College is a time of significant transition for young adults. Our goal in UCSB Housing & Residential Services is to support this process as our residents mature from child to adult. We believe students can make good decisions. Our residents bring a wide range of values and beliefs from family and friends that make our residential community the diverse and vibrant culture it is. We depend on families to offer clear guidance and hold expectations that their students will act as independent adults. At UCSB, you will gain a partner in supporting your son's or daughter's development. Help us help you and your student.
Guiding Your Student to Independence
Students go through a variety of developmental stages during their first year of college. The most crucial one is moving from dependence to independence. As students make this transition, it’s vital to keep abreast of what is going on in their lives. It is important for your student to be the primary source of information that you receive. Encourage them to communicate openly and honestly with you, and provide a listening ear for negative and positive experiences. Make a point to ask about the good things that are going on, as students need reminding about the positive aspects of their college experience. This is a critical skill to develop and will help build trust and respect between families and students. Before contacting UCSB staff members, please remember that when students take on the legal status of “adults,” the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) governs how UCSB deals with student records. This includes any records pertaining to housing. The only exception is an emergency. Students will make mistakes as they negotiate what it means to be an adult. By making the wrong choice and dealing with the consequences, students learn to make better choices in the future. We ask that families discuss the options and allow room for students to make their own decisions.
Students will practice and ultimately learn to define their boundaries and take responsibility for their actions. The number of options and opportunities seems limitless and students are forced to choose between right and wrong decisions. Tobacco and smoke products are not allowed anywhere on campus (all UC properties are Tobacco and Smoke Free). Alcohol is not allowed in the residence halls for students under 21, and illegal drugs are not allowed under any circumstances. There is a large number of students who choose not to use alcohol and drugs. Families can encourage students to find a social group that makes wise choices around these behaviors. Families can also help their students understand their choices and responsibilities as a resident, as they may sometimes find it difficult to abide by the rules of living in a residence hall community. All policies are located on our website. Students who violate the policies will find themselves in our Student Conduct process. Our goal is to educate students about our expectations and the impact of their actions on their community.
Your student’s safety is our number one priority, and we do our best to protect students from harm. Residence Halls have self-locking doors, peepholes, smoke detectors, front desk attendants, and layers of student and UCSB professional on-call staff who are available for after-hours assistance. In addition, Santa Catalina Residence Hall has a UCPD/CSO satellite office. All students are automatically signed up for UCSB Alert, a system that sends alerts and warnings via phones, emails, and the digital signage located throughout our communities. Our communities are patrolled by the Community Service Organization (CSO) in cooperation with the UCSB Police Department. However, the most effective way to keep students safe is to give them the skills to protect themselves. Because students feel safe and “at home” in our communities, they sometimes make ill-advised decisions such as leaving their room doors unlocked, propping open exterior doors, and walking alone on campus late at night. It is critical that students lock their door and keep their keys with them at all times. UCSB provides a 24-hour security escort service for students going to all parts of campus and to any point in Isla Vista. We highly encourage students to use this service or walk in groups at night. Staying safe on the Internet is also important. Our Information Technology department has created an Online Safety page with information to help your student be proactive and protective about their personal information online.
- General Safety Information
- Campus Police
- UCSB Community Service Organization (CSO)
- Student Health
- Online Safety
Many students transition from a structured lifestyle at home to an unstructured lifestyle at college. They set their own schedules for sleeping and eating for the first time. Developing consistent sleeping and eating patterns is the key to wellness. Parents can remind students of the reasons they are in college and what they aspire to accomplish. Helping students make healthy and productive choices is something a parent is uniquely qualified to do. If your student is in recovery, please consider The Haven, a non-profit residence in nearby Isla Vista. All UC properties have adopted a Tobacco and Smoke free policy since January 2014 to improve the health of everyone on campus. Proper nourishment is equally important to students’ intellectual development. The UCSB Dining Commons offer fresh, healthy, high quality, all-you-care-to-eat dining. Their extensive menus feature salad bars, fresh fruit and vegetables (local and organic whenever possible), and a variety of entrees and cooked-to-order specialties, as well as home-made desserts. NetNutrition is a helpful tool that will keep your student informed on whether their meal is high or low in fat, salt, protein, carbohydrates, cholesterol, and calories.
College often proves more difficult than expected because there is less official structure to the academic rigor. Parents can help by encouraging students to create study schedules and adhere to them. This can go a long way toward supporting your student’s academic success. UCSB Housing & Residential Services is dedicated to the academic mission of the University and to offering the ideal academic environment. Our communities include study spaces equipped with Smart Boards, a Faculty in Residence, computer labs, quiet hours, and we are steps from classes and campus resources. Living-Learning Communities connect students through similar interests, whether academics, recreational, culture, or the arts. Our live-in staff plan numerous educational and social programs geared toward academic and personal success. We also have more than 800 student jobs and student leadership positions within Housing & Residential Services, most of which go to our residents.