Residence Life

Gender Neutral Housing

Ramapo College seeks to provide a living environment welcoming to all gender identities; one not limited by the traditional gender binary. Gender Neutral Housing allows for same-gender, opposite-gender or other-gender identities to live together regardless of biological sex. This provides a living/learning environment where residents can learn about and explore gender identity and expression in a supportive environment.

Gender Neutral Housing participants must commit to maintaining an inclusive and welcoming living environment free of discrimination based on gender identity and sexual orientation. Each resident accepted to live in Gender Neutral Housing must agree to the Gender Neutral Housing Agreement and will have responsibility to develop and uphold standards for the community in congruence with valuing all persons and seeking to learn from their diverse experiences and perspectives. Participants must also agree to take part in the assessment of the Gender Neutral Housing program by participating in occasional surveys.

What is gender neutral housing?

Gender Neutral Housing is an environment where student housing is not restricted to traditional limitations of the gender binary. This program has been launched in recognition of the fact that traditional, same-sex room assignments are not ideal or appropriate for all students. Ramapo College has chosen to offer gender neutral housing because we believe it is important that housing policies evolve to meet the needs of students and to create an inclusive, welcoming environment.

Who can participate in gender neutral housing?

Any current resident who is interested in sharing a housing assignment with other Ramapo College students of all gender identities.

What are the differences between co-ed and gender neutral housing?

The term co-ed operates on the assumption that there are two genders: male and female. It leaves little room for the progressive theories on gender, and no room for those who do not identify as their biological sex or those who are transgendered. This idea is based on the notion that there are more then two genders, in fact an infinite amount. Allowing for gender neutral housing, as opposed to co-ed, shows more inclusiveness and room for diverse identities.

What if a student does not want to live in gender neutral housing?

A student must apply separately to be considered for Gender Neutral Housing, and students who are not simply need not apply. The majority of housing at Ramapo will remain single-sex housing, and the usual rules for housing selection will apply.

What will the duration of Gender Neutral Housing be?

Participants will commit to living in gender neutral housing for one full academic year. Students may re-apply for Gender Neutral Housing for the following year if they meet housing eligibility standards.

Will you prevent people who are romantically involved from living together?

Gender Neutral Housing is not intended for romantic couples. However, we respect and honor the privacy of our students, so current open housing procedures do not require students to disclose the reason for their roommate requests.

What if someone who requested to take part in Gender Neutral Housing decides they no longer wish to do so?

Students may request room changes by following the normal room change procedures that are published each semester. Students who do not fulfill their commitment to live in Gender Neutral Housing for one full academic year may not be eligible to take part in future Gender Neutral Housing accommodations.

What will happen to the remaining suitemates in the event that a vacancy occurs?

If a vacancy occurs, the Office of Residence Life reserves the right to place a “wait listed” Gender Neutral Housing applicant in the suite, leave the vacancy open and combine two or more under capacity suites, or convert the room to a single sex room. This decision will be made at the Office of Resident Life’s discretion, but reasonable accommodations will be made wherever possible.

What if parents don’t want their child to live in a gender neutral housing room?

We encourage students to maintain an open dialogue with their families so that they can be supportive of a students housing decision. Students over the age of 18 are legally able to make decisions about their housing contracts. Students under 18 should discuss housing plans with their families, as they must provide parental consent.