Policies - Residence Halls

In general, students are expected to behave in a considerate and responsible manner which respects the rights of the University and of any other person who may be affected by their actions. All Residence Hall students are expected to abide by the Student Conduct Code. In addition to the Student Conduct Code, UM Housing has outlined the following policies in our 2019-2020 Student Handbook for students living in and visiting the Residence Halls.

Residence Hall Handbook

Residence Hall Contract

In addition to agreeing to the Residence Hall policies, the student must sign and agree to the Residence Halls Contract for the specific term when submitting their housing application. Below is the contract for the indicated term:

Alcohol & Drugs

The University of Montana follows all state and federal statutes. In accordance with state law, students under the age of 21 cannot consume or possess alcohol. When both residents of the room are under the age of 21, neither they nor their guests/visitors may possess or consume alcohol. This includes shot glasses, alcohol decorations (trophy bottles), empty alcohol containers, etc.  

For rooms in which one roommate is 21 or older while the other roommate is not of legal drinking age, the resident who is of legal drinking age may not consume alcohol in his/her room. Rooms where both or all roommates are of legal drinking age may consume alcohol inside their room and must keep their behavior from being disruptive. No guests under the age of 21 may be present in the room while the of-age roommate/guests are consuming alcoholic beverages.

Alcohol is not allowed in any public areas of the building or in rooms occupied by underage residents. Most alcohol situations are brought to attention because of disruptive behavior. This behavior is addressed through student conduct and may require attendance to Behavioral Health Options (Options). The cost of the Options program is the responsibility of the student.

Alcohol violations carry with them the prospect of a Minor In Possession (MIP) and other criminal charges, and more severe consequences are dependent on the behavior displayed at the time of documentation.

Drugs are prohibited in University housing at all times. The UM Housing staff is instructed to call the UM Police Department and let law enforcement take over a situation if drugs are suspected to be present. The University has strict policies regarding the illegal use and abuse of substances. Federal Student Financial Aid is immediately withdrawn if a student is criminally convicted of a drug crime.

Although the State of Montana law permits the use, possession, and/or cultivation of medical marijuana, federal law prohibits the use, possession, and/or cultivation in educational institutions and other recipients of federal funds. The use, possession, and/or cultivation of medical marijuana is therefore prohibited in University of Montana housing facilities on the University of Montana premises. Even if a student, faculty, or staff member possess documentation for permitting the use, possession, and/or cultivation of medical marijuana, this activity cannot occur on University of Montana premises.

Facility Usage

All Residence Halls facilities are reserved for the exclusive use of students who reside in the Residence Halls and their guests. Nonresidents may not use any hall facilities for any reason. Unauthorized use of Residence Halls facilities (e.g., bathrooms, lounges, study rooms, laundry rooms, computer rooms, etc.) may result in disciplinary action and/or criminal action.

Bike theft is very common, so please be sure to always lock your bike up when you are not using it. We ask that residents park and lock their bikes up in the racks provided around the Residence Halls and apartments. Please do not chain or lock them to the stairwells or walkways as this is against the State of Montana fire safety codes.

Because this will be your new home, we encourage you to make it your own. Decorate the interior with plants, posters, and rugs that you and your roommate agree upon. You are free to display posters and other things in your room including either side of your door and the inside of your window except for content unprotected by the First Amendment such as pornographic, obscene, defamatory, or fraudulent messages. You are not allowed to display posters or messages in public areas of your Residence Hall, including outside balconies, without prior consent from the Director of UM Housing. We do ask that you consider removing materials visible to other residents in response to any resident complaint in the interest of maintaining a collegial and civil Residence Hall environment. Decorations must not cause damage to walls or furniture, nor should they cover or hang from fire sprinklers.

Some Residence Halls have elevators. Residents should not tamper with or vandalize these elevators. Residents responsible for damage to elevators will be billed and the resident may be subject to disciplinary action and/or criminal charges.

All outside doors and certain public access areas within the Residence Halls will be monitored using electronic devices such as video cameras and door access readers. This monitoring is for the protection and safety of the residents and UM Housing property.

