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First Year Housing Information

Welcome to the Class of 2020!  First year students who begin in the fall semester are guaranteed housing for the academic year. First year students that join JMU in the spring will be housed only for the spring semester.

All first year students are required to live in university residence halls for the entirety of their first academic year at James Madison University (fall and spring semesters). Exceptions to the first year residency requirement may be made for:

  • First year students who commute daily within a 60-mile radius from the permanent home of their parents or legal guardians.
  • First-year students who are 21 years of age or older.
  • Married first year students.
  • Requests for exceptions must be made in writing to the Director of Residence Life. 

New first year students will be able to access the Online Housing System in early April. Visiting this system, students will be able to sign a housing contract, select a meal plan, rank their area preferences and search for roommates.

Room assignments and roommate information will be emailed to first year students on August 1. Move in for first year students is August 23 and 24 from 9:00 am to 2:00 pm, depending on which residence hall the student has been assigned to. 

Residential Learning Communities

Students who participate in a Residential Learning Community get the unique opportunity to live and take classes with a small group of students who share similar interests. Read more about Residential Learning Communities here.

Temporary Triples

A temporary triple is defined as a room that is designated as double occupancy, but has been modified to house three students. The room was randomly assigned by the Office of Residence Life and not at the request of the residents. Temporary triples have three complete sets of furniture and three internet ports. Read more about Temporary Triples here.

Housing After Your First Year

The Office of Residence Life offers new students the opportunity to sign housing contracts for their second year at JMU, called an Upperclass Housing Contract. Why would you want to think about upperclass housing before you’ve even lived on campus as a Duke? There are lots of housing options for students, and it can be quite overwhelming to choose what’s best. We think that living on campus is a great option for all students. Research has shown that living on campus has many benefits for students, including fostering connections to the campus community and enhancing academic outcomes. You can read more about these benefits here.

Beginning in April, new students will be able to commit to living on campus for the 2017-2018 academic year by signing an upperclass housing contract. Students who sign this contract are guaranteed a place on campus for their second year. Signing now also means earlier access to the room selection process that will take place during the spring 2017 semester. Specific building locations will be finalized during Fall 2016.

First Year Housing FAQs

When are housing contracts available?

The contract will be available on the Online Housing System in early April. 

When are housing contracts due?

Housing contracts must be submitted by Monday, May 16. The Online Housing System will continue to accept contracts after May 16. However, students that sign after this deadline may be assigned to a temporary triple. 

I'm in the Honors program. Do I have to submit a housing contract?

Yes. All first year students must complete a housing contract. 

Does everyone have to submit a housing contract?

Yes. All first year students must complete a housing contract, unless they are an authorized commuter. 

Do I have to complete the upperclass contract for 2017-2018?

No, the upperclass contract is not required. Students who complete the 2017-2018 upperclass contract will be guaranteed JMU housing for their sophomore year, but we will also offer second year contracts to students in October of their freshman year. 

When will I find out who my room and roommate?

Roommate information will be sent out to students in early August to their @dukes email address. The information will include the building location and room number, roommate information, and move in date. 

Can I choose what day I move in?

No, students will be assigned a move in date based on the building they are in. 

What buildings are available to first year students?

The following halls will be available to first year students:

  • Bluestone: Gifford, Hoffman, Logan, Spotswood, and Wayland
  • Hillside: Bell, Hillside, and McGraw-Long
  • Lakeside: Eagle and Shorts
  • Skyline: Chesapeake, Potomac and Shenandoah (A-section)
  • Village: Chappelear, Dingledine, Frederikson, Garber, Hanson, Huffman, Ikenberry, and Weaver 

How do you assign spaces?

We try to follow as closely as possible to students’ preferences, but unfortunately it is impossible to give everyone their first or second location choice. If you arrive on campus and are still interested in a room change, your Hall Director can help you fill out a room change form which will be processed three weeks into the school year.