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Gender Inclusive Housing: FAQ

Expanded Gender Inclusive Housing information can also be found on the Experiential Living Opportunities page.

What is Expanded Gender Inclusive Housing?

The Expanded Gender Inclusive options focus on providing an inclusive rooms across campus where students can live in the same room with any student - regardless of sex, gender, gender identity/expression, or sexual orientation.

Why did we introduce Gender Inclusive Housing?

Housing and Residence Life launched a project group during fall quarter 2010 composed of students and staff members to research the concept of GIH. The project group was charged with identifying components of successful GIH communities, the rationale for the option, and the potential for implementing GIH at Ohio University. Through the course of fall quarter, the group partnered with students to ensure that the proposed plans matched student interest.

These options have Expanded as student interest has grown.

Have there been issues with other school's GIH programs?

Research indicated limited concerns regarding GIH community implementation. The most common concern has come from parents asking whether students would be placed in the community without requesting it.

Who is eligible? What are the qualifications?

The LGBT/GIH Experiential Living Opportunities are open to all residential students who complete the application process. Students will indicate an interest in the option by completing the application that can be found at here.  

Other Expanded GIH housing opportunities are open to all residential students who indicate interest on the Personal Information page by the published deadline of March 1 for returning or upperclass students or May 3 for incoming students. In order to update your interests please visit your Housing Self-Service page and select the Personal Information tab on the left side of the screen.

Students with questions about Expanded Gender Inclusive Housing should contact Housing and Residence Life directly. Housing and Residence Life can be reached at 740-593-4090.

Where will this be located?

The LGBT/GIH ELO will be located in Hoover House on the South Green for the 2022-2023 academic year. 

The Expanded GIH options are located in a variety of spaces across campus, integrated within the residence halls on each green.

Will it cost more?

No, the cost will be based on hall and room type.

What is the process? How will students be selected?

For the Expanded GIH options, returning students should request the option on their Housing-Self Service site by March 1. Incoming students should request the option by May 3.

For the LGBT/GIH ELO, any incoming or returning resident should complete the application to express interest. Applications will be reviewed by a team of staff and students.

Participating students will be asked to sign a community contract prior to living in the space. The community contract summarizes potential benefits of living in the GIH community and clarifies expectations of community members. Such expectations will be further clarified through the drafting of community agreements, which  Housing and Residence Life already uses in the halls to empower residents’ voices in establishing community expectations.

Can a student be placed in GIH without requesting it?

Without requesting to reside in GIH, no student will be allowed to live in GIH.

How will roommate matching be done?

Students will be able to match as roommates on their Housing Self-Service site.  As long as each roommate has requested to be a part of gender inclusive housing, students will be able to match with any other student as a roommate. If you are unable to find your desired roommate please ensure you have both updated your My Personal Information on your Housing Self-Service page.

What about couples? Will I be able to live with my significant other?

Couples of any gender mix will be allowed to live together in GIH; however, the focus of GIH is creating an inclusive environment where students can live in the same room with any student - regardless of sex, gender, gender identity/expression, or sexual orientation.

How will roommate conflicts be handled? If I want to move out of my living situation but remain in GIH, will this be possible?

The best way to avoid roommate conflicts is to have roommates proactively discuss expectations of each other and the shared living space. This includes guests/visitors, expectations regarding privacy, cleanliness, shared items/food, etc. One of the best tools to avoid conflict is a roommate agreement. In hall staff an assist roommates in creating a roommate agreement.

When/if disagreements occur, it is best to talk about them as soon as appropriately possible. If you need assistance initiating a difficult or uncomfortable conversation with your roommate(s), speak with your RA or Resident Director (RD). Sometimes it is best not to remain roommates. If that is the best option, your Housing and Residence Life staff member can let you know of open room spaces on campus. If other GIH spaces are available, you are welcome to choose a space in that designated area.

Can a student move out if I find this isn't a good fit?

Students interested in leaving GIH will pursue the standard room change process available to students throughout campus.

The student can work with the RD/GRD or SRA to find a more suitable place to live.

Do all the standard Residence Hall rules still apply?

Residence hall policies and procedures are consistent in all hall environments on campus. To see a complete listing of policies and procedures, please review the Student Housing Handbook [PDF].

If a parent does not want the student in GIH, can the parent have them moved?

It is Ohio University’s practice that students select their rooms. We encourage parents and students to communicate about selecting a room and about any concerns or questions that arise during this process. In order to process a room change the room change request must be initiated by the student.

What type of education will be provided to students outside of the GIH community?

Educational efforts will be incorporated into our ongoing residence hall programming efforts.

What are the plans regarding the safety and security of the facilities?

As with all residence halls on campus, the exterior and Mod doors of the building are kept locked at all times with exceptions made during move in.

Students are encouraged to either confront or report people who do not appear to live in the building. Students are strongly discouraged from allowing others who do not live in the building from following them into the building. All guests and visitors should be escorted. All suspicious persons or activities should be reported immediately to OUPD.

What about restroom facilities/showers?

All restrooms in the Hoover House mod are gender inclusive.  All other GIH spaces offer single use, stand alone restrooms that are not gender-defined. 

Will the GIH community be separate from the hall(s) in which it is located?

Many of the GIH spaces are integrated within their specific residence hall floor. Like most of our Experiential Living Opportunities , the LGBT/GIH ELO rooms have been reserved on a specific floor sections in a select building for 2022-23.

Our hope is that all students, including those in the GIH section, will be involved in the greater residence hall community. A good way to do this is to get involved in the building or complex’s hall council. Hall councils represent all students in the building/complex.

How does GIH support student growth and development?

GIH is intended to provide a comfortable, inclusive environment where students can live in the same room with any student – regardless of sex, gender, gender identity/expression, or sexual orientation. Living in a group with similar values and expectations is a positive opportunity for all students, regardless of the specific situation. Identity development, like broader student development, is dependent on social support. Providing a supportive, inclusive living space is critical for developing a healthy place for students to learn, develop, and grow.