image of wilson complex basketball courtbackground image of pine treependant background imageheader image of librarypurple background imageimage of stair wellimage of student union builingimage of gutterImage of ceilingImage of ceiling of the wilson complex buildingimage of wall in Tech buildingimage of swimming poolimage of ceilingimage of window at Studnet union buildingWall imageImage of window at science buildingImage of window at science buildingImage of stairs in science buildingImage of interior of science buildingImage of science buildingImage of science buildingImage of library buildingImage of buildingbackground image of ceiling

Residence Halls Handbook on Policies and Procedures

Portrait of Yvette Wilkes

Welcome

Dear Resident Student,

On behalf of the entire Housing and Student Conduct Department staff, it is our pleasure to welcome you to on-campus living at New Mexico Highlands University. We are thrilled that you have joined this living and learning community and look forward to engaging in the challenges and opportunities of the coming year with you. As you will discover, living in a residence hall is a unique experience. As an active member of the community, you will have an opportunity to work with others to set a standard of living conducive to personal and academic growth. It is our deepest hope and commitment that you will find Highlands to be a caring and supportive home where you are stretched intellectually, and socially.
Our goal is to create an environment that supports learning and community development. To accomplish this, we are committed to supporting the differences among individuals within our community and, at the same time, to serving the needs of the University as well as the local community in which it exists. Our staff is dedicated to making the residential experience a full and rewarding one for each of you. However, we cannot succeed in this effort alone. You are encouraged to take advantage of the leadership, educational and social opportunities offered to the resident student. We hope that you will participate by taking part in social and educational programs, initiating contacts with your neighbors and floor mates, and collaborating with them in building a sense of community.

This Living on Campus handbook is your guide to residence hall policies, procedures and services. We hope you will assist us in providing an atmosphere of mutual respect through cooperative and responsible behavior. Should you have any questions or suggestions, please know that we are here to assist you in any way that we can.

Sincerely,
Yvette Wilkes
Director of Housing and Student Conduct


Quick links

Housing & Student Conduct Policies and Procedures
Community Living Agreement
Life in Your Residence Hall
Planned Programs (Activities!)
Tutoring Services
Statement of Community
Roommate Agreement
Finances
Leadership Opportunities
Residence Hall Environments
Residence Hall/ Campus Apartment Policies
Rights of Entry
Housing Services & Maintenance
Moving In
Consolidation of Living Space
Moving Out
FAQs
Housing and Student Conduct Contract Release Policy
and Refund Schedule


Residence Halls
HOUSING & STUDENT CONDUCT POLICIES AND PROCEDURES

This handbook is provided to help you maximize your residence hall experience at Highlands. This is provided to help:

  • Enable you to become more familiar with our residence hall system, its services, programs, facilities, staff responsibilities, policies and procedures.
  • Familiarize you with the mission and goals of the Department of Housing and Student Conduct at Highlands University.
  • Inform you of your rights and responsibilities as a residence hall community member.
  • Serve as a reference guide throughout the year.

It is important that you have an overall understanding of the Highlands University residence hall program. This handbook can answer many of your questions. Please take time to thoroughly read this information and get to know your campus home.
Residence hall staff members are valuable resources who can provide clarification and information about residence hall and campus communities. Please feel free to address any questions to hall staff.

DORM vs. RESIDENCE HALL
It has been a long, long time since the days of dorm mothers and 10 p.m. curfews. For the next nine months, your residence hall will be your home and should be treated as such. It will be a place in which you will learn much about yourself, grow, and have fun!
Dorm (dorm): n. 1. place for sleeping 2. building or part of one with sleeping rooms.
Residence Hall (rez idenz hol): n. 1. where college students develop personally or mature 2. a college building in which experiences and programs result in positive growth.

COMMUNITY LIVING AGREEMENT
To encourage students who live in the residence halls to take ownership and responsibility for their living community, the Department of Housing and Student Conduct has incorporated community living agreements as a part of the foundation for residence hall policies. A community living agreement is a document that community members draw up together at the beginning of each year that enables them to become actively involved in developing the behavioral standards in which they will invest and be held accountable.
Students, within the first few days of their arrival, will sit down with the members of their community and develop a set of value-based criteria that each person on the wing or floor will agree to live by. Additionally, the agreement will be revisited at the beginning of each semester to allow for adjustments and changes. As each member of the community will sign the agreement, each member will be held accountable for the contents of the document that they had a part in developing.
The agreements include, but not be limited to, expectations of academic honesty, the creation of gracious space for students to express their feelings, opinions and ideas, abiding by University and State policies surrounding alcohol and drug use, safety, personal property, respect and trust.

LIFE IN YOUR RESIDENCE HALL
In your new home you will find:

RESIDENCE HALL DIRECTORS (RDs):

  • Responsible for managing your residence hall.
  • Supervise the RA and desk staff in the hall.
  • Work with the RA staff to develop programs.
  • Prior experience as an RA.
  • Assist residence hall coordinator with hall administration.

RESIDENT ASSISTANTS (RAs):

  • Are students just like you.
  • Answer your questions.
  • Help you with your academic, social or personal concerns.
  • Plan programs and enhance policies and procedures.
  • Help develop Community Living Agreements.
  • Are a valuable resource. Get to know your RA!

CUSTODIAL STAFF:

  • Work diligently to clean your lobbies, bathrooms, and other public areas of the hall!
  • Will clean your hallway, but not your room!

MAINTENANCE PERSONNEL:

  • Respond to your maintenance needs.

All of these specially trained staff are here for you and are to be treated with respect at all times!

PLANNED PROGRAMS (ACTIVITIES!)

What are the programs?
A program is an event designed to enhance your learning and development. You’ll learn something and have fun at the same time. Sometimes these activities happen spontaneously on your floor, but most of the time your RA will plan an activity for all to participate in. Check the bulletin boards, bedroom doors, laundry rooms, lobbies and other areas in your hall where information is shared to find out what is happening in your hall.

Why should I attend programs?
You’ll spend 70 percent of your time in your residence hall/complex. By attending programs, you will get to know other students in your hall and enjoy a wealth of information.
There will also be additional special programming for freshman during the spring semester. Look for information in your residence hall.

TUTORING SERVICES
Student Support Services offers free tutoring at the Felix Martinez Building. Look for postings with specific time information.

STATEMENT OF COMMUNITY
Living in a residence hall at New Mexico Highlands University means living in a community of students. This community is a dynamic place, composed of various people with different values, cultures, lifestyles, and attitudes. As members of the community, we must strive to understand the individuality and life choices of those among us. We can best learn from one another in an atmosphere of positive encouragement and mutual respect. We must possess a genuine desire to learn from those around us as well as give others the respect and tolerance we desire. Each person has a role to play in our residence hall community and should be allowed to do so.

NEW MEXICO HIGHLANDS RESIDENCE HALL COMMUNITIES INCORPORATE:

  • Education: to ensure that teaching and learning take place outside the classroom
  • Integrity: adhering to and promoting high standards in self, others and community
  • Respect: to ensure that the individual accepts obligations to the community and is held accountable for individual actions
  • Thoughtfulness: to ensure that the individual’s well being is supported and that community engagement is encouraged
  • Connection: so all individuals have a voice in decisions concerning their communities
  • Ownership: to ensure that all individuals care for their building facilities and adjacent property
  • Inclusion: so that all cultures, and individual accomplishments are recognized and celebrated and so ideas and thoughts can be discussed freely

YOUR RIGHTS IN THE COMMUNITY INCLUDE:
To socialize in your room; to sleep and study without disturbance; to live in a supportive and stimulating community; to live in a safe, secure, healthy, and clean environment; to enjoy access to a variety of programs, services, and facilities; and to involve yourself and others in promoting an educational, respectful, thoughtful, connected, and inclusive community of students with integrity.
YOUR RESPONSIBILITIES WITHIN THE COMMUNITY INCLUDE:
To consider the needs of the other students in the community and balance them with your own needs; to promote care of the physical facilities, equipment, and services; to communicate with other residents and staff members to let others know when they are disturbing you; to demonstrate a commitment to the community by getting involved; to promote campus and individual safety; and to demonstrate dignity and respect for all individuals.

Living on campus affords you many opportunities to face challenges head on, achieve in a variety of areas and grow as an individual.

However, these things only happen when you actively participate and support the community ideas stated here.
Adapted from In Search of Community, Ernest Boyer, Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching.

YOU AND YOUR ROOMMATE
This section was prepared to assist roommates in learning about one another so they can harmoniously live together. The variety of topics attempts to provide a broad cross-section of the potential encounters you will have when sharing living space. Your roommate needs to know your general personal background, your attitude and emotions, your values (feelings, attitudes, opinions), and personal preferences.

The term “sharing” is most important here because residence hall living requires a concept of cooperation, whether it is with your roommate or with other residents on your floor. You can begin with a willingness to share some of yourself with your roommate. Open and honest communication usually ensures a satisfactory roommate relationship.

PERSONAL BACKGROUND
You should start by using the questions below to give your roommate some basic information about yourself – the place where you have grown up, information about your schooling, your family, your hobbies, your interests, etc. Try to offer more than “I’m from Austin and I’m interested in the outdoors.”
Members of my family include:
I am glad to be away from home because:
I was not glad to leave home because
I chose Highlands University because:

PERSONAL VALUES:
In this section, you are being challenged to communicate – try and share ideas, issues, and values. Learn what you should know about each other. This is the most crucial portion of the, you and your roommate section, because it will help establish the basis for your living arrangements.
How do I want our room to be utilized?

