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Cortland Living

Welcome to SUNY Cortland!

In August we will be awaiting your arrival. You will join an on-campus community of 3,000 students in 17 co-ed residence halls and the West Campus Apartments. We are delighted you will be joining us!


Housing Requirements

  • All new freshmen are required to live on campus for four semesters (or two full years).
  • All new transfers with sophomore or junior credits are required to live on campus for two semesters.
  • Exceptions are:
    • You are over age 21 by September or January of the semester that you begin classes
    • You are commuting from home (60 mile radius)
    • You are married
    • You are a veteran

If you qualify for one of these exceptions, you must fill out the online New Student Off-Campus Approval Form in order for room and board charges to be removed from your bill. Click here to download the form.

General Housing Information

  • Housing assignments are based on the receipt date of the admissions deposit and submitting the Housing Preference Form on time. Special interest and roommate requests impact your assignment.
  • Freshmen (including freshmen transfer students) are assigned to live in a room with other freshmen, even when assigned to a mixed hall.
  • Transfer students are assigned to live with either another transfer student or a returning student.
  • Junior and senior returning students are not automatically guaranteed housing; their housing is based on the space available at the time and compliance with the room selection process deadlines.

Roommate Requests

Roommate requests will be accommodated if spaces are available as long as both students mutually request each other by May 31.


We will assign some first year freshmen students to tripled rooms (three students in a standard double). 

The later you pay your admissions deposit, the more likely you are to be assigned in a triple. If you live in a triple you will receive a 25 percent prorated room rebate for the number of days you are housed in a triple. This is issued after you move out of the triple.   

Advantages to Living on Campus

  • Greater satisfaction with the college experience
  • Higher grades than off-campus students
  • Greater accessibility for participation in educational and recreational activities
  • Exposure to different cultures and lifestyles
  • Contact with more students
  • A stronger connection to campus

Important Room Deposit Information

Receiving the mailing from Residence Life and Housing confirms that you have paid the $200 admissions deposit. The $200 is non-refundable after May 1 or 30 days from the date of the acceptance letter, whichever is later. No deposits are refunded after the beginning of the semester.

Special Interest Housing

As a new student you can indicate a preference for the options listed below on your New Student Housing Preference Form (new students do not choose specific halls):

  • 24-Hour Quiet Floors are located in Higgins Hall and DeGroat Hall. Each resident on the floor agrees that all levels of sound must be kept to a minimum and within the confines of their room, 24 hours a day, seven days a week. This is a great option for students who prefer to study in their room.
  • The Wellness Floor is located in Shea Hall. Residents of the Wellness Floor sign an agreement to refrain from the use of any alcohol, drugs, and all tobacco products, both on-campus and off-campus. Hall staff provides programming to support the wellness option.
  • Mixed Halls/Buildings house both new and returning students. Freshmen assigned to a mixed hall are placed in a room with another freshman.
  • West Campus Apartments house 240 students in 60 apartments. Each fully-furnished apartment has four single bedrooms (containing a standard twin bed),
    one-and-a-half baths (accessible apartments contain one large bathroom), a fully-equipped kitchen (stove, refrigerator, microwave and dishwasher) and a living/dining area (dining table, four chairs, a couch, two upholstered chairs, lamps and a coffee table and end table).

    West Campus Apartments stays open during all breaks for the convenience of students who student teach or have internships in the area. Students assigned to West Campus pay a slightly higher room charge, but students are not required to purchase a dining plan.

    There are two buildings designated for students over the age of 21, two buildings designated for transfer students, one building designated as co-ed, and two buildings available for mostly freshman students, along with 10 other mixed buildings. West Campus Apartments are located one and a half miles from the main campus.
  • Dragon and Glass Tower Halls offer quad-style living (two double rooms that share a bathroom) and air conditioning. There is a higher room charge for residents to live in these halls. There are very limited spaces available for freshmen and transfers; some freshmen may be assigned to triples.
  • International Student Housing is provided in Whitaker Hall, Fitzgerald Hall and the West Campus Apartments. West Campus Apartments remain open during all breaks.

Housing Accommodations

SUNY Cortland is committed to upholding and maintaining all aspects of the Federal Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA) and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973.