The University of Montana assists students in protecting their personal property as well as the property of the Residence Halls by providing each student with a room access card. The outside doors to the hall are unlocked with the Griz Card and room access cards will only be issued when the student checks in to the Residence Hall. Students are required to return the room access card at semester break and at the time of moving out of the Residence Hall. The outside doors of all Residence Halls will be locked 24/7. Students are advised to have their room access card and Griz Card with them at all times.

By locking Residence Halls 24/7 and offering periodic personal security programs, the University helps provide a safe and secure community for its residents. We, together with the student, are jointly responsible for safety in our communities. Residents can take responsibility for their own security and the security of the hall by locking their room doors, reporting suspicious behavior, and not propping building doors open.

If a resident loses his or her access card, bedroom key (if applicable), and/or mailbox key, a temporary access card and/or key may be obtained at the hall's Area Desk. The temporary access card and/or key fee is $10.00 per checkout, which will be charged to the student's account. The resident has a week in which to locate the lost access card and/or key. If the student does not locate the lost access card and/or key after the week is over, the locks will be changed. This re-keying policy is for the student's protection and security. The student will be charged for missing access cards ($25.00), bedroom keys ($100.00, if applicable), and/or mailbox keys ($100.00).

Residents should not loan their access cards or keys to others as you are responsible for all activity that takes place within your assigned hall room.

The upkeep of your room is your responsibility. The University of Montana requires residents to maintain their room in a safe and healthy condition at all times. The hall Area Desk has vacuums to check out for student use, and there are trash chutes on each floor for emptying wastebaskets. Recycling is strongly encouraged, and there are central recycling stations located outside each Residence Hall. Some cleaning equipment is also available on each floor. Students can receive replacement light bulbs by contacting the hall Area Desk.

Residents are not allowed to remove any University-issued furniture from their assigned room.

Most rooms within the Residence Halls are shared between two or more students. Once all residents of a room have checked in, a roommate agreement is completed to discuss the expectations between roommates on how the room is to be shared. Until all residents of a room have checked in and an agreement has been completed, the room must remain in a "Ready Room" condition.  A "Ready Room" means all belongings of a resident are on their side of the room leaving the other side of the room clean and clear for the other roommate to check in at any time. This is most common at the beginning of each semester when one roommate moves in before the other. During the semester, a student may move out of a room for various reasons. The remaining resident is required to keep the room condition as a "Ready Room" until a new roommate moves in and a new roommate agreement is completed. All of the remaining resident's belongings must remain on their side of the room in order for UM Housing maintenance staff to clean the vacant side of the room and assess damages. Depending on availability, a double room may be kept as a single room. Until officially approved by the UM Housing Office for the remaining resident to keep a double room as a single room, the room must remain in the "Ready Room" condition.

The University recognizes the right of privacy of all residents living in the Residence Halls, but reserves the right to inspect its property at any time for necessary reasons. For health, safety, or emergency reasons it is sometimes necessary for a University staff member to enter a resident's room when he or she is not present. Every effort will be made to have one or both occupants of the room present when an inspection is made. Periodic inspection of rooms will be made by the Resident Assistant on each floor to check for cleanliness and safety and to be sure that health standards are being maintained. Written notification will be made at least 24 hours before these health/safety inspections take place.

With the exception of local newspaper delivery, general sales and solicitation are prohibited in Residence Halls. In order to guarantee the privacy of all residents, no agents or solicitors are allowed to enter the Residence Halls. Residents bothered by unauthorized persons should report them to the hall staff immediately. As a general rule, Residence Hall mailboxes may not be used for any mailings other than those acceptable to the U.S. Post Office. Exceptions to this rule may be granted subject to the approval of the Director of UM Housing.

Do not unlatch screens, remove windows, or throw items from the windows for any reason. Room occupants will be charged for the total cost of reinstalling, repairing, or replacing damaged or destroyed screens. Additionally, do not enter or exit the building through the windows, which is also subject to disciplinary action.

Fire Safety

In case of a fire, call 911. Fires are a potentially serious problem in all shared living space communities due to the high concentration of individuals living in each building. Please use caution and common sense to avoid a disaster.