I expect our room to be…
Who will clean what and when?
How about friends and visitors in our room?
My feelings about my personal belongings are…
My feelings about smoking are…
Grades and studying are…
I prefer to study…

ATTITUDES AND EMOTIONS:
Attitudes and emotions are an important part of us. We convey feelings both verbally and nonverbally. This portion of you and your roommate encourages you to clarify the emotions and attitudes that you express.
I am generally (reserved, outgoing, etc.)…
My pet peeves are…
When I am:
…angry, I generally…
…frustrated, I generally…
…sad, I generally…
…concerned, I generally…
…excited, I generally…
…happy, I generally…
It is (easy, hard) to talk about my feelings.
…Why?

OUR REACTIONS TO EACH OTHER:
Last but not least, you are at the point of drawing some conclusions and identifying positive and negative factors in your living situation with your roommate.
Some things that I have learned from this discussion are…
An important difference between us is…
And we will work on this by…
My roommate and I agree that we will do the following, if conflict occurs between us…

ROOMMATE AGREEMENT
Successful roommates stick things out by helping one another through the good times and the bad times. Don’t quit on your roommate.
We, the residents of room ______ in ________________ Hall agree to the following on this _____ day in the month of _______________ in 20 ______.

  •  We have completed the You and Your Roommate section and discussed each item with one another.
  • The You and Your Roommate section is a tool to assist us in being responsible and courteous roommates.
  • We expect one another to:
  • We will do the following, if conflict occurs between us:
    Roommate #1
    Roommate #2

FINANCES
Handling finances is an educational experience. Avoid your expenses exceeding your income. Establish a budget. Know what’s coming in and what’s going out.

INCOMING OUTGOING
 Money from home  Tuition
 Possible work study stipend  Books
 Part-time job  Room and board
Possible scholarship  Laundry
 Financial aid  Snacks
 Supplies
 Possible travel
 Shopping
 Entertainment

Spend your money wisely.  Buy used books when possible. Use student discounts. Limit or avoid credit card use. Investigate banks for good interest rates.

LEADERSHIP OPPORTUNITIES

ASSOCIATED STUDENTS OF NEW MEXICO HIGHLANDS UNIVERSITY (ASNMHU)

Elected student representatives on the student senate govern the ASNMHU. Under the ASNMHU constitution, student government leadership is committed to representing the broad spectrum of student needs relative to university activity. ASNMHU meets at designated times and can be reached through its office at the Student Center, Room 217, or by calling 454-3495.

RESIDENCE HALL ENVIRONMENTS
ARCHULETA HALL
Archuleta is a suite-style hall, with four single rooms clustered around a common living area and a shared bathroom. Students of the same gender are assigned to each suite. All students are eligible for Archuleta.

ARROTT AND GREGG HOUSE
Arrott and Gregg House primarily serve students with families. However, up to 10 apartments in Arrott House will be available for single graduate and nontraditional students. These are two bedroom, unfurnished apartments with a bathroom, kitchen and living room. Refrigerators and stoves come with the apartments. All utilities are included in the monthly rent, except for electricity. Other amenities also included in the apartments are wireless internet, and local telephone service.

KENNEDY HALLS
Kennedy is designated for students 21 and older. The second floor of North Kennedy is designated for women and the first floor for men.

MELODY HALL
Melody Hall is a coed residence hall with each pair of rooms (no more than four people) sharing a semi-private bathroom. Men are assigned to the first floor and women are assigned to the second floor. Melody Hall has double rooms and a limited number of private rooms.
East, South and West Kennedy halls have private rooms with private bathrooms. Students with at least junior standing are given preference in East Kennedy, while graduate students are given preference in West Kennedy. Only South Kennedy rooms have bathtubs; East and West Kennedy have showers. North Kennedy has a common bathroom on each floor.

VILES & CRIMMIN RESIDENCE HALL
Viles & Crimmin Residence Hall has private and suite-style rooms with private bedrooms shared bath and common suite area with a refrigerator. There are four types of suite-styles: one bedroom, one bath; two bedrooms, one bath; two bedroom, two baths; and four bedroom, two baths.  Students of the same gender are assigned to each suite.
The one bedroom, one bath and two bedroom, two baths are our most popular styles of rooms. Students are encouraged to apply early for these rooms since there is limited availability.
The first floor has a common area game room. There are washers and dryers and common community kitchens on the second and third floors.
ALCOHOL-FREE COMMUNITY
Archuleta, Melody and the Viles and Crimmin Hall are designated as communities free of alcohol presence or use, and are intolerant of disruptive persons under the influence of alcohol. Residents will also take responsibility for their guests and will not allow guests in violation of this policy to enter the residence hall.


RESIDENCE HALL/CAMPUS APARTMENT POLICIES

Why are policies necessary?
Residence hall policies exist to help create an environment that is conducive to your needs for safety, studying, socializing and sleeping. Let’s face it, you will spend more time in your residence hall than any place else on campus. We want to ensure that your residence hall experience promotes your success in Highlands University.

ACCESSIBILITY SERVICES
If you require special housing accommodations, contact Highlands’ Accessibility Services at 505.454.3188  or disability@nmhu.edu.

AUTOMOBILES
Vehicles are to be parked only in designated areas and must not be driven on lawns at any time. Vehicles must be attended at all times they are running. Maintenance work on vehicles is not permitted. Vehicles that are not operable may not be left in a parking lot.

ALCOHOL, DRUGS AND OTHER SUBSTANCES
(PLEASE READ CODE OF STUDENT CONDUCT: 5A)
Highlands University’s policy regarding the possession and consumption of alcohol and other drugs on campus was developed in keeping with New Mexico state law. It is important to note that a majority of disciplinary problems and a large number of academic problems faced by students are alcohol related. The following is a list of points that summarize enforcement of the alcohol and drug policy in the residence halls:

  • Alcohol is not permitted in any NMHU residence hall.
  • Residents may not possess or consume alcohol in a substance-free residence hall.
  • Residents age 21 and older may not furnish alcohol to minors (under legal drinking age).
  • Residents, who come back to the residence halls in an intoxicated state and/or violate hall policy, will be held accountable for violating those policies and all alcohol policies that apply.

COMMUNITY BILLING
Part of the on-campus experience at New Mexico Highlands University is living in a community. Although challenging at times, learning to live with others is also extremely beneficial. One aspect of community living involves dealing with damage that occurs within a residence hall or university apartment unit and inappropriate behavior that can place lives in danger. Unfortunately, damages do occur in buildings that require maintenance attention for no other reason than “someone broke it and we don’t know who did it.” and sometimes life safety equipment will be vandalized due to a prank or personal habits.

The Department of Housing and Student Conduct does not collect nor require a damage deposit when a resident accepts on-campus housing. Instead, the Department of Housing and Student Conduct bills for each incident that occurs. It is our belief this encourages a sense of ownership in the building by the residents.
You will be notified by letter each month of damages that occurred in an on-campus residence building (this notification will eventually be replaced by e-mail notification through your NMHU e-mail account). Residents are encouraged to look over these notifications and share any information with the staff about who might be responsible for the damage charges. Efforts will also be made to identify those responsible through video footage when available. When individual responsibility is not associated for a particular damage that charge is then allocated to the community.  At the end of each month charge(s) are placed on your NMHU account. Your Housing and Student Conduct handbook addresses community billing concepts.

Q. What are Hall, Zone and Individual Damages?
Hall Damage:  These are damages that occurred in common areas, such as hallways, lounges, stairwells, kitchens etc. These charges are assessed to all the residents of that particular hall.
Zone Damages: These would be damages that occur in a particular area of the residence hall. Zone damages are generally assigned by floor, wing, bathroom, etc.
Individual Damages:  These charges would be for any room damage or personal damage that a resident was responsible for. We determine this by the Monthly Room Inspection and the Room Inventory Control Forms the resident signs upon check in.
Building damage is considered destruction, theft, and vandalism to university property. University property includes furniture, walls, floors, and windows in student rooms and in common areas (stairwells, lounges, bathrooms, hallways etc.). Extra cleaning above and beyond normal custodial services is also considered billable damage.
The individual(s) who is/are responsible for the damage is/are accountable for the damage. Every effort is made to discern who the responsible party is. However, when individuals cannot be identified all members living in a building are accountable and all residents will be assessed.
Residents will be informed each month about community billing damage fees or fire/life safety fees via letter or their university e-mail accounts and postings in the residence hall.
Q. Who can answer more in-depth questions?
If you are a parent, please ask your son or daughter. If you have any further questions or concerns after speaking with your student, please contact the Department of Housing and Student Conduct at housing@nmhu.edu, and we will respond as soon as possible.

Common Community Billing Fees
This list is meant as an overview and not an exhaustive list of chargeable offenses and items.

