Holiday Closing of Residence Halls
U.S. universities typically take an extended break from classes over the Christmas holidays, during the Spring semester and over the summer months. Eastern Mennonite University is no exception. Generally the campus is closed for about 3 weeks in the winter, one week in the spring, and three months in the summer. During those times, most residence halls close and no student is able to remain on campus. The only exceptions are Hillside Suites and the Park Woods Apartments, both of which remain open during the Winter and Spring Breaks.
If you reside in any residence hall besides Hillside or Park Woods Apartments, you will be required to vacate your room during these school breaks.
EMU recognizes that this requirement is a hardship for some international students. Unfortunately, there are stipulations about when you are eligible to live in Hillside Suites or Park Woods Apartments and you are required to apply for these premium spaces along with other interested students.
Pay attention to the housing lottery that happens each spring semester for the following school year, and apply for these spaces as soon as you are eligible.
You are encouraged to use the Winter and Spring breaks to travel and/or visit with U.S. families. Very often roommates or other U.S. friends invite international students home with them during these weeks. If you receive such an invitation, you are strongly urged to accept.
Although it may be somewhat uncomfortable for you to stay with an unfamiliar family, it can also be a vital part of learning about U.S. culture and making friends that will truly last a lifetime. If you receive no such invitation, you are encouraged to travel on your own to apart of the United States that you have never visited. Various groups offer holiday packages geared toward international students. Information will be made available to you about these groups, or you might find information from the Internet.
If you choose not to travel anywhere or visit a U.S. family, the ISA will attempt to assist you in locating a local home or inexpensive hotel to stay in over these breaks. You should understand that nothing will be free. The amount you are charged to stay in the residence halls does not include a fee for these weeks, and anywhere else you stay will require a payment.
Summer Requirements for On-Campus Housing
During the summer months, if you are taking classes and/or working on campus, you will probably be allowed to stay in the residence halls, depending upon their availability. If you are not in classes or working on campus, you will be required to obtain your own housing during these months. Campus Connections maintains a list of available apartments and rooms which you can utilize in making these arrangements.
Remember, wherever you are living in the summer, you must provide that change of address to the ISA as required by law.