Residence Life Handbook

Tips for Living on Campus

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Roommate Relationship Tips

Here are some basic tips on how to begin a successful roommate relationship:

  • Have an open mind about the situation. Get to know your roommate before you pass judgment
  • Share all of the basic information: hometown, major, family information, interests, etc.
  • Discuss how you want the room set up, and then do it together.
  • Discuss how you want to “live”—guests, study times, what is “sharable” and what isn’t (clothes, food, supplies, etc.)—and then follow the guidelines you establish.
  • When a problem arises, talk to each other about it! Talking to everyone else will probably only cause more problems. If you need assistance planning what you need to say, talk with your RA.
  • If it turns out that you and your roommates aren’t the best of friends, that’s okay. It is important, however, that you are able to live together in a respectful and civil manner. That can happen if everyone works at it!

Once you get to know your roommate, take the opportunity to meet other students in the building. A good way to do this is through the events coordinated by the RAs. Many of the programs will be designed to be fun: social activities, trips around New York City, sporting events, dinner parties, theater and museum trips, etc. Your RA will be asking for suggestions, so think about things that you would like to do!

In addition to the social programs, the RAs will also be coordinating many programs that will highlight issues faced by Manhattan School of Music students, such as developing independence, making good social and academic choices, and determining your future goals. Programs offered by Residence Life will provide you with information to make good decisions and introduce you to Manhattan School of Music services and staff.

We hope that this year is a great experience for you! Living on campus provides you the opportunity to learn about living with others, but, more important, you will learn a lot about yourself.

Safety Tips

Living in a residence hall is similar to living in any community. Although one of the most important goals of the Office of Residence Life is to provide a safe and secure environment, the bulk of the responsibility rests with each resident. Many problems regarding thefts and vandalism result from residents’ carelessness. Prevention of these problems requires a high degree of awareness and common sense.

While every effort is made to safeguard residents and the contents of their rooms, it is of utmost importance that students cooperate with the School’s efforts to maintain a safe and secure environment. By taking the following precautions, students can greatly reduce their chances of becoming crime victims:

  1. Keep rooms locked whenever you leave, even if only for a few minutes. This is the single most effective thing you can do to avoid theft.
  2. Keep doors locked when going to sleep.
  3. Never leave a door propped open when you are not in the room. If you see a door propped open, close it.
  4. If you notice strangers or suspicious-looking people in the residence hall, notify a residence life or security staff member immediately.
  5. Never leave valuables and large sums of money in your room.
  6. Do not give your keys to anyone; report any loss or theft to a staff member immediately.
  7. Keep a record of the valuables that you bring to campus. Mark them with some personal identification number. This will increase the chance of recovering them in the event of a theft.

It is important that you keep in mind that Manhattan School of Music is in a major city and that you are aware of and cautious about the sorts of crimes against property and person that are a reality of urban living. Safety and security are everyone’s responsibility at the School, and these are some steps that you can take to help insure the safety of yourself and others both inside and outside of your building.

Outside of the Building

  • STAY ALERT. Keep your mind on your surroundings, what and who is in front of you, etc. Appear confident and calm. Plan your route before you go.
  • Plan the safest route to your destination. Choose heavily traveled and well-lit streets.
  • Take the longer route if it is the safest.
  • It is advisable to walk (or run, rollerblade, etc.) with another person at all times, but especially after dark.
  • If you need to walk after dark, be sure to stay on main streets with good lighting and those that are more apt to have other pedestrian traffic.
  • Do not flaunt expensive items. Do not overburden yourself with packages that make it hard to react.
  • Carry “emergency” money—for cab fare, bus, train, subway, a phone call, etc. Carry your personal belongings close to you. Wallets should be carried in front pockets, and handbags should be closed and protected. Do not carry unnecessary items (large amounts of cash, excess credit cards, etc.).
  • Carry your student ID at all times and cooperate with officials requesting that you adequately identify yourself.
  • Report all suspicious-looking persons on or near School property to security.
  • When entering or exiting any secured area (e.g. residence hall, the School facility, etc.) after hours, be sure to secure the door behind you.
  • Report all incidents of theft, intrusion, physical harm, etc., immediately to a residence life staff member and security.
  • Do not invite individuals from off the street or with whom you are unfamiliar into Manhattan School of Music facilities.
  • Report all incidents of doors and windows that are broken, do not close, or lock, to a residence life staff member and to security immediately.

If you find that you need to go to the emergency room, here are some helpful tips:

  • Report your illness or injury to a residence life staff member or security.
  • If you are able, find a friend to go with you.
  • When you report to the emergency room triage desk, identify yourself as a Manhattan School of Music resident student.
  • Carry your Manhattan School of Music ID, health coverage card, and any medical information that may be helpful.
  • Follow up with the Director of Residence Life upon your return to your building.
  • Advise your family of your medical situation. There are certain situations that dictate family notification by a Manhattan School of Music official.

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