Residence Life

Introduction

At JTS, the Office of Residence Life (ORL) strives to create an atmosphere in the residence halls that is conducive to Jewish living and that complements the JTS academic experience. Our staff encourages the practice of a full range of Jewish values within the context of the Conservative Movement, providing opportunities for social bonding, community building, self-exploration, personal growth, and maturation. Our cornerstones are the principles of respect, understanding, leadership, and social responsibility. Our residents come from diverse religious, ethnic, and social backgrounds, and our aim is to provide housing facilities that will make our students proud and satisfied with their overall JTS experience.

Our Mission

It is the mission of the ORL to create Jewish residential communities that provide all of our residents with quality housing and a supportive framework for understanding the plurality of modern Judaism. We emphasize the importance of students' choices about modes of Jewish living as they develop their unique, individual Jewish identities. Through the provision of cocurricular educational opportunities at our residence halls, we seek to actualize student potential—academically, spiritually, socially, and personally.

Community Standards

Conservative Judaism's ideals and practices are an integral part of the lifestyle at JTS. Standards of personal conduct and interpersonal relations are a significant part of the Conservative tradition. It is the aim of JTS to assist students in making choices about their observance within the guidelines of the Conservative Movement, and to protect their rights to so choose, while also upholding the ideals and moral standards of the JTS community.

Residents are expected to follow these standards while simultaneously respecting individual differences within the spectrum of the Conservative Movement. Failure to uphold these standards is considered grounds for the cancellation of housing privileges, and may become grounds to bar a student and his/her guests from JTS housing altogether.

Our Staff

The director of Residence Life oversees and administers all housing and residential life operations at JTS, which includes three coeducational residence halls and limited apartment leasing for graduate students and their immediate families. Live-in resident directors (RDs), who are graduate-level students, occupy an apartment within each residence hall, and manage their building's policy enforcement, crisis management, counseling referrals, and other residential concerns. RDs supervise undergraduate student leaders who serve as resident advisors (RAs). RAs assist RDs by providing peer counseling and facilitating social and educational programs. These programs help to foster a sense of community and friendship within each residence hall. Jewish Life directors, who are live-in Office of Student Life associates, plan religious programs for each residential hall's community and also provide support for students exploring their Jewish identities and observance.

An Overview

Residence halls are located within three city blocks of JTS's main campus, and are accessible to the many institutions and amenities in Morningside Heights and the Upper West Side. These convenient Manhattan locations enable students to take full advantage of the cultural wealth of New York City. Bus and subway connections are within short walking distances from every residence hall and student-housing apartment building.

Housing is guaranteed to all JTS undergraduate students. Graduate student housing is also available, but not guaranteed. Housing is assigned to students through a lottery system after completion of a housing application.

Criteria for housing placement are determined by the director. Living together with peers is considered a significant part of the educational and social student-development experience. Many residence-hall students are assigned one or more roommates or have single rooms in shared suites or apartments.

All rooms are furnished with a bed, dresser, wardrobe or closet, desk, chair, and bookcase for each resident. Some rooms have additional amenities.

Common areas in suites and apartments within the residence halls are also furnished with a variety of lounge furniture and kitchen appliances. Married/family non-residence-hall apartments for graduate students are not furnished.

Each of the residence halls contains communal kitchens, study rooms, social lounges, laundry facilities, local and long-distance phone service, voice mail, cable television, and Internet access.

Common-area kitchens in the residence halls enable residents to prepare their own meals. All kitchens must be kept kosher by the students living in their respective areas. Many students purchase miniature cubic refrigerators and keep all necessary utensils and dishes in their own rooms. Others choose to use the large common refrigerators and cabinet spaces in their shared kitchens.

The JTS Dining Hall, a kosher establishment at the 3080 Broadway campus, is located on first-floor Brush. It is open for breakfast and lunch Monday through Thursday.

Residence Halls

Louis S. Brush Residence Hall
Brush Residence Hall is located within the JTS campus. Two-room suites with a semiprivate bath are shared by students of the same sex. Suite rooms are assigned as single occupancy. Since students may not cook food in their rooms, Brush has separate communal kitchens for preparing meat and dairy meals.

Brush Hall includes a modern student lounge with a color television and Shabbat meal area. Laundry machines and a mail distribution area are also located within the residence hall. An additional charge for air-conditioner usage is applied to residents who choose to have an air conditioner installed in their room.

Brush is adjacent to The Library, classrooms, and synagogue buildings.

Horace W. Goldsmith Residence Hall
Goldsmith Hall, opened in 1978, is a renovated apartment building located one block from JTS at the corner of Broadway and 121st Street. The Goldsmith community consists of 40 units where residents share three-, four-, or five-bedroom apartments with other students of the same sex. These apartments are furnished, and have a full kitchen and common area. All apartments have been completely renovated in the last few years. The Moadon, a large common area on the main floor, serves as the center of residence-hall activity. It has an attractive atrium, a small informal library, and a color television.

Laundry machines and a mail-distribution area are also located within the residence hall. An additional charge for air-conditioner usage is applied to residents who choose to have an air conditioner installed in their room.

