. Full-scale building/hall inspections are announced. Not all common area inspections are announced. The Life Safety inspections are primarily designed to find and eliminate safety violations. Students are required to read and comply with the Residential and Fraternity Guidelines which include life and fire safety rules and regulations for residential buildings.

The inspections include, but are not limited to, a visual examination of electrical cords, sprinkler heads, smoke detectors, fire extinguishers and other life safety systems. In addition, each room will be examined for the presence of prohibited items (e.g., sources of open flames, such as candles; non-surge protected extension cords; halogen lamps; portable cooking appliances in non-kitchen areas; etc.) or prohibited activity (e.g., smoking in the room; tampering with life safety equipment; possession of pets; etc.). This inspection will also include a general assessment of food and waste storage and cleanliness of the room.

For more detailed information including sanctions for life safety violations, see the Public Safety website or contact Public Safety at 717-337-6912.

Fire Alarms

Public Safety should be called immediately at 717-337-6911 (x6911) for all fire alarms. Two emergency evacuation drills are held each semester to ensure that all students are familiar with evacuation procedures. Anytime a fire alarm sounds everyone must evacuate the building and remain outside until you are notified that it is safe to return by a Security Officer or Residential & First Year Programs Staff member. During an evacuation, residents are to follow emergency procedures including any Residential & First Year Programs Staff member instructions.

Fire Safety Equipment

In the event of an actual fire, evacuate the building immediately. Pull the building's fire alarm (if the alarms are not already sounding), and once evacuation has begun, contact Public Safety. Pulling a false fire alarm, inappropriately discharging a fire extinguisher, or failure to comply with the above guidelines during an evacuation will result in disciplinary action. Sanctions may include suspension from the College. False fire alarm activation and fire extinguisher use will also result in a fine to the individual responsible or to a residence hall floor or building in the case that individual responsibility cannot be determined.

Fire extinguishers, fire alarms, pull boxes, smoke detectors, emergency lighting fixtures, and exit lights are located in each building. This equipment should only be used in emergency situations. Misuse or tampering with any fire safety equipment will not be tolerated and may result in removal from the residence hall or suspension from the College. If you use a fire alarm or extinguisher for an actual emergency or fire, please notify Public Safety.

Fire Safety Services provides each apartment kitchen with a five pound fire extinguisher for their safety. This extinguisher must be inspected each month to ensure it is in good working order and mounted properly. The College provides apartment-style living throughout the campus and has developed a policy to allow these inspections to be conducted as efficiently as possible. There is no extra charge for this service, but the residents are responsible for the condition of the fire extinguisher. The charge for a lost, inappropriately discharged, or damaged fire extinguisher is $250 for the first offense. Any fire within an apartment must be reported, especially a fire that is extinguished with a fire extinguisher. Residents will not be fined for using a fire extinguisher to extinguish an actual accidental fire.

Once a month, two building inspectors will visit each apartment. The visits will be conducted on Mondays through Thursdays from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. The inspectors will knock several times and identify themselves if a resident answers. They will explain their visit and the resident may escort them to the kitchen. The extinguisher will be inspected. If no one answers the door, the officers will enter the apartment and announce themselves. If no one answers to their announcement, the inspectors will proceed with the inspection.

Emergency Building Evacuation

Emergency Building Evacuations are necessary to ensure the safety of the occupants to a variety of threats including fires, bomb threats, acts of violence, chemical releases, or other hazardous substances. The fire alarm system serves as the main notification to building occupants that there is an emergency situation that requires an evacuation.

In some cases, the fire alarm may not be used if information indicates that the alarm system may cause a threat, in such cases as a bomb threat. In these cases, the word of mouth and room-to-room notification system may be conducted by the Department of Public Safety. Public Safety may assign certain College personnel to help with the room-to-room evacuation.

During an Emergency Building Evacuation every occupant must exit the building immediately after hearing the alarm, being advised by Public Safety or other College personnel. Occupants who exit the building should remain outside until advised by a Public Safety Officer that it is safe to return. Public Safety will coordinate fire, police, medical, and rescue assistance.

If conditions exist that prevent occupants to reenter then Public Safety will provide occupants with a relocation site nearby. If occupants are relocated to a nearby site, then those occupants will be provided with up-to-date information and needed resources to maintain their quality of life needs such as restrooms, water, food, clothing, and shelter from elements.

Any person failing to leave a building when the fire alarm sounds, when directed to leave by a Public Safety Officer or other College personnel, or as a result of a known or perceived emergency is subject to conduct sanctions and/or prosecution.

Emergency Evacuation Drills are conducted to familiarize occupants with emergency egress from a building and to establish conduct of the drill to a matter of routine. Drills will include suitable procedures, such as room-to-room checks, to ensure that all persons subject to the drill participate. Any person who fails to participate in a drill will be subject to conduct action by the appropriate authority. In the conduct of drills, emphasis shall be placed on orderly evacuation rather than speed. Drills shall be held at expected and unexpected times and under varying conditions to simulate the unusual conditions that can occur in an actual emergency. Participants shall relocate to a safe location outside the building and remain at such location until given further instruction.

Alcohol & Drug Policy

In compliance with Pennsylvania state laws, students under the age of 21 are not permitted to purchase, possess, or consume alcoholic beverages. All students, regardless of age, are prohibited from manufacturing alcohol. In addition, students who are of legal drinking age cannot possess open alcohol containers in common areas (halls, lounges, bathrooms). If students living in a room are both under 21, then alcohol cannot be present in that room. Alcohol is not permitted in any first-year residence halls, with the exception of the rooms of upperclass students who are of legal drinking age. Possession of alcoholic beverage containers, either full or empty, will be taken as a presumption of use and possession, and as such may be considered policy violations. Open source alcohol such as kegs/beer balls and grain alcohol punch are prohibited from all residence hall facilities (including apartments). All drinking games and drinking game paraphernalia (beer pong tables, beer funnels, etc.) are also prohibited.

