UC Davis, University of California

Guide to Residence Hall Life


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Section 3: Residence Hall & University Policies

Congratulations on becoming a member of the UC Davis community. You are also a member of the community that exists within your residence hall and floor. Student Housing and University policies are designed to give a clear perception of what is expected of you as a UC Davis student. Living with forty or more people in a community is not always easy, since everyone comes from different backgrounds and has a different set of expectations for living in the halls. The policies and rules that exist are intended to give you and your neighbors standards by which you can live and learn together.

A. Community Standards of Living

1. Responsiveness to University Staff

Resident Advisors are required to document all possible violations of policy. They do not determine who is responsible and will document all persons present. Students have the opportunity to share their account of a situation when they meet with the Conduct Coordinator or Residence Hall Judicial Board. Your actions and behavior during documentation will be taken into account, and it is imperative that you cooperate with the Resident Advisors. Furthermore, students must comply with the directions or requests of University officials, including housing staff such as Coordinators, SRAs, RAs, and administrative managers. Failure to accurately identify oneself, and/or comply with staff requests will result in disciplinary action.

2. Passive Involvement

Being a member of a community means understanding and adhering to community standards and policies. It also means taking an active role in the development and well-being of that community. One community role residents play is to ensure that community standards are upheld. As a community member, you are responsible for your behavior and the choices that you make. It is our hope that you will choose to abide by all university and housing policies as well as community standards. If you are ever in the presence of a policy violation, you have some choices:

  • You may attempt to stop the violation or;
  • You may contact residence hall staff or;
  • You may remove yourself from the situation.

If you choose to remain at the scene of a policy violation, you may be included in the incident report and may be held accountable for a policy violation.

B. Policies

1. Alcohol & Other Drugs

The university's mission of teaching, research, and public service is furthered by promoting a healthful environment free from abuse and illegal use of alcohol and other drugs. The university encourages and supports research and education on topics related to drugs, alcohol, and health. Faculty, administration, staff, and students have individual and shared responsibility to create a healthful campus environment.

Student Housing makes every effort to maintain residential communities free from illegal use, possession or distribution of alcohol and other drugs. Under California law the legal age for alcohol possession and distribution is 21 years old. The university adheres to all federal, state and local laws governing the possession, use, sale, distribution and manufacture of alcohol and other drugs.

University policy prohibits illegal possession, use, sale, distribution and manufacture of alcohol and other drugs. The university discourages the abuse of alcohol and other drugs. This abuse often disrupts the community risking the health and safety of the abuser and others who come in contact with him or her. Those who violate alcohol and other drug policies are subject to disciplinary action, criminal prosecution, and/or referral to treatment/intervention programs.

Possession and/or use of alcoholic beverages in or around the residence halls is not allowed, except by residents who are of legal drinking age, in their assigned room/suite or that of another resident who is of legal drinking age, with the door closed, or at authorized special events that adhere to Campus Regulations on Alcoholic Beverages. Residents who are of legal age but who have roommates or suitemates who are under 21 need to be aware that they are not to consume alcohol around underage residents, including their roommates or suitemates. Neither kegs and/or other bulk quantities of alcoholic beverages, distribution of alcohol to anyone under the age of 21 years, nor manufacture of alcoholic beverages are permitted in the residence halls. Students who provide an environment where underage students can drink are in violation of this policy, even if the hosting student is not drinking. Students who are intoxicated or not in control of their behavior so as to be disruptive or destructive to the community, the facility, or themselves, are also in violation of this policy.

The possession, use, sale, or other involvement with any controlled substance (illegal drug) violates the law and is against both university and residence hall policy. A marijuana smell can also be considered disruptive to the community, and will be treated as a policy violation in the same way that not being in control of your behavior and/ or being disruptive to the community is an alcohol policy violation. Possession of a valid medical marijuana card does not permit possession or use of marijuana in the residence halls or on Student Housing property.

2. Barbecues

Barbecues are not allowed on balconies, under trees, or in courtyards for fire safety reasons. They are also not allowed around swimming pools. Barbecues must be at least twenty-five (25) feet away from any structure and/or overhang. This distance must be increased if the smoke is traveling towards a building or any window. Lighter fluid may not be stored in your residence hall room.

