Policies, Procedures and Standards

Policies, Procedures and Standards

Policies and Procedures

Alcohol Policy

Use, possession, distribution, or being under the influence of alcoholic beverages on any part of the Harrisburg campus is prohibited regardless of the age of a student. Such behavior is a breach of the Housing Contract and will result in disciplinary action. Absolutely no empty alcohol bottles/cans or containers are allowed. The Penn State Harrisburg campus is a dry campus. Therefore, students should not possess or display items that may have been used for alcoholic beverages. This policy will be strictly enforced. Violators will be subject to disciplinary action via Community Standards or Office of Student Conduct under the Penn State Code of Conduct.

Apartment/Room Maintenance Inspections

Apartment/Room Maintenance Inspections are held during the semester and at time of check-out by the Housing & Food Services staff and a Residence Life staff representative. These departments retain the right to inspect rooms based on the concern for the safety and well-being of residents, as well as concern for policy violation

The University unconditionally reserves the right to inspect rooms at times convenient to its staff, to terminate housing contracts, reassign rooms, and to implement policies necessary to maintain the security and overall integrity of the Residence Life program.

Bicycles and Skateboards

Bicycles are to be placed in the bicycle racks located outside the residence halls. Students may store their bicycles in their rooms with the permission of their roommate(s). Bicycles are not permitted in lounges, hallways, dining areas, or other public areas. Skateboards are prohibited on campus.


Standard television cable service is provided in the living room of each apartment. Residents who desire premium or digital cable service should contact:

Comcast Cable
4601 Smith St.
Harrisburg, PA


The burning of candles, incense, potpourri, or other flame-emitting articles is prohibited.

Damages in Room/Apartment

All students will be held responsible for the condition of the apartment, room furnishings, and for any other damages or loss that may occur during occupancy. Individuals identified as being responsible for damage, theft, or losses will be billed for the cost of repair or replacement. All residents will be held collectively responsible for damages, theft, or losses in common area when individual(s) responsible cannot be identified. Residents are not permitted to make damage repairs or arrange for them to be made.


The unlawful manufacture, distribution, dispensation, possession, or use of a controlled substance, on property owned, leased or controlled by the University is prohibited. Violation of this prohibition may result in disciplinary action including separation from the University, and the violator may be required to participate in a drug abuse assistance or a drug rehabilitation program.

Fire Safety/Fire Alarms

Fire drills will be conducted in the residence halls. At the sounding of the fire alarm, each resident must evacuate the building in an orderly fashion and proceed to a distance from the building that will ensure their own safety and not interfere with fire and police personnel.

Residents should listen for further instructions from University Police, Fire personnel, and/or Residence Life staff and remain 500 feet away from the building until notified that it is safe to reenter the building.

Residents present when an alarm sounds are requested to close but not lock their individual bedroom or apartment doors.

Tampering with fire safety equipment, including fire extinguishers, smoke detectors, sprinkler heads, and pull stations jeopardizes the safety of residents and is a criminal act. DO NOT hang items from or cover the sprinkler heads. Do not leave items unattended while cooking. If pan catches fire, turn off heat and cover with lid to smother flame.


No grills of any type are permitted to be used in and around the complex.


Students assigned to University Housing at Penn State Harrisburg have the privilege having overnight guests providing that the host consult with roommates and the presence of the guest(s) is not a distraction nor interferes with the rights of the other residents assigned to that particular apartment. Housing and Residence Life has a policy that governs overnight guests. Guests are defined as individuals who do not possess a Housing Contract for the apartment they are visiting (this includes students with Housing Contracts but are not in their assigned apartments). Guests are permitted for a maximum of 72 hours within a seven day period. Guests may not move from apartment to apartment to circumvent the visitation policy. A person who abuses this privilege can be considered as illegally “living” in University Housing. If it is determined that such an occurrence has taken place, the individual in question could be cited for trespassing and liable for reimbursement to the University for the cost of residing in campus housing. In addition, the host could face University disciplinary action for violation of University policy which may include the cancellation of their housing contract.

