Residence Hall Handbook


While you may be thinking that living in a residence hall will be the same no matter where you go to college, remember that just as people have different personalities, the University of Akron has different characteristics and cultures. We believe our unique culture makes UA a great place to live.

The University attracts students from a variety of backgrounds — your roommate may be from another part of Ohio or another part of the world. You will build relationships with a wide variety of people.

You will have plenty to do with your new UA friends. The Residence Hall Program Board (RHPB) plans over 40 events each academic year. There also are many activities planned by the Zips Programming Network (ZPN) for the entire campus community.

Residence hall living offers opportunities for each student to become a volunteer and leader. Whether it’s Residence Hall Council (RHC), the Residence Hall Program Board (RHPB), hall government or a special committee, you will have the opportunity to build a variety of skills. From navigating living with others to organizing and planning special events for the benefit of everyone in your hall. Our residence halls also host nationally known comedians, musicians, and self-development seminars, ensuring there is something for everyone.

The University of Akron has been recognized many times for its efforts to provide residence hall students with a well-rounded experience. Most recently, UA was named the 2019 National Association of College and University Residence Halls (NACURH) School of the Year award.  The University has received similar regional awards award seven times since 1989, and has been named National School of the Year three times during that period. UA also received the National Association of College and University Residence Halls (NACURH) 2012 Commitment to Diversity Award.

Sigma Lambda, our First Year Resident Honorary, received the 2015 APCA National Organization of the Year Award.
The University of Akron was named the 2012 Campus Activities Program of the Year by Campus Activities magazine. This is the fifth time since 2000 that UA has received the award.

Many of our students have described the residence hall environment as a “small college atmosphere with large university facilities and programs.” This means at UA, you get the best of both worlds.

Special Events
It is fine for us to say, “Hey, we’ve really got a lot of great activities planned.” But what you really want to know is, “What am I going to do during weekends on campus?”

For starters, every week presents a new twist in student activities and entertainment — ranging from movies, Family Day, Homecoming, and Sibs Day, to road trips and Hall Fest. Here’s a sample of past offerings.

UA Leads
This nationally recognized leadership program is sponsored by Sigma Lambda and features a variety of leadership speakers during the spring semester. Students who attend a certain amount of these programs are invited to attend the annual UA LIFE Awards.

Hall Fest
This award-winning event features social and recreational activities sponsored by hall governments, Residence Hall Program Board, Residence Hall Council and National Residence Hall Honorary.

Educational Activities
Each semester’s calendar includes seminars and discussion groups on important topics conducted by students, staff, professors and community professionals. The topics are based on the interests and concerns of students. Activities have included:

  • Alcohol Awareness Week
  • Community Service Projects
  • Career Awareness
  • Stress Daze
  • Women’s Issues
  • Disabilities Awareness Week
  • Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day
  • Diversity Topics

Residence Hall Program Board
RHPB is the major programming organization for the residence halls. It is run by a nine-member student board made up of four committees that handle everything from publicity to sound and lights and the booking of professional entertainers. Since 1997, RHPB has been recognized as the “Best Program Board” in the United States eight times by three national entertainment associations.

Each RHPB committee is looking for help from you, our new students, to assist in organizing the year’s programs. Membership on RHPB committees is an easy way to get involved. Introductory meetings are held at the beginning of fall semester. The RHPB office is in Ritchie Hall, or you can call 330-972-7861. Here’s a list of committees:

  • RHPB Major Events
    This committee plans major activities on New Roo Weekend, during Hall Fest, and on Sibs Day.
  • RHPB Music and Comedy
    This committee schedules performances and sponsors the popular and award-winning 9:09 p.m. Entertainment Series and 7:17 p.m. Coffee House series.
  • RHPB Publicity
    Share your creativity by helping to promote upcoming events through the use of flyers, posters, table tents, etc.
  • RHPB Technical
    With the power of light and sound, “The Tech Crew” enhances RHPB events.

Residence Hall Council
This chief legislative body of residence hall student government includes members of the individual residence hall governments. It provides a forum to increase communication among students, staff, faculty and administration. RHC also offers educational, service, leadership and recreational programs to meet the needs and interests of residence hall students.

In addition to the offices of president, vice president of internal affairs, vice president of external affairs and secretary/treasurer, RHC has four executive directors in the areas of community services, diversity issues, historical and critical issues. The council has twice received the National Association of College and University Residence Halls (NACURH) School of the Year Award for exceptional dedication to students and programs. NACURH is the largest student organization in the nation and this is the highest award it bestows. Schools are judged on all residence life activities, programs and events.

Hall Government
Each residence hall elects its own officers — president, vice president, treasurer, secretary, historian, RHC and floor representatives. Special activities are planned in each residence hall for its members. Being a member of residence hall government or RHC gives you the opportunity to become involved and voice your opinions. For more information, see your RA or RLC.

National Residence Hall Honorary (NRHH)
Only 1 percent of the residence hall population can belong to this prestigious organization. The students chosen for membership have demonstrated outstanding service and leadership in the halls. NRHH plans leadership workshops, recognition programs and service projects during the year. UA has received “Best Chapter in the Country” recognition six times since 1990 from the National Association of College and University Residence Halls.

Sigma Lambda
Sigma Lambda honors freshmen residents who demonstrated outstanding service and leadership in the residence halls. Sigma Lambda sponsors and co-sponsors several events during the year with three focus areas: Community Service, Leadership, and Peer Mentoring. This allows members to further develop their leadership skills.