Extra Cleaning

The following are chargeable:
Removing food from carpets, walls, ceilings, stair, etc.
Removing sputum from walls, bathroom stalls, etc.
Cleaning food, tobacco chew, excessive tooth paste, etc. out of sinks/water fountains.
Cleaning graffiti off walls.
Cleaning excessive shaving cream off sinks, stalls, floors, etc.
Cleaning hair that was left behind from a haircut done in the bathroom.
Any other similar cleaning.
Charge: $25 minimum

Residential suites and individual bedrooms, bathrooms and carpet stains

Charge: $75 minimum

Trash
The following are chargeable:
Emptying room trash into a bathroom trash can.
Leaving trash in the hallways or stairwells.
Leaving trash in the lounges, kitchens and balconies
Emptying room trash into a lounge trash can.
Pizza boxes not properly disposed.
Charge: $25 minimum per instance, per person
Rationale: Trash can leak on the carpets and create unsanitary conditions, and it has the potential to be a fire hazard, attract insects and vermin. Students are responsible for disposing their own trash.

Biohazards
The following are chargeable:
Urine, feces, condoms or vomit
Any matter found in the NMHU housing facilities.
Charge: minimum of $50 per instance, per person (depending on the situation, may become a criminal investigation with the NMHU Campus Police Department)

Blood
Any blood clean up in bathrooms, hallways, walls, carpet, lounges, etc…
If the incident was accidental and an attempt was made to clean up, no charge will occur.
Charge: minimum of $50 per instance, per person
Situations that are accidental will be looked upon differently than ones that are intentional.

Damaged Swipe Lock   $370
Missing Lounge Furniture
Furniture in public areas must not be removed. Each month, an inventory is taken of the community furniture. Items found missing will be billed to all residents living in that hall. The following are approximate replacement costs for community furniture:
Couch: $450-$700
Love Seat: $350-$500
Lounge Chair: $200-$400
Coffee Table: $150-$200
End Table: $200-$400
Study Table: $200-$600

Room Cleaning
The following is chargeable:
Students leaving without cleaning their rooms.
Charge: $75 minimum.
Spring-loaded door hinge tampering – $40
Screen removal OR screen damage – $50 – $250 (depending on location)
Life safety equipment (fire extinguisher, smoke detectors, etc)
Tampering fines per instance, per person – $25 (1st), $30 (2nd), $35 (3rd) etc.
Fire extinguisher replacement – $400
Smoke detector replacement, installation and programming – $600

PARENTAL NOTIFICATION FAMILY EDUCATIONAL RIGHTS AND PRIVACY ACT (FERPA)
Section 952 of H.R.6, the Higher Education Amendments, allows institutions of higher education to disclose to parents violations of local, state, and federal laws as well as institutional policies and rules governing use or possession of alcohol or controlled substances.

APPLIANCES
Avoid overloading outlets with too many cords and do not use extension cords at all. THEY ARE NOT PERMITTED. The only appliances permitted in the residence halls are one microwave oven per room and one 2.5-cubic-foot refrigerator per room. The wiring system is NOT intended for items that place a heavy load on the system. It is also recommended that surge protectors be used within the residence halls for all of your appliances, computers, stereos etc. Additionally, residents are NOT ALLOWED to use hot plates, smokeless grills, or appliances with exposed heating elements. If these items are found in your room, they will be CONFISCATED.

BICYCLES
Residents must register their bikes with the office of housing and student conduct. We encourage residents to register their bicycles with the Las Vegas police. When not in use, bicycles should be locked on bicycle racks or stored in the room. Bicycles should never be chained to fences, stairwells, etc. or stored in common areas where they impede safe travel or create other safety hazards. Bikes stored in prohibited areas or abandon will be disposed of.

BUILDING SECURITY AND PERSONAL SAFETY
Each resident has the responsibility for respecting building security.
Buildings are locked 24 hours a day. Propping doors, including fire exit doors, is not permitted. To ensure maximum security, please observe the following guidelines

  • Make every effort NOT to lose your room and entry keys!
  • LOCK room when sleeping or away (including going to the bathroom).
  • DO NOT open building doors to strangers.
  • When walking around campus at night, students are encouraged to walk with friends and to be aware of your surroundings.

CARE OF ROOMS AND FACILITIES
University property is inventoried according to location and is not to be moved without the expressed written permission of the director of housing and student conduct. Vandalism of and graffiti on university property/facilities is prohibited, and students will be held responsible for such damage.

Residents are prohibited from painting rooms. The stacking of beds, or other furniture, on tops of desks and dressers is prohibited.
Students may not alter or add attachments to their rooms. These items include, but are not limited to, locks, outside radio and television antennae, additional wiring, window shades, or awnings. Students are responsible for damaged or missing property and will be billed accordingly.

COMBUSTIBLE MATERIALS
Combustible materials such as propane, gasoline, kerosene and items containing combustible materials (i.e., lanterns) are not permitted in residence halls.

COMMUNITY SPACE
All residence halls provide community living space for the purposes of socializing, studying, recreation and programming. Each resident shares in the responsibility for maintaining the cleanliness and function of these areas, as well as using the space in appropriate ways. Never is a pornographic-theme activity appropriate. Please see statement on sexual harassment.

COMPLIANCE WITH UNIVERSITY OFFICIALS
Residents are required to comply with the requests of university officials at all times. These officials include professional and student staff members of the Department Housing and Student Conduct, campus police/security, student affairs representatives, and facilities staff members.

DAMAGES TO ROOMS AND SUITES
Residents are accountable for damages occurring as a result of personal negligence or vandalism. When found to be responsible, a resident may be charged for damages occurring in public areas, as well as in their room. All damage charges are billed to the student’s account.
Hall residents living in suites are each responsible for damages in the public areas of the suite and will be collectively charged for repairs or replacements resulting from unexpected wear.

DAMAGES TO PUBLIC AREAS
There are specific acts of damage, vandalism and waste disposal that occur in and immediately around the residence halls for which the responsible parties cannot be identified. The Department of Housing and Student Conduct has a community billing policy for assessing vandalism and other charges. If the responsible party is not established, the cost for repair, replacement or disposal of the area or item(s) affected will be assessed equally among all residents. The students will be notified of the charge, and the payment must be made to the Business Office. Failure to pay damage fees will result in loss of housing and other penalties may apply. Prior to assessment of fees, an effort will be made to identify the parties responsible for the damage, including hall, floor and unit meetings. It is the resident’s responsibility if not present for the meeting to obtain the information from your residence hall staff.

DROPPING OR THROWING SUBSTANCES OR OBJECTS FROM WINDOWS
For the safety of everyone, residents are not allowed to drop or throw objects from or at residence hall windows, balconies, and or ledges. This includes bodily fluids, snow, or substances of any kind. Residents must also refrain from throwing objects through windows from outside. This policy includes throwing keys to friends outside.) Violations of this policy will result in disciplinary action.

ENTERING BUILDINGS
Residents and their guests may enter buildings only through doors designated for entry. Entry through windows or unauthorized fire exit doors is prohibited.

FACILITIES USE/ACCESS
Residence hall buildings use approval is solely a designated responsibility of the Department of Housing and Student Conduct. Common areas in residence halls (lounges and lobbies) are for the use of the building’s residents and their guests. Only groups or individuals invited by residents or staff may make informative or educational presentations to hall residents in the hall lounge. The residence hall staff will monitor and schedule such presentations.

FAMILY EDUCATIONAL RIGHTS AND PRIVACY ACT (FERPA)
The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act affords certain rights to students concerning their education records. The primary rights afforded are the right to inspect and review the education records, the right to seek to have the records amended and the right to have some control over the disclosure of information from the records.

Education records are those records that are 1) directly related to a student and 2) maintained by an institution or a party acting for the institution. FERPA gives students who reach the age of 18 or who attend a postsecondary institution the right to inspect and review their own records. An institution is not required to disclose information from a student’s education records to the parents of dependent students but may exercise its discretion to do so.

Section 952 of H.R.6, the Higher Education Amendments, allows institutions of higher education to disclose to parents violations of local, state and federal laws as well as institutional policies and rules governing use or possession of alcohol or controlled substances.

FIRE ALARMS
Legitimate fire alarms save lives. When activated, the alarm sounds in the entire building and EVERYONE must evacuate immediately. After activating an alarm, go to the nearest safe telephone (outside the building) and dial 911 to report the fire and 454-3278 to notify campus police. Individuals falsely activating an alarm will face disciplinary action, possible criminal prosecution and may be fined. False alarms may leave the local fire department shorthanded in the event of a real fire.
FIRE DRILLS
Every residence hall is required to conduct a fire drill each semester for the safety of staff and residents. All residents are required to exit the building within 60 seconds. Hall staff is required to time the drill in each building. Failure to evacuate will result in disciplinary action.

FIRE SAFETY EQUIPMENT
Damaging or tampering with fire alarm equipment is prohibited. FIRE EXTINGUISHERS are strategically located throughout each residence hall and campus apartment. Carefully follow the instructions on the extinguisher and use them ONLY in the event of a fire. EXIT SIGNS are considered fire equipment and are placed to guide residents to exit routes in emergency situations. SMOKE DETECTORS also are sensitive pieces of fire equipment. Actions that result in the activation of a smoke detector, tampering with fire alarm apparatus and equipment (including removing batteries from smoke detectors) or false alarms may result in criminal penalties, as well as disciplinary action.