3. Bathrooms

Residents are not permitted to use, walk through or be in bathrooms designated for the opposite gender. Coed floors may have only one single-gender bathroom, so some residents could have to use bathrooms on another floor in the building. Bathrooms designated as gender neutral can be used by anyone. Residents need to be considerate of others when using the bathrooms. Students engaging in inappropriate behavior for community bathrooms may be referred for disciplinary action. Students may not use bathrooms when they are being cleaned by custodial staff.

4. Bedbugs

UC Davis takes a proactive approach in addressing the issue of all types of household pests, including bedbugs. It is our goal to maintain the highest quality living environment for our residents. Student Housing has no prior knowledge of a bedbug infestation or has professionally treated the room for bedbugs.

Any student who suspects they may have bedbugs in their room is required to immediately notify their Area Service Desk to report the problem. An inspection will be scheduled and treatment will be done if bedbugs are present. Students may be temporarily transferred to another space while their room is being treated and re-inspected. Students will be asked to leave all belongings in the room for treatment while they are relocated.

Students are advised to avoid buying or receiving used furniture, mattress pads or covers due to possible “hitch hiking” of bedbugs into the room. Bedbugs may also be carried into a room in luggage, backpacks, clothing and packages. Resident owned belongings that are found to have bedbugs must be permanently removed or treated and re-inspected by trained professionals before being returned to the room.

5. Bicycles

For safety reasons, bicycles are to be parked only in designated bicycle parking areas. At no time are bicycles to be parked or ridden on walkways, in hallways, courtyards, stairwells, or in other public spaces. Bicycle repairs and maintenance may not be performed within residence halls; grease, oil, and solvents can damage carpets and floors. Residents will be financially responsible for any damages in their room. Bikes may be repaired at Bike Fix-it Stations located on the east side of Miller Hall, the basement of Thoreau and between Laben and Campbell. Bikes need to be registered at Transportation & Parking Services. Visit the TAPS website at taps.ucdavis.edu/bicycles for more information. Residents must remove their bicycles from the residence halls and campus grounds at the end of the academic year. Failure to do so will result in administrative charges. Residents should always lock bicycles properly to a fixed pod or rack; they should not be locked freestanding. Bikes should not be locked to ramps, handrails or parked in front of building exit/entrance doors. As many as 800 bikes are reported stolen at UC Davis each year.

6. Computers

Residents are responsible for following the campus computer and network use policy.

Examples of unacceptable network use include, but are not limited to: operating a business via the Internet; copying music, graphics, and other copyrighted information; establishing unauthorized servers on the network; and "hacking" (unauthorized access to another system). Misrepresenting oneself through any instant messenger service is also a policy violation. Students misusing computer and network privileges will lose in-room network access and face university disciplinary sanctions.

Facebook, Twitter and other social networking sites can be positive ways to get to know others in your community and at UC Davis, but it is important to remember that these sites are public, and all information shared via these kinds of sites is automatically public unless you change the settings to private.

It is also a resident's responsibility to provide and maintain updated virus protection on his or her individual computer. Computers and networks provide communication and access to resources on campus and worldwide. Such open access is a privilege and requires that individuals act responsibly. Users must respect the rights of others, respect the integrity of the systems and related physical resources, and observe all relevant laws, regulations, and contractual obligations. Since electronic information is volatile and easily reproduced, users must exercise care in acknowledging and respecting the work of others through strict adherence to software licensing agreements and copyright laws. Students may not download or share copyrighted materials in violation of such laws. These violations often occur through the use of peer-to-peer filesharing programs and students should be aware of how programs work before installing them on their computers.

7. Damage & Cleanliness

Students who accidentally or intentionally damage residence hall property will be expected to make restitution for repair or replacement. Students may not make repairs or alterations (including the removal of closet doors) to any university property or furniture. Students will be held responsible for cleaning up or be billed for cleaning any excessive messes in their room/suites or common spaces (see damage reduction). It is the resident's responsibility to report custodial and maintenance concerns using the Student Housing channel on MyUCDavis.

