Residence Life

Making sure that you feel comfortable with your living situation is an important component of your transition to Carleton. This section will help you to understand what life in Residence will be like, or, if you live off-campus, we’ll show you how you can stay connected and involved with the Carleton community.

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Overnight Orientation

If you plan on living in Residence, consider attending our Residence Overnight Orientation, which will be held on the evening of July 20 until the morning of July 21! This program is a community learning experience that allows incoming students to participate in social activities with peers and see what living in Residence is like.

Registration for this program is now open.

Residence Agreement

Living in Residence is considered a privilege and with that privilege comes certain responsibilities. The Residence Agreement is a document that outlines these responsibilities and is a binding agreement between Residence students and Carleton University. By signing this contract, you let us know that you accept the conditions outlined in the Agreement and Residence Standards.

Getting Involved

Living in residence is a great way to learn and gain experience outside of the classroom. One of the ways to have these experiences is to get involved with the community around you. In residence there are several ways you can do this which include participating in the Mental Health Champions, Team Green, Students for Wishes, visiting the Raven’s Roost, and participating in events, programs, and groups in and around residence.

Accommodations in Residence

If you will be requiring Special Accommodations in residence based on a physical or non-physical disability, medical condition or special dietary need that may affect your room assignment or ability to use the meal plan, please visit the Residence website for full details.

Safety in Residence

For emergency situations on campus, please call Campus Safety. You can dial extension 4444 from your residence phone or 613-520-4444 from your cell phone. As well, this number can be dialed free of charge from any payphone on campus.

What to Bring

  • Linens (sheets and towels) and don’t forget a pillow
  • Alarm clock, radio or stereo and headphones
  • Flashlight
  • Ethernet cord
  • Hangers/iron
  • Kettle (must have automatic shut-off)
  • Coffee maker
  • Power bar with a surge protector
  • School supplies
  • Winter clothes

You will probably want to decorate your room. Please bring along posters and pictures of family and friends to make your room feel more like home.

What Not to Bring

  • Pets of any kind (with the exception of authorized service animals)
  • Fridges
  • Bedroom furniture (there isn’t anywhere to store more than what is already provided)
  • Beer bottles (beer products in cans only, if you are over 19 yrs)
  • Candles (they are a fire hazard and will set off the smoke detectors and heat sensors)
  • Subwoofers
  • Any weaponry (knives, firearms, hunting weapons, ornamental weapons etc)
  • Space heaters
  • Personal cooking appliances (with the exception of students moving into Frontenac, Prescott and Leeds Houses)

You will be informed of the room type you are assigned (double or single room & traditional or suite residence) in the Residence Information email you will receive in your Carleton email account at the end of July. Your actual room number is not disclosed prior to check-in. A further email will be sent mid-August to inform you of your assigned building and mailbox number. Once you receive this information email, please take the time to learn about your assigned building. These building profiles will give you a clear view of what to expect your room to look like and what is provided.

The traditional move-in period for residents is from 9 a.m. on Saturday, September 1, through to midnight of Sunday, September 2. The peak periods are Saturday and Sunday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Your move-in day is assigned to you and communicated in your residence information email sent to you in late July. In order to make move-in as smooth as possible, we ask that you adhere to your assigned date.


If you’re going to be living on Residence while you’re at Carleton, you’re going to be eating at The Caf. Students living in traditional style residence will be enrolled in the All Access Meal Plan (unlimited entry into the Residence Dining Hall and $100 Dining Dollars). Residents living in suite style will have the additional option of the Reduced Meal Plan (seven meals per week and $450 Dining Dollars). Dining Dollars can be used at any University-operated dining establishment on campus.


Are you going to be living off-campus? Not to worry, Dining Services has meal plans geared specifically towards off-campus students and their lifestyles. Visit their website for more info!

There are plenty of other locations around campus to eat if you don’t have time to go to the Fresh Food Company between classes. Check out the Dining Services’ website for a list of all their locations around campus.

Finding Off-Campus Housing

Finding a place to live can be a challenging task. Your first task should be to figure out what neighborhood you want to live in. Carleton has created a breakdown of the Ottawa region with information about services located in each area.

The Housing and Residence Life Services office has partnered with – the Off-Campus Housing website that specializes in providing students with the highest quality rental property listing service possible.

Be Informed Before you Start your Search

Carleton has created a good listing of important considerations you will want to think about before signing a lease.

Getting Involved on Campus while Living Off-Campus

Even though you are living off-campus, there are still many ways for you to get involved. In fact, lots of students who live off-campus say that getting involved on campus allows you to feel at home both on campus and in your house off campus. For ways to get involved and experience campus life, check out our Campus Life section!


If you are a parent or guardian of a future Raven check out CU Parents to learn more about supporting your student as they transition to life at Carleton.

Top 4 Residence Tips