FIREARMS
No person shall have in his or her possession any gun, pistol, firearm, explosive, dangerous chemical or other dangerous weapon or instrument (including paintball guns, swords, knives, etc.) on university property. Violators will be subject to appropriate legal and disciplinary action, including the possible termination of the violator’s housing contract and suspension or expulsion from Highlands.
FURNITURE
The Department of Housing and Student Conduct supplies each room with basic furniture, which differs depending on the residence hall.  Additional non-university furniture is not permitted. However, university-owned furniture moved from a room or common use area without authorization from the Department of Housing and Student Conduct or designee, may result in a charge for the missing items (even if placed in the hallway) and a police report for theft.

GAMBLING
Gambling is not permitted on university premises.

GUEST POLICY
Only residents and their guests are permitted in the residence halls living areas. Students from another residence hall are considered guests as well. You are expected to accompany guests at all times while they are in the building. You will be held responsible for the behavior of your guests. As a result of the unique nature of a residence hall community, resident students have a high responsibility to other residents. Students who bring guests into this living environment must be willing to assume responsibility for the behavior of their guests.

Residents are allowed only two guests per visit. Students who reside in the same residence hall, may visit with other residents at will, providing all policies governing courtesy hours, quiet hours, etc. are adhered to and the guests are not a disturbance to roommates/suitemates.

While you cannot absolutely control another person’s behavior, you can control whom you choose to have as a guest. The fact that you are responsible for those you allow to visit should foster more judicious decision-making on your part. It is your responsibility to inform guests of residence hall and university policies and to require compliance.
Residents may have overnight guests of the same gender with the prior knowledge and consent of all roommates and the approval of the resident director/residence hall coordinator. Overnight guests are to be occasional and therefore guests may stay no more than two nights consecutively in one month. Opposite-gender guests are not permitted to stay overnight.

HEALTH CODE
All residents shall comply with city, county and state codes regarding health and safety. Upon notification, students shall comply with all Housing and Student Conduct requests pertaining to correction of health and safety violations in and around their assigned room. This may include, but is not limited to, pest control, cleanliness, garbage removal, etc.

INCENSE AND OPEN FLAME
Because of the risk of burning incense or an open flame left unattended, the use of such is prohibited in residence halls. Candles or lanterns may not be used even in the event of a power outage. Residents are encouraged to have flashlights or similar devices to provide emergency lighting.
LEDGES AND ROOFTOPS
For student’s safety and to protect against building damage, residents and their guests are never permitted on rooftops or ledges. Violation of this policy may result in disciplinary action.

LOCK OUTS
Students who lock themselves out of their rooms should attempt to contact a resident assistant to admit them to their room. If they are not available between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m., go to the Housing and Student Conduct Office and a key will be temporarily issued. The key must be returned to the office in the time designated or you will be charged $10 for the key. Students will be asked to provide identification.

LOST KEYS
For the safety of all residents, lost keys should be reported to hall staff immediately. Stolen keys should be reported to campus police.

MEAL PLAN
When you sign your room and board (meal plan) contract, you are making a financial commitment.  ALL students living in the residence halls are required to have a meal plan, NO EXCEPTIONS! Should you have dietary needs that require an accommodation, you must provide medical documentation, which will be verified, and meet with the director of food services to explain your dietary needs. The director will outline for you how your dietary needs can be accommodated. The meal plan portion of your contract will not be cancelled. You have signed a contract and are expected to fulfill you financial commitment. You can make changes to your meal plan the first two weeks of the fall and spring semesters only. Meal plan charges will not be removed from your student account should you choose not to use your meal plan.

Meal Plan Cancellation Policy and Refund Schedule

Once meal service has started for a given semester, students wishing to terminate the meal plan must petition the food service director, or his/her designate, for approval of meal plan cancellation.
Failure to participate in the meal plan does not release the student from this contractual obligation. All approved cancellations of the meal plan will be subject to the refund schedule. Please refer to the cancellation refund schedule for charges that you are liable for if your cancellation is approved.
Meal Plan Cancellation Refund Schedule applies for students who have been officially released from the meal plan contract:

Fall 2017 Room Refund Schedule
100% through August 16
75% August 17 through August 27
50% August 28 through September 10
25% September 11 through September 24
Thereafter – No Refund

Spring 2018 Room Refund Schedule
100% through January 17
75% January 18 through January 28
50% January 29 through February 11
25% February 12 through February 25
Thereafter – No Refund


Fall 2017 Meal Plan Refund Schedule
100% through August 16
85% August 17 through August 20
70% August 21 through August 27
55% January 29 through February 4
40% September 4 through September 10
25% September 11 through September 17
10% September 18 through September 24
Thereafter – No Refund

Spring 2018 Meal Plan Refund Schedule
100% through January 17
85% January 18 through January 21
70% January 22 through January 28
55% January 29 through February 4
40% February 5 through February 11
25% February 12 through February 18
10% February 19 through February 25
Thereafter – No Refund

Written appeal requests for meal plan release will be accepted for the following reasons only:

A. Medical reasoning supported by appropriate medical documentation.
a. Appropriate documentation includes items such as, but is not limited to:
i. Signed medical documents on official letterhead that includes the physician’s identification number and contact information.

B. Life-changing events that are catastrophic in nature and supported by appropriate documentation.
a. Evidence of loss of a parent or guardian, supported by appropriate  documentation.
Financial or community behavior based requests will not be considered.

All appeal requests MUST include the following or they will NOT be considered:
A. Copy of completed Meal Plan Contract Release Form.
B. A signed and dated letter outlining the reason for the appeal request.
C. All appropriate documentation (see above) confirming the reason for the request.
Any student wishing to be released from the meal plan can petition for a release provided he or she has a qualified reason with supporting documentation for release.
Qualified meal plan releases include:
A. Transfer to another school
B. Graduation
C. Taking part in a student exchange program
D. Withdrawal from NMHU (you will not be enrolled at NMHU)
All other reasons for releasing your contract are NOT considered qualified.

All terms and conditions are subject to change without notice.


ARENTAL NOTIFICATION – FAMILY EDUCATIONAL RIGHTS AND PRIVACY ACT (FERPA)
Section 952 of H.R.6, the Higher Education Amendments, allows institutions of higher education to disclose to parents violations of local, state, and federal laws as well as institutional policies and rules governing use or possession of alcohol or controlled substances.
PARKING
You may park in designated parking areas in lots and on the street.

PAYMENT
Room and board fees are due the first day of the semester. For installment payments, please contact the Highlands University Business Office to make arrangements.

PERSONALIZING SPACE
Students may decorate their rooms with lamps, rugs, bedspreads, posters and other personalized items as long as it does not damage the room. Keep in mind that when the room is vacated, it must be returned to its original condition. Residents in violation of the outlined policies will be subject to disciplinary action, and damage charges.

PETS
Students are not allowed to have animals in the residence halls. Violators of this policy will be subject to disciplinary action and charges for damage.

PUBLICITY AND LITERATURE
The distribution of free literature or commercial advertising is prohibited in residence halls and campus apartments without prior authorization. 0

QUIET HOURS
Residents are responsible for maintaining a noise level satisfactory to other community members. During quiet hours, the level or volume of noise must be contained within the confines of the room. If noise is heard beyond the room walls and door, residents are responsible. A neighbor, staff member and/or campus police may address the situation. As in all situations, cooperation is expected in resolving the matter. The Department of Housing and Student Conduct asks that students always observe “courtesy hours” when quiet hours are not in effect. Specifically, the needs of a student who wants to study will generally be given precedence over a student who wants to play their stereo or produce other types of noise.
RESIDENCE HALL MEETINGS
Resident directors are responsible for holding residence hall meetings on a monthly basis. These meetings are designed to keep the residents informed of any policy changes as well as to talk about programs and activities for the hall. These meetings are mandatory, and it is the responsibility of every resident to be aware of what takes place at these meetings. The mandatory meetings will be posted in advance. There will, however, be certain meetings throughout the semester that are not mandatory for all residents to attend.

ROOMMATES
Although the Department Housing and Student Conduct department does its best in matching roommates, sometimes they are not compatible. Residence hall staff will provide support and assistance to roommates in resolving conflicts. You will find a Roommate Agreement in this handbook. If roommates are unable to resolve conflicts, a room transfer can be requested from the residence hall director or residence hall coordinator. If space is available, the transfer will be granted.

ROOMMATE SPACE
There are times when a student has a double occupancy contract, but may live alone in a double room. It is a requirement for students to be prepared to have a student move into that space at any time. This means the bed is not being used, the closets are empty and available, and the room is generally available for occupancy at any time. If space is not available upon entry for a student, you will be required to make that space available for a student to be assigned into that space. If you fail to comply within the designated time frame, you will be charged for a private room.

SECURITY
New Mexico Highlands’ campus is comparatively safe. With a daily population of more than 3,000 and a resident population of more than 700, crime statistics at Highlands are small compared to other universities and cities of similar size.
However, that does not mean burglary and thefts do not occur here. Quite the contrary, but many times some of these incidents could have been prevented by the victims themselves.

  1. Lock up all of your valuables and do not leave them unattended.
  2. Lock your room door every time you leave. Even when you go to the bathroom.
  3. Do not let people you do not know into the residence hall. This may sound harsh, but you could be directly responsible for someone being the victim of burglary or rape. THINK ABOUT IT! DO YOU LET STRANGERS IN TO YOUR HOUSE JUST BECAUSE THEY ASK NICELY!

