Carnegie Mellon University

Winter Break

The information on this page pertains to Winter Break 2021-2022.

If you are interested in staying on campus during any portion of Winter Break, you must register or apply and receive approval from Housing Services. Residents who arrive before January 14 at 12 p.m. or reside in an open building during Winter Break without Housing approval will be assessed a fee of $100 USD per night through their student account.

Residents leaving for Winter Break are asked to do so within 24 hours after their last exam.

Residents cannot regain access to their space until January 14 at 12 p.m. If there is an extenuating circumstance requiring you to be on campus prior to this date and time, you must contact Housing Services at 412-268-2139 to have your request reviewed. Students that arrive before January 14 at 12 p.m., without Housing approval, will be assessed a fee of $100 USD per night through their student account.

Things to Know About Leaving for Winter Break

  • Housing Services will conduct health and safety inspections for all living spaces, process maintenance requests, and complete projects over the winter break. As a result, residents can anticipate that maintenance personnel may enter their room. If any issues are found during inspections, a notice will be left in the residence indicating the item(s) to be addressed. If you have any questions, please contact your Facility Coordinator.
  • The last person to leave for Winter Break should review the Leaving for Winter Break Checklist (pdf) to prepare your room for Winter Break.
  • When you return for the Spring 2021 semester, your ID will be pre-programmed to start working at your room door as of 12 p.m. on January 14. 

Residents living in the following open buildings can request to stay the entire Winter Break:

Residents who are currently assigned to an open building may reside in their own room during Winter Break, but are required to register online with Housing Services before December 15 at 12 p.m. Registration is required for any portion of Winter Break, including arrival prior to January 14.

Residents residing in an opened building for any portion of Winter Break without registering and receiving Housing approval will be charged a fee of $100 USD per night through their student account.

Don't Live in an Open Building?

Housing Services is not responsible for securing a space for a resident wanting to stay in campus housing over the Winter Break, and cannot assist in finding arrangements for residents in closed buildings. Residents not living in an open building, but wishing to stay in university housing for any period of Winter Break, must follow these steps:

  1. Determine if you have friends or acquaintances that live in the open buildings and ask permission to stay in their room over the break.
  2. When a suitable arrangement is secured, apply online from mid-November through December 14, 2021. Before your request is approved, all roommates involved are required to confirm their approval of the Winter Break arrangement. If Housing Services cannot secure this confirmation, you will be notified that your request is denied. 
  3. Denied requests will result in the student needing to find other accommodations for Winter Break. You may contact Housing Services if you have questions regarding this process at  

The process to obtain keys for Winter Break access will be included in resident approval email messages.

If you must move into another assignment in an opened building for Winter break, please visit Leaving for Winter Break for further instructions on how to appropriately leave your own fall semester space.

University Affiliated Approved Early Arrivals
Residents involved with university organizations that are requiring early arrival for group purposes should contact the program coordinator of your group for details on your approved early arrival in January.

Students leaving the University at the end of the fall semester must notify Housing Services of their departure and request to be released from the Spring 2021 portion of their housing contract.

Students will be granted a cancellation exception (and released from the spring portion of their agreement), only for the following reasons:

  • Graduation
  • Spring semester study abroad
  • Withdrawing/Transferring
  • Leave of Absence
  • Co-op
  • Exchange student returning home
If you need to request a spring semester housing cancellation, submit the Spring Cancellation Request Form (pdf) to Housing Services either via email, fax, or in person at the Residence on Fifth.  If you already know you are not returning for spring, please submit this form now so that we can start to process your request.

Spring cancellation requests can be made starting Monday, November 15, through 12 p.m. on Tuesday, December 14, 2021. All fall semester residents who will not be on campus for the spring semester — including exchange students only here for the fall semester — are required to complete the cancellation paperwork.

Any residents thinking about moving into Greek housing should first consult their organization’s president or house manager and email the room assignments staff for cancellation parameters.

Students not returning for the spring semester must vacate their room by December 15 at 12 p.m. If you have an extenuating circumstance and live in an opened building for Winter Break, please email Housing Services. However, please know that there will be a $100 per night fee charged for any extension requests made by residents not returning for spring. 

Please visit Leaving for Winter Break for further instructions on how to appropriately leave your own space.

Any resident whose roommate is leaving university housing (due to graduation, study abroad/co-op, leave of absence or withdrawal) may pull-in a roommate of their choice provided that all of the below criteria are met: 

  1. The resident leaving the room is approved to be released from his/his spring contract
  2. The selected new roommate (the pull-in) currently lives in campus housing
  3. And, the roommate being pulled in moves all belongings into their new assignment prior to 12 p.m. on December 15, 2021.

Residents interested in this option should email the room assignments staff as soon as possible with their name, room, the name of the roommate leaving, their reason for leaving, and the name and assignment of the person they wish to pull in.

Requests received after, or moves that cannot be completed before 12 p.m. on December 15, 2021, will not be granted.

Residents remaining in rooms with vacancies should expect that a new resident will be assigned over the break and move in on January 14, 2021. Residents are required to keep the vacant set of furniture completely free of personal belongings. Residents whose belongings are spread out throughout the room, which prohibit Housing Services from being able to assign a new roommate to the vacancy, will be held financially responsible for the full cost of the vacancy. The remaining resident(s) should also anticipate an inspection for damages to be completed over the break period.

If a resident with a vacancy in their room knows of someone coming back to housing for the Spring 2021 semester and would like to request them as a roommate, please email with the name and Andrew ID of the person that you think is returning. These requests are not guaranteed but we will evaluate each request individually and work with the students involved. 

Please visit Leaving for Winter Break for further instructions on how to appropriately leave your own space for the break periods.