Residence and Dining Regulations


Residences and Living Spaces

Bates College is a residential college. Campus residence is required of all students except for those individuals who have been granted special permission by Student Affairs.

Room assignments for upper-class students are determined through a room lottery by class year and on the basis of room preference forms for new students. Students may not move from one room to another without the permission of the Office of Residence Life and Health Education. If a student changes rooms without permission, a $200 illegal room change fine is assessed and the student will be required to return to the original room. Should a room/suite be picked with an upper-class student’s lottery number and not occupied by that student, all occupants may be removed from the room and assigned to a different room.

Room Reassignment

The Deans reserve the right to reassign students for any reason, including the relocation of students without roommates or the placement of additional students in rooms that are not full. Whenever possible, such reassignments will be finalized by the start of each term. The Office of Residence Life & Health Education does not permit one person to live in a triple or a quad alone. Students in such situations must find a roommate or they will be reassigned to a new space on campus.


Each resident student is furnished with a bed, desk, desk chair, bureau, mirror, wastebasket, and recycling containers. All furniture must remain in the original student’s room. After students have vacated a room, any remaining items that were not originally allotted to the room will be removed and a disposal fee of $75 assessed. All lounge furniture must remain in the lounge space. Alterations in the structure or painting of rooms, including built-in furniture, are prohibited. Waterbeds are not permitted.

No structure serving as a bar or facilitating the distribution of alcohol is allowed. Questions regarding the purpose of a structure should be referred to Student Affairs.

Please refer to the Safety section of this document for information on which appliances are permitted in Student Rooms.


Internet Connections in Student Rooms

The college-wide network system provides network ports in each room. Use of the network and network services is subject to the terms set forth in the college “Computer Use Policy.” In case of intentional damage to the network facilities, fees may be assessed for repair.


Custodial Services

Custodial workers are responsible for the normal upkeep of the bathrooms (with the exception of bathrooms within suites) and common areas of the residences. Any excessive mess is the responsibility of the students involved and under certain circumstances a cleaning charge may be assessed. Students are responsible for the upkeep of their room, including routine waste removal. Upon vacating the assigned room, all waste and personal items must be removed; if the room is carpeted it must be vacuumed, and if the room is a hard floor it must be swept clean. Facility Services assesses a cleaning fee of $50 per room occupant for any room not in compliance with these guidelines. Students may check out a vacuum or broom and dustpan from their custodian.


Residential Lounges

Some residence lounges may be reserved for general social and cultural functions. Reservations for event space may be made online at Reservations for events with alcohol must be initiated with the Student Activities Office and approved by the Residence Coordinator. First year lounges cannot be reserved for events with alcohol. Activities that require additional cleaning will necessitate special charges made to the appropriate group or person. All lounge furniture must remain in the lounge space.


Satellite Dishes and Cable Access

Satellite dishes and individual contracts for cable or Internet services are not allowed. Cable access is provided in lounges in halls and houses and in other locations designated by the College. Common rooms of suites do not have cable; students may elect to have cable installed privately. Any use of cable outside those approved by College policy is prohibited. Unauthorized cable installations will be removed and fined $150 under the Damage Policy.


Students who wish to hang wall decorations are encouraged to do so using molding hooks or adhesive sponges provided by Facility Services – free of charge. Nails, tape and paste are damaging and their use may lead to charges. Rooms are inspected for damages at the end of each semester. Items found in need of repair or replacement (other than normal wear) are charged equally to the most recent occupants unless the charges have been previously assumed. If there is a change in occupancy, rooms are specifically checked for damages upon request by a representative of the Facility Services staff. Willful destruction of property may be cause for action by the Student Conduct Committee or the Student Affairs Office.

The Facility Services Department retains the “Right of Entry” at all times for all rooms for the purpose of maintaining a safe physical environment. A listing of Dormitory Damage Standard Charges may be found online at:

The College is not responsible for theft of or damage to student belongings on campus. Students are strongly encouraged to ensure that their belongings are covered by the family’s homeowners’ insurance or to secure other private insurance to cover their belongings.

