Student Rights and Responsibilities

In July of 2016, the University of Nebraska at Kearney adopted a new Student Code of Conduct.  This has impacted how Residence Life processes conduct cases and the section “RESIDENCE LIFE AND UNIVERSITY CONDUCT PROCESS” in the Residence Life Information & Policies handbook.

Personal Mobility Device Policy

  • The operation, use, and storage of non-traditional means of transportation including but not limited to bicycles, mopeds, skateboards, scooters, in-line skates, roller skates and recreational electric personal mobility devices is prohibited.
  • View the entire policy at UNK Personal Mobility Device Policy

Abandoned Property

  • Property which is left by a resident at the end of his/her contract period or when the student leaves an assigned space is considered abandoned and will be packed up by a University official in the presence of a witness. The contents will be inventoried and stored in another location. A letter and a copy of the inventoried items will be sent to the student at the student's home address on file with the University, informing the resident that they have sixty (60) days to claim the property. Items not retrieved within this time frame will be donated to a local charity or disposed of at that time. The University has no liability for the loss or damage to a resident's personal property if the property has been abandoned.


  • Residents are required to immediately report any fires, accidents, injuries, and property damage occurring in the residence halls to their hall staff.


  • Use, possession, manufacturing, or distribution of alcoholic beverages on University premises (except as expressly permitted by the University), or public intoxication. Alcoholic beverages may not, in any circumstance, be used by, possessed by, or distributed to any person under twenty-one (21) years of age in the State of Nebraska.  Any student or guest in a room who knows that alcohol is present will be held responsible under the alcohol policy unless a resident informs a staff member of the violation or removes themselves from the room. Residence Life staff reserves the right to contact parents/guardians about any resident who is transported to the hospital for acute alcohol intoxication.
  • Possession of alcoholic containers is not allowed in the residence halls. Possession of alcoholic containers, includes, but is not limited to, kegs, party balls, beer bongs, bottles, shot glasses, and cans.


  • Only items with enclosed heating or lighting elements are permitted. Both the appliance and any cord used in connection with it must have a UL (Underwriters Laboratories) approved label. Residents may use coffee makers within their rooms.  Other appliances such as, toasters, toaster ovens, George Foreman-style grills, electric skillets and infrared ovens may be operated in residence hall kitchens only.  Microwave ovens, standalone freezers and window mounted air conditioning units are not allowed to be brought to campus.  Residents that reside in Antelope/Nester are permitted to have and use toasters, toaster ovens, George Foreman-style grills, electric skillets, electric grills, and infrared ovens in the kitchen area.  These items are not permitted for use in sleeping rooms.  


  • Residents and guests may only use bathrooms in the residence halls that are designated for their gender.

Candles and Incense

  • Candles (including lit and unlit decorative candles) and incense are not permitted in the residence halls. No-flame candle plates are not permitted. Wax warmers, with enclosed miniature light bulbs, are permitted.


  • Residential housing is solely reserved for students enrolled at UNK and Residence Life staff members serving such students. Children are not allowed to reside in residential housing unless they are a dependent child of a Residence Life staff member. Any child visiting must have adult supervision at all times. Babysitting is prohibited in the residence halls.


  • Residents are expected to cooperate fully by furnishing all the requested information and complying with all requests made by a University official and/or Residence Life staff member. This includes, but is not limited to, providing student ID when requested, meeting with Residence Life staff members as directed, and/or completing sanctions outlined as the result of an administrative disciplinary meeting. Pranks, verbal harassment, swearing, or any similar disrespectful behavior directed toward a staff member will not be tolerated and may lead to further disciplinary action.

Computer Usage

  • Theft or other misuse of computer facilities and resources, including but not limited to; unauthorized entry into a file, to copy, use, read, or change the contents, or for any other purpose, unauthorized transfer of a file, use of another individual’s identification, username/user id and/or password, use of computing and information technology facilities and resources to interfere with the work of another Student, faculty member or University Official, use of computing and information technology facilities and resources to send obscene or abusive messages, use of computing facilities and resources to interfere with normal operation of the University computing system and information technology systems, use of computing and facilities and resources in violation of copyright laws, any violation of the University Computer Use Policy (Executive Memorandum No. 16.
  • Computer labs located in residence halls are for resident use only. Wireless routers are not permitted in the residence halls. 


  • The Office of Residence Life reserves the right to confiscate property identified as a policy violation in this handbook and in the residence hall contract. Items that are legal to possess, but are in violation of residence hall policy (i.e. certain cooking equipment) may be confiscated by Residence Life staff. The hall staff will hold these items and the resident will be responsible to collect them. 
  • A resident will receive written confirmation of any items confiscated from his/her room. Items that are confiscated and returned must be removed from the residence hall and campus as directed by the hall staff.  Unclaimed items will be donated or disposed after 15 business days.