If you are a student who requires a medical or special housing accommodation, please contact the Disability Services Office located in Van Hoesen Hall, Room B-1, 607-753-2066. Medical singles are available on a limited basis, based on recommendations from the Student Counseling Center, Student Health Service or Disability Services. Any information regarding your required accommodation will remain confidential and will be divulged only with your knowledge and permission. Early notification is requested so that we may accommodate you to the best of our abilities; there is a July 1 deadline for submitting your medical documentation. Further information regarding housing accommodation is available on the Residence Life and Housing Web page under “Accessibility/Housing Accommodations”.

Residence Life and Housing Staff

Living with and sharing life’s day-to-day experiences with your new roommate(s) has the potential to be one of the most enjoyable, challenging, and memorable college experiences.

To assist you in having a positive on-campus experience and the best possible roommate experience, the following staff members are available in the residence halls:

  • RHD (Residence Hall Director) or HM (Hall Manager) – professional staff member with a bachelor’s degree and/or master’s degree who lives in the residence hall and supervises the building community and student staff.
  • RA (Resident Assistant) – trained student staff member who lives on your floor, provides support and mentoring, educational and social programming, and provides hall office coverage during evening hours.
  • AA (Administrative Assistant) – student staff member who provides staff office coverage and delivers mail.
  • APM (Academic Peer Mentor) – student staff member who provides academic support and programming.

We encourage students to use the Roommate Agreement Form to prevent miscommunication from happening. If a roommate conflict arises, an attempt to resolve the issue must be made by all parties before a room change can be considered.

The Residence Life and Housing staff is readily available to help out with any questions or concerns. Our central office includes six professional staff members, as well as very helpful support staff.


Things You Need to Know

Bed linen: The extra-long twin bed mattress measures 36” x 80”. Regular size twin sheets, and extra-long single bed sheets, will fit our mattresses.

Turn your room into a comforting home away from home with the Residence Hall Linens program. Residence Life and Housing has partnered with Residence Hall Linens since 1999 to provide our students and families with a convenient, affordable way to ensure you have everything you need for life on campus. The extra long sheets and bedding products are guaranteed to fit all of the beds on campus, and there are matching towels and even storage items available to help make the transition to college life easier. All products are guaranteed until graduation, and shipping is free for all Value Pak orders. Residence Life and Housing receives proceeds from every order placed through this program. Parents and students who have taken advantage of this opportunity in previous years recommend placing your order early, since popular colors and patterns can sell out quickly.  Please visit the RHL website or call (800) 957-4338.

Bed Risers: Storage space under the beds is approximately 15.5” - 21.5”. Cinder blocks and other forms of bed risers are unsafe and are not permitted.

Cable: All residence hall rooms and West Campus Apartments are wired for cable television. The cost of this service is included in the room rate. Note: We recommend that you bring a TV no larger than 32”.  Bring a television cable (coaxial) cord, or you can purchase one at the College Store.

Campus Internet: All residence halls have both wired and wireless capabilities. A base internet service is provided in each room per student. Students may purchase upgrades for their internet service through Apogee ( at an additional cost per semester. Contact Apogee for network service information. Computer routers are not permitted on campus.

Carpets/Rugs: We recommend that carpets are no larger than 9’x12’ for your room. On-campus bedrooms are not carpeted, with the exception of West Campus Apartments.

Decorations: We encourage students to personalize their room. Keep in mind that poster mounts and tape will cause damage to walls. We recommend 3M Command Strips and poster putty as ways to hang posters and photos without causing damage. Any damages may result in a charge being assessed to the student’s account.

Designed Triples: These rooms are larger than a double room and easily accommodate a third person. Triple room rebates are not associated with ‘designed triples’. Designed triples are located in Cheney, DeGroat, and Glass Tower.

Insurance: The College is not responsible for damage and/or theft of student property. You may wish to review your family’s homeowner policy for potential coverage. If you are not insured, Haylor, Freyer & Coon, Inc., works closely with the College and can offer you an insurance policy. Contact Auxiliary Services Corporation at
(607) 753-4627 or visit them at their Web page for further information.

