Office of Residence Life

Gender Inclusive Housing Application

Rensselaer Student Living and Learning Gender Inclusive Housing Application

Gender Inclusive Housing is a housing option at Rensselaer that enables two or more students to share a multiple occupancy apartment, suite, or bedroom regardless of their gender by mutual agreement. Gender inclusive housing aligns with the Rensselaer's non-discrimination policy and represents a full commitment to the principles of equity and inclusion with respect to sexual orientation, gender, and gender identity. Gender inclusive housing provides additional housing options for students who may identify as transgender, gender non-conforming, non-binary, are questioning their gender identity, or do not subscribe to the gender binary construct. The Rensselaer Student Living and Learning Office is committed to creating a safe and comfortable home for students living in their residence halls, regardless of sex, gender, or gender expression/identity.

Recognizing that single-gender housing may not be appropriate or comfortable for all students, the Student Living and Learning Office offers a limited number of rooms as Gender Inclusive Housing in both the residence halls and apartments on a space available basis. Students signing up for these areas will be permitted to have roommates and suitemates that identify across the gender spectrum. Through this policy gender inclusive refers to all areas of the specified residence halls, including by not limited to bedrooms, common rooms, and all bathroom facilities.

To apply for Gender Inclusive Housing, please complete this form.

Gender Inclusive Housing Guidelines at Rensselaer

Students who prefer to live in a gender inclusive space may apply for housing and select this as their first option. Room assignments for students who select this option as their first housing choice are made with priority status. While the Student Living and Learning Office will make every attempt to place students who apply, the application does not guarantee that all students who apply will be placed in gender inclusive housing due to space limitations.


The following are general guidelines that will be followed:

  • Students must be eligible for on campus housing.
  • Assignments will be made with a focus on placing students who select gender inclusive spaces (based on space and availability).
  • If a vacancy exists in a gender inclusive room, the following steps will be taken to fill the empty bed:
    • The Student Living and Learning Office will allow the remaining residents to identify a new roommate to fill the vacancy and will define the time allocated to find a new roommate (typically within 72 hours). This window of time will vary depending on time of year and the status of the housing waitlist.
    • If the current residents are unable to find a student to fill the space, the Student Living and Learning Office reserves the right to assign the open bed to another eligible student.

Frequently Asked Questions:

1. What is the timeline for the gender inclusive housing application for the 2018-2019 academic year?

  • The application is live on Monday, January 29, 2018 at 9 AM-Friday, February 2, 2018 at 4:00 PM.
  • One-on-one or group meetings with applicants will be held Monday, February 5, 2018-Friday, February 9, 2018 with an Assistant Dean(s) that oversee Gender Inclusive Housing. The Assistant Dean(s) managing the Gender Inclusive Housing process will contact applicants to schedule a meeting via their Rensselaer e-mail after the application is submitted.
  • Friday, February 16, 2018: Gender Inclusive Housing placements will be sent to approved applicants via their Rensselaer e-mail by 5 PM.

2. What is the difference between co-ed and gender inclusive housing?

The term co-ed reflects the assumption that there are two genders: male and female. It leaves little room for progressive theories on gender and no room for those who do not identify as their legal sex or those who are transgender. Gender inclusive housing is based on the notion that there are more than two genders and seeks to recognize the needs of students whose gender identity does not align with the construct of a gender binary. Providing gender inclusive housing, as opposed to co-ed housing, allows for more inclusiveness and room for diverse identities.

With the above, this option is strongly discouraged for students who wish to live together with a significant other. The potential consequences in the event that the relationship ends can be significant and disruptive (i.e. relationship issues, determining who moves, roommate complications, etc.).

3. Where will the gender inclusive residential spaces be across campus?

Gender inclusive housing will be offered in suites, apartments, and corridor style residence halls across campus. Students will be asked their preference during their meeting/conversation with the Assistant Dean(s) and the Student Living and Learning Office will try to accommodate the student’s preference. However, the Student Living and Learning Office will assign students and/or groups to gender inclusive spaces in halls appropriate to the student’s cluster (first year, sophomore, junior, senior, etc.).

4. What if someone who requested to take part in gender inclusive housing decides they no longer want to live in a gender inclusive space?

Students may request room changes by following the normal room change procedures and by scheduling a time to meet with the Assistant Dean of Student Living and Learning that oversees the area that they live in.

5. What happens if a vacancy occurs in a gender inclusive housing space?

If a vacancy exists in a gender inclusive room, the following steps will be taken to fill the empty bed. The Student Living and Learning Office will allow the remaining residents to identify a new roommate to fill the vacancy and will define the time allocated to find a new roommate (typically within 72 hours). This window of time will vary depending on time of year and the status of the housing waitlist. If the current residents are unable to find a student to fill the space, the Student Living and Learning Office reserves the right to assign the open bed to another eligible student.

6. What if a student does not want to live in gender inclusive housing?

Students must apply for gender inclusive housing to in order to be considered for gender inclusive housing; students who do not want to live in gender inclusive housing will go through the housing lottery process as they have not indicated an interest.

7. Is gender inclusive housing specifically for transgender students?

This option is available to all upper class students whose roommate selection doesn’t fit the standard male/female binary. While not specific to transgender students, this option does allow Rensselaer to provide better support for our trans population.

8. How do I sign up for Gender Inclusive Housing?

To request a gender inclusive space, students complete the application below. Students will then meet with the Assistant Dean(s) that oversee the gender inclusive housing placement process. This is not to question any student’s reasoning – the meeting is to clearly affirm that all residents are willingly choosing to share a room (by mutual agreement). During this meeting the student(s) will also indicate a preference for an on campus space. The Student Living and Learning Office will try to meet the student’s requests; however, based on a limited number of gender inclusive spaces the Student Living and Learning Office is not always able to honor these requests.

Last modified: Apr 24, 2018