Santa Clara University

Admitted Undergraduate Students

Living At Home

No matter where they live, every student is part of the Santa Clara community. Just like students who live on campus, those first-year students who choose to live at home are members of a Residential Learning Community (RLC).

Residential Learning Communities

Each RLC is associated with a residence hall, and each organizes its community around one or two broad themes. Students take some of their classes with other students in their RLC, and regular events—sometimes connected to those classes—bring students together. When people share interests, knowledge, and experiences, it makes everything that happens in an RLC more enjoyable and enriching. We encourage students who live off campus to be just as involved as those who live on, and we know that the RLC experience is a great way for those students to quickly connect with the Santa Clara community.

Each RLC is coordinated by a leadership team that includes a member of Santa Clara's faculty (the "faculty director") and a full-time student-life professional (the "resident director"). Nearly all of the faculty directors and all of the resident directors live in the residence halls. The leadership team also includes live-in resident ministers, some Jesuits-in-residence, and a student staff that includes an assistant resident director and a team of community facilitators. Long before school starts in the fall the leadership team is hard at work, creating a year-long schedule of exciting programs for their RLC.

Supplemental Pre-enrollment Information Form (SPIF)

Two requirements central to the foundations component of Santa Clara's Core Curriculum are the two-quarter Critical Thinking and Writing, and Cultures and Ideas sequences. Your responses on the Supplemental Pre-enrollment Information Form, or SPIF, help us determine the two sequences that best match your interests. You also have the opportunity on the SPIF to tell us if you're interested in one of the special, small communities we've created within some of the RLCs, or in taking a bilingual Critical Thinking and Writing sequence.

Further Information

Various departments come together to make the first-year experience a great success for all first-year students, whether they live on campus or at home. These include the Housing Office, Office of Residence Life, the Residential Learning Community (RLC) program, and Dining Services. 

The Office of Residence Life manages the programmatic aspects of the on campus living experience, including hiring and training community facilitators and coordinating the many events and leadership opportunities offered in the residence halls. Community council positions are available to those at home, as well as those living in the halls.

The RLC Program collaborates with various faculty across campus, coordinates the linked courses offered in each RLC, and facilitates other co-curricular initiatives.

Dining Services provides various meal plan options for students. Additional information on meal plan options and campus dining venues can be found through this link, including options specifically for first-year students who live at home.

Steps to prepare you to join our community

  • Complete your RLC Preference Form, whether you will live on campus or at home
  • Complete your Supplemental Pre-enrollment Information Form (SPIF).
  • Register for orientation where you will meet your faculty director, resident director and other first-year students who will be in your RLC.
  • Join us for Welcome Weeks where you'll learn about the various involvement and leadership opportunities that exist on campus and in your community.
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