Keys & Card Access: Room keys will be issued at check-in. Residence halls are locked 24 hours a day to ensure student safety. Your SUNY Cortland ID card is a “prox” card that will unlock the outside door to only the residence hall that you live in.  If a room key is lost, there is a charge to change the lock and replace the key, and it should be reported to your RHD.

Lamps: Lamps with a shade made with plastic, including those lined with another material are not allowed. Shades must be made only with glass, metal, or fabric.Laundry

Laundry Facilities: Each residence hall has a laundry facility. Cost for using the facility is covered through a laundry fee that you pay as part of your dining plan.

Refrigerator & Micro-fridge Rental/Purchase: You may bring your own refrigerator or Micro-fridge.  The refrigerator must meet the following criteria: it must be UL approved, grounded with a three-prong plug, and no larger than 5.5 cubic feet. You may also rent a combination microwave/refrigerator called Micro-fridge through the College Rental Program. Please note that this is the only microwave approved for hall rooms. Contact Auxiliary Services Corporation for more details at (607) 753-4627 or the Micro-fridge Distributor at (800) 525-7307. Only one Micro-fridge or refrigerator is allowed per bedroom. Exceptions require medical documentation.

SUNY Cortland ID Card: Your SUNY Cortland ID card gives you access to your residence hall. The ID card will be used for meals, and your Connections Account (which can be used at vending machines, copiers and printers around campus). Students are required to carry their ID with them at all times. There is a fee to replace lost ID cards.

Sustainability: SUNY Cortland actively participates in becoming more sustainable in the residence halls. Please help us by doing the following:

  • Install compact fluorescent bulbs with appropriate wattage in all lamps you bring to campus.
  • Use the recycling bin provided to you in your room. (bottles, cans, paper, plastic)
  • Turn off electrical items and lights when not in use.

Telephone/Voicemail: For information regarding how to sign up for a paid phone plan on campus, contact Apogee (

Window Treatments: Window sizes vary from hall to hall, and only suspension rods may be used. If you are thinking of purchasing curtains, please wait until after you arrive. Windows in student rooms already have blinds provided.


What’s next for me to do?

Review the SUNY Cortland Housing Preference Form Instruction Sheet on our Web page and to go on myRedDragon beginning May 1, and let us know your housing preferences by May 31. You will not be housed until this form is completed!


Fall 2013 Opening Weekend

Thursday, August 22 from 1 - 4 p.m.: Check-in for freshmen and transfer students who did not attend Summer Orientation.

Friday, August 23 from 9 a.m. - 4 p.m.: Check–in for freshmen and transfer students who already attended Orientation.

*Some halls have a staggered check-in schedule; your check-in time will be included with your housing assignment in August.

Suggested Shopping List

Here is a list of commonly used items you might not think to bring with you to college. Some of these items may be purchased at the College Store.

  • desk lamp with a compact fluorescent light bulb
  • hangers
  • wastebasket
  • surge protectors
  • humidifier
  • iron with automatic shutoff
  • touchtone telephone or cell phone
  • flashlight/batteries
  • coffee pot with automatic shutoff
  • drying rack
  • laundry bags/baskets
  • shower shoes
  • shower caddy
  • dish towels
  • mattress pad
  • weather appropriate outerwear
  • cleaning supplies
  • postage stamps
  • bathrobe
  • slippers
  • manual can opener
  • TV cable cord
  • Ethernet cable
  • snow shovel to leave in your vehicle
  • mini fan
  • thermometer
  • facial tissues
  • hand sanitizer
  • band-aids/first aid kit
  • Micro-fridge (only one per room; triples are permitted two)

What NOT to Bring

Here is a list of items that are not permitted* in the residence halls. Do not bring any of these items.

  • lamps with plastic shades (5-light “octopus” lamps, desk lamps)
  • pets (other than fish in bowls with no electric filters and/or heaters)
  • microwaves
  • Foreman grills or sandwich makers
  • candles or incense
  • extension cords
  • hot plates/hot pots    
  • toasters/toaster oven
  • bed risers
  • electric blankets

*If you are assigned to West Campus Apartments you may bring an electric table top appliance like a toaster, George Foreman Gril, blender, etc. No more than four appliances per apartment allowed, toaster ovens not allowed. This is applicable to West Campus Apartments only.