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First Year Housing Assignments

To give special attention to the needs of incoming first-year students, first-year students live on the Martha Rivers Ingram Commons, separate from upperclass students. The Ingram Commons is a campus-within-a-campus for first-year students and residential faculty. There are ten first-year residences, called Houses, each home to an average of 165 students. Students will be assigned to double rooms. Each house will be led by a distinguished faculty member of the University residing there as the Faculty Head of House.

How to Apply

Incoming first-year students apply for housing online through the Student Housing Portal. Instructions for accessing and completing the first-year housing application are provided to students in a brochure titled The Road to Vanderbilt distributed by the Office of Undergraduate Admissions after students pay their matriculation fees. It is important for students to read carefully the instructions for completing the application and to complete the form with thoroughness and accuracy.

In the application, students are asked to:

  • provide personal contact information
  • provide emergency contact information
  • complete a brief questionnaire concerning their living and study habits

First-year housing applications must be submitted by June 1. Optionally, a student may also request a specific roommate. For the request to be considered, each student must request the other by June 15. Important: We cannot guarantee roommate requests.

How the Rooms Are Assigned

First-year assignments are made on the basis of matriculation fee payment dates:

  • 1st Priority: Students who submit their matriculation fees by May 1. Within this group, room assignments will be determined by a random selection procedure (lottery), not by date.
  • 2nd Priority: Students who submit their matriculation fees after May 1. For this group, the order of room assignment will be determined by date of receipt of matriculation fee.

Students in the first priority group are assigned to rooms before students in the second priority group. Roommate requests are considered if the requests are mutual. Vanderbilt uses a “pull-up” system for considering roommate requests: the student higher in the assignment order “pulls up” the student lower in the assignment order to be his/her/their roommate.

Students are assigned to rooms in the traditional first-year residence halls as long as rooms are available. When first-year enrollment exceeds the capacity of the first-year residence hall system, students are assigned to alternative accommodations (such as study rooms on residential floors in first-year or upperclass halls or in other spaces available on campus.) for a few weeks, for a semester, or for the entire first year. Admission to the University does not guarantee assignment to a particular building or type of room. Requests for assignment to specific buildings or rooms are not considered.

First-year housing assignments are mailed from the Office of Housing and Residential Education on or about August 1. Each student’s specific room assignment, phone number, and mail box number are included. When applicable, the roommate’s name and address are also provided. To safeguard students’ privacy, housing assignment information is not available by phone.

Admission to the University does not guarantee assignment to a particular type of room. Room assignments are made without regard to race, creed, or national origin.

First-year students seeking suitable furnishings or accommodations due to disabilities, medical or psychological conditions or for some other reason should contact the Office of Housing Assignments at (615) 322-2591 or Students will be asked to complete a request form and provide supporting documentation from medical professionals.

Note: The University population is fluid, and demand for housing may change considerably in a relatively short time. It may be necessary to house students in alternative accommodations (such as study rooms on the residential floors) for a few weeks, for a semester, or for the entire first year.

Room Changes

An on-campus room assignment is for the entire academic year. Requests for room changes based upon roommate incompatibility will be considered upon application of the student residents after they have been in residence for two weeks. Changes prior to that time will be considered only when based upon physical disabilities incurred after the submission of the housing application.

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