Residence Life Handbook

This handbook has been developed to provide you with information that will be helpful to you during your stay on-campus at the School of Mines. It is filled with basic beliefs or attitudes that we use to guide us. We encourage you to read it at the beginning of your stay in the residence halls and to keep it bookmarked on the web for reference throughout the year. You are responsible for information contained in the handbook The hand book is not all-inclusive; policies may change during the course of a year. Updates will be posted to the Residence Life website.

Table of Contents

Our Rights and Responsibilities  

Residents have the Responsibility …

  • To keep our door and hall doors locked, and not to prop them open or allow in strangers or guests without a resident escort, and to straighten up common areas after usage;
  • To observe quiet hours, keep our music, television, other electronic equipment and voice at a reasonable volume in the residence hall, and to remind others that we expect the same of them;
  • To let our roommate know of our wishes and preferences for hours of sleep, study, and visitation, and to work through any differences we may have in a peaceful manner, within the guidelines provided by SD School of Mines;
  • To know and abide by the laws of the State of South Dakota including those pertaining to alcohol beverages and illegal drugs. We have the responsibility to follow the rules and regulations as stated by the SD Board of Regents;
  • To support the educational purposes of SD School of Mines and to sustain a safe and comfortable living community in the hall;
  • To examine our own behavior when confronted by another and work toward resolving conflicts.;
  • We also have the responsibility to confront others in a non-aggressive and non-threatening manner;
  • To notify a staff person of our problem in a timely manner and to cooperate with them as they work with us to solve our problem;
  • To read information provided to us by SD School of Mines and ResLife staff, especially The Residence Life Handbook (on-line) and the Student Code of Conduct;

Residents have the Right …

  • To a safe, clean, and well-maintained residence hall space;
  • To a quality learning environment conducive to our academic and social pursuits;
  • To privacy and the proportionate use of our room both in terms of space and time, and the right to be free of unwanted guests in our room;
  • To choose our means of recreation and relaxation;
  • To confront another’s behavior that infringes on our rights;
  • To the assistance of our Resident Assistant or the Hall Director when we need help with a problem;
  • To make adult choices as a members of the South Dakota School of Mines Residence Life community.
  • To participate in wing and hall meetings and share responsibility for adhering to and enforcing community policies and guidelines.


Advertising in the Residence Halls
Posters, signs, advertisements or notices may be posted in public areas of the residence halls ONLY with the approval of the building Hall Director or the Director of Residence Life. Residence Hall Council officers and RAs may post signs related to residence hall activities.

Alcohol and Drug Policy
Residence Life adheres to the SDBOR Alcohol and Drug Policy found in the Code of Conduct which states the following is prohibited: The manufacture, sale, possession, use, or consumption of alcohol, marijuana, or controlled substances by students on any property controlled by the Board of Regents or used in connection with any institutionally sponsored activity; except that alcohol may be served at social activities held in other locations subject to the restrictions set out in this article and in guidelines for alcohol usage set out in Board Policy 4:27.

Note that in residence life housing, being in the presence of alcohol is considered a violation of the SDBOR alcohol policy. Suspected presence or usage of marijuana or other controlled substances within SD Mines managed housing will result in residence life staff contacting local law enforcement.

Automobiles and Motorcycles
Residents who wish to park and operate a car or motorcycle on the campus must abide by the regulations established by the university. All vehicles parked on campus must have a SD Mines permit. Complete policies, procedures, and parking information can be found here.

Common Area Damages
Residents of each floor and wing are jointly responsible for proper use of all common or community-use facilities (e.g. washrooms, shower rooms, lounge furniture, corridors, kitchens, etc.). As all residents are jointly responsible for all common and community facilities, damages made to common areas that cannot be attributed to specific individual(s) will be charged back to the wing, the apartment complex, residence hall or specific areas of the hall.

Damage Repairs
Any student identified as being responsible for damage to residence hall or apartment facilities or equipment will be assessed the final cost of repair or replacement.

Decorating Guidelines
The use of tacks, nails, screws, duct tape, poster putty, or cellophane tape is prohibited for hanging posters, pictures, etc. on any university surface (walls, ceilings, furniture). Nothing shall be attached to the ceiling in any room. Nothing used to mount pictures, posters, etc. shall penetrate the walls. Blue painters tape is the only allowable way to hang items to walls.  Occupants are responsible for removing any tape residue from the walls when the room is vacated. Failure to adequately clean walls or any wall damage will result in damage fines.

