Approved by: The President
History: Issued             -- August 2004
Revised           -- March 24, 2020
Last Reviewed -- March 24, 2020
Related Policies: Non-Discrimination Policy; Refund of Student Charges Policy; University Supplied Housing Policy
Additional References: Office of Housing Services
Responsible Official: Director of Housing Services, tel. (202)319-5615


I. Housing Eligibility


Generally, in order to live in on-campus housing, individuals must be University degree-seeking students who have full-time status with the University. University standards for full-time status are outlined in the Academic Announcements publications. A student whose course load falls below full-time status should petition the Office of Housing Services for permission to remain a residential student. Other exceptions may be granted on a space-available basis.

II. Definitions


A. Non-Traditional Students mean individuals whose particular circumstances do not fall within the usual demographic of the typical or traditional undergraduate student. The determination of whether a student is non traditional is made on a case-by-case basis by the Office of Housing Services considering a number of factors and characteristics together, such as but not limited to:

  • Delayed enrollment (i.e., the student does not enter postsecondary education in the same calendar year that he/she finished high school);
  • Part-time status for at least part of the academic year;
  • Full-time employment (35 hours or more per week) while enrolled;
  • Financial independence for purposes of determining eligibility for financial aid;
  • Having dependents other than a spouse;
  • Having more demanding non-University responsibilities;
  • Being a single parent (either not married or married but separated and has dependents);
  • Not having a high school diploma (completed high school with a GED or other high school completion certificate or did not finish high school); and
  • Military veteran status.

III. Freshmen, Sophomore, and Junior Housing Requirement


Currently, The Catholic University of America requires that all freshmen and sophomore undergraduate students live in campus housing unless they reside with a parent or legal guardian within 20 miles of campus or are 21 years of age or older. Students who fall under the foregoing exceptions need not request an exemption to the on-campus residency requirement.  Effective with the class of 2023, the foregoing requirements and exceptions will apply to junior undergraduate students as well as freshmen and sophomores.

Students subject to the on-campus residency requirement who do not qualify for one of the exceptions above may seek an exemption to the residency requirement by submitting a written request to the Office of Housing Services documenting the requested reason(s) for the exemption. If a student has already contracted for housing, he/she must also submit a Residence Hall Agreement Cancellation Request form along with the request for exemption. Students wishing to be granted an exemption to the residency requirement should submit their request no later than July 1 for the fall semester and November 15 for the spring semester. Students who do not meet the submission deadline will be charged for housing.

IV. On-Campus Housing for Juniors and Seniors


Currently, on-campus housing for junior and senior undergraduate students is not automatically guaranteed. During the spring semester, a lottery is conducted whereby interested junior and senior students may select housing from available rooms for the next academic year. The Office of Housing Services also offers guidance and support to junior and senior undergraduate students seeking off-campus residences. As noted above the on-campus housing requirements will apply to students beginning with the class of 2023. 

V. On-Campus Housing for Graduate and Non-Traditional Students


On-campus housing generally is not available for graduate or non-traditional students (defined above), but may be provided on a case-by-case basis upon request of the student and subject to the availability of suitable housing as determined by the University. The Office of Housing Services also offers guidance and support to graduate and non-traditional students seeking off-campus residence.