In order to promote acceptable levels of sanitation, hygiene and proper care of university property, all students are expected to clean their bedrooms. Trash from bedrooms must be disposed of properly in designated locations. Locations are different for each area and residents must comply with area policies. Cuarto residents will have their bathrooms cleaned every two weeks. Student Housing provides the cleaning supplies necessary to meet these expectations. Residents who fail to meet this requirement are subject to charges for labor, supplies and overhead associated with university staff having to clean the assigned spaces.

8. Electrical Safety & Appliances

Student safety and residence hall electrical capacities are the primary concerns related to the use of electrical appliances in the residence halls. The following policy for the use of electric appliances is intended to allow residents to enjoy the use of some appliances without compromising safety standards or overtaxing our electrical capacities. All appliances used in the residence halls must be used responsibly and be in good working order, free of wiring defects, and approved for use by Underwriters' Laboratory (UL). All cords and plugs must be grounded and free of frays.

  • Only one refrigerator and one microwave, or one microfridge is/are allowed in any single, double, or triple room. In suites, each living room and bedroom can have one refrigerator and one microwave. The maximum storage capacity permitted for refrigerators is 4.5 cubic feet with a maximum height of 35 inches. The maximum allowable wattage for microwave ovens is 800 watts.
  • Only one coffee maker may be in use at a time in any residence hall room. Due to a sensitive heat/fire detection system, hot air popcorn poppers may not be used in residence hall rooms, nor are other food related appliances such as toasters, toaster ovens, crock pots, hot plates, waffle irons, rice cookers, broilers, etc. These items may, however, be used in "community kitchens." Used food containers must be properly disposed of daily.
  • No modifications to, or changes in, electrical wiring are permitted. No "splices," "octopuses," or modification devices of any kind may be used to "add plugs" in your room or suite. UL approved, grounded power strips with fuses may be used only for computer and computer related hardware.
  • Paper or plastic may not be used to cover any light or light fixture. No modifications may be made to your university-provided desk lamp, or living room lamps, if applicable.
  • Lighting fixtures, including holiday lights, are not allowed to be strung on any surface outside rooms or suites.
  • We strongly recommend that you do not use a portable electric heater in your room, suite or apartment. If not used correctly portable heaters can be very dangerous. If there is a problem with the heat in your room, please report the problem using the "Service Request" link on your MyUCDavis home page. If you do use a portable electric heater, it must be in good repair. Use only a UL approved heater, with tip-over protection and wattage below 1200 watts.

9. Elevators

Maximum occupancy and weight limits are posted inside the elevators; however, guidelines for safe usage are also posted on the outside of some elevator doors. Students who exceed maximum occupancy limits in elevators and/or cause the elevator to malfunction may be referred to Student Housing and/or Student Judicial Affairs. They may also be assessed any costs associated with any maintenance or repairs.

10. Fire & Safety Equipment

Refer to the Fire Safety section of this booklet for policies regarding fire alarms, smoke detectors, candles, and other fire safety standards. Because of the sensitivity of our fire detection system, and for safety reasons, no objects are to be thrown indoors (see sports).

11. Furniture

  • Residence hall furnishings are not to be removed from public areas. No university furniture is allowed outdoors or on balconies. No university furniture may be removed from any room or suite. Removing furniture from public areas is considered theft and will result in a referral to Student Judicial Affairs.
  • Students wishing to have a bed ladder must review and sign the Bed Ladder Acknowledgement form available at the area service desk. Student Housing staff will install a ladder and/or restraining rail to lofted or bunked beds upon request.

