» Parents and Families of Residential Students

Residence Life & First Year Experience considers parents and family members to be essential partners in students’ education. The information below provides insight and information that will assist you in helping your student navigate their residential experience.

Toggle Section

Moving In and Adjusting

Move In Day

Many students appreciate when their parents and family members accompany them on move in day. Moving to campus can be overwhelming and exciting for both students and family members. Follow these tips to help make the transition as smooth as possible:

  • Remember that this is your student’s day. Allow him/her to take the lead in order to encourage responsibility and many memory-making moments!
  • Review residence hall policies ahead of time and help them pack appropriate items. See our moving in page for information on what/what not to bring.
  • Be supportive and model open-mindedness. Perhaps this is your student’s first time living in a triple room or with a person s/he does not know – a great learning experience!
  • Let go and say goodbye. This is the start of an exciting journey for your entire family!


Most Chapman students live with a roommate (or two!) Students are matched with roommates based on the lifestyle responses they provided on the housing application. Students often find that living with other students is one of the most fun and challenging experiences they have in college. We encourage you to talk with your student to help him/her acknowledge individual living habits and to think about how to incorporate those into a successful living arrangement.

Residential Staff

Each floor has a student Resident Advisor who has undergone extensive training and is available to help build community and ensure the safety of their residents. Each building is led by a Resident Director who is a professional staff member and is responsible for supervising the RAs and managing the operation of the residence hall. The RA and RD are happy to assist your student in having a successful on campus experience.

Community Living

Safety and Security

Your student’s safety and the security of their residential area are very important, as it is the foundation to a successful living and learning environment. The RAs and RDs, as well as Public Safety, maintain an active presence within the residence halls. You can help us keep our communities safe by talking with your student about the tips below:

  • Sign up for Panther-Alert and program Public Safety’s phone number into his/her cell phone
  • Close and lock the residence room door
  • Do not let any unrecognized individuals through the building doors (which are activated by student ID )
  • Walk with friends when navigating campus at night
  • Read the Student Conduct Code and refrain from any behaviors that are not consistent with our policies.

Involvement on Campus

While your student’s primary focus should be his/her academic pursuits, studies show that involvement outside of the classroom provides students with significant benefit. Along with sports and recreation, Greek Life, and campus clubs and organizations, the Office of Housing and Residence Life has a number of involvement opportunities on our Student Employment and Leadership Opportunities page.

Tips and Resources

Suggested Reading

Let the Journey Begin: A Parent’s Monthly Guide to the College Experience
By Jacqueline Kiernan MacKay, Houghton Mifflin, 2001

Letting Go: A Parents’ Guide to Understanding the College Years (5th Edition)
By Karen Levin Coburn and Madge Lawrence Treeger, Harper Collins, 2009

You’re On Your Own (But I’m here if you need me): Mentoring Your Child during the College Years
By Marjorie Savage, Fireside, 2003

Campus Resources

You may find it helpful to learn about other resources Chapman offers to help support students:

Academic Advising Center

Dean of Students

Financial Aid

Fish Interfaith Center

Public Safety

Student Business Services

Student Health Center

Student Psychological Counseling Services

Tutoring, Learning, and Testing Center

First Year Experience

For more information on the First Year Experience and the programs and resources being offered please visit their webpage.