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Waiver Request Appeal Information

In order to provide the most equitable and fair evaluation of a student’s unique circumstances, the Office of Student Housing has implemented an appeal process for students to pursue should they believe their circumstances are truly exceptional and rare. In the past, many students would “automatically” appeal a waiver denial. It’s important to note that this process is for specific cases where there are inimitable circumstances.
 
Students cite various reasons for appealing the University’s On-Campus Residency Policy. Please consider the following frequently cited but rarely granted reasons for requesting an exemption before progressing with an appeal.


Appeal Considerations

Already Signed a Lease

Students who sign leases without having received a “granted” letter in writing from the Office of Student Housing will still be responsible for fulfilling the on-campus housing requirement. A housing hold is placed on students account until either an assignment for on-campus housing has been made or a waiver has been approved. You are advised not to sign a lease unless you have received a letter from our office indicating that you are exempt from the housing requirement.
 

Allergies and/or Asthma

Many students come to campus with allergies, asthma, or some other type of chronic health problem. Some students develop allergies after they arrive. Although many students have allergies, it is rarely the basis for an exemption as it does not prevent them from living and academically achieving in the residence halls. In severe cases of allergies and asthma, the University can usually offer some type accommodations that can help, such as year-round air conditioning, an air purifier, a single room, etc. in addition to whatever medications or strategies are prescribed by the student’s physician. While we cannot guarantee that all allergic symptoms are eliminated, we will do what we can to provide accommodations that help alleviate the symptoms in severe cases. Students who need an accommodation due to allergies, asthma, or any type of chronic health problem should contact the Office of Disability Services.
 

Bad Experiences with Roommate or Floormates

The Housing staff wants students to have a rich and rewarding residence hall experience. Sometimes, however, roommates are not compatible— even roommates who originally chose to live together. In these cases, we recommend that both roommates work with the hall staff to try to work out their problems or make a room change. Professional residence hall staff in extreme cases will work to resolve the issue or make an immediate room change.
 

Finances

If a student chooses to attend MSU, there is an assumption that he/she has the financial resources to pay for it. It is expected that students fully utilize all financial aid available to them. If a change in your financial situation has occurred since enrolling, please work with the Financial Aid Office to see what aid options may be available. Although having both a lease and a residence hall contract could cause a financial difficulty, it is not grounds for an exemption.
 

Food/Dining Needs

The residence halls offer a wide variety of dining options and types of food, including low-fat and vegetarian options. The Office of Disability Services can work with Morehead State University’s food service provider should a student have dietary concerns. Food services can almost always assist students who are on special diets prescribed by their physician.
 

Lack of Privacy

Most students are used to having more privacy at home than they have in the residence halls and this can require a major adjustment. If it is extremely disturbing to the student or if the student is an individual with a disability and needs more privacy for medical reasons, the Office of Disability Services can determine if a reasonable accommodation is necessary.
 

Desire to Live with a Non-Parent Relative (sibling, cousin, aunt, grandparent, etc.) or Commute from Outside the Approved Commuting Distance

Students may live full-time and commute from home under two conditions: 1) they will reside full-time with a parent or legal guardian (someone who has applied for and been granted legal guardianship by the court/s) and 2) that parent or guardian lives within a 50-mile radius of campus. If either of those two conditions are not met, an exemption will not be granted.
 

Please also consider the following before submitting an appeal request:

  • Exemption appeals are rarely granted.
  • The Office of Student Housing’s first obligation is to make appropriate accommodations for students with serious health problems and/or disabilities. Therefore, our goal is always to try to find a solution within the residence halls to whatever problem is prompting your request for an exemption.
  • The appeal process is not to be taken lightly since each appeal requires significant review and evaluation by at least one professional staff member (or in the case of Waiver Appeal Boards, many professional staff members/students).
  • Therefore, we ask that you carefully consider whether or not your situation is so extreme that it cannot be resolved in the residence halls or that the consequences of remaining in the residence halls would be severely negative for you.
 

If exceptions are rarely granted, then why have an appeal process?

Many students don’t realize the number of ways the University can meet their needs and the type of accommodations that can be made to enable them to fulfill their residency requirement. However, there are those rare circumstances where a student with a significant problem or extreme circumstance has special needs that cannot be met in the residence halls. Determining whether or not those circumstances provide the basis for an exception to a University requirement can be difficult. That is where the expertise of those included in the appeal process is helpful.
 

Waiver Appeal Process

If you decide to appeal the initial results of your waiver request, the first appeal is a Director Appeal. Please note:
  • This appeal must be initiated in writing via email to housing@moreheadstate.edu indicating your request for a Director Appeal.
  • This request must be made within ten working days of your initial waiver request decision.
  • Director Appeals are usually resolved within ten working days, but delays during peak operational times are possible.
  • Decisions will be communicated to your MSU email account.
After resolution of your Director Appeal, should you feel additional review is warranted, you will have only one opportunity to request a final appeal from the Housing Waiver Appeal Board. This appeal must be initiated in writing via email to housing@moreheadstate.edu indicating your request for a Housing Waiver Appeal Board. These appeals are written appeals and face-to-face appeals or oral arguments are not possible. You are encouraged to include an additional written statement (not to exceed two pages in length) and any additional supporting documentation you would like considered. This request must be made within ten working days of your Director Appeal decision. Members of the Housing Waiver Appeal Board include representatives from the student body as well as experts from various professional areas to ensure a thorough and knowledgeable review of each appeal. Housing Waiver Appeal Board decisions are final and no additional appeal avenues are possible.
 
Housing Waiver Appeal Boards convene four times per year based on the following deadlines:
  • To ensure review of your appeal by March 1, please submit all appeal information by February 1.
  • To ensure review of your appeal by May 1, please submit all appeal information by April 1.
  • To ensure review of your appeal by August 1, please submit all appeal information by July 1.
  • To ensure review of your appeal by December 1, please submit all appeal information by November 1.
 
The above deadlines are firm and no appeals will be reviewed between the above dates. As well, appeal deadlines will not be adjusted to meet personal deadlines. If all documents are not submitted by the deadline, your appeal will not be reviewed until the next review session. Again, you are strongly advised NOT to sign a lease until your appeal has been reviewed and unless you are granted an exemption in writing from the Office of Student Housing.
 
If you have questions or need additional help with the appeal process for an on-campus residency policy exemption request, please contact the Office of Student Housing via email at housing@moreheadstate.edu or via telephone at 606-783-2060.