12. Guests

  • A guest is any person who visits a room, suite, dining commons or any Student Housing facility to which he or she is not assigned.
  • Residents are prohibited from hosting guests who have had their housing contracts terminated or who are banned from the residence halls.
  • Hosts must be a resident of the room or suite.
  • Hosts must have permission from their roommate(s) and suitemate(s) before a guest is permitted. Although roommates and suitemates are encouraged to work out host privileges with one another, the rights of a resident take priority over those of a guest.
  • Hosts may not have overnight guests more than seven cumulative nights per academic quarter. This includes guests staying in bedrooms and common areas.
  • Hosts are responsible for their guest's actions and will be held accountable for policy violations.
  • Hosts may treat their guests in the dining commons by charging an additional meal against their card.
  • Guests should be let into the building only by their host, and hosts may not give their room keys to guests so guests can enter rooms unescorted.
  • Guests must abide by university and residence hall regulations and show consideration for the community.
  • Overnight guests must be housed only in hosting students' rooms.
  • Overnight guests are not allowed during final exam week.

13. Firearms & Weapons

Fireworks, ammunition, explosives, pyrotechnics, or flammable materials are prohibited in the residence halls. Weapons of any kind (including, but not limited to, firearms, bb-guns, air rifles, paintball guns, knives, switchblades, swords, brass knuckles, and nun-chuks) are also prohibited in the residence halls. Airsoft guns may not be discharged in the residence halls or any Student Housing building. Any item used to harm or threaten any individual or oneself is considered a weapon. It is a criminal offense for any person to bring or possess firearms on university grounds without permission (see California Penal Code Section 626.9). The university, upon discovering the presence of any weapon, may terminate any contracts immediately and the student may be subject to campus disciplinary or other legal action.

14. Food Fights

Students are not to be involved in food fights or throw food in the dining commons or any residence hall space. If someone throws food at you, please seek assistance from University Dining Services or residence hall staff; retaliation is not an appropriate response and may lead to disciplinary action.

15. Food, Supplies, & Utensils

Your meal contract entitles you to unlimited servings while in the dining rooms. You are permitted to take out an ice cream bar/cone, a piece of fruit, or a baked good, and a beverage. Student Housing provides reusable bottles for residents. These are the only beverage containers that can be brought into the dining rooms. University policy does not allow students to take any other food, supplies, or utensils from the dining facilities. Taking food from the dining rooms not only deprives others, but also increases food costs for future residents. Taking dishes, utensils, and supplies creates shortages that inconvenience the entire community. Students violating these policies can expect to be referred for disciplinary action by dining commons staff, RAs or other housing staff. Sport bottles are not allowed in the dining commons.

16. Hall Postings

Only residence hall staff may post information in the residence halls. In each area, there may be one bulletin board for general public postings; see a staff member for the location in your area. Posting is not permitted on walls, windows, or bulletin boards without permission. Students may not destroy or damage educational or informational bulletin boards created by Resident Advisors.

17. Lounges & Public Space

Residence hall lounges and public spaces are part of assigned residents' homes. The use of these areas is reserved for resident study space, resident recreational use and Student Housing program activities. At least half of the participants in any group meeting or gathering in a lounge must be residents. Because lounges are for all residents to use, lounge activities must be appropriate for a group living environment. Students engaging in sexual activity or other behavior that impacts the ability of all residents to use lounge space may be referred for disciplinary action.

18. Musical Instruments

The use of musical instruments in the residence halls is a privilege. Instruments are to be played with consideration for the rights of other residents. This privilege must always be exercised within noise policy guidelines; inability to work within these guidelines may result in the loss of playing privileges. Amplified sound is not allowed in any residential areas.

19. Noise

Noise is any sound, human or otherwise, that can be heard outside a room. To reduce noise in the residence halls, specific quiet hours have been established. During finals, quiet hours are 21 hours a day. Residents must leave the halls within 24 hours of their last final to minimize disruptions for residents still taking exams. During quiet hours, disruptive noise is not to be heard outside rooms; all other hours are "courtesy hours," during which a reasonable amount of quiet is expected to allow residents to sleep and study. Residents are responsible for their own behavior and must ask those who infringe upon their rights to be more courteous. Construction noise should be expected during designated hours and is exempt from this policy.