Service and Assistance Animals

Animals needed to assist students with documented disabilities may qualify as service animals or therapy animals and may be permitted to live in the residence hall when expressly authorized by the Dean of Accessible Education and the Residence Life Office. For information on Therapy and Service animals in residences, visit


Small fish are the only pets allowed in residence halls, and fish tanks may not exceed 10 gallons in size. When notified that animals other than small fish, or approved service or assistance animals have been located in a Residential Hall/House, Student Affairs alerts the student(s) of the transgression. This notification will require the immediate removal of the animal(s). A copy of the letter is sent to the Office of Security and Campus Safety and logged for follow-up by Security the next day. If the animal(s) is found on College property again, the animal will be immediately removed and brought to the local SPCA.

  • A Security Officer will proceed to the room in question and transport the animal to the Security Office. Students may not deny the Security Officer entrance to the room.
  • A private contractor retained by the College is then notified to pick up the animal(s) at the Security Office for transport to the local SPCA. Student(s) will be billed $50 for the SPCA expenses. The Student Affairs is notified that the animal(s) have been removed.
  • There is no second notification for repeat offenders, and these may be subject to disciplinary action through the Student Conduct Committee.


The Facility Services Department administers the comprehensive recycling programs in all residential, academic and administrative buildings. The recyclables at Bates, once in the common bins, are considered property of the College.


Solicitation / Use of Resources

Bates College does not permit the use of its resources (physical, electronic, financial, or other) to support commercial enterprises, not-for-profit activities unrelated to the educational goals of the College, work on behalf of political candidates, or any activity that could compromise the tax-exempt status of the College. Reasonable use of college resources for personal noncommercial purposes is permitted if it does not entail a direct cost to the College, impede operations, or violate college policies.

Bates College does not allow: (1) Students to contract with outside vendors to perform services inside residence halls or (2) door to door solicitation of any kind without prior approval from the Director of Residence Life.

Please refer to the College Computer Use Policy for more information regarding computer use related to the above activities.


Safety and Privacy

In living in a Bates residence, a student assumes responsibility for the use and general care of the room and its furnishings. Bates College retains the right to enter students’ rooms at any time. Reasons college personnel may enter student rooms include, but is not limited to: in cases of emergency, to investigate a suspected policy or criminal violation, to protect the safety of students, to ensure building safety and integrity, and for the review of residences in the assessment of safety, loss, and damage.

Safety is a priority, and any tampering with life safety equipment is a serious violation of Bates policy. In order to ensure that local, state and federal fire safety rules as well as Bates policies are being followed, the Bates Environmental Health and Safety (EHS) Department, along with the local Fire Department as well as private contractors periodically inspect student rooms. During these inspections, any items that violate Bates policy that are found in plain sight will be addressed as described, by the EHS Department and the responsible student will be fined and referred for follow up via Student Affairs. For a complete list, please visit the Safety section of our website.

College Security will contact Lewiston Police if drugs or drug paraphernalia are in plain view; students in violation will be subject to disciplinary action.

During these room inspections, special attention will be paid to unsafe conditions. Each item is described below, with the associated actions that will be taken.



Fines may be charged for safety violations. The level of fine will be determined based on the risk, the frequency of violations, and the time and effort required to restore safe conditions. Fines are $75 for the first offense; $150 for the second; $300 for the third. If you receive a fine, all registered residents of the room will split the total fine amount.



Bicycles may not be stored on porches, in lounges or in hallways. Bicycles may only be locked to authorized bicycle storage racks. Please refer to the Bates Bicycle Policy for authorized locations. Bicycles found in violation of this policy will be confiscated, and chains, cables, or locks on those bikes may be cut if necessary at the owner’s expense. A bicycle may be reclaimed after the first offense by presenting a valid student ID and signing a claim form. Bicycles confiscated a second time are held until the end of the academic year. Fines will be charged.


Cooking is among the most frequent cause of residential fires and is not permitted in student rooms. Fire alarms set off due to cooking in rooms are subject to safety fines and confiscation of prohibited appliances. Cooking may only be done in designated kitchen areas and must not be left unattended. The following items may be used only in kitchens: microwaves, bread makers, and slow cookers. The following cooking appliances are not permitted on campus: deep fat fryers, toasters, and toaster ovens.


No type of decorations, electrical lights, ropes, signs or personal items may be hung or attached in any way to electrical fixtures or on the sprinkler piping or sprinkler heads. Clear space of 22 inches + is desired around each sprinkler head. Live trees, wreaths, and garlands are prohibited. No decorations may be placed on the outside of residences. No alterations or adjustments are permitted which could potentially cause a sprinkler head to discharge. Tapestries are not permitted on ceilings; they can be hung on walls as long as they do not interfere with fire alarms. Safety fines may be assessed for violations and items will be confiscated.


