Housing & Dining Information for New Students

As a residential college, Oberlin College believes that having students living and dining together fosters community, discourse, and debate. Therefore, all students are required to live in college housing or in an Oberlin Student Cooperative Association (OSCA) co-op and participate in one of the dining programs through graduation.

This site contains information to help you complete the Housing and Dining registration process online.

The Housing and dining registration form will be available June 1st. This form and any other housing forms required for your housing preference must be submitted online by June 15.

You may share personal preferences that help us match you with a roommate, or you may also request a specific roommate.

Additional applications exist for preferred selection for several special housing options and are on the website. These options include Program Houses, First-Year Residential Experience (FYRE), Sustainability-focused living, Cooperative Housing and Theme Housing. If you do not have access to the online documents, contact the office, and the staff will be happy to assist you.

Exemptions from the housing and dining requirement are made for the following situations:

  • Students who are married to another individual who is a non-Oberlin College Undergraduate Student;
  • Students who commute from their parents’ homes (within a 50-mile radius of Oberlin);
  • Students who are age 23 or older by January 2 of the academic year;
  • Students who are enrolled for five or fewer credit hours;
  • Students who have underage, dependent children; and
  • Students classified by the registrar as graduate or special students.

To qualify for an exemption, appropriate and thorough documentation must be submitted by June 15, to the Office of Residential Education and Dining Services. More information on requesting an exemption is available online at new.oberlin.edu/office/housing/forms-and-policies/exemptions.dot, or by calling the office, 440-775-8472.

** Students classified by the registrar as graduate or special students will be completely exempt from participating in a meal plan or living on campus.

Residence Halls

Oberlin provides a variety of living options for first-year students.

You will find detailed information about Oberlin’s housing options and answers to frequently asked questions on the Residential Education and Dining Services website at FAQs, https://new.oberlin.edu/office/housing/new-students/new-student-faq.

In addition, you'll find applications required for Program and Theme Houses on the website. You may also contact our staff by e-mail at resed@oberlin.edu or by calling (440) 775-8472, with any housing questions.

Special Housing and Dining Accommodations

The Office of Residential Education and Dining Services understands that some students may have medical conditions that require special housing and or dining accommodations. The college successfully meets the needs of most students, and only in rare instances must students needing accommodations live off campus or not participate in a meal plan.

Students requesting housing and/or dining accommodations must contact the Office of Disability Services at new.oberlin.edu/office/disability-services/ and complete the disability self-disclosure form. For accommodation requests to receive best consideration, forms must be received by June 15.

Notification of Housing and Dining Assignments

Students who complete and submit their registration forms by June 15, may review their housing and dining assignments, along with roommate contact information, beginning the last week of July. Information will be available by logging on to the Residential Education Housing System. Refer to the Res Ed Housing website, new.oberlin.edu/office/housing/housing-selection/ for more information.

We will do our best to assign you to one of your preferences, but all assignments are based on availability.

Students who complete and submit their registration forms after June 15, will be considered late applications and have a greater likelihood of being assigned into our transitional housing, which may result in the need to be relocated to a permanent assignment during the year.

Check-in for new students on Tuesday, August 22, will begin at 9 a.m. To check in, go to your assigned residence hall if arriving before 12:30 p.m., or to the Office of Residential Education in Stevenson Hall if arriving between 1:00 and 5 p.m. If you need to request an earlier check-in date, visit our website for information about the approval process and associated fees. The deadline to request an early arrival without additional penalty fees will be posted on this website as well.

Meal Plan and Dining Hall Information

The Campus Dining Service (CDS) program at Oberlin College offers a wide range of food options with an emphasis on healthy cooking from scratch, local foods, creative vegan/vegetarian offerings, and sustainable practices. All first-year students will participate in the 300 meals per semester plan, which offers the following opportunities.

  • 300 meals are deposited onto your ID card at the beginning of the term. 
  • CDS offers the flexibility of six locations located throughout campus reflecting our commitment to quality service and a variety of options
  • Meals can be used during Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, or Fourth Meal
  • Carry-out sick trays are also provided for students participating in a CDS meal plan who wish a hot meal while they are recovering
  • The dining halls at Oberlin College do more than feed students and staff. CDS has several environmentally-conscious initiatives that help prevent waste and preserve our natural resources.

You may use your meal plan at Stevenson, Lord Saunders located in the Afrikan Heritage House, Dascomb, and the Science Center Cart.