First-Year Residential Experience (FYRE) & Residency Requirement

Benefits of Living on Campus

First-time, full-time undergraduate students admitted to the Las Cruces campus will be required to live in a university-operated residence hall for the first academic year, or two semesters. Research has shown when students live on campus, they gain many more benefits and rewards than those living off campus. Students who live on campus are more likely to:

  • Move-In DayConnect with campus services
  • Participate in extracurricular activities and events
  • Perform better academically and typically receive a higher first-semester GPA
  • Continue to their second year in college and graduate in four years
  • Create bonds with faculty and other students that extend past graduation
  • Explore a wider range of ideas by engaging with diverse people and cultures
  • Develop stronger interpersonal and communication skills

Program Outcomes

RHA Battle of the Halls

NMSU Housing and Residential Life supports student growth and success by providing an enhanced residential living experience for students. We dedicate substantial resources to provide low student-to-staff ratios, personal outreach by Resident Assistants, excellent educational and social programming facilitated by Resident Activities Planners, guidance and support from live-in professionals, opportunities to connect with faculty mentors, and leadership opportunities like Hall Council.

Additionally, we have designed a set of learning outcomes to boost student development in college, along with a programming curriculum that provides frequent opportunities for residents to engage with the five main outcomes of our curriculum:

  • Personal Safety & Wellness: Students will learn how to operate safely in the world around them including drug and alcohol safety, mental and physical wellness, healthy relationships, and safe social networking
  • Academic Excellence: Students will learn how to navigate the NMSU campus and its resources, develop academic success strategies, and become familiar with the many resources available on campus
  • World Impact: Students will explore their own identities, develop knowledge of cultures and identities different from their own, learn how they can impact sustainability and reduce their environmental impact, and engage in respectful discourse surrounding current events
  • Aggie Pride: Students will feel a sense of belonging at NMSU, develop positive relationships, and participate in Aggie traditions
  • Life skills: Students will learn to live responsibly and respectfully in a diverse community environment, develop knowledge of adult life skills, critically evaluate news sources, and become familiar with aspects of financial fitness

We encourage students to attend events and activities from all of the learning outcome categories in order to cultivate a well-rounded college experience.

Each year, we conduct a survey of campus residents to gauge their learning and satisfaction in relation to their residential experience. We use the data to drive decisions and improve the residential experience year after year.


Residency Exemptions  

Chill with RHa

In rare circumstances, a student may need to live off campus. Eligible students may request one of the following exemptions to the residency requirement:

If a student has already completed the housing application, the housing application takes priority over the housing exemption request.

  • Student living with immediate family (limited to parent(s), legal guardian, grandparent(s) or aunt/uncle)
  • Student residing with spouse/domestic partner or dependent child(ren)
  • Student 21 years or older
  • Student enrolled full time in distance education
  • Active military or veteran status
  • Medical accommodation
  • Other extenuating circumstances (including financial hardship)