Fire Safety
Tampering with life safety equipment (smoke detectors, sprinkler heads, fire extinguishers, or heat detectors, etc) is prohibited. Failure to evacuate any building during an alarm situation will result in disciplinary action.  Prohibited conduct or prohibited items that results in false fire alarms or unsafe conditions will lead to disciplinary action under this provision.

Institutional Liability
This institution does not carry insurance covering loss or damage to the students’ personal property and does not assume responsibility for such loss or damage. You are encouraged to determine if you have insurance coverage under the provision of a parent’s household insurance plan or take action to secure appropriate insurance coverage of your personal property through renter’s insurance.

Missing Person Procedure
The Missing Person Procedure is located online here.

Overnight Guests
Overnight guests are allowed when the residence halls are open. They must be registered through the online Guest Registration Form (available online, under "forms") 24-hours before their arrival and may not stay more than 4 nights within any 30 day period. Residents are responsible for their guests at all times.  Residents may not rent, sublet or allow guests to pay for housing in their residence hall assignment.  It is the expectation of Residence Life that residents will discuss possible guests with roommates to ensure all roommates agree to any overnight guests. Overnight guests who are under 18 must have a registration/parental permission form completed in advance.  The resident hosting the minor guest needs to ensure the form is submitted to Residence Life prior to their guest staying overnight in their room/apartment.

Private Areas
Residents are not allowed in "Staff Only" locations, including housekeeping closets, facility closets, or any other area meant for staff purposes. For your personal safety and to prevent damage to roofs, access to any roof is prohibited.

Quiet Hours/Visitation Policy
All residence halls have 24 hour visitation.  All residence halls and apartments have 24-hour courtesy hours. At all times you are asked to be mindful of your neighbors and your community. Quiet Hours for al residence halls are:

Sunday - Thursday 10:00 pm - 8:00 am
Friday and Saturday 12:00 am - 8:00 am

Extended quiet hours will be initiated and enforced during the days preceding finals and also during the week of final examinations.

Sporting in the Halls
The use of sports equipment must be confined to areas away from campus buildings and parking lots to avoid damage to rooms, damage to hallways, broken windows, and damage to vehicles.

Solicitation and Business Enterprises                
Soliciting or sale of articles or services in the residence halls and apartments is prohibited. Exceptions may only be made by the Director of Residence Life and only to on-campus groups with specific outlined goals. If you encounter outside groups or individuals who are not known to you selling magazines or other goods or services in the residence halls, report it immediately to an RA or HD. Because of the potential interference to the living environment of others, students are not permitted to run businesses, conduct business enterprises, or conduct the business of an independent contractor out of their Residence Hall rooms.   

Student Code of Conduct
All residents must adhere to the South Dakota Board of Regents Code of Conduct found here. All residents are responsible for being familiar with the Code of Conduct.

Tobacco, Smoke, and Vapor               
South Dakota School of Mines & Technology is a tobacco-free and vapor-free campus. No tobacco products or vapor products may be used on campus. Hookahs and hookah use are not allowed in residential housing.  The complete University tobacco and vapor policy can be found online here.

Weapons are regulated by the SD BOR Code of Conduct and the  SD Mines Weapons Policy. In addition, all residents must adhere to Rapid City Ordinance 9.28.050: "It is unlawful for any person to discharge or shoot off any gun, pistol, rifle, air gun, carbon-dioxide gun or any other firearm, or use for any purpose any such device for throwing or forcing through the air missiles or projectiles of any character whatever, within the limits of the city . . .



Alcohol and Other Drugs
When alcohol is found in the residence halls or apartments, it will be disposed of immediately.  In cases where the alcohol is in the possession of an individual student, Residence Life staff will supervise the disposal, otherwise staff will dispose of the items.  Any alcohol will be poured down the drain and any empty alcohol containers will be taken to the outside dumpsters.  Being in the presence of alcohol is a violation of the SD BOR alcohol policy.

If other drugs are suspected, residence life staff will contact the Rapid City Police Department immediately and will assist the officers in identifying where the controlled substances may be located.  If controlled substances or drug paraphernalia are found in the residence halls or apartments, residence life staff will immediately turn them over to RCPD.

In all cases, any alcohol or other drugs found in the residence halls or apartments will be documented in an Information Report for review and probable disciplinary action.