Minimum Quiet Hours
  • Sunday through Thursday: 11pm-7am
  • Friday and Saturday: 1am-7am

20. Parking

Residence hall students are ineligible to purchase campus parking permits and may not park vehicles on campus. Residents are not allowed to possess stolen or borrowed permits and may not have a nonresident obtain a permit for them. Students found in violation of this policy may be subject to university discipline.

21. Pets

All pets and animals are prohibited in the residence halls, except fish in an aquarium that does not exceed ten gallons. Student Housing must approve requests for aquariums and all roommates must have the concurrence of all roommates prior to set up.

22. Rates

Listed below are the rates charged for failure to adhere to residence hall policies and guidelines:

Administrative Fee
  • $25
  • Reason for charge: Charged for lost access card, late return of or failure to return borrowed equipment or items, and for a filled signature card
Cleaning Fee
  • $25/hour
  • Note: One hour minimum
Failure to Clean
  • $50
  • Reason for charge: in addition to the cleaning fee this fee will be charged when it is clear no attempt was made to clean before vacating
Failure to Vacate
  • $75
  • Reason for charge: Resident fails to vacate room on date contractually agreed upon
Homesteading Fee
  • $75
  • Reason for charge: Resident uses vacant space for roommate as personal space
Illegal Room Swap
  • $75
  • Reason for charge: Residents swap rooms without following Student Housing procedures
Improper Check out
  • $75
  • Reason for charge: Resident fails to follow Student Housing check out procedures
Late Housing Payment
  • $75
  • Reason for charge: Resident pays quarterly fee after the due date
Lock Change
  • $50
  • Reason for charge: Resident loses or fails to return a key
Object Retrieval
  • $65
  • Reason for charge: Retrieval of items from inaccessible locations

23. Pools & Spas

Cuarto residents and their invited guests enjoy the privilege of hall pools and spas. There are no lifeguards and residents are responsible for appropriate standards of health and safety. The university assumes no responsibility for damage or injury resulting from the use of pools and spas. The policies outlined below are intended to ensure the safe and enjoyable use of these facilities.

  • Pools and spas are for the use of Cuarto residents and their guests only; two guests per resident may use the facilities at one time.
  • Pool and spa hours are the same as quiet hours. Students must comply with residence hall noise policies.
  • Using pools and spas alone is not advised; at least two individuals must be present in pool areas before using the facilities.
  • Glass is prohibited in pool and spa areas; only plastic or metal containers are allowed.
  • Pushing, shoving, running, and/or any horseplay (including water fights) around pool walkways and courtyard areas is prohibited; jumping and/or diving into pools and spas is prohibited.
  • Throwing items from balconies, walkways, or in pool areas is not allowed.
  • Appropriate bathing attire is required when using pools or spas.
  • Unless it is a student housing event, no amplified sound or stereo or stereos in the pool areas.
  • During final exam periods, the pool hours mirror finals quiet hours, making the pool and spa areas open only from 5 p.m.-8 p.m. each day.

24. Pranks & Practical Jokes

Pranks, practical jokes and other forms of disruption have no place in the campus community. Such activities, while often non ill intentioned, may escalate into harmful and/or destructive behaviors. The victims of practical jokes often feel harassed or physically injured by what has happened to them, and do not see it as "funny." Therefore, these kinds of activities are strictly prohibited.

25. Research Projects

Research in the residence halls or involving residence hall students such as ethnographic interviews, psychology experiments, and curricular evaluation studies, must follow all federal regulations and campus protocols.

26. Screens, Roofs, & Balconies

Residents are not permitted on sunscreens, ledges, or roofs, and must not remove window screens; first floor security screens must remain closed and latched except to exit in case of emergencies. Residents and guests may not climb or cross over balconies to access or exit buildings. Items are not permitted to hang out windows nor may objects be thrown or dropped from windows, walkways, balconies, stair landings, or roofs. Due to the serious safety issues involved, those responsible may be referred to Student Judicial Affairs and cited by UC Davis police for trespassing in a restricted area.

27. Skateboards, Roller Skates, & Inline Skates

For everyone's safety, skateboards, roller skates, and inline skates may not be used in hallways, walkways, courtyards, stairwells, or other public spaces. Roller skates and inline skates may not be worn inside the residence halls or dining halls. The use of skate equipment on benches, curbs, handrails, tables, or similar surfaces is prohibited.