Flammable Materials

Candles, wax melters, incense, or any source of open flame or ignition are prohibited in student residences. Flammable materials may not be stored or used in student residences. If found, safety fines will be immediately assessed and items confiscated. Students may retrieve confiscated items at the end of the semester by contacting the Office of Environmental Health and Safety.

Electrical Appliances

Electric line load limitations prohibit the use of heavy-demand appliances in student rooms. One small refrigerator/freezer/microwave combination unit is permitted per student. Students should coordinate this with their roommate(s). For rentals and deliveries, one option we suggest is New England Student Services. Larger sized refrigerators, keg refrigerators, coolers, air conditioners and space heaters are prohibited and will be removed if found, and students are subject to a safety fine.

If in doubt about multiple appliance usage, please contact the Facility Services electrical staff for guidance. All electrical items should be unplugged if the student room will not be occupied for an extended period of time, such as break periods.

Electrical Safety

Any electrical device which is modified after purchase or shows signs of visible damage is prohibited and will be removed. Students may not add wiring, remove or alter existing wiring or use unsafe wiring devices. Outlet expanders are prohibited and will be confiscated. Thin wire extension cords used for any purpose other than extending a single, low wattage item (e.g. lamp, radio, alarm clock, cell phone charger) will be removed. Overloading thin wire extension cords can lead to overheating and fire. Do not plug power strips into thin wire extension cords. In no case should power strips be plugged into a second power strip.

In no case may wires be run under carpets or taped across walking paths, door thresholds or through doorways or windows where pinching or other damage can result. Fines may be issued for unsafe wiring practices.


Firearms and Weapons

Firearms, fireworks, paintball guns, sling shots, bows and arrows, knives, and ammunition are not permitted anywhere on campus, except in the secured location provided by the Security Office. Please make arrangements for storage with the Security Office to avoid violation of local ordinances and college regulations.

Fire Extinguisher Discharge Policy

If a fire extinguisher is discharged for reasons other than to put out a fire, the individual or individuals will be charged for the activation of the fire alarm, the cost to recharge or replacement of the fire extinguisher, and fees associated with the clean-up. Depending on the circumstances, individual(s) discharging an extinguisher may be referred to the Student Conduct Committee and/or other appropriate judicial actions. If no individual comes forward to take responsibility for the discharge, the fines will be attributed to all students in the residence.

Life Safety tampering fine: Starting at $75

Fire extinguisher replacement: $135 for recharge and $180 replacement

Clean up cost is a minimum of $1,000

(Fines/charges for false alarms are listed below in the “False Fire Alarm Policy”)

Fire Protection and Combustible Materials

A fire in a college residence is a disaster that can be avoided by the mutual effort of residents and staff. The misuse of fire safety equipment (e.g. fire escapes, fire extinguishers, smoke detectors, sprinkler systems and fire alarms) is not permitted and is a violation of public safety laws in the State of Maine. Smoke detectors, sprinkler heads and fire alarms may not be covered with tapestries or other materials. Nothing may be attached to or hung from sprinkler pipes or sprinkler heads. A $75 is assessed and items confiscated. Students are responsible for all costs for the repair/replacement to any life safety item.

False Fire Alarm Policy

Bates and the City of Lewiston charge a fine for false alarms. False alarms produced by human error, faulty equipment, or pre-meditation, waste money and endanger the lives of fire fighters and civilians. A false alarm is defined as: “a visual or audible signal transmitted by an alarm system which indicates the existence of an emergency situation, when in fact no such emergency exists.” This includes the activation of an alarm system by the following means:


  1. The intentional and/or accidental pulling of a fire alarm pull station.
  2. Intentionally and/or accidentally introducing smoke or other objects into a smoke detector. Smoking is not allowed anywhere in student residences.
  3. The throwing of articles such as balls and frisbees, which inadvertently activate a smoke or heat detector.
  4. The cooking or heating of food and water in a bedroom or any room other than the kitchen.
  5. Improper use of the kitchen facilities. Examples of improper use include but are not restricted to:
    1. Allowing food to burn in an oven, toaster, toaster oven, or microwave oven.
    2. Dirty dishes left in sink.

