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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Below you will find the answers to many frequently asked questions. If you find you have additional questions please don't hesitate to contact the Department of Residence Life by clicking here or by calling 870-230-5083.

Q: Am I required to live on campus?

 A: Henderson State University has a Mandatory on campus residency requirement. All fulltime students attending the university under the age of 21 who have completed 59 or fewer hours prior to the first day of classes for the term and are not living at the primary residence of their parents or legal guardian within a 60 mile radius of the university are required to live on campus.
Attaining the age requirement does not void the contractual agreements made for housing; provided, however, that a student who will attain the age of 21 prior to the first day of classes for the following spring semester may request a one-semester housing contract/and further provided that a student under 21 who satisfactorily completes 60 or more hours during the first semester may be released from the second semester of the housing contract. A non-refundable application fee is required before the application can be processed.
A student who is a military veteran with at least two years of service is exempted from these housing requirements. A married student, living with his/her spouse is exempted from these housing requirements. A single parent may also be exempted from these housing requirements if their child lives with them.

Q: When can I move in to the Residence Halls?

A: The following schedule has been set for you to move in to the residence halls. If you have questions about this schedule please contact the Residence Life office at or 870-230-5083. 

All Freshmen – Tuesday, August 19, 2014

All returning students – Thursday, August 21, 2014 
Specific room assignment information will be mailed out around July 4, 2014. If you are scheduled to move in with an athletic team, the band or another organization that has an early move in, please contact your coach or director for those specific move in dates and times.

Q: Can I paint my room before I get here?

A: Dreaming about painting our room a fresh color for fall to match your comforter? You may paint your room if you live in Smith Hall or Newberry Hall. When choosing a color to paint your room you must use one of the five, university pre-approved colors. You can choose from softer tan, jersey cream, innocence, livable green or atmospheric blue. We have set aside days, prior to the start of the semester, for you to come paint your room so that it will be dry by the time you get her to move in. Due to some renovation projects taking place this summer the “paint days” for the Fall 2014 semester are July 25th, 26th and 27th. If you would like to paint your room please fill out the permission to paint form and send it to:

The Office of Residence Life
1100 Henderson Street
PO BOX 7533
Arkadelphia, AR 71999-0001

You can contact the local Sherwin Williams in Arkadelphia to order your residence hall paint kit, and they will have it ready for you to pick up when you arrive to paint your room. Each kit includes a drop cloth, one roll of painter’s tape, a paint brush, roller with roller cover, a paint pan and one gallon of paint. The cost of the kit is around $50.00 each.

Q: What am I allowed to bring from home?

 A: We encourage you to make your residence hall room as cozy and comfortable as possible. This can be done by bringing curtains, rugs, pictures, posters, TV stands, small couches or chairs, bookshelves, beanbags, lamps or refrigerators (4 cubic feet maximum). You may also bring your TV, stereo, DVD player, gaming system, alarm clock or personal computer (desktop or laptop) to help spruce up your room. If you like to cook don’t forget your air popcorn popper, rice cooker or coffee pot. Please note that microwaves are only allowed in East, West or Sturgis halls.

Q; What should I leave at home?

A: The following items are not allowed in the residence halls: halogen lamps, ©George Foreman grills, toasters, candles or incense, decorative alcohol bottles, hot plates, crock pots, toaster ovens, sandwich makers, fryers or any kind, lava lamps and microwaves (if you live in Smith or Newberry halls).

Q: Why are microwaves not allowed in Smith and Newberry halls?

 A: If you have been assigned to live in either Smith or Newberry halls you are not allowed to have a microwave in your room. These buildings are older buildings and its electrical components are not capable of supporting a microwave in every room. To assist our students, microwaves are provided for you to use on each floor in both Smith and Newberry halls.

Q: Why are toasters, George Forman grills, candles or toaster ovens not allowed in the Residence halls?

 A: You are not allowed to have cooking items, such as those listed above, in any of the residence halls due to fire safety. Kitchens and microwave rooms are provided for you to use in Smith and Newberry Halls and BBQ grills can be found around campus to assist with any cooking needs.

Q: Are pets allowed in the residence halls?

 A: The only pet that you are allowed to have in any of our residence halls is a fish. There is a 10 gallon tank stipulation and the only animal that is allowed to be housed in the tank is a fish. Animals such as, but not limited to, frogs, dogs, cats, birds, squirrels, hamsters, gerbils, turtles and snakes are not permitted in the residence halls.

Q: Will I have a curfew?

 A: No, you do not have a curfew. When you arrive to campus you are given a student ID card. This card will act as your key to your residence hall, allowing you to come and go as you please. There is however, a visitation policy for the residence halls. Students and guests must follow the visitation policy which can be found in the Student Handbook.

Q: Am I required to have a meal plan if I live on campus?

 A: Yes, you are required to purchase a meal plan if you live in one of the residence halls on campus. At any time during the semester you are able to increase your meal plan if you find that you are running short on meals. If you want to decrease your meal plan, you can only do so during the first week of the semester or between the fall and spring semesters. It is also important to remember that Declining Cash Balance (DCB) dollars are nonrefundable. 

Q: When will I know where I have been assigned to live for the upcoming year?

A: All housing assignments are made and mailed out around July 4th. If you have a roommate request please make sure that both you and your requested roommate have requested each other with our office. No roommate request will be granted unless both you and your roommate request each other.

Q: Do I have to pay for cable, laundry or electricity?

 A: No, there are many free amenities for you to enjoy while living in the residence hall. Some of these include cable, internet, laundry, electricity, water, movie channel and entertainment in the form of RA programs.

Q: What if I don’t get along with my roommate?

