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Offices & Services > Office of Student Development > Campus Life Office

Housing Lottery FAQ

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What if I can't be there?

We know your schedule is busy! So, if you can't make it for housing lottery, it's OK! However, you must use a Proxy Form (PDF). This form must be presented by the person who is selecting a room for you, i.e., your roommate or an apartment-mate.

Failure by you or a proxy to sign up for a room at your scheduled time will result in your name being placed at the end of the lottery. If you will be using a proxy, be sure to have back-up rooms in mind so the person going in your place has options if your first choice is taken. The decision your proxy makes for you is binding.

I'm leaving on an off-campus program or have a friend who is already gone. What do I do?

Sign a Proxy Form (PDF) and drop it off at the Campus Life Office before you leave. If you are supposed to sign up for someone who is gone now and you don't know if they proxied yet, stop in and we'll make arrangements. Proxy forms are also available in the Campus Life Office. The form may be submitted via email.  

Do I have to find a roommate?

If you want to apply for an Apartment or Block Housing, you do need a roommate.  However, you do not have to have a roommate to sign up for a room through general lottery. Any other student, however, may sign up for the remaining spot in the room. All spaces are filled at the end of lottery or shortly after, so you will receive a roommate.   

Can I go off board?

If you would like to go off board, you must complete an application from the Campus Life Office. In general, off-board requests are not granted. However, in extreme cases, the Campus Life Office will consider exemptions on an individual basis. Usually, the only requests for off-board permission that are granted are for those with well-documented medical and religious dietary needs that cannot be resolved after a trial period with Dining Services. Off-board permission may affect your financial aid package, and off-board applications take at least a few weeks to process.

Can I live with someone who's not in my lottery category?

Yes! You simply attend the General Lottery and sign up with the person with the best lottery number if you would like to room together. Any students can sign up together for one of the "best average" lottery spaces, like block housing or the apartments.

Does everyone get a lottery number?

Not everyone will get a number. Only students who we expect to be on campus and live in the residence halls during this academic year will receive numbers. Examples of students who will not receive numbers are:

    • Students on full-year off-campus programs for 2016-17
    • Resident Advisors
    • Students who may graduate by the end of Spring 2016
    • Students who are currently on a leave of absence
    • Students who have indicated intent to transfer or take leave next year
    • Students granted off campus housing through the Off-Campus lottery
    • Students who have already been housed in Greek, Theme, or Cultural Houses.

If you need a lottery number, you must check during the category generation stage to make sure that you have been assigned a category. You will have a couple of days to notify us that you will need a number. For more information, check out the lottery number explanation page.

Participating in an Off Campus Program next year? Check this out!

Student Senate has passed legislation regarding off campus programs and housing. While students planning to study off campus are still allowed to go through lottery, all beds must be filled at all times. This has been enacted in order to reduce or eliminate the use of temporary housing.

You may live with a roommate who understands that you will be going away and will need to find a different roommate for the terms you will be gone, or you may link up with another student who will be on campus the terms you are away to create a two-term or full-year reservation.

If you use this rule, you must account for any term in which both students are on campus. There cannot be any terms where one of the students has no housing assignment.

Example: Kerry will be off campus Winter and Spring, and Amanda will be off campus in the Fall. They sign up as one person on their block housing application, and the better of their lottery numbers is used.

If you're interested in doing this and do not know a student who will be gone the correct terms, contact the Campus Life Office at and we'll start a list of interested students. Contact us if you have any questions.

I'm thinking about transferring, should I go through lottery?

You should go through lottery if you conceivably think you will be on campus next year. You should communicate with your roommate about your plans, however. Any student who is without a roommate at any point during the summer will be assigned a new roommate (either a current Knox student or a transfer student). Two students who are living alone in a double somewhere in the same building may be consolidated into the same room at the end of lottery or over the summer.

What if there is an open space in my room, apartment, or block?

All spaces muct be filled to submit an application.  But if for some reason, there is a space  become open in your room, apartment, or block (for example, if someone does not return next year), this space will likely be filled by the Campus Life Office. This also may apply to spaces left open temporarily because a student is studying off-campus, if the space is needed. We encourage all students who think they will live on campus next year to go through housing lottery, but also to communicate with roommates and suite mates about their likelihood of returning or studying off-campus. Students who go through housing lottery with no intention of living on campus next year might think they're helping a roommate get a large room as a single, but what they're really doing is opening up their roommate or apartment-mates to living with a student not of their choosing. Please contact the Campus Life Office if you have any questions or need help in making a housing lottery decision.

For those of you who just can't get enough of Knox...

If you have been granted post baccalaureate study, you will not be eligible for on-campus housing.

I want an apartment! What's my best strategy?

First, don't be picky. If you have a group of two or three people, consider combining with another group and tendering an application for each apartment size.  Being a part of multiple apartment lotteries is very important; people lose out on a chance for an apartment every year because they hang all their chances on only one of the lotteries.

I want to live with my friends! What's my best strategy?

Be a part of every lottery that you can. Your best bet is in the Block Housing lotteries. This strategy works every year for students who want to live together in large groups.  If all else fails, attend General Lottery together, pick a floor in a hall, and sign up as your numbers are called.

Knox College

Printed on Saturday, July 30, 2016

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