A Guide for Lafayette College Neighbors

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Living-Off Campus

During the academic year, a small number of Lafayette students, fewer than 15 percent, have the privilege of living off-campus. These students reside in the College Hill neighborhood, adjacent to main campus, living in College-owned or College-operated apartments and houses. The College-owned residences also include several living groups: the Arts Houses, the Portlock Black Cultural Center, The Hillel House, and several Living- Learning Communities that are housed on Monroe Street. In addition to these College-owned properties, a small number of students are permitted to rent private residences and most choose to live within the College Hill neighborhood.

WHO LIVES OFF-CAMPUS?

Nearly all of the Lafayette students who are afforded the privilege of living and learning through a more autonomous experience are seniors. Whether students live in College-owned houses or apartments owned by College Hill landlords, all students must be approved by the College to live off-campus. The application process gives priority to rising seniors who have earned a cumulative grade point average of at least 2.8, are in good academic standing, and have no disciplinary restrictions.

Students assigned to Lafayette’s Living Learning Communities (LLC’s) on the 600 block of Monroe Street are selected through an even more rigorous application process. These students are chosen for their shared academic interest and a desire to link the learning of the formal classroom with opportunities for growth in their off-campus living groups.

This group of approximately 60 sophomores, juniors, and seniors resides in one of up to 20 different Living Learning Communities organized around an academic theme or discipline of study. Each LLC is advised by a non-resident faculty member and are substance-free (no alcohol or other drugs) for both the residents and their guests.

HOW WE PREPARE STUDENTS TO LIVE OFF-CAMPUS?

We believe that our students should be good neighbors and citizens to you and to each other. The off-campus housing application process requires students to demonstrate their knowledge of College policies, local city ordinances, and community expectations as an essential component of being selected to live off-campus. Over the summer and again during move-in, we convey to students particular policies that are essential to being a good community citizen and neighbor, namely those policies related to noise, trash, alcohol or other drugs use, disorderly conduct, and criminal mischief. At various points during the year, we follow up with reminders and additional information that encourages students to reflect on how well they are meeting expectations as well as ways in which they can be better neighbors. These expectations include asking our students to introduce themselves to their neighbors in the spirit of community building. Please look for them to stop by and say hello this fall.

HOW DOES OUR PROFESSIONAL STAFF SUPPORT NEIGHBORS?

Our professional staff within the Office of Residence Life and the Division of Campus Life are responsible for the health and safety of our students, as well as being educators who utilize our conduct process to help address behaviors that are not consistent with our values as a College. Lafayette takes our role as educators seriously and, in an effort to ensure we know the concerns of our neighbors, an administrative staff member regularly attends College Hill Neighborhood Association meetings.

WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS FOR STUDENTS OF LIVING OFF-CAMPUS?

The increased responsibility for managing one’s living space is a helpful transition between living on-campus within the College’s residence halls to a graduate’s life after leaving Lafayette. For many students, the year spent living off-campus will be the first time they have assumed responsibility for paying monthly rent, taking out the trash, purchasing groceries, cooking their meals, and negotiating for on- street parking. By living amongst community members and neighbors, a student is able to learn firsthand about different schedules and lifestyles. Needing to modify one’s own behavior and to consider other’s wellbeing is a reflection of maturity and growth. The development of these and other “life skills” are essential components of a Lafayette education.

HOW DO I REPORT A CONCERN?

The majority of our students adhere to Lafayette College and City of Easton standards of conduct. In fact, the continuation of a student’s off- campus living privilege is predicated on adhering to our highest expectations. In instances when our students are not being good citizens to you or other neighbors, we want their behavior to be addressed. Whether you resolve issues directly with a student (we encourage you to get their cell phone numbers as a means of immediate communication) or require assistance from the College to address an ongoing problem, the College takes your concerns seriously. The Division of Campus Life will follow up on all reports about a specific student or property. Please keep in mind, however, that the College is in a better position to hold students accountable for their behavior when problems are reported immediately and specifically. Reporting “noise one night last week” is less helpful than letting us know that a specific house (with address) was particularly rowdy on Friday, Oct. 9, at 11:30 p.m.

There are several options for reporting a concern:

  • Speak with your student neighbors. If the situation permits, we encourage you to address the matter directly with your neighbors. This is a part of their valuable learning and will likely yield longer-term benefits. We expect that our students will introduce themselves to you when they move in and hope that you will invite their acquaintance. This familiarity and connection will make conversations about neighborhood concerns easier should the need arise.
  • Call Lafayette College Public Safety; non-emergency line of (610) 330-5330 or emergency (610) 330-4444. Lafayette Public Safety has jurisdiction in all College-owned and operated properties. Officers are on duty 24 hours a day, 7 days per week, to conduct regular patrols on- and off-campus, and to respond to reports of incidents.
  • Call Easton Police; non-emergency (610) 759-2200 or emergency 911. City police officers have jurisdiction in non-College owned properties (privately rented apartments, businesses, city streets). The College has a collaborative and invaluable relationship with the Easton Police Department that serves us well in these difficult situations. Even for incidents that do not occur on College property, the Easton Police Department informs the College of violations involving our students and may request assistance from Lafayette Public Safety.
  • Contact a College staff member. For general questions or to discuss a concern, you are welcome to contact the Office of Residence Life at (610) 330-5335 or one of the staff members listed below in the contact information tab.

CONTACT INFORMATION

Grace Reynolds, M.A.Ed.
Director of Residence Life
reslife@lafayette.edu
(610) 330-5335

Jennifer Dize
Assistant Dean of Students
(610) 330-5082
dizej@lafayette.edu

College Hill Connections

Lafayette College and residents of College Hill have been neighbors for more than 180 years. The College was founded in 1826 by citizens of Easton, who resolved that “in memory and out of respect for the signal services” rendered by the Marquis de Lafayette “in the great cause of freedom, [it] shall be forever hereafter called and known by the name of Lafayette College.”

In 1832, classes in mathematics and the classics began in a rented farmhouse on the south bank of the Lehigh River in 1834, the College acquired seven acres of land on Mount Lafayette, located across the Bushkill Creek from the center of Easton. Mount Lafayette soon became known as College Hill. Later that year, on its summit, the first of the College’s buildings was built, on the site now occupied by South College.

College and Community Events

The College values its relationship with neighbors on College Hill and within the City of Easton. We hope you will develop positive relationships with your student neighbors and can be partners with us in their education and civic growth. Just as our students are neighbors to you, you are neighbors to the College. As such, we invite you to be a part of our community by participating in College activities. Opportunities include:

  • Athletic events at Fisher Field, Metzgar Fields, and Kirby Field House and Arena
  • Recreational activities at Kirby Sports, including the recreational swim program, racquetball and summer sports camps.
  • Arts activities, performances, concerts, and guest speakers at the Williams Center for the Arts, including the Performing Arts Series, the Grossman Gallery or Williams Center Gallery, and Colton Chapel.
  • Access to our collection of books and other resources inside Skillman Library

For descriptions and dates of specific events, please consult the College’s calendar of events at: calendar.lafayette.edu or our Ticket Office at www.goleopards.com/tickets.

Contact Melissa Starace

Assistant to the President for Board and Community Relations

staracem@lafayette.edu
610-330-3365