Mathilde Schechter Residence Hall (MSRH)
Mathilde Schechter Residence Hall is located at 415 West 120th Street, three blocks from the main campus and in close proximity to Columbia University and Barnard College. Opened in September 1976, this building provides modern facilities for our students, including central air conditioning. Suites housing three to six students each in single-, double-, and triple-occupancy rooms have shared, full-size, eat-in kitchens with modern appliances. Floors are typically single sex, or single sex by wing. This residence hall has a number of lounges, study rooms, a recreation area, a music room that includes a baby grand piano, and a small informal reference library. Laundry machines and a mail-distribution area are also located within the residence hall. Many activities for residents and the extended community also take place in the large assembly room on the first floor.

Apartments

601 West 110th Street (College Residence)
Single or married matriculated graduate-level students without children or pets are encouraged to apply for housing in this postwar modern housing facility located on West 110th Street just off Broadway. JTS leases a limited number of large studio and one-bedroom apartments in this building, which features 24-hour security staff, a concierge, a live-in building manager, ample laundry facilities, and two elevators. Most of the apartments are carpeted, and a few have hardwood flooring. Agreement lengths are 12 months with all utilities included. An additional charge for air-conditioner usage is applied per unit to residents who choose to install an air conditioner in their apartment. College Residence is located just around the corner from the 110th Street number 1 subway line. These apartments are popular with our students, and fill quickly.

Residence Life Committees

The Residence Life Committees (RLC), chaired by the director of Residence Life, began in the fall 2000 semester as a way for residents to have direct input on issues and concerns that specifically affect their quality of life in our residence halls and apartment buildings. The undergraduate RLC is composed of students from each class year, including Barnard College students, who are appointed by the List College Student Council. The Graduate RLC is self-selected.

Eligibility

To be eligible for JTS housing, students must:

  • Be accepted and matriculated at JTS
  • Have current student accounts with no holds for late tuition or other payments
  • Have proof of ability to cover all charges
  • Be enrolled in JTS's student health insurance or have proof of similar health insurance coverage, as indicated by completing a health insurance waiver with the Office of Human Resources
  • Be registered as full-time students in one of the following ways:
    1. Enrolled in the List College Joint Program with Columbia University or Double Degree Program with Barnard College
    2. Enrolled as visiting undergraduates carrying a minimum of 9 credits per semester
    3. Enrolled in The Graduate School or The Davidson School, carrying a minimum of 10 credits per semester
    4. Be in the process of completing comprehensive exam preparation, thesis, or dissertation work for The Graduate School or The Davidson School (may require supporting documentation)
    5. Enrolled in H. L. Miller Cantorial School and College of Jewish Music or The Rabbinical School, carrying a minimum of 12 credits per semester
    6. Be in the process of completing comprehensive exam preparation, thesis, or dissertation work in H. L. Miller Cantorial School or The Rabbinical School (may require supporting documentation)

Regardless of eligibility, housing is guaranteed to List College students only. Graduate students who meet eligibility requirements may not receive housing assignments. Graduate students currently in housing are prioritized over current graduate students not living in JTS housing. Semesters spent in housing indicated on applications are only used to assess eligibility, and do not affect seniority.

Students completing their JTS educations who are not returning for full-time graduate work may not reapply for JTS housing. Students who are completing one program, but are returning for another JTS program, may apply for JTS housing and should submit a housing application. Such students will be considered new students within their programs.

Students in simultaneous programs are eligible for housing up to the maximum housing eligibility for their longest academic program.

Special Needs and Accommodations

Students with disabilities may apply for special-needs housing opportunities that may be granted provided JTS has the ability to fulfill such requests. Students must request specific special-needs accommodations each year on their housing application forms.

Housing Agreement Lengths

Residence-hall occupancy agreements for full-time JTS residents are for the fall and spring semesters. During this period, residential students are allowed to remain in housing during times that JTS is on break. Summer housing is a separate process, and charges are billed separately.

Summer Housing

Current JTS students in any program are given priority for summer housing, with higher priority granted to those registered for at least 3 JTS credits per summer session. Non-JTS students may apply for housing if they are registered in JTS's Summer School, and will be housed depending upon space availability.

Extension Requests

Housing extensions beyond the academic year are calculated based on daily rates, and must be approved by the director.

Extensions are granted to students taking non-JTS classes, or who have work or exam schedules that extend beyond the term limit of their housing agreements. There is a daily charge per building and room type for extension requests.

Deposits

Currently JTS does not require a separate deposit from residence-hall housing applicants. Graduate students who sign agreements for non-residence-hall apartments are required to pay a full month's rent as a security deposit, which is due by the starting date of their agreement.

Refunds

Students who break their housing agreements prior to the start of the late registration period for a given semester or session must pay 20 percent of their current semester or session housing costs. However, students with off-campus housing may not break their agreements after they have been signed.

Students who break their housing agreements prior to the last day of the late registration period for a given semester or session must pay 50 percent of their current semester or session costs.

Students who break their housing agreements after the last day of the late registration period for a given semester or session must pay their current semester or session charges in full.

Exceptions may be made in the case of academic dismissals, medical leaves, disciplinary sanctions, or in other individual cases. Exceptions will be reviewed and approved by the director of Residence Life. Students must provide supporting documentation.

Contacting Us

Housing process dates, policy revisions, and charges are updated and published by the Office of Residence Life periodically. To contact the Office of Residence Life, please email reslife@jtsa.edu or call (212) 678-8035.