It is the responsibility of the host resident to see that his/her guest(s) are aware of University and Residence Life policies. Guests will be held responsible for their own actions and for knowledge of University/Residence Life regulations. However, the host may be held accountable for damages committed by his/her guest, unless the guest can be identified and is a University student.

Apartment keys will not be provided for guests. Residents are not to give their keys to guests in order for them to gain entrance to the residence.

Housekeeping Hints

As each individual has their own standard of cleanliness, discussing housekeeping guidelines early in the semester will reduce the chance of conflict in this area later on.

  1. Develop a revolving schedule on a weekly basis for cleaning the common areas of the apartment – bedrooms are the responsibility of each individual
  2. A good rule of thumb, whoever cooks (when cooking for the entire apartment), should not have to do the dishes – unless cooking for self or friends. Roommates should split the labor on this chore.

Certain things must be done daily to show consideration for others in the apartment. Among these are:

  1. Clean up after yourself in the bathroom (toilet, sink, shower & floor)
  2. Do your own dishes after eating (unless a schedule is made and responsibilities assigned)
  3. Drop your belongings (clothes, shoes, books, etc.) in your room – showing consideration to your roommates and guests.


Please help keep the residence area litter free. Trash receptacles are available within the complex. These receptacles are not to be used for personal trash from your apartment. Use the dumpsters to dispose of your trash.


Incoming mail is distributed by the Middletown Post Office to the cluster boxes located in front of the Community Center. Only mail addressed to an occupant of an apartment/room will be processed. A mailbox key is issued with your apartment key at check in. Please use the format below when notifying others of your campus address:

Resident Name
Apartment/Room Number Olmsted Drive
Middletown , PA 17057

Outgoing mail: A mail slot for outgoing mail is located in each section of cluster boxes. Mail is picked up Monday-Saturday. An additional mailbox for outgoing mail is located in front of the Olmsted Building.

Airborne Express/DHL, Federal Express, UPS and large packages from the Post Office are delivered directly to the Community Center. Individuals will be contacted when a packed is delivered for them.

Maintenance and Repairs

  • Routine Repairs

    A routine repair is a problem that does not require immediate attention, such as a burned-out light bulb, a torn screen, dripping faucet, etc.
    What to do: Submit an online Maintenance Request. Residents unable to submit an online request may contact the Housing Office at 948-6244.

  • Emergency Repairs

    An emergency situation is anything that needs immediate attention and which if not remedied will result in serious injury or damage. Examples include: Loss of water, heat, or electricityElectrical hazardFlooding or major water leakFireGas leakGlass window breakage that is a potential safety and/or security hazardAny condition that represents a significant imminent threat or potential hazard to the communityHousing and Food Services at 717-948-6244 during normal business hours; or

  • Police Services at 717-979-7976 after hours

Meals and Food Shopping Hints

The planning of meals and the sharing of food costs should be discussed early. Here are hints for making this discussion easier:

  1. All roommates should meet to decide if they will prepare meals and shop individually or as a group. Conflict often arises regarding the use of another’s food items.
  2. Roommates should discuss food preferences – who likes what foods
  3. Roommates should discuss class/personal schedule – how often each person plans to be in the residence, class schedules, meals that one does not usually eat, and how often one plans on going home for weekends.
  4. Roommates should decide how they will share the cost of food and who will do the shopping?

Shopping Wisely

  1. Make a general meal plan for the week
  2. Make a shopping list.
  3. Compare sale price to regular price.
  4. Check newspaper ads, sales flyers, use coupons, look for unadvertised specials.
  5. Compare prices of national, store, or generic brands of a product.
  6. Substitute sale items for more expensive foods on your list.
  7. Read labels.
  8. Buy perishable food including frozen food last.
  9. Try to shop when you’re not hungry, tired, or rushed.