SCREENS AND WINDOW STOPS
Screens and window stops are safety equipment. Removal of or damage to these items may result in disciplinary action, and/or eviction, and a charge for damage.

SEXUAL HARASSMENT
Consistent with Highlands University’s policy on sexual harassment, the residence hall communities maintain a living environment that is free from sexual harassment. An individual found in violation of this policy will be subject to disciplinary action.

SMOKING
Smoking, including e-cigarettes, is not permitted in any residence hall or campus apartment. Any resident be found in violation of the no smoking policy is subject to a $300 fine and the housing contract subject to cancellation. All residents who do smoke, agree to do so outside and at least 25 feet from an entrance.

SOLICITATION AND POSTING
Organizations may not solicit in the halls unless directly related to residence living and approved by the director of housing and student conduct or a designee. Organizations not related to university housing, may have material posted provided they have been approved. Once approved, materials need to be delivered to the Department of Housing and Student Conduct office for distribution.

WATERBEDS
Waterbeds are not allowed in residence halls.

CAMPUS APARTMENTS FAMILY HOUSING OCCUPANCY
Arrott and Gregg House apartments afford families the opportunity to live on campus. These two-bedroom unfurnished apartments are an economical alternative for the student with a family. Married couples (with or without children, single parents, siblings or grandparents in guardianship of dependent minors, are all encouraged to apply. A student and spouse having more than two children cannot be accommodated. Official documentation of all relationships is required.
FURNISHINGS
You are responsible for the care of the apartment and of all furniture and equipment inside or attached to the unit. Upon occupancy, the apartment manager and resident will make the initial inspection of the apartment and its furnishings by completing the Student Apartment Inventory and Condition Check. Any changes of the inventory occurring during occupancy should be immediately noted and initialed by you and the apartment manager. The inventory will be the basis for determining damage, loss or cleaning charges during occupancy or when the apartment is vacated.

DECORATIONS
Repairs, alterations or installations of any kind are not permitted without the written consent of the director of housing and student conduct. Contact paper and mirrors with adhesive backing may not be affixed to surfaces within the apartment. University-owned furniture, fixtures and equipment may not be removed from the apartment.
REFRIGERATORS
Some older models are not frost free and require you to manually defrost them. Do not use sharp objects to defrost refrigerators. This may cause damage to the freezer unit, which may then require replacement of the refrigerator at a cost to you of approximately $600. It is recommended that you defrost your refrigerator regularly to prevent an ice build-up that can break the freezer door and prevent the refrigerator from operating properly. To defrost the freezer, turn the unit off after removing any food (store the food in a cooler or wrap it in several layers of towels). Placing a pan of hot water in the freezer will speed the process. As the ice melts, transfer it to the sink. Wipe the freezer dry before replacing your food and turning the unit on.

MAINTENANCE
If you are need of a repair in your apartment, contact your apartment manager or the Housing Office as soon as possible, because delaying a repair can cause further damage.

Items for which charges are usually assessed include, but are not limited to, labor cost for cleaning apartments, nail or other holes that have not been properly patched with spackling compound, tape or putty that needs to be removed or has damaged any surfaces, coloring or marks on the surface within the apartment, and excessive damage to walls, wood, metal surfaces, sinks, counters tops, etc.
*Please see the maintenance section of the handbook for detailed instructions.

INSPECTIONS
Inspection of the apartment may be made if there is reasonable cause to check for damage to University property, fire violations, safety violation and/or health conditions. The University can make such inspections at all reasonable times when conditions exist which warrant such action.

RENTAL PAYMENTS
The Business Office will bill the resident’s account at the beginning of each term for the amount due:

  • Fall (August – December)
  • Spring (January – May)
  • Summer (June – July)

If you want to make several payments instead of paying the charges all at once, please contact the Business Office as soon as possible.
You must furnish your own light bulbs (with the exception of the overhead florescent bulbs, which are provided and installed by the Facilities Department via work order), shower curtains, T.V. cable wires and extensions, telephone instruments and extension cords.

RATES
All rental rates are subject to change. However, a minimum of 30 days written notice of the impending change will be given to all current residents and those who have received assignments, but who have not yet taken occupancy.

CONTRACT TERMINATION
You may terminate the contract by completing a Notice of Intent to Vacate at least 30 days before the actual date of departure. The Notice of Intent to Vacate should be given to the apartment manager or the Housing Office. Failure to give 30 days notice will result in rental charges covering the 30 days following the date on which you move out. The 30-day notice also applies to those students who are graduating. The apartment must be vacated no later than the end of the month, unless you have been accepted into another Highlands academic program.
The university may terminate the contract for violations of the contract and/or Code of Student Conduct, including failure to make payments. Should this occur, you will be given 72 hours to vacate the apartment. Failure to vacate the apartment within this time period may result in removal of your possessions and storage of them at your expense and your removal from the premises. Should the university be forced to go to court to seek eviction, you will be responsible for all cost and reasonable attorney fees incurred by the university.
ACADEMIC ELIGIBILITY
Students living in the family housing apartments MUST meet all eligibility requirements. All students are required to be registered for a minimum of 6 credit hours, and all credit hours must be applicable toward their declared major(s) (area of study).
*If all apartments are occupied and someone moves in to your vacated apartment within 30 days of your check-out, an adjustment will be made in your charges.
*If you need to change your departure date, please contact the Housing Office as soon as possible. Although, we need changes in writing, we will try to work with you.

CHECKOUT PROCEDURES-APARTMENTS
The apartment must be thoroughly cleaned (including walls, refrigerators, stove, bathroom, etc.) and all personal possessions removed before the apartment manager can do the final inspection and inventory. When the Notice of Intent to Vacate is submitted, be sure to request a copy of the Vacating Information and Procedures sheet for cleaning and checking out information.
The apartment manager will inspect the apartment for lost items, damage and cleanliness. The apartment must meet or exceed the same standards originally noted on the Student Apartment Inventory and Condition Check form. Charges will be assessed for any damage beyond normal wear, any cleaning that must be done and for any missing university property. In addition, all windows must be locked, all lights turned off and the refrigerator turned off with the door propped open.

  • Keys: All issued keys must be returned to the Apartment Manager at the time of the final apartment inventory. If we do not receive all keys at the time of check out or within one week thereafter, a lock change will be ordered and the cost charged to your account.

ALCOHOL POLICY
The family housing apartments are designated as alcohol permitted only for residents of legal age (21) in the state of New Mexico. At no time may an apartment resident serve alcohol to individuals not of legal age. This is a violation of the Code of Student Conduct and New Mexico state law and will result in disciplinary sanctions and/or police action. All campus police reports dealing with alcohol and drug violations are routinely provided to the state police, which has the option of filing legal charges.
No alcoholic beverages are to be consumed in public areas (e.g., lounges, lobby areas, and hallways). The state law establishing a legal age for alcohol consumption must be observed at all times.
*Drunken and/or disorderly behavior will not be tolerated by anyone residing in family housing or their guests.

Family Housing Guidelines

  1. Persons of legal age may consume alcoholic beverages in their individual apartments. Open containers are specifically prohibited outside of the apartment. Thus, containers being carried to or from apartments must be factory sealed. Empty containers must be properly disposed of in trash receptacles and may not be used as decoration.
  2. The consumption of alcohol by persons of legal age must not result in a disturbance to the educational environment in or around the complex. The rights of other occupants in the complex must be respected.
  3. Individuals possessing alcoholic beverages within the unit may be required, at any time, to provide proof of their legal right to possess those alcoholic beverages by providing a valid form of identification to a housing staff member, Highlands police or other university official. Should individuals fail to provide valid proof of legal age, appropriate disciplinary action will be taken.
  4. Front doors (i.e. screen doors) to individual apartments shall be closed while legal-age residents consume alcoholic beverages. Individuals not of legal age (other than dependant minors in the legal care of a parent or custodial adult) may not be present in the apartment when alcohol is being consumed.
  5. The number of individuals visiting an apartment at any given time shall not exceed the limits of reasonableness (taking into consideration the possibility of noise disturbance as well as problems related to parking, limited restroom facilities, weather and the relative physical comfort of the occupants and guests).
  6. Kegs of any kind are not allowed.
  7. Selling, either directly or indirectly (such as through donations or solicitations), of alcoholic beverages is prohibited. This restriction shall include the exchange of tickets for alcoholic beverages, or any other means by which alcoholic beverages are provided for a consideration of cash or otherwise.
  8. Apartment residents are charged with full responsibility for the conduct of their guests and must take actions to ensure that guests observe the relevant law and university regulations.
  9. Advertisements of any kind soliciting attendance at a function or party in individuals’ rooms where alcoholic beverages are to be consumed are not permitted.

Alcohol permitted apartment units: Arrott and Gregg House

AUTOMOBILES
Vehicles are to be parked only in designated areas and may not be driven on the lawns at any time. Vehicles must be attended at all times while they are running. Because of limited space on walkways, vehicles may not be backed into parking spaces. Maintenance work on vehicles is not permitted nor may vehicles that are not operable be parked in university parking areas.

