The university implemented a two-year residency requirement beginning with the Class of 2023. Students in their freshman and sophomore year are required to live on campus, regardless of distance from their permanent address.
The program will explore additional academic, social, and cultural living and learning communities for students in the third and fourth semesters at W&M.
Housing Agreement & Housing Assignment
- Social Class 2023 & 2024 sstudents will be required to enter into a housing agreement with the institution for their first and second year based on social class designations.
- Failure to sign the contract will not release a student from this requirement and Residence Life will still assign a housing assignment. Our office will follow up with students who are required to live on to confirm completion of the housing contract.
- Unless a written notice of approval and/or contract release is issued from Residence Life, a student is expected to occupy the assigned room.
- A student is not considered exempt from the residency requirement if they do not complete a housing application and contract. Failure to take possession of the assigned space is not grounds for an exemption to the residency requirement and/or to have associated charges reversed.
When do Housing Contracts Go Live?
- May 1, 2020 – New Students Online Housing Contract for Fall 2020
- February 1, 2021 – Returning Students Online Housing Contract for Fall 2021
Study Away Programs:
If you plan to study away fall of your sophomore year/3rd semester you will be required to live on campus spring semester of your sophomore year/4th semester. If you study away spring of your sophomore year/4th semester you will not be required to live on the fall of your junior year/5th semester.
If you are participating in the DC Semester Program and live a semester through the Semester Program Student Housing fall or spring of your sophomore year this will count towards your two year live on requirement. A student may request a commuter exemption if they wish to live at the legal and primary residence of their mother/father or legal guardian within a 30 mile radius of campus and may apply to the Office of Residence Life for an exception.
Can a Student be Released from the Housing Requirement?
Freshman and sophomores are required to live on-campus housing based on social class. A student may request a commuter exemption if they wish to live at the legal and primary residence of their mother/father or legal guardian within a 30 mile radius of campus and may apply to the Office of Residence Life for a residency waiver. Additionally, all students who reside on campus are required to select a meal plan. Only under special circumstance with prior written approval from Parking Services, are freshmen and sophomores allowed to have cars on campus.
Does the Two Year Live on Requirement Include Transfers?
Yes, based upon incoming social class 2023 & 2024. Residence Life will confirm transfer students social class status and all transfers designated as sophomores will be required to live on campus. Our office will reach out to students directly to confirm completion of the housing contract. Failure to sign the contract will not release a student from this requirement and housing will still assign a housing assignment.
Contract Release Evaluation and Decision Process:
- All requests not completed within thirty (30) days of application will be discarded.
- All release requests will be reviewed on the basis of current policies stipulated in the housing contract.
- Applicants will be notified of the decision in writing.
- Failure to appeal any written decision within five (5) business days of the date of the written decision constitutes acceptance of the decision. No appeals shall be accepted after this time.
- Residence Life generally will respond to initial requests within fifteen (15) business days.
- Exemption requests will not be reviewed after the first Friday of classes, both fall and spring semesters.
Need to complete a housing contract and application? Head over to the Housing Portal
COVID-19 Housing Release Updates
William & Mary is committed to both the intellectual and personal development of all students. As such, we require students to live on campus for their first two years in our community.
Given the COVID-19 pandemic situation, below are the ways we can help students navigate decisions regarding living on campus in fall 2020.
Classes of 2024, 2023 (Freshmen and Sophomores) have the following options if they wish to remain enrolled at W&M:
a) Students choose to live on campus and agree to abide by strict health and safety practices outlined in the Residence Life Resource Guide.
b) Students whose permanent residence is within 60 miles of the W&M campus may commute from their home and join classes in person.
c) Students choose all fall remote course offerings, and reside at their permanent address on record and live with legal guardians.
d) Students defer/take leave of absence.
Living in an off-campus location locally in Williamsburg is not an option for freshmen or sophomore students unless it is their permanent address and they are commuting from their family home and residing with legal guardians whom live in with them in the residence 5 out of 7 days a week.
Classes of 2022, 2021, 2020 and graduate students have the same options as above. Additionally, they may request to cancel their housing contract with no penalty. This can be done via the W&M Housing Portal.
Please let us know your housing plans by August 18, we will continue to be flexible as you plan your fall semester.
If you are enrolled in a meal plan and wish to change or cancel your plan, you must visit mealplan.wm.edu before the end of add/drop and update your selection
Cancellation requests must submitted via the Housing Portal under the 2020-2021 Housing Application, if you choose a Commuter Exemption option please do so on the Contract Release Request page in the Housing Application.