Prevention can save your life and the lives of others. Explore your community and familiarize yourself with all exits. Keep exits and access areas clear of all debris and storage. Residence Hall staff will conduct fire drills twice annually in order for all residents to evaluate proper evacuation routes in case of a fire emergency.  

Please note that halogen lamps, candles with wicks, and incense are not allowed to reduce the risk of fires within the Residence Halls.

Candles and incense have been found to be a severe fire hazard, and their use is prohibited in the Residence Halls. Wickless candles are an acceptable alternative and provide fragrance without the flame.

Cooking appliances are not allowed in the Residence Halls except for coffee pots, hot pots, microwaves, and popcorn poppers. In hall kitchens, baking is allowed, but cooking meals that contain meat or cooking with oils is prohibited. Appliances such as toasters, toaster ovens, hot plates, appliances with open elements, crock pots, rice cookers, George Foreman-type grills, Instapots, and airfryers are not allowed.

All-natural trees and branches to be used as ornamentation in the Residence Halls or rooms must first be fireproofed, and all decorations must be non-flammable. Residents may not hang items from the ceiling or from sprinkler heads, or create holes in the walls.

Gasoline, kerosene, alcohol, cleaning fluids, etc., constitute a serious danger and are prohibited in the Residence Halls, as are vehicles containing such fluids.

The Consumer Product Safety Commission issued a warning about the dangers of halogen lamps and the excessive operating temperatures of 970 to 1200 degrees Fahrenheit that they produce. Curtains, clothing, paper items, and so forth burn quickly when they come into contact with 300W or 500W bulbs. Therefore, light bulbs greater than 150W, either incandescent or halogen, are not allowed.

The use, possession, or storage of Hoverboards, Swagways, IO Hawks, Skywalkers, and similar devices, is prohibited on campus until safety standards for them can be developed and implemented, and the prohibition is lifted. Recent information has revealed that the batteries in the devices are dangerous and prone to explosion, creating a safety and fire risk. Until a time that the safety standards for these devices are improved, UM Housing has prohibited them from being in any of our Residence Halls or apartments.

If you have one of these devices, please remove it permanently from University property. Please know that you will not be able to have it in campus housing and if it is found, you will be asked to remove it from University property or face disciplinary action.

General Behavior

To conform to state laws, no form of gambling is permitted in the Residence Halls.

You may have overnight guests stay in your room, not to exceed three days, and with your roommate's permission. The resident host is completely responsible for the activities and behavior of the guest and will be subject to disciplinary action should the guest violate University regulations. Due to fire code regulations, placing mattresses, mats, or sleeping bags on the floor is prohibited. For guests requesting to stay longer than three days, please see your Area Coordinator for the guest request process. Residents should not loan their keys to others

Fish in 10-gallon tanks or less are the only pet allowed in the Residence Halls, University Villages, and Lewis and Clark Village. All other animals, except for certified Service Animals, of any kind are strictly prohibited in the Residence Halls and apartments. This includes pets belonging to guests. Pets will not be permitted to "visit" or be on the premises for any reason.

Exceptions will be made for individuals requiring a service or companion animal. This request must go through the Disability Services for Students Office located in Room 154 of the Lommasson Center. This request must be submitted and approved by the UM Housing Office prior to the animal being in the Residence Halls or apartments.

Anyone making abusive, obscene, or harassing telephone calls or E-mail messages will be subject to prosecution and/or disciplinary action.

Theft of or intentional damage to University furnishings or the property of persons in the Residence Halls or apartments is prohibited and will result in severe disciplinary action and/or prosecution.

Residents should immediately report any missing property to their Resident Assistant, providing a complete description of the items and their value, where they were located, when was the last time the item was seen, and if there is any person suspected of the theft. Any theft should also be reported to the UM Police Department.

As stated in your housing contract, the University of Montana is not responsible for any personal losses due to theft, fire, water damage, or any other incidences specifically mentioned in the agreement. For this reason we strongly urge you to obtain renter's insurance coverage for your personal belongings. If you own an automobile or bicycle, make sure that you have adequate coverage against loss, vandalism, etc.