BALCONIES AND PORCH
You are responsible for the general upkeep and condition of the area directly in front of your apartment. Objects may not be hung on railings nor thrown from the balconies. Walkways should be kept free of obstructions. Indoor furniture (e.g. couches, chairs, tables) are not permitted in these areas.

BARBECUE GRILLS
Personal barbecue grills are not permitted. When the university-provided barbecue grills are in use, they must be tended at all times. Coals must be extinguished immediately after use to prevent injury to children. Do not put live barbecue residues in dumpsters. Charcoal lighter fluids may not be stored in the apartment. Please be aware that restrictions on use of grills may be imposed in dry seasons by the City of Las Vegas and/or by the State of New Mexico. In such cases, appropriate notices will be posted.

CANDLES AND INCENSE
Halogen lamps, candles, incense, and other open flame items are prohibited for safety reasons.
CHILDREN
Children of all ages must be supervised at all times. Parents will be held accountable for the behavior of their children. The university will refer cases of neglect and other problems involving children to the campus police and/or other appropriate authorities. You are responsible for having your children observe the established quiet hours (see also Quiet Hours).
FIREWORKS
Fireworks of any kind may not be stored or used in the apartment or on university grounds.
GAMBLING
Gambling on university premises is not permitted.
GUESTS
Guests are permitted for short-term visits only (no more than 14 days per calendar year). Residents must inform the apartment manager of any guest for safety and security reasons. You are responsible for the conduct of your guests, who are held to the same regulations and policies as residents.
LAUNDRY
Laundry facilities are available in both Arrott and Gregg House for the exclusive use of apartment residents. Policies and instructions for operating the machines are posted in each laundry room.

LAWN & YARD
You are expected to help keep the lawn free of trash. You are expected to help keep the yard gates closed at all times to prevent dogs from entering the yard and children from leaving without their parents’ knowledge. Parents are responsible for picking up all toys and play equipment used by their children. Staff may dispose of abandoned toys and play equipment. Trees may not be planted by residents due to problems with their root systems maintenance. Planting of flowers and other beautification proposals may be considered but must have the written approval of the director of housing and student conduct prior to any work due to water limitations.

MAIL
Central mailbox areas are located close to the laundry rooms (in the yard in Gregg and by the parking lot behind Arrott). Each resident must obtain the key for the mailbox from the central Post Office on Douglas Avenue. The mailing addresses for each building are:

Name
#xxx Arrott House
900 Mora Avenue
Las Vegas, NM    87701
Name
#xxx Gregg House
1010 San Francisco
Las Vegas, NM 87701

Packages shipped other than through the U.S. Post Office will be delivered to the university’s Central Receiving and then to the Housing Office. We will call you when packages arrive.

MOTORCYCLES & MOPEDS
Motorcycles and mopeds are considered vehicles and must be parked only in designated parking areas and are subject to the same stipulations as described under Automobiles. Motorcycles and mopeds may never be parked inside common areas or apartments.

NEIGHBOR OR ROOMMATE CONFLICTS
Residents are expected to try to resolve conflicts among themselves. If differences cannot be resolved in this manner, the apartment manager should be contacted for assistance in finding an appropriate solution.

PETS
Animals are not permitted in the residence halls. Student may not keep a pet (including fish) in the residence halls.

PICTURES AND PLANTS
Pictures may be hung on walls with very small nails. The nails must be removed and holes properly patched when the apartment is vacated. Plant hooks may be used in the ceiling but should be left when the apartment is vacated.

QUIET HOURS
Residents are expected to respect the rights and privacy of others within the community. In support of this, courtesy quiet hours have been established. These are 8 p.m. – 7 a.m. during fall and spring semesters and 9 p.m. – 7 a.m. during the summer, all weekends, and university breaks and holidays.

SOLICITATION
University guidelines prohibit solicitation and distribution of literature or other materials at all times by individuals who are not members of the university community. Fundraising activities sponsored by a residence hall association must receive prior written approval by the director of housing and student conduct and must display that approval upon request. Such activities by registered student groups must have prior approval by the coordinator of campus life.

STORAGE
No storage space outside of the apartment is available. Common entrances, stairways and walkways may not be used for such purposes. Storage vehicles are not permitted in parking areas or on university grounds. The university reserves the right to remove and dispose of items left in such common areas at the resident’s cost. Flammable fuels may not be stored within or next to the apartment complex.

THEFTS / PROPERTY DAMAGE
Thefts and property damage should be reported immediately to the campus police and to the apartment manager. The university assumes no responsibility for residents’ personal possessions or for injuries occurring within the apartment. Residents are required to show proof of insurance coverage and are encouraged to register possessions through the campus police (see Operation Identification).

TRASH
Trash and garbage are to be disposed of in the dumpsters provided in each parking lot area, not swept onto the walkways, thrown out of windows or off the balcony, left by the front doors, or put in the laundry room. Rugs and dust mops should be shaken out at the end of the buildings, not from the balcony. Materials such as disposable diapers, sanitary napkins and grease should be wrapped and placed in the dumpsters, not disposed of through the sewer system.

WATERBEDS
Waterbeds are permitted only in ground-level units due to potential water damage if a leak occurs. Residents are responsible for any damage caused by a waterbed.
WEAPONS
Firearms, bows, arrows, hunting knives, explosives, and other weapons are not permitted in the apartment at any time. Facilities are provided by campus police for the safe storage of recreational firearms.
WILD BIRDS
Wild bird feeders must be located at least 50 feet from the building for health and maintenance reasons.


RIGHTS OF ENTRY

The Department of Housing and Student Conduct reserves the right to enter any room or apartment:
(a) with or without notice for the purpose of inspection, maintenance, or repair;
(b) without notice to or permission of the resident thereof, for the purpose of
(1) inspecting for dangerous drugs or narcotics;
(2) inspecting for firearms, fireworks, explosives, weapons; or
(3) any other substances, materials or goods the possession of           which is a breach of the Housing Contract, the standards and Highlands University regulations. Such entry and inspection, however, should be made only when the university has reasonable cause to believe that such items are present in the room; and
(c) when there is reason to believe that the occupants of the room are in serious physical or psychological distress.

ROOM INSPECTIONS
Because a university is viewed as an educational community with special behavioral requirements, the courts have upheld the university’s right to enter and search student rooms and suites with just cause. However, the entry and search must not be done in an arbitrary and capricious manner, which unnecessarily deprives a student of fundamental constitutional protection.

The Highlands University housing staff will also make monthly inspections of students’ rooms, suites and apartments for damage, safety and health reasons. Violations observed during routine inspections and/or building evacuations may be referred to the Housing Office. The intent of this policy is to provide protection for the rights of each student while at the same time providing staff members and university officials the means to maintain and protect the educational environment necessary for the university to fulfill its primary purpose.

EMERGENCY ENTRY
A staff member may, without verbal or written authorization from a higher authority, enter a student’s room, suite or apartment either forcibly or with a building master key in cases of fire, explosion, bomb threats, attempted or suspected suicide, or other situations which call for the immediate entry in the interest of safety and security both for the residents of the room or suite and the physical plant.

Any unauthorized or illegal items observed in student rooms, suites or apartments during an emergency entry will not be used as a basis for criminal prosecution. However, in the event of suspected vandalism, arson, assault or other violations of housing and/or Highlands policy, which may have occurred in a room, Campus Police will be called in to conduct an investigation. The results of such an investigation may result in disciplinary action and/or criminal prosecution.

AUTHORIZED ENTRY
In the case of a known violation of a housing and/or Highlands policy, a staff member may request permission to make an authorized entry into a student’s room, suite or apartment. The request will be made to the director of housing and student conduct who will determine the merits of the request and either approve or disapprove the entry.
The staff will then notify those residing in the room, suite or apartment that authorization has been obtained to enter by use of whatever means necessary. When a room, suite or apartment is entered by means of an authorized entry, the purpose will be to make a visual inspection of the room and observed violations may be referred to the Department of Housing and Student Conduct and to other appropriate university departments as needed. The staff member also may look in the bathroom, in the closet, under the bed and anywhere else deemed necessary to ensure the safety of students and compliance with housing and/or Highlands policies.

SEARCH AND SEIZURE
The Department of Housing and Student Conduct reserves the right for appropriate officials to search rooms, suites and apartments without a written notice whenever there is reasonable suspicion that illegal items are in the room(s), which violate housing and/or Highlands rules and regulations, local, state and federal laws or in cases of emergencies when there is suspicion of danger or injury to individuals or University property. If such property is discovered, the University may confiscate it until proper disposition of the case has been made.

SEARCH WARRANT ENTRY
In those cases where an individual has personal knowledge or other information of a violation of a criminal nature, such as theft or acts of violence, campus police are to be contacted. The campus police officer will then determine whether or not sufficient evidence exists to request a search warrant.

HEALTH AND SAFETY INSPECTION
Living conditions that could adversely affect residents’ health and safety are prohibited. Residents are responsible for maintaining reasonable standards of cleanliness and safety in their rooms or apartments, hallways, lounges, bathrooms, and lobby areas including proper garbage/trash disposal and securing of cable, telephone and electrical wiring. The housing staff reserves the right to inspect rooms to ensure that residents comply with health and safety regulations. Upon vacating a room or apartment, the resident must ensure that the space is clean and in condition for the next student to occupy.
The purpose of health and safety inspections is to ensure that each student’s room or apartment, all common spaces, and public areas of the residence halls/family housing are in reasonably clean condition, and that all terms associated with the safety regulations and policies of the university are being met. These inspections are conducted at least once per month.