You are encouraged to review the agreement language in your housing application.  Do so online: application agreement 

Residence Life makes all housing assignments. Assignments are gender specific in double-occupancy rooms and gender inclusive in single-occupancy rooms (with student application).  Preferences expressed when applying for a room are given consideration, but are not guaranteed. Room assignments need not be permanent, and sometimes changes are advisable. Application for a change in room must be made with your Hall Director and must be agreed upon by all students involved. Changes in room assignment may be necessary to accommodate single room requests and consolidation needs. Housing assignments and housing assignment changes are made at the discretion of Residence Life.

Breaks and Move-Out
Individual residents must vacate their housing assignment by noon on the day following completion of their last final examination for a given semester. Additional rental charges may apply for late stays approved by Residence Life.

All housing closes for Winter and Spring Breaks. Over these breaks, students may apply to stay for an additional charge, pending approval by Residence Life. RAs will complete room checks for compliance with posted closing procedures over these breaks. Residents are responsible for following closing procedures as posted.

Charges for room and board are to be paid in advance for each semester at the time of registration. All questions regarding these charges are to be presented to the Student Accounts and Cashiering Services Office in Surbeck Center. Non-payment will result in the student no longer being eligible for on-campus housing. Normally, upon notification from Cashiering Services, Residence Life will give a student who has not made payment 24 hours to vacate.

All housing applications must be accompanied by a $100 damage deposit which is kept on account until you vacate the residence halls or apartments at the end of your tenure on campus. Deposits may be carried over from year to year to secure application for the following academic year.

"Dorm Storm" Procedures
Officially-recognized student organizations and University departments may request a 'dorm storm' to inform residents of an upcoming event following the following procedures. 1. Submit written request to Director of Residence Life at least 24 hours in advance of proposed 'dorm storm.' 2. Provide the following information in this request: proposed date/time, purpose of 'dorm storm', and names of building escorts (each building must have a resident escort at all times). "Dorm storms' can not occur during quiet hours. Since Residential housing is for resident use only, requests will be approved/denied at the discretion of Residence Life.

Entry, Search and Seizure
Entry, search and seizure by civil officers shall be governed by civil law.  Entry by University personnel shall be allowed for the following:

  • Maintenance requested by the occupant(s) is being performed
  •  Maintenance is performed upon institutional initiative (preceded by at least twelve hours notice to occupant)
  • There is reason to believe there is imminent danger to the safety, health, or property of occupant(s) or to institutional property
  •  Verification of occupancy
  •  Enforcing safety/health standards

Residence Life staff may also perform an administrative entry/search permit based upon a belief that a college policy or regulation, or a local, state or federal law is being violated. Only those designated by the University President may authorize administrative entry/search permits. Those authorized to conduct a search are the Director of Residence Life or members of the Residence Life Senior Staff. A search permit will be completed upon a search; it will indicate:Room(s) to be searched; Regulation(s) allegedly being violated; Items(s) being sought (if applicable); Names of those authorized to enter and conduct the search.

Key and Key Card Replacements
ID Card Replacement: $10
Rocker Square Card Replacement: $20
Rocker Square Mailbox Key Replacement: $15
Key Replacements: $25 - $50

Lockout Procedures
Residents who are locked out of their rooms can contact their RA or the RA on Call for a "lockout." Cost per lockout is $5, charged to the student account. Lockout charges are waived the first two weeks of Fall Semester.

Painting of Rooms
Students may not paint their rooms or any other area of a residence hall/apartment. All rooms and hallways are painted by the University.

Prohibited Items
The following items are prohibited in Residence Life-managed housing:

  • Ammunition and weapons
  • Toasters, hot plates, other items with exposed coils (items can be in kitchens)
  • Halogen lights
  • Candles, incense or any item that is burned (candles with wicks cut-out are allowed)
  • Hookahs
  • Fireworks and explosives
  • Flammable liquids & lab chemicals
  • Pets/animals (fish in tanks smaller than 10 gallons are allowed)
  • Air conditioners (other than those installed or approved by Residence Life)
  • Waterbeds and lofts
  • Lofting/bunking kits, except those provided by the University in Palmerton, Connolly, and Peterson

Room Changes
Room changes are prohibited without prior approval of the Residence Life Office. If you desire a change, you should first contact your RA or HD to get a Room Change Request form. Moving without prior approval may result in disciplinary action being taken including improper check-out fines.