Motorbikes, Motor Scooters, and Motorcycles

Motorbikes, motor scooters, and motorcycles are to be parked in designated areas of parking lots. Fines will be levied for parking in any other area.


The University has established a Newspaper Readership Program, which provides several different newspapers free to students (Harrisburg Patriot, New York Times, USA Today) Monday through Friday throughout the fall & spring semesters. For your convenience, the papers are located in the Community Center as well as in the Olmsted Building.


Pets of any kind are NOT permitted to be fed, housed or harbored in or around any housing unit or area owned or operated by the University Housing and Food Services department. This includes amphibious creatures, reptiles, birds, dogs, cats, etc -- with the exception of tropical fish and gold fish in a fish tank not to exceed 5 gallons. This includes pets of guests. The University reserves the right to inspect the premises and will do so when pets are suspected.

Quiet Hours

One of the goals of Residence Life is to provide an atmosphere that is conducive to study and rest. It is necessary that residents understand that the rights of residents to study and to sleep takes precedence over the right to make noise which disturbs others. Quiet Hours and Courtesy Hours are in place to assist in the monitoring of noise.

*Courtesy Hours – observed 24 hours a day. If a person is approached about noise at any time, they should shoe courtesy and comply with the request.

*Quiet Hours – designated hours when no noise should be heard outside an apartment – Sunday - Thursday 8:00 pm - 8:00 am and Friday - Saturday 1:00 am - 10:00 am.

Electronic sound equipment (radios, TVs, stereos, amplified and other musical instruments, etc.) should not be heard outside the apartment. Such equipment should never be played so loudly as to disturb other residents. Stereo owners are urged to use headphones to ensure that noise does not carry beyond one’s bedroom/apartment.

It is important that residents take the initiative to discuss the noise with the offender. If you are bothered by someone else’s noise, ask them to quiet down. You have every right to expect them to do so. Likewise, if you are requested to quiet down, please do so thus showing your respect for a fellow student. RAs will continue to deal with excessive noise. However, they cannot always be aware of every problem. All students and guests are expected to be mindful of their behavior in order to help maintain a quiet living environment.


It is the responsibility of residents to help ensure that adequate security is maintained in the apartment. Students should report unauthorized persons to proper authorities and be constantly aware of the importance of maintaining security in the apartment complex. Each student should keep room/apartment doors and windows locked when not in the apartment. If you have security concerns, contact University Police at 717-979-7976.


In compliance with University policy, smoking is prohibited in all University buildings, including the Capital Village apartments. Smoking is permitted outside of the apartments. When smoking outside, please place cigarette butts in the "Smoking Oasis" located at each building. Violators of the smoking policy will be subject to disciplinary action and held financially responsible for the cleaning and damages that occurs in the apartment.


The solicitation of a sale of products or services shall include: 1) any attempt to organize a meeting in a residence hall for the purpose of a demonstration or explanation of products or services which are for sale and 2) any demonstration, explanation or distribution of literature in a residence hall concerning products or services which are for sale.

No person (including a student), firm, business entity, charitable organization, religious organization or other organization may solicit money or sell or solicit the sale of any product or service anywhere in a residence area. Exception: Registered student organizations and residence hall governments may solicit money or sell/solicit the sale of products or services in a residence hall in accordance with the regulations governing Student Organizations found in Policies and Rules for Students, Funding and Financial Affairs of Register Student Organizations, Fund Raising on Campus and Solicitation on Campus.

Trash & Recycling

Trash and recyclable materials must be removed from the apartments by residents and placed in the dumpsters located behind the fence in the parking lot near the Community Center. Please separate recyclables from your regular trash (glass, cans, plastic) and place the recyclables in the small "Totes" located next to the larger green trash dumpsters, Trash or recyclables are not to be placed outside of ones apartment. A fee of $25 per bag will be charged for removing personal trash left in public receptacles and/or stairwells. This fee will be billed to specific individuals or apartments. To prevent pest infestation, trash should be removed daily.