The housing staff will inspect the general condition of the room, which includes: closets, appliances, extension cords, ceilings and wall hangings. Violations will be noted and called to the attention of the student. Serious violations or failure to remedy the condition may result in loss of housing and other penalties may apply. During the room inspection, housing staff will look for such violations as presence of pets and animals, excessive dirt, open food containers, overloaded outlets and alcohol and drug containers and paraphernalia. However, items seen in the room that are in violations of the housing policies will be confiscated.

PROCEDURE
These inspections are for the life safety of each of our residents.

  1. The date and time of inspections for your residence hall does not have to be announced.  There may not be notification to building residents regarding the time or date of the inspection.
  2. The process involves the inspector accessing all occupied rooms and common-use areas. There are no exceptions.
  3. A copy of the Notice of Violations will be completed by the safety officer/resident director/residence hall coordinator or apartment manager and forwarded to the director of housing and student conduct. The notice indicates that repairs and/or removal items in violation are necessary. When violations are found, a reinspection will be conducted approximately seven to 10 days after the initial inspection. If a large number of violations have been found, more time (two weeks) may be allowed before the next inspection. However, this allowance is solely at the discretion of the Department of Housing and Student Conduct and its representatives.

Housing Services & Maintenance

 

INTERNET ACCESS
Each residence hall room and family housing apartment provides Internet access. All first-time students residing in any university facilities must have their computers checked by IT Services for viruses and anything that may cause damage to the university network. Free virus protection software will be provided if you do not currently have this on your computer. To make an appointment with IT Services, call 454-3496. An information sheet about what equipment is needed for you to access the campus network can be obtained from hall staff or the Housing Office.

E-MAIL
Each student is assigned a Highlands University e-mail address. This is considered a formal communication tool of the university and should be regularly checked.

KITCHEN
Residents who use the kitchen area are responsible for cleaning it after use.

LAUNDRY ROOMS
Washers and dryers are provided in each residence hall and apartment complex on campus. The laundry facilities within each hall are to be used solely by the residents of the respective hall. There is a nominal charge to use the washers and dryers. Highlands University and the Department of Housing and Student Conduct are not responsible for lost or stolen items.

MAIL
Each student assigned to a residence hall is also assigned a mailbox at the Campus Post Office. A refundable deposit of $20 is required to activate the mailbox. YOU ARE REQUIRED TO ACTIVATE THE MAILBOX. This mailbox serves as an official communication tool of the department and university and should be checked regularly.

PACKAGE DELIVERY
Once a package is delivered to Central Receiving, the Housing and Student Conduct office will notified. The resident will be notified by the HSC office to pick up the package at Central Receiving. The resident will have 48 hours to pick up his or her package. If the package is not picked up during this time, the package will be returned to sender.

TELEPHONE

Basic telephone service is included in room and board fees. Long distance calls can be made using a calling card. You must dial 9 to make an off-campus call.

Dialing Instructions

  • On campus calls – Dial the last for digits of the number (i.e. 454-3193 dial 3193)
  • Campus operator – Dial 0
  • Emergency service (e.g. ambulance, local police) – Dial 9 – 911
  • Toll-free calling – Dial 9 – 1-800 + the toll free number

HARASSING TELEPHONE CALLS
Harassing telephone calls should be reported to the campus police at 454-3278 and housing staff.  If the calls are persistent, keep a log of them.

UTILITIES
Highlands University provides heat, electricity, local telephone service and basic cable to all residence halls. The campus apartments are provided with heat, local telephone service, and basic cable. All residents of Arrott and Gregg House must make arrangements with PNM for their electric service.

REPORTING MAINTENANCE PROBLEMS
It is the resident’s responsibility to immediately report room damages or deficiencies to the resident assistant, resident director or residence hall coordinator. They will report your maintenance problem to the Housing Office, which in turn will file a work order report to Facilities Services. The response time will depend on the nature and severity of the maintenance problem. If you should call to the Housing Office, or leave a message with the hall staff, it is important to give your name, residence hall, room number and telephone number. Please be VERY SPECIFIC about the problem and location.

Example #1:  My sink is leaking and needs to be fixed.

This example doesn’t provide enough information. Where is it leaking from, the fixture or the pipe?

Example #2:  My sink is leaking from the pipe under the basin. It’s leaking heavily and there is a puddle of water on the floor underneath it.

This example not only specifically identifies to location of the leak, it also illustrates the severity of the problem.

If a problem occurs after normal business hours or on weekends, call your RA and he or she will determine if the problem is severe enough to call a maintenance person. If you are unable to contact hall staff and believe there is an emergency maintenance problem, call campus police at 454-3278, and they will respond and assess the situation. Please use common sense when determining an emergency. If you call campus police to report an emergency, and it is determined that it is not an emergency, you will be subject to disciplinary action.

The definition of emergency maintenance is:

  • Something that could or will cause physical harm to resident(s).
  • Something that could or will cause physical damage to property or structures.

Examples of emergency situation that require maintenance personnel to be called are:

  • Gas leaks
  • No heat (outside temperature below 50 degrees)
  • No electricity (blackout)
  • Water leaks or broken water lines
  • Frozen water pipes
  • Plugged sewer lines and/or toilets

Examples of nonemergency situations that do not require maintenance personnel to be called after normal business hours are:

  • No hot water
  • No heat when temperature is above 50 degrees
  • Removing objects from drains such as contact lenses, rings, etc.
  • Plugged sinks or bathtubs

Report all necessary repairs immediately – minor problems can quickly become major ones with major repairs costs to match. If you neglect or abuse causes damage, you are liable for repair/maintenance.
Highlands University also reserves the right to enter a room without notice during reasonable hours when necessary to provide maintenance, service, repairs, improvements, etc., or to make inspections when no one is home. The times between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. have been designated as reasonable maintenance times.

BATHROOMS
Residents are responsible for cleaning bathrooms in their rooms or suites. Common-use bathrooms are maintained by the custodial staff, but please be respectful of other residents and custodial staff and keep them clean. Notify residence hall staff of any maintenance problems.


MOVING IN

CHECK-IN PROCEDURE
When you arrive on campus, report directly to the Housing Office. At that time you will need to have your student ID, proof of registration and your assignment confirmation letter. After your ID is programmed with your key, you will proceed to  your residence hall, where you will be greeted by your resident assistants (RAs) or resident director (RDs). You will go through a formal check-in procedure with one of the above people. At this time you will receive a Room Inventory and Condition Check(RICC) form. Please review the form carefully and inspect each item in your room that corresponds to the form.  It is your responsibility to note additional comments or discrepancies listed on the form.

Once your room inspection is completed, the RICC form should be signed and turned in to the RA. Your ID card is programmed to open the doors to your residence hall and your room.

CHANGING ROOMS AND/OR HALLS
Requests for transfers should be made to the Department of Housing and Student Conduct. Room transfers are not permitted until the Housing Office has been notified. If the transfer request can be accommodated, a residence hall staff member will direct you to the Housing Office and have you fill out the appropriate forms and facilitate the move. If the request cannot be accommodated, then your name will be placed on a waiting list at the Housing Office. A $50 room change fee will be assessed to your student account.


CONSOLIDATION OF LIVING SPACE

DOUBLE ROOM CONSOLIDATION
Due to the large request for private rooms, approximately eight weeks after the beginning of the semester, room consolidations take place. If you are assigned to a double room and your roommate changes rooms or does not check in to the room, you may be asked to consolidate (move into another room or have someone else move into the room you are occupying).
You will receive notice of consolidation via a letter from the Department of Housing and Student Conduct. Residence hall staff will notify you of which residents are without roommates, and you are free to choose a new roommate. However, if you do not make your selection in the time allotted, you will be assigned a new roommate by the Department of Housing and Student Conduct. If you choose not to accept the consolidation move, you will be charged for a private room.

ACCOMMODATIONS DURING BREAK
Students are asked to vacate their rooms within 24 hours of their last final examination. Accommodations during break periods are not included in the contract. Special arrangements may be made for an additional fee for student’s residing in residence halls between semesters. However, accommodations can only be made if there is space available in another hall that remains open during the break. You will receive written notice from the Department of Housing and Student Conduct regarding the availability of housing during a break. If no housing is available, you will have to seek accommodations elsewhere.

PERSONAL DAMAGES AND/OR LOSS LIABILITIES
Highlands University accepts no responsibility for loss to the student because of earthquakes, fire, theft, or water damage, or the loss of monies, valuables or other personal property.


MOVING OUT

CHECK-OUT PROCEDURE
When you vacate your residence, you must complete a formal check-out procedure with your resident assistant or resident director. Clean the room before checkout time. At checkout time you are required to return all issued keys for your room and hall. Discrepancies in your check-in and check-out information addressing damages or loss to Highlands property may result in a charge to your account, as well as a cleaning fee when necessary.

ALL RESIDENTS are responsible for scheduling their checkout at least 24 hours in advance of their departure. Any resident that does not honor a scheduled check out will be assessed an improper check-out charge. Hall residents living in suites are each responsible for damages in the public areas of the suite and will be collectively charged for repairs or replacements resulting from unexpected wear.

