Expectations for Community Living
The Office of Residence Life strives to promote the mission of Azusa Pacific University by providing an atmosphere that is conducive to scholarship and personal growth and development. Therefore, living in residence at Azusa Pacific University carries with it a distinctive set of privileges and responsibilities. Students who reside on campus live in a community with their peers and are entrusted with the responsibility to challenge and support each other in a respectful, cooperative, and communicative fashion. This environment provides students with enriching experiences, which may be an impetus for healthy interpersonal relationships.
Trained professional and paraprofessional personnel form the Residence Life staff. The mission of this staff is to: create communities and opportunities where students are challenged to explore issues of identity, faith, and purpose in Christ.
Therefore, residence directors and resident advisors strive to support the learning that takes place in and outside of the classroom and address the needs of the APU residential community by coordinating social and educational activities that encourage students to: define their values, and beliefs, explore their interests, express their gifts and personal leadership abilities, formulate questions and pursue answers, and learn to fellowship with others within the context of community.
1.0 EXPECTATIONS FOR LIVING IN COMMUNITY
All residents must respect and comply with lifestyle expectations and all university policies and procedures. Each resident is responsible for reading and adhering to the procedures and regulations outlined in this handbook, the housing policies, the Undergraduate Catalog, and any additional policies related to living in specific university owned or leased living areas. Residents are also held accountable to local, community, state, and federal authorities.
In accordance with the Student Standards of Conduct, all residential students are subject to the following community expectations and procedures:
1.1 SELF LEADERSHIP
All residents are expected to conduct themselves in a manner that promotes and supports the well being of the community, its integrity and Christian values, and the well being of other members of the community. Therefore, the university reserves the right to confront behavior that is detrimental to the student, infringes upon the rights and sensitivities of others, or that has the appearance of impropriety (appears to not be in keeping with accepted university standards of what is right and proper).
The following may be viewed as some (but certainly not all) forms of questionable conduct:
Inappropriate public displays of affection
Being in certain states of undress
Couples lying in bed together
Use of derogatory language or behavior
Each resident is expected to assume responsibility for his/her actions.
1.2 MUTUAL RESPECT
Students are expected to be respectful of the individual rights and freedoms of others within the APU community, including faculty, staff, and other students. If a shared sense of understanding does not exist between community members, students are still expected to exhibit an outward sensitivity to the inherent diversity within the APU community. Conduct that denigrates or shows hostility toward an individual based upon an individual's race, color, gender, national origin, age, disability, sexual orientation, religious or denominational difference or any other basis will not be tolerated.
1.3 ACCOUNTABILITY IN COMMUNITY
All residents are subject to all parts of the student standards of conduct. The accountability process within Residence Life is designed to help students to develop a living and learning style, which is consistent with the Christian standards of Azusa Pacific University. These standards help to create an environment that is respectful of individual rights and freedoms; one where all are free to pursue academic excellence; and one that brings glory to God.
It is our intention to hold community members accountable to these standards through disciplinary action that is both redemptive and respectful to individuals. Residents involved in disciplinary action may be subject to sanctions involving restrictions, fines and/or housing contract termination.
Students wishing to appeal any Residence Life disciplinary action must do so, in writing, to the executive director of residence life within three school days of the date of the written decision.
The appeal shall consist of one or more of the following exclusive grounds for appeal:
- New Information — There is new and significant information that has not yet been considered. Information would be considered “new” if it was discovered after the student’s hearing.
- Excessive Sanctions — Sanctions imposed are excessive to the violation(s) relative to sanctions imposed for similar violations under similar facts and circumstances as determined by the Student Standards of Conduct.
- Procedural Irregularity — e.g. The student did not have opportunity to present information at the hearing.
Guidelines for the letter of appeal:
- Students must submit a written appeal to the supervisor of the judicial officer or designee within three school days of the date of the written decision. Written appeal must reflect the guidelines as listed in the following point.
- The petition must include:
- Names of the parties involved
- Clear statement of the nature of the appeal (must consist of one or more of the following exclusive grounds):
- New information
- Excessive sanctions
- Procedural irregularity
- A narrative of incident including:
- Why it occurred
- How it occurred
- Where it occurred
- Who was present
- The information on which the appeal is based
- The desired outcome
The supervisor (or designee), may, in response to the written appeal and upon review of all information and testimony presented, revise or confirm an earlier disciplinary process. The decision of the appeal may be made with or without meeting with students. After a decision has been reached, the student will be notified in writing by the supervisor. Decisions made in the appeal process are final and may not be addressed through the “Grievance Process” set forth in the catalog.