Room Condition Report (RCR)
As you occupy your room, room contents and conditions are inspected and described on a Room Condition Report (RCR). You will be held responsible for all furnishing and equipment, and are expected to exercise care in their use as you would in your own home. It is not permissible to move furnishings or other equipment out of any common areas or lounges or individual rooms, or to move these furnishings from one room to another. Residents are expected to report room or equipment damage or need for repair promptly to their HD or AM. Once you move-in, you will receive an email where you may review your room's condition and submit your comments within 48 hours of moving into your room.  

Routine Room Inspections
Room inspections for the purpose of health, safety and maintenance will be held at least once during the semester. The individual RA will inspect rooms on their wing/floor with a minimum of twelve hour notice of the inspection will be given. Residents do not need to be present during the inspection. The inspection will consist of a reasonable check for health, safety and maintenance problems to ensure that the housing regulations are being followed. The inspections are not searches, and no closets, drawers or refrigerators may be opened without the permission of the occupants.

Any unsafe or unhealthy findings need to be corrected in an agreed upon time between the student and the RA. Failure to comply with directive to correct an unhealthy or unsafe condition in a resident’s room may result in the student entering the conduct process.

Safety and Security
For your security, all Residence Halls are locked 24-hours a day. Exterior doors are not to be propped open. Do not allow unknown people into buildings. Your residence room should be locked at any time you are not in the room. Tampering with the doors and locks is not allowed and will result in conduct charges. For more safety information, visit the Health and Safety website.

Single Rooms
A premium rate will be charged for all single rooms. Guaranteed single rooms are available only in Connolly Hall. Residents who are paying double room rate, but have not had a roommate assigned or whose roommate has left the room for some reason, will not be permitted to reside as singles. Such residents will be allowed two weeks to do one of the following:

  • Find a new roommate of their choice. If this option is selected and no new roommate is found, the student will be billed the single room rate from the date of the departure of the former roommate.
  • Take out a single room contract for the remainder of the year, provided there is no demand for the space and pay the additional cost associated with that agreement.
  • Remain in your room and accept assignment of a roommate by Residence Life. If such a person is not available, the resident may be reassigned to another half-occupied room in any residence hall.

Students will be charged single room rates after a roommate moves out if they do not find another roommate, accept relocation to another room, or refuse an assigned roommate. Single room rates will be assessed from the date of departure of the former roommate. The higher rate will not be charged if another room or roommate is not available.

When a single room is available and offered to any student and is declined, that student is removed from the prioritized lists for single rooms. If such a student wishes to be added to the list for future consideration, he/she must submit a written request and be placed at the bottom of the prioritized list for single rooms.  

Wing/Area Meetings
All residents are required to attend meetings as designated and scheduled by their RA or building staff. RAs will do their best to schedule meetings at times most suitable to the majority of residents. 

Windows and Screens
Windows must be kept clear of drawings, pictures, signs, bottles, or any other item deemed inappropriate by University staff. The unauthorized removal of windows and screens will result in conduct charges. Items may not be thrown from windows; entrance or egress from windows is not allowed.

A student withdrawing from school must vacate the residence hall or apartment within 24 hours of his/her withdrawal. A student is not officially checked out of the halls/apartments until all personal property is removed from the room/unit, the room/unit has been cleaned by the student, and is inspected by a member of the ResLife staff. Keys must be turned in at the time of check-out.



The entire ResLife staff works with and for residents to create an environment conducive to personal growth and academic achievement.

Assistant Hall Directors/Coordinators
Each residence hall area has an assistant hall director (AHD) or coordinator.  The AHD/Coordinator is a student with at least one year of experience as a resident assistant. The AHD/Coordinator provides supervisory support and management of the residence hall. Peterson Hall, Palmerton Hall, and Connolly Hall have Assistant Hall Directors.  Rocker Square has a Rocker Square Coordinator.

Hall Directors
HDs are live-in professional staff who have been selected on the basis of educational background, experience in residence life and an interest in and concern for people. The HDs are responsible for their assigned residence hall through supervision of student staff, administration of the hall and dealing with violations of university policy. Their primary focus, however, is meeting student needs, developing student responsibility and the overall welfare of the hall community. The HDs are available to help you with personal and group problems, and as they reside in the hall, they often handle emergency situations.

