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Frequently Asked Questions about Housing at the Culinary Academy at IUP Punxsutawney

  • Frequently asked questions about housing and residence life at IUP’s Punxsutawney campus

    What is my new mailing address?

    Your new mailing address is:

    Your Name

    264 Center St.

    Box # ________

    Punxsutawney, PA 15767

    To find your mailbox number, please refer to your housing assignment letter and read the number next to the mailbox assignment. Please be aware that, due to the limited number of mailboxes, you may be sharing the mailbox with another resident. We will attempt to set it up that you share your mailbox with one of your roommates. However, this is not always possible, and you may have to share with another resident.

    Can I get out of my housing contract?

    The Residence Hall Housing License Agreement and Dining Service Contract is a legal agreement and, once signed, is binding for the summer session (July–August) and academic year (Fall and Spring semesters).   Students are financially responsible for both semesters unless they participate in a university-sponsored program that takes them away from the Punxsutawney area or if they terminate their enrollment. Culinary students should note that their contracts are in effect for twelve months, including the Summer session.

    What amenities are offered in the suites?


    • Bed, desk, dresser, and chair for each occupant
    • One closet
    • Internet and cable access
    • Door locks with separate key from suite door


    • Shower and toilet
    • Double-sink vanity, and storage spaces outside each bathroom

    Common Areas

    • Couch, armchair, TV stand (TV not provided), end table, coffee table
    • Full-size refrigerator, microwave, cupboard space
    • Internet, cable, and telephone connections
    • Central air conditioning and heat

    What size are the beds?

    The beds are twin size. The mattress size is 36 inches by 76 inches. They are not extra long. If an extra long is needed, please contact the Residence Life Office at 814-938-8366.

    If I would want to bring curtains with me, what size are the windows?

    All of the windows in the Living Center have mini-blinds. Students are encouraged not to hang hooks or anything that would cause damage, as the students are charged for repair and painting. Students are permitted to use tension rods to hang curtains if they wish.

    Dimensions of windows are

    Four and one bedrooms — 38" wide x 58" high
    Two bedrooms — 78" wide x 58" high
    Common area — 78" wide x 58" high

    Do I need to bring carpeting?

    No. All suites are carpeted.

    What do I need to bring to school?

    We suggest that each student bring:

    • pillow, blanket, bedspread, sheets, and mattress pad
    • towels, laundry bag or basket
    • sturdy key ring
    • bath bucket (to carry personal items to the shower in traditional halls)
    • hangers, sewing kit, and first aid kit
    • hair dryer
    • flashlight
    • coat, jacket, and umbrella
    • non-halogen study lamp
    • stamps
    • throw rug
    • alarm clock with batteries
    • items to decorate the room
    • touch-tone telephone
    • kitchen and bathroom cleaning supplies

    Residents wishing to bring draperies must ensure they are fire retardant. We recommend that students bring a small dolly or luggage cart to speed the move-in process. Please note: We encourage that you purchase renters’ insurance in case of unanticipated damage to your belongings.

    Are there any size or power-consumption restrictions for a refrigerator?

    For safety reasons, refrigerators cannot exceed two amps and 3.1 cubic feet. If you are unsure of the power consumption of an appliance, ask a store clerk, or look for that information on the back of the appliance.

    What can’t I bring to campus?

    The following are among the items prohibited:

    • weapons, firearms of any kind, and look-alike weapons
    • halogen lamps, potpourri burners, and candle warmers
    • candles and incense
    • toasters, toaster ovens, hot pots, and popcorn poppers
    • George Foreman grill and hot plates
    • space heaters (except as determined by the university), ceiling fans, air conditioners
    • any other items or appliances the university deems potentially dangerous

    Do I have a meal plan?

    Residents are required to purchase one of five university meal plans. This ensures access to high-quality, nutritious meals. Many students attending college for the first time are not experienced with time management. Having a meal plan relieves the student of the responsibility of shopping, cooking, and cleaning up after meals, allowing more time for academic pursuits. Furthermore, residence halls are not designed for students to prepare meals. Of concern are the potential for fire, activation of smoke alarms, clogging of drains, improper disposal of waste and garbage, electrical overloads, insects, and rodents.

    A high-quality dining program requires a solid financial base in order to operate at a reasonable cost to students. Our residence hall students provide that base. If meal plans were optional for residence hall students, the cost would be significantly higher.

    What is the policy on noise?

    Residents are responsible for maintaining reasonable conditions for study and sleep in our residence halls. Quiet hours are in effect Sunday through Thursday from 10:00 p.m. to 8:00 a.m. and Friday–Saturday from midnight to 10:00 a.m. A twenty-four-hour quiet period goes into effect prior to and during final exam periods. Courtesy hours, in effect twenty-four hours a day, require students to be considerate of the needs of others at all times and to comply with requests for maintaining a reasonable level of quiet. Quiet hours cover specific evening hours and require that noise be reduced so that nothing can be heard from within rooms when doors are closed.