Controlled Substances

  • Use, possession, manufacturing, or distribution of marijuana, heroin, narcotics, or other controlled substances, or drug paraphernalia, except as expressly permitted by law.

  • Possession of drug paraphernalia that can be demonstrated to be linked to illegal drug activity is also a violation of this policy. Students and their guests are not permitted to possess paraphernalia such as bongs, rolling papers, deseeding trays, roach clips, scales, or any item used to inhale/ingest illegal substances or any item used to disguise the use of drugs. Misusing legal substances to obtain an unnatural reaction is prohibited.

  • Federal and state laws forbid the sale and use of drugs that are not prescribed by a physician for personal use or are not available on the legal open market. Any person known to be in possession, using, or distributing such drugs is subject to disciplinary action and possible arrest, imprisonment, or fine according to state law. 


  • Cooking is prohibited in resident rooms. Cooking may only be done in hall kitchens or in the individual kitchenettes in the Antelope/Nester complex.

Disorderly Conduct

  • Behavior that is disruptive to orderly community living is prohibited. Conduct that is disorderly or indecent, including but not limited to, public urination; breach of peace; or aiding, abetting, or procuring another person to breach the peace on University premises or at functions sponsored by, or participated in by, the University or members of the University community.

Displaying Offensive/Disrespectful Items

  • Items deemed disrespectful or offensive by Residence Life staff is prohibited on room doors or when visible through the window or open room doors. Some displayed items may also violate the harassment policy and will not be allowed. 


  • When elevators are out of service because of misuse by students, those students identified as being responsible for the misuse will be charged for the service call of the elevator company employees. Defacing or vandalizing elevators is also prohibited and will result in charges to the individual or individuals found responsible. If the individual(s) cannot be identified, all community members will be charged at checkout for an equal portion of the damages.

Fire Safety

  • State law, as well as residence hall policy, requires that all students leave their room and/or public areas when a fire alarm is sounded. Failure to evacuate during an alarm will subject the student to University disciplinary action and/or civil action. Smoke detectors are provided for your safety in each room/apartment and should not be tampered with or disconnected.
  • Residents and guests should not falsely activate the fire alarm or tamper with the alarm equipment (heat detectors, pull stations, fire extinguisher, exit/emergency lights, and sprinkler heads or smoke detectors) and is a federal, state and local violation of the law.  Equipment that needs repair or is malfunctioning should be reported to Facilities Management immediately at 865-1800 or to hall staff.
  • Exits or exit access shall not be obstructed at any time in any manner with furniture, storage, displays, vending machines, etc.  Fire doors on stairwells, unless arranged to close automatically in the event of fire, shall be maintained in the closed position at all times.  Exit signs shall be properly illuminated at all times. Such signs shall not be obstructed or blocked from view at any time. Exits and exit access doors shall not be locked at any time unless equipped with panic hardware or other approved means to permit emergency egress by building occupants.


  • Furniture purchased for the use of residents living in University residence halls and designed for the common areas (lounges) shall remain in the common areas; it is not to be taken by residents to their rooms for personal use. There is a $10.00 per day per item charge. Furniture provided in residence hall rooms must remain in the assigned space.  Furniture may not be elevated.


  • Unlicensed gambling is a violation of state law. Gambling is not permitted on state property.


  • A resident may only host one same-gender guest at a time and for a limit of three consecutive nights in a week.  Approval to have an overnight guest must be obtained in advance from the host’s roommate. Keys will not be loaned to guests. The host resident is responsible for the actions of their guests.  Guests must be escorted in public areas at all times.

Hall/Sports Equipment Use

  • Sports activities inside the residence halls are not permitted, with the exception of Residence Life provided table sports. This includes, but is not limited to, roller-blading, skateboarding, having water fights, bike/scooter riding, rough housing, and playing pranks.  The operation, use, and storage of non-traditional means of transportation including but not limited to bicycles, mopeds, skateboards, scooters, in-line skates, roller skates and recreational electric personal mobility devices is prohibited.  Residents should refer to the Campus Mobility Devise for more information.  


  • Harassment in any form, threats, demands, and retaliation is prohibited. The University maintains a strict policy prohibiting sexual misconduct and harassment on the basis of race, religion, color, national origin, disability, marital status, sexual orientation, age, or any other basis protected by federal, state or local law, ordinance or regulation. All such harassment is unlawful and will not be tolerated. 