UM Housing supports the University of Montana’s tobacco free campus policy, and does not permit the use of tobacco products in any of our Residence Halls or apartment buildings. All buildings are designated “No Smoking” in all areas including student rooms. Smoking of any kind (e.g., hookahs, e-cigarettes, and vape/vapor/vaporizer pens) and the use of tobacco products (e.g., chew, snuff, etc.) are not allowed in areas including study rooms, restrooms, hallways, stairways, lobbies, elevators, lounges, student rooms, etc.

In accordance with the University of Montana’s tobacco free campus policy, students also may not smoke or use tobacco products outside the Residence Halls on campus property. Tobacco use is allowable at the following locations: sidewalks along Beckwith, Arthur, 5th and 6th Streets west of Maurice, Maurice north of 6th Street, Kim Williams Trail, and all properties outside of those borders and beyond boundaries of any property of the University of Montana. E-cigarettes and vape/vapor/vaporizer pens can be used on campus, just not within the student’s room or apartment.

Quiet hours are from 8:00 pm to 8:00 am beginning Sunday evening through Friday morning, and from 11:00 pm to 9:00 am beginning Friday evening through Sunday morning. During this period, all activities that might be disturbing to others must be suspended. During finals week and on the "quiet floors," quiet hours are in effect 24 hours a day. All residents are expected to be reasonably quiet at all hours in the Residence Halls. Guidelines for behavior during quiet hours include:

  • Radios and stereos must be quiet enough so they cannot be heard outside the room.
  • Musical instruments can only be played in music rooms available in certain Residence Halls, in the music building, or outside the Residence Halls.
  • The right of a roommate to study and sleep has priority over your right to entertain guests in your room.
  • Because of disturbances to hall residents and the potential for injury to bystanders, outdoor games are limited to the lawns south of Pantzer Hall, east of the second sidewalk in front of Craig Hall, and on the River Bowl. Drumming activities should be taken to the River Bowl area.


Some students have medical conditions requiring the use of needles. Improper disposal of hypodermic needles is dangerous because these needles may carry blood borne pathogens. Proper disposal of hypodermic needles is mandatory. A disposal container can be obtained at no charge by simply asking for one at the Curry Heath Center. Please keep our campus and staff safe by properly disposing of needles.

Any student or student's dependent who has been designated as a violent or sexual offender by a county, state, or federal court and who is requesting housing in University facilities must notify the UM Housing Office of this information prior to execution of the contract.

The UM Housing Office must also be notified when a student or student's dependent residing in University Residence Halls or apartments is designated as a violent or sexual offender within 24 hours following such designation by a county, state, or federal court. The University reserves the right to review the student tenant's or student tenant's dependent's offender status and the potential risk to the community due to the tenant's or tenant's dependent's residence in the University Residence Halls or apartments. After such review the University may deny occupancy to a tenant or a tenant's dependent based on either offender's designation status. A student's failure to provide this required notification may also result in the student's unauthorized occupancy of University premises or other University of Montana Student Conduct Code violations, subjecting the student to Student Conduct Code disciplinary proceedings.

Because of the physical danger, annoyance to residents, and the possibility of fires, possession or discharge of fireworks, noxious chemicals, burning incense, or explosives in the Residence Halls or on campus is prohibited. The University of Montana offers weapons storage through the UM Police Department. Weapons can be stored or checked out Monday through Friday from 8:00 am to 5:00 pm. Special appointments are available upon request. Please contact (406) 243-6130 or (406) 243-6131 (UMPD Dispatch) for additional information or to speak with an officer.

Possessing or using non-lethal weapons (projectiles) that may result in direct or indirect injury are prohibited in a student's room. This may include but is not limited to: slingshots of all types, water balloons, water guns, paintball guns, air soft guns, etc.

Pepper spray/mace/bear spray is permitted as a tool for safety and should only be deployed in the case of an emergency. If used in an offensive manner and not in self-defense, it is considered a non-lethal weapon subject to this policy. Offensive use of pepper spray could also come with criminal charges in the State of Montana.