28. Smoking & Incense

UC Davis is committed to providing a healthy, smoke-free environment for students, faculty, and staff. No smoking is permitted in residence halls or dining facilities. In accordance with local law, additional smoke-free areas are within 25 feet of any building, courtyard, pool area, exterior walkway or balcony. This distance must be increased if the smoke is traveling towards a building or any window. Residents or guests who smoke in permissible areas must provide their own receptacle to extinguish and dispose of cigar/cigarette butts appropriately. Failure to do so constitutes littering and will not be tolerated. As a courtesy to community residents, incense burning is not allowed in the halls.

29. Solicitation

No solicitation is allowed within the residence halls and/or exterior areas as outdoor areas surrounding on-campus student residential facilities are nonpublic areas. Solicitation is defined as any uninvited contact, generally involving a request or literature distribution. No person may distribute literature or solicit in the residential outdoor areas or residence halls except Registered Student Organizations (RSO) who have an approved Dining Room Table reservation. RSOs should submit reservation requests to Student Housing for approval. Solicitors should be referred to the Student Housing staff.

  • The Segundo area is defined as the area bordered on the east by California Avenue, on the west by LaRue Road, on the north by Russell Boulevard, and the south by parking lot 25.
  • The Tercero area is defined as the area bordered on the east by Bioletti Way, on the west by Dairy Road, on the north by Tercero Hall Circle, and on the south by LaRue Road.
  • The Cuarto area is defined as the area bordered on the east by Sycamore Lane, on the west by Oxford Circle, on the north by Wake Forest Drive, and on the south by Russell Boulevard.

30. Sports

Sports, especially those involving thrown objects, are not permitted within residence halls, in courtyards, and surrounding property. No games or sports are permitted in any courtyard, pool area, or grass area; residents should make use of intramural fields, recreation hall spaces and city parks for sporting activities.

31. Stereos & Amplified Sound

The use of stereos and other amplified devices in the residence halls is a privilege and, in keeping with the noise policy, is to be exercised within reason, with moderation and consideration. Bass travels easily through walls and should be kept to a minimum. Speakers may not be directed out any window. Lack of consideration may result in loss of privileges.

32. Storm Drains

For many years, it was common practice to wash down sidewalks and driveways, rinse out various containers, or wash down equipment and vehicles directly into storm drain inlets. On the UC Davis campus, storm water drains directly into our local waterway. Storm drains in the core campus drain directly into the Arboretum Waterway, and excess water from the Arboretum Water-way discharges to Putah Creek. Campus EH & S would like to encourage members of the campus community to take an active role in helping eliminate non-storm water pollutants from entering the campus storm water conveyance system. This will help ensure the campus stays in compliance with both federal and state regulations, but will also help to protect the environment for both wildlife and us.

The storm water information is located on the Safety Services website, located at: safetyservices.ucdavis.edu, under Environmental Compliance/Water Quality Programs.

The campus community can also report illicit discharges on-line at: http://safetyservices.ucdavis.edu/programs-and-services/environmental-compliance/water-1/report-of-an-illicit-discharge.

33. Videotaping & Camera Use

No person may videotape, audio record, or take photographs of any person in a private location without that person's explicit knowledge and consent. Private locations include, but are not limited, to , residence hall rooms and common areas, bathrooms, lounges, and other areas where residents have a reasonable expectation of privacy.

34. Violence

Any perpetration of physical aggression or violence, or the use of real or implied threats against another resident, in or near campus housing is unacceptable. Students involved in these behaviors will be referred to the Student Housing Office to have their housing contract reviewed. Students may also be subject to student discipline through the Office of Student Judicial Affairs.

35. Water Fights

For reasons of safety and sanitation, water fights are prohibited in all residence hall areas, including inside buildings, courtyards, pool areas, and in areas around the buildings. This policy includes, but is not limited to, water balloons and water guns. Students may use these items on green spaces as long as the activity does not disrupt others or create a safety risk.