Only in case of sexual misconduct issues, both the complainant and the respondent will have the right to appeal the decision made through the process. Decisions made in the appeal process are final and may not be addressed through the grievance process.
The associate dean of students (or designee), may, in response to the written appeal and upon review of all evidence and testimony presented, revise or confirm an earlier disciplinary action.
Ideally, personal growth and development are encouraged most when each member of the community uses self leadership and shares the responsibility to care enough about others, to confront them in an appropriate manner. Therefore, residents are encouraged to hold one another accountable to community and university standards. Resident advisors and resident directors will provide guidance, support, and direction in this process.
1.4 COMMUNITY MEETINGS
Residents are expected and required to participate in living area meetings conducted by Residence Life staff members. Meetings are primarily called to discuss, promote, and educate residents about events or community issues and concerns. Because of the importance of these meetings, failure to attend a “required” meeting may result in disciplinary action. Please report scheduling conflicts with one’s Residence Life staff member and schedule an alternate meeting.
1.5 USE OF PUBLIC SPACES
Living area lounges, hallways, courtyards, and other public areas are meant to be used by everyone with care and respect. Therefore, disruptive behavior, disrespect for others, as well as any other circumstances deemed a hindrance will not be permitted. Living area lounges are not to be used for public displays of affection by couples or for sleeping. Appropriate attire is required in these areas at all times. Therefore, nudity and states of undress considered to be inappropriate are prohibited.
In addition, if the condition of any public area is altered or abused, the person(s) responsible will be charged and disciplinary action taken. Due to the high risk of property damage and personal injury, sports, water fights, and other high-risk activities are prohibited in indoor residential areas.
1.6 24-HOUR COURTESY
The right to study and sleep supersedes the privilege to entertain oneself or others. A “24-Hour Courtesy” policy upholds the university’s commitment to providing an environment where students may experience academic success. Noise, which is audible beyond the confines of one’s room/apartment, is prohibited and may result in disciplinary action. Students are free to have radios, stereos, televisions, etc. in their rooms, but the amplification should be controlled so that neighbors both inside and outside of the building are not disturbed. Speakers must not face or be placed in windows. Failure to keep the noise level of sound equipment reasonable may result in removal of the equipment from the student’s room.
The resident advisor or residence director reserves the right to confront and address what they deem to be excessive, disruptive behavior that is disrespectful to others, in the immediate outside vicinity of the living area (e.g., courtyards, sidewalks, entryways). Individuals and groups may be asked to leave the area.
1.7 ROOM DECORATION
Realizing that the display of certain items may be considered offensive and disrespectful to some community members, the university requires the use of discretion concerning the "content" of the pictures, posters, or written materials displayed in rooms and hallways. Decorations inconsistent with university philosophy may not be displayed. This includes sexually oriented or suggestive items or depictions (including “soft pornography”) or any other material, which presents the human body in a degrading manner, occult materials, and alcohol, drug, and tobacco advertisements or paraphernalia. Illegally obtained street signs are also prohibited. The final interpretation of whether a decoration/posting is inappropriate will rest with the residence director. Residents possessing any materials that the university deems questionable may be asked to remove such items from their rooms.
1.8 ROOM/APARTMENT ENTRY AND SEARCH
The Office of Residence Life and the Department of Campus Safety, reserve the right to enter students’ rooms to ensure community health and safety, and assess violations of the student standards of conduct.
Entry and search: All residential units are the property of Azusa Pacific University under the control of the Board of Trustees. Responsibility for immediate supervision lies with the university administration. It is the policy of the university to ensure students such privacy in their rooms as may be consistent with the basic responsibilities of the institution to fulfill its educational functions and to conduct its day-to-day operations. The entry and search policy is intended to protect both the integrity of the student and the university.
The responsibilities of the university require a right to enter into students’ rooms for the following reasons:
- To ensure maintenance and general repair within the room.
- To address an emergency or health risk.
- To ensure the room is vacant during fire drills.
- To provide for the health and safety of all residents (includes inspections).