Students must register parties where alcohol will be served. Illegal drugs are prohibited. Violation of these policies will result in conduct action. See the Handbook of Student Rights and Responsibilities for further information on the alcohol/drug policy.

Prohibited Items and Prohibited Conduct

If your behavior does not meet College community expectations or is in violation of the policies outlined in the Housing License Agreement, this Residential Guidebook or the Student Handbook, you may expect conduct action. Gettysburg College expects students to maintain a standard of personal discipline that is in accordance with the educational goals of the institution, federal, state, and local laws and to respect the rights, privileges, and property of fellow students, faculty, staff, and administrators. Students are responsible for the items contained and the events that occur in their rooms. Special surveillance resources may be utilized by the College when conduct issues become chronic or disruptive.

Prohibited Items

The following items are prohibited in residence halls:

  • Guns, firearms, knives longer than three-inches, or weapons of any type, including BB and pellet guns.
  • Candles and/or incense (lit or unlit).
  • Tapestries, banners, and flags. These items cannot be hung on walls, ceilings, or over windows. Window treatments such as curtains must be made of a fabric that resists or retards the spreading of flames and has either a UL fire rating #723 or NFPA 225.
  • Room-heating devices, including all space heaters, kerosene or oil lamps, and alcohol burners.
  • Gasoline-powered items, such as motorcycles, mopeds, or parts thereof.
  • Hover boards and/or electric unicycles
  • Pressurized tanks (e.g. helium tanks).
  • Flammable and/or combustible liquids and/or chemicals including gasoline and charcoal.
  • Grills of any type (except UL-listed Foreman-style grills in apartments).
  • Fireworks, smoke bombs, sparklers, etc.
  • Drug paraphernalia and illegal drugs.
  • Animals or pets of any kind (except certified service animals, approved emotional support animals, and/or non-carnivorous fish). *See pet policy for more information.
  • Light dimmers, ceiling fans, or any other device that replaces, adds to, or interferes with any room apparatus.
  • Excessive furniture that blocks or restricts egress.
  • Physical training equipment.
  • Three-section couches.
  • Waterbeds and beds other than twin size (unless provided by the College).
  • Dartboards and darts.
  • Nails, hooks, double-faced adhesive tape, LED light tape, or other items that will damage walls.
  • Live trees.
  • Personal lofts.

The following electrical appliances and corded items are prohibited in residence halls:

(Note: all cords and permitted appliances must be UL Listed)

  • Halogen lamps.
  • Electrical appliances with an exposed heating source (e.g. toaster ovens, toasters, hot plates).
  • Overloaded electrical receptacles.
  • Faulty or old extension cords.
  • Portable washers, dryers, and dishwashers.
  • Mini refrigerators (only permitted in apartments). This excludes the microfridges provided by the College.
  • Air conditioners (except for approved units that are provided and installed by the College through the disability accommodations process).
  • Microwaves other than a microfridge (unless within an apartment, and then limited to one).

Note: The preceding list is not all-inclusive; any item that is a threat to public safety may be removed. In addition to confiscation, violators may pay a monetary fine and may be subject to conduct action.

Prohibited Conduct

The following actions are prohibited in residence halls and may result in conduct action:

  • Smoking inside any residential space; this includes the use of electronic cigarettes and vapes. Smoking must occur at least 15 feet away from any building.
  • Draping or placing objects, including fabric, over lighting fixtures, smoke detectors, or fire sprinkler systems.
  • Hanging cardboard, plastic, or fabric (e.g. tapestries, banners, and flags) on walls, ceilings, light fixtures, or fire sprinkler apparatus. Posters on walls can't exceed 25% of the total wall surface.
  • Hanging stringed lights on the exterior of buildings without the advanced, expressed, written consent of the Office of Residential & First-Year Programs. Inside residence halls, students may use up to three strands of stringed light per room. All stringed lights must be UL-approved.
  • Wrapping or placing wires or stringed lights in the area of beds.
  • Lending keys to others; copying keys; possession of keys that are not authorized for your use.
  • Water fights, ball playing, bike riding, or similar activities which may cause harm to persons or property.
  • Storage of bicycles in stairwells or hallways.
  • Storage of personal items such as sports bags/equipment, furniture, or suitcases in stairwells or hallways.
  • Throwing any items into or out of windows.
  • Altering, tampering, or dismantling any door closure or propping open any exterior door.
  • Cooking food in individual bedrooms (other than in microfridges).
  • Solicitation of goods or services, except by Gettysburg College students who have received prior approval from the Office of College Life.
  • Painting, wallpapering, or similarly decorating individual rooms or common areas unless prior approval is given by the Office of Residential & First-Year Programs and Facilities Services.
  • Repairing any damages or the removal or replacement of light bulbs in ceiling fixtures that have not been approved by the Facilities staff.
  • Removal, destruction, disassembling, or altering of any furniture in a room.
  • Removing screens from windows.
  • Installing wall partitions or paneling.
  • Modifying or tampering with circuit breakers or any part of the electrical system.
  • Installing and subscribing to a cable or satellite TV provider.
  • Installing personal locks or chains on doors or windows.
  • Sleeping in public areas of the residence halls by residents and/or guests.
  • Entering the Quarry pond - this includes wading, swimming, and ice skating.
  • Vehicle maintenance on college property.
  • Flushing of wipes, both flushable and non-flushable brands.