Failure to complete the Inventory And Condition Check form upon vacating (including signatures) does not remove the responsibility of such repair or replacement costs, and will result in an improper check-out charge of $100.

IMPROPER CHECK OUT
Failure to be prepared for your scheduled (a minimum of 24 hours in advance) checkout may result in an improper checkout fee of $100. Not surrendering your keys, cleaning your room and/or restoring the room to original check-in condition (except for maintenance problems that were reported during check in or during the semester) will also result in additional charges.

TERMINATION OF CONTRACT
The university may terminate your contract for nonenrollment, failure to pay university fees when due or violation of the contract and/or Code of Student Conduct. Should any of these circumstances occur, the resident will normally be given 48 hours in which to check out of the room. The Housing Office will notify you when the Business Office requires you to meet with them due to your financial commitments. Should you not comply within the specified amount of time, you will be electronically locked out of your room until the Housing Office is notified by the Business Office that you have complied. Should you be required to move, failure to check out within the given time period may result in removal of your possessions at which time the department will dispose of them. You will forfeit the $100 refundable portion of the application fee.
Should you be required to move due to disciplinary sanctions for violation of housing and student conduct policies, the Code of Student Conduct and/or New Mexico state law, the amount of time given for you to move will be outlined in your disciplinary letter. You will forfeit the $100 refundable portion of the application fee.


FAQs

When I move in, what responsibilities do I have for the condition of the room?
Residents are responsible for the care of the room and of all furniture inside as well as sharing responsibility for common areas of the residence hall.

Can I hang a poster in the room?
Repairs and the installation of items requiring attachment to walls or ceilings are not permitted. You may hang poster using putty or another material that will not place wholes or otherwise damage the walls.

If something is broken or doesn’t work, how does it get fixed?
Requests for general maintenance and repairs should be submitted to the resident assistant or resident director/residence hall coordinator. Maintenance personnel and other authorized employees of the university may enter your room at reasonable times (9 a.m. – 5 p.m.) to make repairs as may be deemed necessary by the university (You may also call the Housing Office at ext. 3193 to report problems.)

I have total privacy in my room, right?
Not completely. Inspections of the room will be made monthly by residence hall staff and/or the university safety officer to check for damage to university property, fire violations, safety violations and or health conditions or violations of university policies or Code of Student Conduct.
In addition, no one other than the student to whom the room is assigned may reside in the room.

What happens at the end of the year?
Residents must check out of their rooms with the residence hall staff at the end of the contract year. An appointment should be scheduled with your resident assistant at least 24 hours in advance at which time the condition of your room will be checked using the Room Inventory and Condition Check (RICC) form. Any damages (including items missing and cleaning charges) will be noted. Both you and the resident assistant will then sign the form and you will get a copy of it. You must also return all keys issued to you at this time. You will be charged $70 for any traditional  keys (Connor Hall only) that are not returned. Failure to formally check out with the residence hall staff will result in an improper check-out charge of $100 to your account. Items left in the room after check out will be retained by the Housing Office for 15 days only. At the end of the 15 days, all such items will be disposed of.

My contract is for how long?
The housing contract, including meal plan, is for the entire academic year (or that part of the academic year which remains when the student signs a contract). The contract may be terminated prior to the end of the academic year only with the approval of the director of housing, if the student withdraws from the university.
Students must be enrolled for a minimum of six hours per semester in either Highlands University or Luna Community College.

Can I get out of my contract before the end of the year?
Yes, but generally only if you are no longer a student. You may also request to be released from the contract by completing the form, Request for Release from Residence Hall Contract, which is available from the Housing Office. All requests are submitted to the Contract Release Committee. Requests are typically granted only for circumstances which occur after the first day of classes and which are beyond the control of the student. The committee will meet once a month.

Can the university cancel my housing contract?
Yes. The university may terminate the contract for nonenrollment, failure to pay university fees when due, or violation of the contract and/or Code of Student Conduct. Should any of these circumstances occur, the resident will normally be given 48 hours in which to check out of the room. Failure to check out within the given time period may result in removal of your possessions and storage of them for 15 days, at which time they will be disposed of. The university may also implement disciplinary sanctions for violation of the Code of Student Conduct. Should the university be forced to go to court to seek eviction, you would be responsible for all cost and reasonable attorney fees incurred by the university.
I have to be on campus during the Thanksgiving or spring break. Is housing available?
Yes, but with some limitations. Most residence halls are closed during Thanksgiving and spring breaks. Residents who must stay on campus at these times will be required to move to another hall for safety reasons at no additional charge.  (As space may be limited, residents must sign up for a space at the Housing Office a week in advance.)
What about semester break?
During semester break, most halls are closed. However, limited space at an additional charge is available for residents needing housing. Residents must sign up for a space at the Housing Office at least a week in advance.
I’m going to summer school; what are my options?
All students desiring break housing at the end of spring semester or the summer term or summer school housing must complete a break housing application/agreement at least one week prior to the break housing desired. Application forms will be available at the Housing Office. Residents may be eligible for a waiver of break housing fees. Watch for announcements regarding housing availability and rates.
Where do I eat during the summer? Do I have to have meal plan?
Meal service is not available during break periods. It is available, and required, during the regular, eight-week summer term (June-July).
What if I want to keep my family housing apartment for the summer?
Enrollment during the summer is encouraged but not required as long as you are enrolled for both spring and fall semesters. However, you are responsible for rent during this time, whether or not you reside in the apartment.
To maintain you residence over the summer, you must submit a copy of your schedule of classes from the Registrar’s Office of pre-enrollment for the following fall semester must be submitted to the Housing Office in order to maintain residence over the summer.


Housing and Student Conduct Contract Release Policy
and Refund Schedule

 

 

The Department of Housing and Student Conduct will accept written appeal requests for contract release charges only for the following reasons:
A. Medical reasoning supported by appropriate medical documentation.
a. Appropriate documentation includes items such as, but is not limited to:
i. Signed medical documents on official letterhead that includes the physician’s identification number and contact information.
B. Life-changing events that are catastrophic in nature and supported by appropriate documentation.
a. Evidence of loss of a parent or guardian, supported by appropriate documentation.
Financial or community behavior based requests will not be considered.
All Appeal Requests MUST include the following or they will NOT be considered:
A. Copy of completed Contract Release Form.
B. A signed and dated letter outlining the reason for the appeal request.
C. All appropriate documentation (see above) confirming the reason for the request.
Any resident with an academic year contract, and who would like to move out of the residence halls after the end of the fall semester, can petition for a release from his or her spring housing charges provided he or she has a qualified reason with supporting documentation for releasing their contract.
Qualified Housing Contract releases include:
A. Transfer to another school
B. Graduation
C. Taking part in a student exchange program
D. Withdrawal from NMHU (you will not be enrolled at NMHU)
All other reasons for releasing your contract are NOT considered qualified.
All terms and conditions are subject to change without notice.

Housing Refudn Schedule
Fall 2016 Spring 2017
100% through Aug. 19 100% through Jan. 20
75% Aug. 20 through Aug. 27 75% Jan. 21 through Jan. 28
50% Aug. 28 through Sept. 10 50% Jan. 29 through Feb. 11
25% Sept. 11 through Sept. 24 25% Feb. 12 through Feb 25
Thereafter – No refund Thereafter – No refund
Meal Plan Refund Schedule
100% through Aug.16 100% through Jan. 17
85% Aug. 17 through Aug. 21 85% Jan. 18 through Jan. 22
70% Aug. 22 through Aug 28 70% Jan. 23 through Jan. 29
55% Aug 29 through Sept. 4 55% Jan. 30 through Feb. 5
40% Sept. 5 through Sept. 11 40% Feb. 6 through Feb. 12
25% Sept. 12 through Sept. 18 25% Feb. 13 through Feb. 19
10% Sept. 19 through Sept. 25 10% Feb. 20 through Feb. 26
Thereafter – No Refund Thereafter – No Refund

 

The Department of Housing and Student Conduct will accept written appeal requests for contract release charges only for the following reasons:
A. Medical reasoning supported by appropriate medical documentation.
a. Appropriate documentation includes items such as, but is not limited to:
i. Signed medical documents on official letterhead that includes the physician’s identification number and contact information.

B. Life-changing events that are catastrophic in nature and supported by appropriate documentation.
a. Evidence of loss of a parent or guardian, supported by appropriate documentation.

Financial or community behavior based requests will not be considered.

All Appeal Requests MUST include the following or they will NOT be considered:
A. Copy of completed Contract Release Form.
B. A signed and dated letter outlining the reason for the appeal request.
C. All appropriate documentation (see above) confirming the reason for the request.
Any resident with an academic year contract, and who would like to move out of the residence halls after the end of the fall semester, can petition for a release from his or her spring housing charges provided he or she has a qualified reason with supporting documentation for releasing their contract.
Qualified Housing Contract releases include:
A. Transfer to another school
B. Graduation
C. Taking part in a student exchange program
D. Withdrawal from NMHU (you will not be enrolled at NMHU)
All other reasons for releasing your contract are NOT considered qualified.
All terms and conditions are subject to change without notice.