    Students are expected to confront individuals who infringe upon their right to study or sleep. Community assistants (CA) are available to help maintain a reasonable level of quiet on the floor; however, they are not expected to be the sole policy enforcers on the floor. No staff member can be available twenty-four hours a day to address every situation that may arise. At the same time, students are encouraged to practice the skills they will need to be self-sufficient adults. When asked to settle a noise situation, a CA is likely to ask the resident if she/he has made any attempt to resolve the situation. If the resident has made an attempt and did not receive an adequate response, the CA will assist in intervention. If the resident has not made an attempt, the CA is likely to encourage her or him to discuss the matter with the student in question before seeking intervention.

    Students who continually show disrespect for the rights of others and/or refuse to cooperate with requests to keep the noise level down are referred to the building director for disciplinary action. Repeated violations could lead to a student’s loss of eligibility for campus housing. (Office of Housing and Residence Life)

    What happens when a student violates policy?

    Students who violate policies can expect to experience the consequences of those decisions. For a lesser violation, a student will be required to meet with his or her building director to discuss the situation and participate in an action plan. Action plans may include a formal written warning, a contract for behavior change, and/or an educational assignment designed to help the student gain new information and insight. If the incident requires investigation, the student is a repeat violator, or the situation is particularly serious, a referral to the residence hall judicial system may be initiated. When appropriate, IUP Campus Police are invited to participate in investigations. Campus Police are contacted for all alcohol-related policy violations and all matters involving alleged criminal activity. A hearing time is established when a university hearing officer or judicial board will review information concerning the student’s behavior, including testimony from the accused student and any witnesses, then decide whether the student is in violation of any policy. If a violation(s) is determined, the officer or board will decide on sanctions or consequences appropriate to the case.

    How can I protect my property?

    The best defense is to keep your room locked at all times and to take valuables home over break periods. University Police participate in Operation Identification, part of the Pennsylvania Crime Watch program, designed to prevent burglary. Officers go to residence halls at scheduled times and assist students with engraving identifying information (i.e., Pennsylvania driver’s license numbers) on stereos, cameras, TVs, computers, radios, etc. There is an engraver available at the main desk of each residence hall for student use. If you have a laptop computer, you should buy a locking mechanism for it.

    What do I do if I have problems with my suitemate(s)?

    The relationship between roommates often impacts one’s satisfaction with college life. Components of a positive relationship are the assertive expression of one’s needs, the recognition and respect for the unique needs and lifestyles of others, and the positive management of conflict. Students are expected to take primary responsibility for ensuring the development and maintenance of a positive roommate relationship. Students are strongly encouraged to invest themselves fully in working together to resolve differences by speaking directly to roommates, sharing concerns, expressing feelings in an honest manner, and jointly resolving conflict.

    In some cases a roommate may be unresponsive or difficult to approach. In either situation, the student should seek help from his/her CA or residence director. Residence hall staff members can assist students in expressing themselves to their roommates or in negotiating a living agreement.

    Room changes are not granted during the first and last three weeks of each semester. Room changes can occur during the posted room change period in accordance with OHRL policy. (Office of Housing and Residence Life)

    What staff are in the residence halls?

    A full-time professional residence director manages the Living Center with the assistance of two assistant residence directors. Residence hall floors are staffed by six community assistants (CA). CAs are responsible for working with students to create and maintain a floor community conducive to academic, social, and personal needs. CAs are expected to confront violations of university policy, act as role models, encourage residents to take responsibility for their own actions/choices, and encourage respect and appreciation for each other. The Living Center office is staffed by student workers who are responsible for checking out recreational equipment, issuing spare keys, sorting mail, answering questions, and attending to administrative tasks assigned by the residence directors.

    Is the residence hall co-ed?

    Yes, the building houses both males and females on each floor. Suites are assigned by gender.

    Where can I study?

    Courtesy hours are in effect for all residence halls, seven days a week. Quiet hours are in effect in all residential buildings during evening hours. When quiet hours are not in effect, courtesy hours require that students be considerate of the needs of others and comply with requests for maintaining a reasonable level of quiet. These policies help make residence hall rooms suitable places to study. Other places for studying include study lounges on second and third floors of the Living Center. The library in the Learning Center is also a good option.

    What is the policy on visitors?

    Overnight guests are permitted as long as the appropriate Overnight Guest form is completed and contains the signatures of all suitemates. Overnight guests are limited to two per resident and may not remain for more than three consecutive days . Overnight guests cannot stay on campus for more than nine nights during a thirty-day period. Guests include off-campus students and non-students. The suitemates’ rights to sleep, study, and have privacy supersede visitation privileges. Guests entering the building must be escorted by their host/hostess at all times when they are in the building. Residents are directly responsible for the actions of their guests. Residents may face disciplinary action and be held financially responsible for any behavior of a guest that results in property damage. The university reserves the right to deny access to any guest if it has been determined that he/she has disturbed, endangered, or disrupted residents. (Office of Housing and Residence Life)

    What about security?

