Dakin and Merrill are the traditional-style dormitories, and are home to almost all students during their first year at Hampshire. Around one third of the incoming class are housed in doubles, and the rest in single rooms. Most halls are designated for all genders (including the bathrooms); however, some are designated single-gender. Each hall has a designated noise level that residents must respect. Smoking is not allowed in any of the residences, nor within 25 feet of any building. Substance-free halls are available in both dorms. In addition, there are identity-based halls, interest-based halls, and Living and Learning Communities.
Greenwich, Enfield, and Prescott Houses are apartment-style residences, each offering different architectural styles and social atmospheres. Commonly referred to as "mods," these spaces accommodate from four to ten students and include single and double bedrooms. Mods are equipped with a kitchen, bath(s), and a living-dining area. Mod residents are almost exclusively continuing students, but an extremely limited number of spaces (almost always in double bedrooms with a roommate) are sometimes available for incoming students. Such spaces usually go to older transfer students, and those who need specific accommodations.
As a residential college, Hampshire expects its students to live on campus. Only students 25 years of age or older, students living with their parents within 30 miles of Hampshire, and students with their own families can choose to live off campus. The housing operations office can sometimes approve other exemptions to the residency requirement for continuing students if there is a need to create more bed space on campus. These exemptions are granted on a case-by-case basis, by application only. If you qualify for a housing exemption and wish to live off campus, please submit the Application to Live Off-Campus to inform us of this choice.
All houses have professional and student staff who work to create community within the residences. Staff plan programs and activities to enhance students' experience at Hampshire, as well as support the norms for community living and individual student needs. Residence life staff work out of an area office located close to the residence they support. Each area office is a hub for information and assistance with living at Hampshire. The houses put on many events throughout the year such as faculty seminars, study breaks, discussion groups, dances, and film series.
Hampshire College is committed to providing substance-free spaces for all residents who request them. Substance-free environments exist in all the housing areas, including several halls in Merrill and Dakin. A substance-free environment is a residential area (generally a hall or mod) where all residents and their guests agree to keep their hall or mod free from substances at all times. Substances are defined to include alcohol, cigarettes, and other smoking materials as well as illicit drugs. While there is an expectation for the entire community to comply with all state, federal, and local regulations regarding the use of alcohol and other drugs, the substance-free housing option offers an additional measure of support for people who choose not to smoke, drink, or use other drugs. Students interested in this option must complete the substance-free housing registration in addition to their Housing Preference Form.
There are currently six Living and Learning Communities located in Dakin and Merrill Houses. These communities allow first-year students the opportunity to live with peers who have similar academic interests. Living in the communities requires a 2-hour, bi-weekly commitment for programming facilitated by faculty, staff, and student leaders. Participation in the communities may contribute to the CEL-1 requirement that each first-year student must complete.
Identity-based housing includes various group living situations with a common identity such as race, culture, or sexual orientation. Current identity-based spaces include Queer, Asian Heritage, Students of Color, and Women of Color. We're always open to creating new identity-based halls if enough interest exists.
Intentional Housing Communities are living spaces in which the residents have chosen to come together around a particular area of interest that will contribute to and cultivate the campus' culture of learning. They work together with a faculty or staff advisor to educate themselves and the larger community about their area of interest. Students who elect to reside in these spaces can expect to gain meaningful relationships with one another, lasting connections with staff and faculty, access to greater campus resources, and sense of pride in their community.
Students may request special accommodations due to physical, psychological, or learning disability needs. This includes environmental and food allergies. Those requests must be processed and approved by the office of accessibility resources and services. Requests for accommodations must be received prior to certain deadlines in order to be considered for the following semester. Please contact the office of accessibility resources for details.
Hampshire's dining commons is located between Dakin House and Merrill House. All residents of Dakin and Merrill are required to participate in the full meal plan. For further information regarding meal plans, or to discuss special dietary needs, please call the dining commons manager at 413.559.5750.
The variety of food offered is diverse, and students may choose from a wide selection. Vegetarian and vegan entrees are served daily along with a well-stocked salad bar. Students may also prepare their own meals in woks. Three meals are served daily on weekdays. Brunch and dinner are served daily on the weekends. The dining commons closes during Thanksgiving break, spring break, and after the last day of Hampshire College exams during the fall semester and after graduation in the spring.
A lot of information is available on the Before You Arrive page. During the summer, incoming students will receive a packet in the mail with much of this information and more. Students should always check their Hampshire email account, as this is our primary means of communication.