Roommate Request Process

Penn State does not utilize a roommate matching survey or ask questions regarding a student's personal preferences, and will randomly match students to reside together.  Penn State values diversity in its student population and feels strongly that living with others from different backgrounds, cultures, and ethnic groups serves to enhance the college experience.  The University is committed to equal access to facilities for all persons and maintains an environment free of harassment and free of discrimination against any person.   Discriminatory conduct and harassment violates the dignity of individuals, impedes the realization of the University's educational mission, and will not be tolerated. 

First-Year Students

Penn State recognizes that many students may have an interest in rooming with a friend, and offer the opportunity for a student to list another person as a roommate request. Roommate requests must be mutual - meaning, both students must indicate the other student's Penn State Access Account (i.e. abc123) as a preference on the Housing and Food Services (HFS) Contract. Each student is responsible for verifying that the other student's information listed is correct, and that the record is displaying before the modification deadline of May 15. 

The following timeline is used for processing mutual roommate requests:

  • Students who both accept the offer of admission before April 1 will be assigned together in regular housing in a traditional or renovated residence hall (depending upon space available and preferences indicated).
  • If one student has accepted the offer of admission before April 1, but the other student accepted after April 1, the students must decide to either be assigned together in supplemental housing or forgo the mutual roommate request and be assigned based on each students' individual preferences and when the offer was accepted.
  • Students who both accept the offer of admission after April 1 may be assigned together in supplemental housing

Current Students

Students may "pair up" with one other student during the housing request process by indicating a "potential roommate" on the request.  Adding a potential roommate will double the chance of a student being offered a HFS Contract during the lottery process, but is not a guarantee that an offer will be made. If two students are mutually paired up and one of the students receives a HFS Contract offer, the other student will also receive an offer for the same type of HFS Contract. There is no obligation of either student to accept the contract offer, and it will not affect the other student's contract. A student who does not enter a potential roommate is not penalized during the offer process, as the system is random. The pairing feature does not work for a group of four students in the residence hall request process - the group should split into two groups, with two students mutually requesting each other.  Groups of four may submit mutual requests for Nittany Apartments and White Course Apartments.

The following conditions apply for the pairing feature to be successful:

  • Both students must submit a request by the deadline date.
  • Both students must request the same type of housing option.
  • Both students must request the other student on the request - the pairing must be mutual in order for the system to recognize the pairing request.
  • The paired students do not have to be assigned together as roommates. When accepting the HFS Contract offer, students can indicate roommate preferences. If the paired students do not want to room together, the Assignment Office will not assign them together simply because they were paired together during the offer process.