 A: Your first step is to talk to your roommate; chances are your problems may stem from a lack of communication. If that does not work, you are encouraged to visit with your RA about the problem. Your RA can be a tremendous help by helping you and your roommate develop a guideline for living together. If you are still unable to get along with your roommate, you may see your Area Coordinator for a possible room change.

Q: When can I switch rooms?

 A: Room changes are available beginning on the 11th day of class. For a room change you will need to contact your Area Coordinator and complete all required paperwork before the move takes place. Students are allowed to move one time free of charge. Any student requesting additional moves will be charged $25 for each.

Q: What happens if I drop below the 12 hour requirement to live in the residence hall?

 A: If there ever comes a time in the semester when you need to drop below the full time student (12 hour) requirement, you will be required to move out of the residence halls. In certain circumstances you may gain special permission from the Director of Residence Life to remain in campus housing. Dropping below 12 hours per semester has severe consequences. You may also want to check with the Financial Aid office to see how it will affect your student account.

Q: Where do I go if I lose my student ID card?

 A: If you lose your student ID card you can get replacement in the Charles Dunn Student Recreation Center. The first ID card is free; each additional card will cost you $10.

Q: If I have an emergency in the residence halls or on campus, who do I call?

 A: If you ever find yourself in a situation where help is needed you may contact your RA, Hall Director or Area Coordinator. Residence life has staff on call 24 hours a day. You may also contact the Henderson Police Department or 911 in case of an emergency.

Q: What do I do if something breaks or stops working in my room?

 A: If you have a problem in your room you can submit a maintenance request to your RA or Hall Director. Once they have received your request, they will report the problem to the Universities physical plant for repair.

Q: What happens if my roommate moves out or does not show up at the beginning of the semester?

 A: If your roommate moves out or doesn’t show up, don’t worry. We will consolidate you with another person who needs a roommate or you may request someone you know to move in with you.

Q: What happens if I lose the key to my room?

 A: It is not uncommon for students to lose the key to their room. If this happens to you, immediately contact your Area Coordinator so that they may have the lock changed to your room. A charge of $60 will be issued to you for every lock change that must occur.

Q: What is a Resident Assistant (RA)?

 A: An RA is a student leader that lives on your floor or in your building. They are the first person you should talk to if you have a problem. The RA can help you with a number of things like setting up the voicemail to your room phone and reporting any maintenance issues that may arise. The RA is also there if you have questions about campus resources, you need someone to talk to, or if you are having problems with your roommate. It is very important for you to get to know your RA, as they are your closest link to the university. After all, they've been in your shoes as a student at HSU and know the ropes.

Q: What is a Hall Director?

 A: A Hall Director is a specially trained graduate student that is responsible for the management and daily operation of the residence hall. Your hall director lives in the building with the student and is there to help when needed. In addition, you hall director will serve as the advisor for the Hall Council for your hall. The hall Director is the director supervisor for the Resident Assistant and Deskwork personnel of the building.

Q: What is an Area Coordinator (AC)?

 A: Area Coordinators are full time housing professionals who live in the residence hall. They are responsible for creating an environment in the halls to support the academic success of the residential students. The Area Coordinator is the direct supervisor of the Hall Director and responsible for the day to day management of the residence hall.

Q: Am I required to have a roommate?

 A: Yes, all residents are required to have a roommate unless a single room is required by a physician and considered mandatory under the ADA laws.

Q: As a freshman, what residence hall will I be assigned to live in?

A: All first time students are assigned to Smith and Newberry halls. If you wish to live in one of the co-ed residence halls; East Hall, West Hall, Sturgis Hall or the International House, you must indicate this request on your housing contract. Once this request has been received by the Department of Residence Life you will be placed on a waiting list and contacted should space in one of those halls become available for you.

Q: Can I live in Sturgis as a freshman?

 A: Freshmen are allowed to live in Sturgis hall provided they are a member of the Honors College. Typically, it is uncommon for a freshman to initially be assigned to this building as it tends to fill up with upperclassmen first.

Q: What is there to do in the residence halls?

 A: There are plenty of things to do in the residence halls and you are encouraged to get involved. The RA staff of your building will provide activities throughout the semester for you to attend. If there is something that you like to do or would like to learn more about, talk to your RA. They have the resources to plan an activity around your idea. Each hall also has a Hall Council that is supervised by the Hall Director. The Hall Council serves as the voice of the building and its residents when communicating to the Residence Life department. Hall Councils plan fun activities to help build hall pride among the residents of the building. Some of the activities include: Halloween door decorations contests, battle of the Ravine decoration contests, Christmas parties, Can food drives and RHA Olympics.

Q: Do I need a phone in my room?

 A: You are not required to have a phone in your residence hall room; however the phone in your room is generally how members of the housing staff will contact you. You are provided a phone line in your room, at no charge, however you must request for the phone line to be activated with computer services. This can be done any time during the semester.

Q: How much will it cost me to do my laundry?

 A: It will cost you absolutely nothing to do laundry in any of our residence halls, so leave the quarters at home. Each hall is equipped with high efficiency washers and dryers, set up on a laundry alert system that will text or email you when your laundry is finished. This means you won't miss that favorite show on TV while standing in the laundry room waiting on the machine to finish.

Q: What is FYE?

 A: FYE is the First Year Experience program that is designed for first time freshmen and transfer students. This program helps students find the answers to questions they may have and guides them in the right direction on the road to success. The FYE program provides services such as free tutoring, peer counseling as well as introducing students to the many social opportunities at Henderson, including: clubs and organizations, community service opportunities, leadership programs, cultural events and campus activities. You can visit the First Year Experience page for more information.

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 John W. Graves, chair of the social sciences department and professor of history.

Graves received his Ph.D. degree in history from the University of Virginia and his M.A. and B.A. degrees in history from the University of Arkansas.

Graves has an outstanding reputation for research in southern history.

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John W. GravesSocial Sciences,
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