The current charges for false alarms in a building are listed below and are subject to increases by the City of Lewiston.

  • First false alarm – $55
  • Second false alarm – $90
  • Third false alarm – $115
  • Fourth false alarm – $145
  • Fifth and subsequent false alarms – $380

Healthy Living Conditions

Rooms and common areas (including hallways) must be kept clean and uncluttered to maintain a clear pathway for egress in the event of an emergency. Living conditions that could adversely affect residents’ health and safety are prohibited. When residence hall staff, residence hall occupants, or other college staff determine that such conditions exist, immediate corrective action must be made. Cost of additional cleaning will be charged to room occupant(s). Hallways are not meant to store personal items (i.e. boots, sneakers, skateboards, scooters, bikes, snowboards, skiis, etc.).


All lamps must be safely designed and operated. Halogen lamps, lamps with bulbs that exceed their recommended wattage, or which operate at high temperatures, pose a serious fire risk and are prohibited. Lamps taped to bed frames or covered with potentially combustible material (e.g. clothing, tapestries, fabric, paper, athletic gear) will be confiscated. Fines may be charged. Contact the Environmental Health and Safety Department if there are questions about a lamp’s safety status.


Loft-beds are permitted only under circumstances consistent with room safety standards. Students interested in installing a loft must obtain a “Loft Building Permit” from the Environmental Health and Safety Department prior to building the loft. It is the student’s responsibility to dismantle and dispose of all the loft materials when vacating their room. If a legal loft is not removed prior to the student vacating the room, it will be removed and, a fee of $75 will be charged to the student’s account. Lofts installed without a permit will be removed and a fee of $150 will be charged.


It is unsafe for students to be on roofs and therefore prohibited.


Smoking or the burning of any type of pipe, cigar, cigarette, or similar product, legal or illegal, is prohibited in all campus buildings including residence halls and houses and their stairwells, porches or garages. Smoking is also prohibited within 50 feet (approximately 20 paces) of all campus buildings, including residences.

The presence of ash-filled ash trays and/or hookahs and water pipes will be considered proof of smoking in rooms and will be reported to Security and Student Affairs. Water pipes and hookahs will be confiscated.

  • First violation will result in a warning.
  • Second violation will result in a fine of $75.
  • Third violation will result in being moved to a different building on campus and a mandatory meeting with the Alcohol, Tobacco, and Other Drug Counselor.

Guests in Residential Rooms

Overnight Visitation

Each student is entitled to the full use of their room at all times when the College is in session. If a student’s comfort or sense of privacy is violated by unwelcome guests, they should discuss the situation with their roommate(s). If this is not satisfactory, they should report immediately to the Residence Coordinator, Junior Advisor, or to the Housing Coordinator. Measures may include mediation or other forms of reconciliation.

Guest Policy

Guests who are not residents of Bates may stay in a student’s room for a maximum of three nights. Guests’ presence may not infringe upon the rights of other Bates students. Any room, suite, or apartment-mate or other Bates student who feels inconvenienced by a guest should first discuss the matter with the host student. If that brings no result, the student should contact their JA, RC, or the Office of Residence Life & Health Education.

Hosts are responsible for the actions of their guests/visitors and will face disciplinary action if their guests/visitors violate college or residential policies. The host must report the name and car license of each guest to the Bates Security. If the situation warrants, an exception to the three-night limit may be obtained from Student Affairs. Any resident who provides permanent residence to a non-student or an off-campus student is in violation of college regulations and may be subject to disciplinary action.

Storage of Personal Items



The College has a limited amount of unsecured space in designated buildings for student storage available on a first come first serve basis. Students will have access to student storage only during the academic year. This lasts from the Campus Arrival Date in Fall Semester until five (5) days following the date of Commencement. Once access is rescinded for each academic cycle, all items in student storage will be removed and donated to local charities. In storage areas with cages, all locks will be cut, and the College will not be responsible for reimbursement for cut locks. There is no summer storage provided at Bates College, and no storage will be provided for students studying abroad.

Academic year student storage is limited to 3 containers (boxes, totes, bags) (3’ x 3’ x 3’) per individual. These boxes must be clearly labeled with the student’s name and class year. All items not labeled properly will be removed and donated. Students may never store lumber, rugs, furniture, flammables, gasoline driven vehicles or refrigerators. The College will attempt to safeguard all property left in these designated storage areas if securely packaged in accordance with the storage policy but does not assume any responsibility for loss, theft, or damage to student property in storage areas or residential buildings. The Storage Policy is posted at all storage locations and on the Facility Services website.


