Expectations for Community Living, Residence Life | Earlham College
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Earlham College is committed to providing a safe and healthy working and learning environment for the students, faculty, staff and visitors on its campus. As of July 1, 2016, Earlham College is a smoke and tobacco-free campus.

Expectations for Community Living

At Earlham, the Office of Residence Life is committed to working with students to facilitate the creation of residential communities where students feel safe, valued, and respected.  Community life is central to a great experience at Earlham, and our staff in the halls are commited to supporting and challenging students through these developmental processes.

Below is more information about the ways we help residents develop healthy communities as well as some of our expectations for community living among your peers.  

All first-year students, and most returning students, live with a roommate.  This experience helps to strengthen interpersonal skills through communication and negotiation of use of a shared space.  

Characteristics of Healthy Roommate Relationships

  1. Flexibility: Make sure that you are reasonable in all situations.
  2. Compromise: Don’t expect things to go your way, or no way at all.
  3. Assertiveness: While you may need to cool off after being upset, it is best to address situations sooner than later.
  4. Respect: Keep personal boundaries, beliefs and values in mind.
  5. Optimism: In most cases, there is a reasonable solution. Persistence is key!

Characteristics of Unhealthy Roommate Relationships

  1. Assumptions/Pre-judgments: Always ask questions before you make up your mind about something.
  2. Gossip: Go directly to the source! Slandering your roommate will not help the situation.
  3. Passiveness: You can’t expect a roommate issue to resolve itself without speaking about it.
  4. Minimizing: Just as you may expect your roommate(s) to take you seriously, you should do the same for them.
  5. Negative Language: Threatening and escalating the situation blows everything out of proportion!

Roommate Agreement

During the opening days of the semester, our staff introduces our Roommate Agreement to residents.  This agreement is designed to facilitate dialogue between roommates around the following areas:

  • Study Habits
  • Sleeping Habits
  • Guests and Visitation
  • Our Living Space & Personal Property
  • Cleanliness
  • Communication 

All first-year students are required to complete this agreement and returning students are strongly encouraged to do the same.  This document is available to be completed online and can be revisited throughout the year to help roommates learn how to communicate with one another while navigating conflict.

Once submitted, each roommate will receive an email with a copy of their completed agreement for their records.

This section is currently being updated and will be available soon!

This section is currently being updated and will be available soon!

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Earlham College, an independent, residential college, aspires to provide the highest-quality undergraduate education in the liberal arts and sciences, shaped by the distinctive perspectives of the Religious Society of Friends (Quakers).

Earlham College
801 National Road West
Richmond, Indiana
1-765-983-1200 — Main Switchboard
1-800-EARLHAM (327-5426) — Admission


Earlham admits students of any race, color, national and ethnic origin, age, gender and sexual orientation to all the rights, privileges, programs, and activities generally accorded or made available to students at the school. It does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national and ethnic origin, age, gender and sexual orientation in administration of its educational policies, admissions policies, scholarship and loan programs, and athletic and other school-administered programs.