  • Hazing, defined as any activity by which a person intentionally or recklessly endangers the physical or mental health or safety of an individual for the purpose of initiation into, admission into, affiliation with, or continued membership with any Student organization (regardless of whether the organization is formerly recognized as an RSO). Such hazing activity shall include, but not be limited to, whipping, beating, branding, forced and prolonged calisthenics, prolonged exposure to the elements, forced consumption of any food, liquor, beverage, drug or harmful substance not generally intended for human consumption, prolonged sleep deprivation, any brutal treatment, or the performance of any act which endangers the physical or mental health or safety of any person. 

Holiday Decoration

  • Many holiday decorations are highly combustible, special care must be taken in decorating. Cut live trees are NOT permitted in student rooms. Light cords used on artificial trees or in room decorations (including lights used in windows) must be Underwriters Laboratory (UL) approved and should be checked for safety. Lights must be turned off when leaving the room. Window decorations celebrating the current holiday are permitted to be displayed but cannot obstruct the window. Room doors may not be completely wrapped in paper due to fire hazard.

Identification (ID)

  • Misrepresentation or misuse of student identification is prohibited. Residents, visitors, and guests are required to produce their UNK ID or other picture ID (i.e. driver's license) immediately upon request to a University official to verify their identity. Anyone who cannot show appropriate identification may be asked to leave the residence halls immediately. Misuse of the University ID card by allowing others to gain hall access is prohibited.

  • Presentation of a false ID is considered criminal impersonation, which is a violation of Nebraska state law (Nebraska Rev. Stat. §28-638).


  • Residence hall keys may not be loaned or duplicated for another person’s use. If a resident loses keys, the following points will apply:

    • Check with hall staff to see if the key(s) has been turned in.
    • If not found, the hall staff will start the replacement process. The lock will be re-cored and re-keyed and the resident will be assessed the replacement costs listed below.

Replacement Key Costs

Keys Cost Applies to
Room Keys: $55 All halls
Mailbox Keys: $20 Antelope/Nester, CTE, CTW, Mantor, Men's and Randall Halls
Fobs: $20 Antelope/Nester


Residents are responsible for carrying their room keys at all times.  If a resident should find themselves locked out of their room, they first should contact their residence hall front desk for assistance.  If the desk is closed, the Resident Assistant on Duty should be contacted.  The following points will apply:

  • All residents will be required to show the assisting residence hall staff member a picture ID either before or immediately after being let in the room to ensure the safety and security of all residents.
  • Residents will be required to produce their key to the assisting residence hall staff member.  If the key cannot be produced, the staff member will notify hall staff.  The next business day, the hall staff will initiate a lock change at the resident’s expense.

Liability/Disruption of Services

  • The Office of Residence Life is not liable for loss or damage to personal property in resident rooms or public areas. It is the responsibility of all residents to keep their rooms locked at all times. Residents may be covered by their family’s personal property insurance and are encouraged to carry a private insurance policy to cover their property against loss.
  • The Office of Residence Life is not responsible for the continuation of food, mail, custodial, heating, maintenance, or security service at normal levels in the event of a natural disaster, strike, or lockout of public employees or suppliers’ employees, power-water-sewer interruptions from on-or-off campus sources, or in the event of other catastrophic events beyond the control or reasonable anticipation of Residence Life.


  • Improper disposal of personal trash is considered littering. Residents are responsible for the proper disposal of their trash in the dumpster located outside their building. In the event that a resident litters a public area (i.e. hallway, stairwell, lounge) or the surrounding grounds of the building, that student will be responsible for the cost of the clean up. Room trash and litter found in common areas will result in disciplinary action.


  • Only non-dangerous fish are permitted in the residence halls; all other pets are prohibited. Each room is allowed to have one aquarium no larger than 10 gallons. The cost of pest control and cleaning will be assessed to the resident if this policy is violated.  Students who wish to seek an accommodation should contact Disability Services for Students.  

Posting Policy

  • All posting material must be approved and stamped by the Associate Director of Residence Life BEFORE copies are made for distribution. No posting is to be done by individuals, but will be distributed from the Office of Residence Life to each hall staff for posting. The number of copies to be made can be obtained at the Office of Residence Life.

Prohibited Areas

  • Unauthorized individuals are not allowed on the roof, overhangs, or awnings of any residence hall building or adjoining facilities.
  • Unauthorized occupation and entry into any residence hall facility or student room is prohibited.

Quiet Hours/Noise

  • Quiet hours are established to provide periods during which noise and other disturbing activities are prohibited to allow residents a peaceful time to sleep and/or study. Courtesy hours are in effect twenty-four (24) hours a day and require that all residents and guests keep their noise to a level that does not interfere with others. Residents responsible for excessive noise and/or disruptive behavior will be subject to disciplinary action. Sound equipment may not infringe on the rights of others. At no time may amplified sound be directed out of windows.

  • Quiet hours are Sunday-Thursday 11:00pm-10:00 am, Friday and Saturday 1:00 am-10:00 am.