Access Cards

All students are issued a Bates ID card which is used to gain entrance to the student’s residence building 24 hours a day and all other student residences during specific hours. Some academic and athletic buildings may be accessed with the ID card during evenings and weekends. The card is also used for identification in the College Library and Dining Services. ID cards may be replaced for a fee of $25.


Each student is issued one set of keys to their room. Students must present their Bates ID card and sign for all keys received at the time of issuance. Students who do not pick up their keys within the first week of the beginning of the semester will have their card access cut off.


Key Return/Key Loss

All room keys must be returned prior to leaving campus. If keys are not returned to the Access Control Office on the final day of authorized residence or Commencement Day, whichever comes first, they will be considered unreturned/lost and a $75 per key charge and a $25 late fee will be billed to the student’s account. The cost to replace a room key and to re-key the lock during the academic year is $75 per key.


Room Changes

If the Office of Residence Life & Health Education authorizes a room change during the semester, all exchanges must be conducted at the Access Control Office to ensure proper documentation. Key swapping among students is not allowed. Students have 48 hours to hold keys to both their previous residence and their new residence. Failure to return the key for the previous residence within 48 hours will result in a $100 charge. Keys may be returned to the Security Office at 245 College Street only if Chase Hall is locked.

Students who leave campus early must surrender their keys to the Access Control Office prior to leaving campus, or their accounts will be charged as stated above.

Security Screens

Security screens are to be opened only in cases of emergency. Failure to comply will result in a $150 fine.

Dining Regulations

All on-campus students are on the meal plan. The meal plan provides three meals per day Monday through Friday, and two meals on Saturday and Sunday. Shirts and shoes must be worn in all college dining areas at all times. Meals are available for purchase during limited serving hours during all vacation periods with the exception of October Break, during which meals are included in the meal plan.

Off-campus students can make changes to their meal plan selection in the Office of Residence Life & Health Education until the end of the first week of classes each semester.

Dining Hall Access

Access to the dining hall is limited to those students who have the proper identification card and to guests who purchase individual meals or use a student’s guest pass. Students who give their ID cards to another person, share meals with someone not on the meal plan, carry food out of the dining hall, or otherwise creating a disturbance therein may be subject to fines, loss of dining privileges, and/or community service hours in Dining Services.

Should an individual have special dietary concerns (e.g. food allergies or special dining needs), arrangements can be made with the Director of Dining for alternate dining options.

Arrangements for special menus for groups, organizations or individuals should be made with the Catering Manager. The private dining rooms may be reserved for student groups or organizations by booking online at Reservations for events with alcohol must be initiated and blue slipped with the Student Activities Office.


Traditionally, Bates has taken pride in the responsibility of its students and the social and educational atmosphere of its campus. We do hold our students responsible for their conduct at all times. Damage is defined as damage that exceeds a physical condition that would be expected from normal wear and tear. Each instance of damage is recorded, a work order and bill are created, and then the repairs are scheduled and performed. A full description of damage costs can be found here.

Students are responsible for any damage caused to their own rooms. Damage to common areas is assumed by the person or group deemed responsible. When it is impossible to identify the responsible party, charges for repairs are billed to all building residents. Charges will appear on semester bills. Failure to pay dorm damage charges may lead to transcripts being withheld and/or disciplinary action. Willful destruction of property will result in disciplinary action. If you have a question regarding your student’s dorm damage charges, please contact: David Larrabee in Facility Services

If the College is able to determine which individual or individuals caused the damage, the penalties will be as follows:

1st Incident
  • Letter sent to student.
  • Student charged for the cost of the damage.
  • If the responsible student does not report the damage they caused within 72 hours, they will be required to perform 12 hours of community restitution.
2nd Incident
  • Letter sent home to parents.
  • Student charged for the cost of the damage.
  • Mandatory community restitution hours.
  • If they responsible student does not report the damage they caused with 72 hours, they will be automatically referred to the Student Conduct Committee. Otherwise, the referral to the Student Conduct Committee will be at the discretion of the Office of the Dean of Students.
3rd Incident
  • Referral to the Student Conduct Committee for review.
  • Possible removal from on-campus housing