Vacuum Cleaners

Vacuum cleaners are available in the Community Centers to assist residents in the cleaning of their apartments.

Vehicle Registration/Parking

All vehicles must be registered and display a sticker of evidence of registration. Students must park their cars and other vehicles in designated parking areas and abide by University policies outlined in the parking regulations. The vehicle registration office is located in the Susquehanna Building.

Weapons, Firearms and Fireworks

Please refer to the firearms policy on the Safety and Police Services website.

Windows and Screens

All windows have been provided with screens for comfort and safety. For personal safety, students are responsible for ensuring that windows in their rooms are closed when no one is in the room. Removal of window screens is prohibited. Damaged screens will be repaired/replaced, and any charges assessed will be posted to the student’s account.

Community Standards

Conduct expectations of members of a community are defined in the procedures, policies and regulations established for their particular community, and for the larger community of which they are a part. Federal, State and local laws and ordinances are the standards for the larger community surrounding Penn State Harrisburg. The regulations in the Code of Conduct are the standards for the Penn State Harrisburg Community. The regulations of the Code of Conduct do not replace the federal, state or local laws nor is the campus community a sanctuary from the procedures, policies, and regulations of the general community. The Student Guide to University Policies and Rules and the Housing and Food Services Contract Options & Information brochure describe many of the community standards and expectations that impact students living in campus housing.

Adherence to established procedures, policies and regulations is the choice and personal responsibility of community members. Each member of the University community is accountable to appropriate authorities, both internal and external, for their decision to deviate from established guidelines. An individual’s deviation may result in civil, criminal, and/or disciplinary action by the University.

Residence Life has a responsibility to intervene where behaviors within the residential community impede, contradict or are inconsistent with standards set by the residential community, academic mission of the University, or violates contractual agreements made between the student and the University.

Allegations of student misconduct that occur in the residence area will be adjudicated by the Assistant Director of Residence Life, or referred to the Campus Judicial Affairs designee. Following are descriptions of the Community Standards Interventions a student may face if accepting responsibility for a documented behavior:

Community Standards Intervention

A number of administrative and educational interventions have been identified to address behavior inconsistent with established community standards. Both types of interventions inform the student that the behavior was inappropriate while also encouraging the student to become a positive contributor to the community. Students may be assigned one and/or both types of interventions.

Administrative Interventions

Administrative interventions impact a student’s status within the living area. They include, but are not limited to:

  • Verbal Warning – A verbal acknowledgement that community standards and/or expectations have been disregarded.
  • Letter of Concern – A written acknowledgement that community standards and/or expectations have been disregarded.
  • Contract Review – Contract Review is implemented when a student has either seriously breached a community standard or has repeatedly engaged in inappropriate behavior.
  • Change of Housing Assignment – Student is moved from current housing assignment to another housing location. This may be a temporary or permanent change of assignment.
  • Restitution – Restitution refers to requiring a student to pay for damages to misappropriation of property. Restitution may be imposed separately or in addition to any other intervention. In the case of damage, destruction, defacement, theft, or unauthorized use of property, restitution to the University or the individual affected may be required through financial payment or community service. Failure to make restitution may lead to an additional intervention.
  • Loss of Privilege – Loss of privilege refers to the withdrawal of the use of a service, participation, in an activity, or other withdrawal of privileges consistent with the inappropriate behavior. Loss of privilege may be imposed separately or in addition to other interventions.
  • Contract Termination – refers to a student being separated from the University housing program by revoking a student’s housing contract. The housing contract may be terminated temporarily or permanently.

Educational Interventions

Educational interventions require a student to become actively engaged in a process that will challenge the student to learn how the behavior impacted the community and how the behavior may be harmful to individual student development. The student will gain the skills and knowledge needed in order to become a positive contributor to the community. Examples of educational interventions include, but are not limited to:

  • Community Service Project – consists of assignments or tasks to be carried out for specified periods of time.
  • Educational Interventions – Educational Interventions refer to specific interventions appropriate for specific behaviors.