    University Police officers patrol the campus from 8:00 p.m. to 4:00 a.m. each weekday night and from 8:00 p.m. to 6:00 a.m. on the weekends. The University Police office is located on the first floor of the Living Center near the main doors. The officers are fully commissioned police officers with arrest powers, and they work closely with the Punxsutawney Borough Police Department. The officers work with Residence Life staff to provide programming, safety and security resources, and services.

    What is the policy on alcohol and other drugs?

    University regulations prohibit the possession, sale, and/or consumption of alcohol and other nonprescription drugs within university residence halls. In addition, alcohol beverage containers, advertisements, or neon signs may not be placed in student room windows or displayed in other areas of the residence halls (including suite doors). Further, alcoholic beverage containers (full or empty) may not be displayed at all in student rooms. Violators are subject to disciplinary action. Students found within a residence hall who are notably intoxicated are subject to disciplinary action. (Office of Housing and Residence Life)

    Can I smoke in my room?

    University policy prohibits smoking in all residence halls.

    Can I have a pet in the suites?

    Students are only permitted to have fish in a ten-gallon or smaller aquarium. No other pets are allowed. Please note: Residence Life staff members will not be able to care for fish during break periods, and, during long breaks (a week or more), all appliances, including fish tanks, must be unplugged.

    Can I bring my car to school?

    Yes, students at IUP Punxsutawney are permitted to have cars on campus. However, it is recommended that students wait to see if they will need to have a car before bringing one. If you do choose to bring a car to campus, it must be registered with the University Police, and you must have a parking permit. IUP Punxsutawney students who need parking permits would be considered commuters and can get permits on line.   If you do not have a permit, you cannot park on campus. Please be aware, however, that if you get a parking permit on line it will be sent to your home address. (University Police)

    Where should I park my car?

    Students are permitted to park in the large lot outside of the main doors of the Learning Center. Students are not permitted to park behind the Learning Center (near the dumpsters) or in the small lot near the main doors of the Living Center (basketball court area). These are staff parking areas, and students found parking in these areas can face tickets, towing, or the university judicial system.

    Where would I do my laundry?

    The laundry room in the Living Center is located on the second floor of the building. There are several washers and dryers that are operated with the use of your student I-card. You can add money to your I-card through a machine located on the first floor of the Learning Center, and then use your I-card in the machine in the laundry room. No change is needed.

    What health care services are offered on campus?

    All IUP students are eligible for health care through the university’s Health Service on the Indiana campus. However, in the event of an emergency, students are encouraged to go to the Punxsutawney Area Hospital. Ambulance service is provided to students. Students should have an insurance card or any necessary insurance information before going to the hospital or doctor’s office.

    What if my suitemates don't lock the door?

    Suite doors automatically lock and cannot be left unlocked. However, the doors can be propped open. We encourage students not to prop doors open, as it leaves the suite vulnerable to theft and damages. Residents should talk with their suitemates if this becomes a concern. IUP Punxsutawney is not held responsible for any missing or damaged items. Individual homeowner’s policies should be consulted for theft and damage coverage.

    What is there to do in Punxsutawney?

    The Mahoning Shadow Trail is available for walking, biking, running, and (in the winter) cross-country skiing. See the Mahoning Shadow Trail for more information.

    Indiana is located 27 miles from Punxsutawney, and Dubois is approximately 20 miles away. Each place has a mall and other shopping and dining opportunities.

    Are there clubs or organizations I can get involved with on campus?

    Student Activities Board: Open to all students to plan activities on campus

    Resident Housing Association: Open to all residents as well as to any off-campus students who are interested; serves as the student government and programming board of IUP Punxsutawney Housing, and provides opportunities to plan activities as well as travel to conferences

    Service Learning/Volunteering: Students in certain classes will be required to participate in service learning opportunities within the community, but students are encouraged to volunteer and get to know people in the community even if it’s not a class assignment

    Other Opportunities: Students are encouraged to talk with faculty and staff if there are any activities or volunteer opportunity they are interested in.

    I’m a musician. Are there any facilities on campus where I can practice?

    There are no specific areas for music practice. However, a piano is available for student use on a first-come, first-served basis as long as it does not interfere with any other classes or activities. No instruments are permitted to be played within the residence hall, unless it is not amplified and the sound cannot be heard outside of the suite. For example, you can bring your guitar and play it as long as it is not hooked up to an amplifier and you follow normal quiet and courtesy hours.

    What if I want to go to Indiana for an activity or for the weekend?

    Bus service (free of charge, but first-come, first-served) is available to transport students to Indiana for the weekend. The bus leaves campus on Fridays at 5:00 p.m. and picks students up in Indiana at the HUB on Sundays at 6:00 p.m. Please note: Students must find their own places to stay for the weekend. IUP Punxsutawney only provides transportation to and from the Indiana campus. Buses will also be available for certain events on the Indiana campus, such as home football and basketball games.

    I need transportation to Wal-Mart or a doctor in town. What do I do?

    If you need transportation to a doctor’s appointment or other necessary location, you must submit a request form to see if someone is available to drive you in the campus van. You must provide at least 48 hours’ notice.

    Van shuttles to Wal-Mart will occur at numerous times during the week. Dates and times will be announced. Contact the assistant dean of Students for more information.