- To turn off stereos, radios, alarm clocks, and other items which are bothersome to others.
- To investigate, when reasonable cause exists, possible violations of university regulations.
All room searches by Student Life personnel must be approved by at least one of the following: the dean of students, the associate dean of students, the associate dean of student services, the director of Residence Life, or their designate, except in the case of an immediate and clear emergency involving danger to safety and health. There are two basic situations which precipitate room search: 1) A clear indication that the established code of student conduct or health and safety regulations are being violated; or 2) emergency situation occurs which make it necessary for a staff member to search a room for a particular item, such as a discarded prescription bottle or a telephone number or address.
If a staff member should enter a room and notice in plain sight evidence of a violation of university policy, federal, state, or local law, he/she may take that evidence and refer the incident to the university or civil authorities.
Rooms may be searched upon reasonable suspicion of contract violation or concern for health or welfare. The occupant or occupants may be informed of the reasons for any room search.
When it is necessary for authorized university personnel or their agents to search a student’s room without the occupants present, two staff members should be present. A student who believes this policy to have been violated may appeal directly to the associate dean of students. The appeal should be in writing and presented to the associate dean of students within 10 days of the occurrence.
Each living area has visitation privileges for its residents. This enables students to interact with one another for academic or social purposes. The privilege permits guests of the opposite sex in one’s room or apartment. These visitation and guest privileges may be revoked at any time to any and all parts of a living area. The residence director reserves the right to terminate an open-night visitation in apartments or residence halls due to excessive, disruptive behavior, disrespect for others, or any other circumstance deemed a hindrance. Main lounges in residence halls are open 24 hours a day to give students a common area in which to interact. Listed below are the different parameters for visitation in each of the living areas:
Adams, Engstrom, Smith, and Trinity halls:
Sunday–Thursday, 12–10 p.m.
Friday–Saturday, 12 p.m.–12 a.m.
Shire, Alosta Place, Bowles, University Park, and University Village:
Sunday–Thursday, 9–12 a.m.
Friday–Saturday, 9–1 a.m.
All guests must abide by the student standards of conduct. With the approval of roommates, guests of the same sex may stay overnight in the student’s room or apartment for no more than three nights (separate or concurrent) each semester during the academic year. This ensures that an environment conducive to study, privacy, and personal needs of all residents are maintained. For guests of the opposite sex, arrangements can be made with friends in another living area. Under no circumstances may guests of the opposite sex utilize floor or room showers, or be in any state of undress while visiting a resident/living area. Campus residents who allow a nonresident (student or non-students) to remain in their rooms/apartments longer than the acceptable guest policy of three nights without receiving clearance from the residence director and/or the Office of Residence Life are subject to judicial action; the resident may be permanently barred from campus housing, charges may be incurred, and additional disciplinary action may be taken. Residents will be held accountable for their guests’ actions.
Under no circumstances may a guest reside in APU campus housing unattended. An APU student (who is assigned to the actual room/apartment in which the guest will be staying) must host them.
Visitation and guest policies remain in force during school holiday, exam, and summer housing periods. Failure to comply with these policies may result in termination of the housing privileges and/or further judicial action, including suspension or dismissal.
The residential community seeks to promote an atmosphere that is sensitive and respectful to the needs of students. The living-learning environment should be a place where one cannot only seek out opportunities for involvement, but also for privacy and freedom from constant interruptions and disturbances. Therefore, no one is permitted to sell or operate any type of business in a university living area without prior approval from the director of Residence Life (or designee). This includes door-to-door contacts, flyer or coupon distribution, “party” sales; residents as well as non-residents; young children as well as professional salespeople. Any requests for exceptions to this policy must be submitted in writing to the director of Residence Life.
All students should take precautions against thefts. Most thefts that occur in the residential units occur as CRIMES OF OPPORTUNITY when students leave their room with the door unlocked or leave their laundry unattended in the laundry room. Most thefts can be prevented by eliminating these situations. Students are advised to keep room doors locked at all times. As a service to students, Campus Safety officers will post notices on open doors to assist students in remembering to keep their room doors locked and may lock the door.
If a theft does occur, students should report it immediately to their residence director and the Department of Campus Safety. Students may also assist by notifying Campus Safety personnel immediately of any suspicious people on campus.