Other Staff
ResLife staff also includes many others—the senior secretary, the project specialist, mailroom specialist, maintenance and custodial staff, the “Summer Crew” and the director—whose contributions are equally important to the overall success of the residence halls. The director and the senior secretary for Residence Life are located in Surbeck Center near the main desk.

Resident Assistants
RAs are student staff of South Dakota School of Mines who live on each wing with their fellow residents and receive special training to assist residents in a variety of ways. RAs main goal is to create a positive, healthy community for students to live, learn, and thrive.

Residential Peer Mentors
Residential Peer Mentors (RPMs) are student staff employed to help students succeed academically.  RPMs hold office hours, tutoring sessions, and academically-focused programs to help students succeed at Mines.


Facilities and Services

Bicycles and Bicycle Registration  
Outside racks are conveniently located for bicycle storage near each of the halls. There are no indoor storage facilities for bicycles. Bicycles are not to be parked or stored in rooms, lounges, hallways, stairwells, bathrooms, laundry rooms or kitchens of the residence halls. Bicycles remaining in the area after completion of spring semester may be considered abandoned and turned in to the Rapid City Police Department. You are required to register your bicycle on-line. Upon registration, you will get a registration sticker that needs to be affixed to your bicycle. The B-cycle program is also available to all students.  Use this program instead of bringing a bike to campus.

Passenger elevators are provided in residence halls to allow ADA access to all floors and as a convenience to all residents. Please report any problems with elevators to your Hall Director or the Residence Life Office immediately. If you are trapped in an elevator, an emergency phone is located in the car which dials directly to Campus Safety (394-6100). NEVER attempt to open the elevator door if are in trapped in the car. Never use an elevator when there is a fire or when the fire alarm sounds. Please take precautions when moving items in and out of the elevators. Overloading, excessive movement, including jumping or bouncing while the elevator car is going up or down, may cause the elevator safeties to engage and the car will stop moving. This will result in disciplinary action being taken and/or damage charges being assessed.

Internet Connections
Each residence hall room has one port per person and wireless internet. Usage is subject to SD Mines policies, located here. All devices must be registered to access the oncampus network. Gaming and other non-authenticating devices must be registered with ITS. Rocker Square I and II residents receive internet through a 3rd party vendor; routers are installed in each apartment.  Rocker Square I has wireless internet only; Rocker Square II has wired internet only.

Card and coin operated facilities are provided in Connolly, Palmerton and Peterson Halls. Grubby Gold may be used with laundry machines in the residence hall laundry rooms. Rocker Square II laundry machines are operated by a laundry card available for purchase from the Rocker Square II lobby.  Rocker Square I laundry is included in housing costs. 

Each resident of Palmerton, Connolly, or Peterson is assigned a mailbox with a combination lock. You will have the same mailbox throughout your uninterrupted stay in the residence halls. Do not remove windows or otherwise alter the box. Charges, or appropriate disciplinary action, will be assessed against box holders who abuse/misuse mailboxes. All mailboxes are located in Surbeck Center. If you receive a package or a parcel that must be signed for, a notice will be placed in your mailbox. You may sign for and pick up your package at the main desk in Surbeck Center.

Rocker Square residents receive USPS mail in the lobby of each building.  A mailbox key is provided.  FedEx and UPS deliveries are made to the Surbeck mailroom; emails are sent when these packages are received.

Recycling Program
Containers are available throughout the residence halls for collection of “blue bag” recyclables. You are requested to use these containers for paper, glass, aluminum cans and plastics. Cardboard recycling bins are located north of Palmerton Hall and north of Surbeck Center - be sure to recycle in the appropriate bin.


Repair requests should be made online through the FixIt Request system.

    The university does not have facilities to offer for the storage of personal belongings. Hallways, stairwells, lounges and kitchens are not to be used for storage. “Excess” furniture from student rooms must remain in the room.


    2016-2017 IMPORTANT DATES

    • Thurs. Aug. 18, 8am-6pm
      New Student Move-In
    • Aug. 19-21, 8am-6pm
      Returning Student Move-In
    • Thurs. Dec. 15, 12noon
      All residential buildings close for Winter Break
    • Sat. Jan. 7, 12noon
      All residential buildings open for Spring Semester
    • Sat. March 4, 12noon
      Residence Halls close for Spring Break (Rocker I/II remain open)
    • Sun. March 12, 8am
      Residence Halls re-open after Spring Break
    • Sat. May 6, 12noon
      All residential buildings close