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Assignment Processes

Living @ UNH

Semester II Petition for Release From Housing Frequently Asked Questions

Q. Why do I have to petition if I want to leave campus housing?

A. When you signed up to live on-campus, you agreed to the terms and conditions of the Room and Board Agreement which clearly states in Section A2 that the commitment is for the full academic year (both semesters).  You are therefore legally and financially bound to fulfilling the agreement.  Any request to be released from this commitment must be submitted formally via the Petition for Release from Housing form which is online at Blackboard > Webcat/Services tab > Housing Online module > Current Residents.

Q. When is the petition due?

A. Semester II Petitions for Release are normally due to Housing by 4:30pm on the second Friday of November. This is a strict deadline.

Q. What if I miss the deadline?

A. In most cases, missing the submission deadline for the Semester II Petition means that your request will be denied.  If you have circumstances that you believe will prevent you from meeting the due date, please contact Amy Whitney in Housing (prior to the deadline!) at 862-3402 to discuss your situation  

Q. What if I’m not sure of my plans prior to the deadline?

A. In most cases, missing the submission deadline for the Semester II Petition means that your request will be denied.  If you have circumstances that you believe will prevent you from meeting the due date, please contact Amy Whitney in Housing (prior to the deadline!) at 862-3402 to discuss your situation.

Q. How do I submit my completed petition form?

A. Petition forms must be be submitted online in our Housing Online module in Blackboard (Blackboard > Webcat/Services tab > Housing Online > Current Residents). 

Q. When will I know if Housing has approved or denied my request?

A. If you submit your petition before the November deadline date, you can check the status of your peition by logging back into you the Housing Online module. Petitions are reviewed daily. If you submitted your petition before the November due date, Housing will update the status of your request very shortly before Thanksgiving. This notification will be sent to your UNH email address.

Q. What’s the big deal? Can’t you just fill my spot with someone from the waitlist?

A. It’s not quite that simple. First, the Room and Board agreement is not transferrable – we do not simply transfer your commitment to another student. Secondly, while we typically have a waitlist for the spring semester, it is usually relatively small and often we are unable to fill all of the spaces that become vacant at mid-year. Lastly, because the Department of Housing does not receive funding from tuition or the State of New Hampshire, it is very important that we maintain occupancy levels in order to meet our budgetary requirements. We must be able to count on certain occupancy levels in order to keep housing rates as low as possible and to guarantee students that the cost of housing will not increase during the academic year.

Q. I want to move in to my fraternity or sorority house. Can I do that?

A. You will not be released from the Room and Board Agreement in order to move to a fraternity or sorority house. Greek organizations are aware of this policy and it is their/your responsibility to plan accordingly.

Q. I’m only going to register for a part-time course load next semester. Am I automatically released from housing?

A. Intending to register for a part-time course load for the spring semester does not automatically release you from your housing commitment. In order to petition on such grounds, you must submit documentation from your University advisor clearly stating that they are aware of your intention to become a part-time student. Along with your petition, you must also submit a Statement of Change to Part-Time Course Load that states you are aware that any approval granted will be preliminary and may be revoked (and charges reinstated) if you are registered for 12 or more credits once the course add period has passed. For the spring 2012 semester, that date is February 10. If your approval is revoked, you will be notified and payment for the reinstated charges will be due immediately.

Q. My petition was denied but I might move off-campus anyway. What will happen?

A. You may choose to do so however the spring semester housing and dining charges (if applicable) will not be removed from your account and you will still be responsible for paying them.

Q. What kinds of reasons for petitioning are usually approved?

A.
Study Abroad, National Student Exchange or Washington Center
– Approval will only be granted to those students that are participating in a UNH sponsored program. Approval will NOT be made until Housing receives written verification from the appropriate University department, not only of your acceptance in to the program but also your confirmed enrollment. Once that is received, the petition will be approved and the spring housing and dining charges will be adjusted. You will also be eligible to submit an Intent to Return to Housing After Exchange at that time if you wish to do so.
Graduation – Housing will verify with the Registrar’s Office that you have completed all requirements to graduate from UNH at the end of the fall 2011 semester. Once that is verified, the petition will be approved and the spring housing and dining charges will be removed.
Leave of Absence or University Withdrawal – When submitting your petition, you must attach a copy of the completed paperwork that has been signed and approved by an authorized representative from the Registrar’s office.
Internship – If internship is for UNH credit and at a distance that would make living in campus housing unreasonably challenging (as determined by Housing), an approval is usually granted. You are responsible for ensuring that verification of internship, location and required hours are submitted to Housing by the appropriate University department prior to the petition deadline.

Q. What kinds of reasons for petitioning are usually denied?

A. Below are the petition categories that are reviewed very critically and often denied.
Financial –Any financial-based petition and supporting documentation will be reviewed very critically for indications that you experienced a significant change in financial status (determined by Housing) since you agreed to the terms and conditions of the Room and Board Agreement. Documentation must demonstrate a true inability to meet financial obligations to the University and not that you just wish to make different housing arrangements in an effort to save money. An example of supporting documentation is a formal letter of employment termination addressed to one of your parents or documentation of a recent injury or disability that has significantly impacted your finances in a long-term way. Bank account statements will not be accepted as documentation.
Medical – We pride ourselves in having a variety of living environments that can accommodate most any need and would be happy to work with you to arrange an assignment change. However, if you do decide to submit a medical-based petition, please email documentation from a physician stating why you cannot live in any of our various on-campus options. Documentation must be original and on the physician’s official letterhead. (If meeting the petition deadline is an issue, the physician may fax a copy of the letter to 603-862-3406 and then mail the original to our office). Housing may consult with a University physician when considering such cases.
Psychological – To request release based on psychological reasons, please attach documentation of an established relationship with a professional counselor who can verify that your needs cannot be in met in any of our on-campus living environments. Documentation must be original and on the counselor’s official letterhead. (If meeting the petition deadline is an issue, the counselor may fax a copy of the letter to 603-862-3406 and then mail the original to our office). Housing may consult with a University counselor when considering such cases.

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