  • All residence halls will begin twenty-four (24) hour quiet hours on the Sunday prior to the start of finals week. Policy violations may result in immediate removal from the residence hall.

Room Changes

  • The unauthorized changing of rooms is prohibited. No room changes may be made the first two weeks or the last two weeks of each semester.  Room changes are requested and considered on a case by case basis.  The Office of Residence Life will not be requesting anyone to move out of a designated room because of a roommate’s discomfort with a protected status such as race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, gender expression, ability status, age, veteran’s status, religious expression and/or socio-economic status. Please see the UNK’s Non-discrimination Statement for more information about UNK’s commitment to inclusion.

Room Cleanliness

  • Residents are required to keep their rooms clean and orderly. Routine and spontaneous Health and Safety Inspections will be held periodically throughout the year. Residence Life reserves the right to clean and charge for the cleaning of rooms deemed unsanitary. Residents will receive a minimum of twenty-four (24) hours notice prior to inspections, and given 24 hours to correct any problems or violations.

Room Entry and Search

  • The University reserves the right to enter and search rooms in order to serve institutional purposes, which include protecting the health and safety of students, enforcing University rules and regulations, and other reasonable purposes.  Searches generally will not be conducted unless there is an emergency requiring immediate action (i.e., medical concern, extreme community disruption, or danger to the campus community) or unless there is a search warrant. UNKPD may also assume responsibility for a search.

Safety and Security in the Residence Halls

  • Residents are responsible for locking their room.  Room should be looked at all times. Exterior doors and doors leading to living areas are locked twenty-four (24) hours a day. However, each resident entering and leaving the hall should make sure that doors are secured and locked. Doors may not be propped open. Unauthorized entry is not permitted. Residents are not allowed to exit a residence hall through the emergency doors/fire exit except during an emergency.

  • Suite bathroom doors may not be tampered with in any way.

  • It is important that residents are security conscious in the halls, on the campus, and in the community. Students should be familiar with safety precautions. Residents should be aware of their actions and the potential danger that could be inflicted on other persons or property. The violation of a safety policy will result in residence hall probation and/or termination of the housing contract. 


  • Canvassing or solicitation of funds, sales, votes, memberships, literature, signatures, or subscriptions - whether it is UNK related or not, is not permitted in the residence halls.

  • This includes going “door-to-door” in the residence halls for the above reasons. Putting “door hangers” on doorknobs and/or sliding flyers underneath doors into students rooms is not permitted. Residence hall rooms are not to be used for any commercial purposes or selling via personal business.


  • Theft is a violation of local, state and federal laws and is prohibited.

Tobacco and Vaping

  • The use of all forms of tobacco and vaping products is prohibited on University of Nebraska at Kearney property with the exception of parking lots. The prohibition extends to vehicles and venues owned, operated, leased, occupied or controlled by the University. “Tobacco products” Includes all forms of tobacco, inclusive of but not limited to, cigarettes, cigars, pipes, water pipes (hookah), electronic cigarettes and similar devices, and smokeless tobacco products. 


  • Damages, destruction or defacement of University property is prohibited. Common area damages are charged equally to all students residing in that area. If, however, an individual resident or group of residents is responsible for damage to the hall and can be identified, the responsible party will be required to pay the cost incurred.

Violation of Federal, State, or Local Law

  • Violation of federal or state law, or a county or municipal ordinance or regulation within residential premises will not be tolerated.

Violence/Fighting/Threats or Intimidation/Assault

  • Threats of violence (verbal, physical, sexual, etc.), assault, bullying, or conduct that threatens the health, safety, or welfare of any person in or around the residence hall community will not be tolerated. Posts via social media are also included under this policy.


  • Weapons are not permitted in the residence halls. This includes, but is not limited to, firearms, ammunition, explosives, tear gas, large knives, pellet guns, wrist rockets, catapults, dart guns, and devices that propel objects through the air. Recreational weapons such as, but not limited to, sling shots, electronic stun guns, pellet guns, air soft guns, etc., are not permitted in the residence halls. Objects that are used in the martial arts, such as nunchakus, throwing stars, and bolas, and those used in hunting, such as bows and arrows, are not permitted in the residence halls. Students who use an object in the form of a weapon to injure someone are subject to disciplinary action under this policy. Residence Life staff may search a room if there is reason to believe a weapon is located in the room. Violation of this policy may result in termination of the housing contract. The only exception to this policy is legal chemical dispensing devices, such as pepper sprays, that are sold commercially for personal protection. 


  • Throwing, dropping, hanging, etc., of any object from a residence hall window is prohibited. Removal of window screens and entering or exiting a residence hall by way of a window is prohibited.