Undergraduate Student Handbook

Welcome to Cairn University!

Cairn faculty, staff and administration are pleased to have you embark upon one of the most memorable experiences of your life. As a biblical university we have intentionally and strategically designed your educational experience to provide you with the best of academic, faith, and community experiences. Our hope is that you will embrace an education that shapes and strengthens your faith, prepares you for vocation and service, and unites you into a lifelong process of learning within community. Whether you are a commuter or resident, part time or full time you will want to know how to find your path on this journey and what to expect along the way. This handbook has been written so that you might have a resource for the expectations and logistical details of the Cairn experience.

We understand that you will not be committing the contents of this handbook to memory, yet we hope that you will reference it as needed. An even more appropriate resource is the staff in the Office of Student Life. This group of Student Life professionals is dedicated to providing you with the direction, guidance, and resources to complete your degree and make your time with us dynamic. We urge you to read through the policies, protocols and expectations found within this handbook and embrace the opportunity to walk a different path at Cairn University. Make the most of your Cairn experience by being a part of the life of the campus and greater regional community. You have selected to come to an institution which will invest into you if you allow that opportunity. Welcome to Cairn.


Scott Cawood
Sr. Vice President of Student Affairs and Administration


Cairn University Mission Statement

“Cairn University exists to educate students to serve Christ in the church, society, and the world as biblically minded, well-educated, and professionally competent men and women of character.”


Student Life Philosophy and Core Values

The philosophical role of Student Life in fulfilling the university’s mission is to support and facilitate the student’s growth and development through co-curricular experiences which enhance the corporate and individual student educational experience; assist in the holistic development of each student, and promote engagement inside and outside the university.

  • Enhance and support the educational experience, student success and life planning through varied student experiences and programs with an eye on retention and completion.
  • Assist in the total development of each student; which includes focusing on their intellectual, emotional, spiritual, social, and moral growth as men and women of character (Col. 1:28).
  • Promote a desire for students to serve Christ in the Cairn community, the local church, local communities, and throughout the world (1 Pet. 4:10-11; Col. 3:23-24).

Student Life is the purposeful efforts of university personnel to create a community of learners that embodies progress towards spiritual maturation, the practice of intellectual development, and the implementation of professionally competent service. The building of this community is not incidental, but a planned incremental outcome that demonstrates core values of Student Life. These core values are:

  • Structured Orientation to the University and the Community:
    Successful orientation to the university is the best retention tool and a significant gateway to quality student learning. Through orientation events, Student Life provides every student with an understanding of the expectations of university and community living. We strive to create a first year experience that will nurture students in planned incremental stages throughout the first collegiate year as a path towards retention and graduation.
  • Intentional Spiritual Formation in All Students:
    The entire educational experience at Cairn is designed to be a cohesive program that fosters spiritual formation. Classes, chapels and student ministries create a foundation for personal growth. Student Life strives to provide experiences and activities where students can build on that foundation both in our local community and in society at large.
  • Training Students to Embrace Community:
    Through the Community Life Covenant and the Student Handbook, the university establishes expectations for community living. When standards are violated or not recognized by a student, the Student Life staff will approach the student with dignity and love. Students will be mentored, challenged, given accountability, lifted up in prayer, and sanctioned when necessary.
  • Framework of Intellectual Development and Support:
    Cairn is an educational institution where teaching and learning are core components of the overall degree programs. Student Life has a responsibility to support the development of scholarly habits, a studious environment, integrity of learning, and academic support services that give all students the tools to learn.
  • Development of Service and Leadership:
    The Office of Student Life desires to develop student leaders; equipping individuals to lead and serve one another and the greater community.  We are committed to the identification, selection and training of student leaders. Student leaders will practice and develop skills through organized training, orientation and on the job input.
  • Competent and Responsible Student Care:
    The Office of Student Life recognizes that, for most students, this is the first occasion for life apart from family care. Cairn provides care through a safe campus, quality food choices, well maintained facilities, and health and counseling services. Care has many facets and must be designed with the entire student body in mind, yet with a focus on specialized needs of groups of distinct learners.
  • Dynamic and Robust University Life through Programs:
    Community Life at Cairn is a dynamic part of the university experience. Intentional programming will be done within each division and component of Student Life so that students can experience the joy of living together, socializing with one another and connecting to the greater community.
  • The University Experience Ought to be Fun:
    The professional development of students dictates the development of good work habits and time spent in study. At the same time, Cairn is committed to comprehensive student development which recognizes the unique bond that the university experience will bring about. Students are provided with events and activities that foster fun, friendship, fellowship, and community.


The Office of Student Life provides every student with an understanding of the expectations of university and community living.

Undergraduate students begin their university experience with new student orientation and continue with the course “Life Management.” Each academic year brings successive initiatives that prepare and acclimate the student for success at Cairn.

Your Cairn experience will begin with several events designed to quickly make you familiar with the university and make you part of our community. You will find that the university student life experience will be more enjoyable as you embrace the culture of the community. Orientation begins on your first day and will continue throughout the years that you are a student. As each year commences, there are new expectations, therefore the university plans on orientation being a commitment during the entire time frame of enrollment.

Student Orientation and Registration (SOAR)

Before undergraduate students begin their first semester of classes, the university hosts a day long orientation event that allows students to begin making the transition from applicants to incoming students. SOAR (Student Orientation and Registration). Days are scheduled in the spring and early summer. Participants in a SOAR day are able to attend seminars and presentations that connect the students and parents to the university. Students will meet with representatives of curricular programs and be introduced to the advising process as they review their academic schedule for their first semester of classes.

Student Welcome and Orientation

At the onset of each semester, Cairn hosts a student orientation event for incoming freshmen and transfer undergraduate students. While many of the welcome events are tailored to the entire group, each distinct subgroup of the community will find sessions built in to directly meet their specific needs. The goal of our welcome events is to connect students to one another, the university community at large, as well as the greater Philadelphia area.


Each year, the university holds a Homecoming weekend that features many events designed to continue building community and celebrating the legacy of alumni who have attended the university. This annual celebration is full of activities for alumni and students, bringing new events, chapel speakers, and ongoing traditions.

Life Management

The success of Cairn students is not measured solely by the receiving of a diploma, but by their ability to integrate living and learning within a biblical framework. To help equip students at the beginning of their enrollment, a mandatory course within the core curriculum has been designed to encourage the student to develop a biblical and philosophical rationale for the integration of the academic, spiritual, and social aspects of the university. This course allows undergraduate students to continue the orientation to the university by seeing that the pursuit of knowledge is not done apart from the walk of the believer. Students will learn that having well-educated minds and biblically minded hearts includes the active development of character.

R.I.D.E. Seminar

Each year students in our ENACTUS organization sponsor an event known as R.I.D.E. This event prepares students to anticipate all that will take place in the search for a job. Presentations span two Saturdays and cover resume writing, being prepared for job interviews, how to dress appropriately and etiquette that should be practiced throughout the process.

Pathway Center

The Pathway Center places reflection at the center of its interactions with students. Starting in their freshman year, students are asked to consider “Who am I?” and “What is my purpose, passion and calling?” The Pathway Center emphasizes this personal development process early on. Starting with the first day freshmen set foot on campus during orientation activities, students learn about the process and the importance of utilizing their entire college experience – and not waiting until their senior year—to position themselves well to thrive personally and professionally after college. The Pathway Center encourages students to engage in their own personal development, and to understand the importance of assessing and knowing their own interests, values, beliefs, personality, strengths and goals.

The Pathway Center works to develop guided career pathways to assist inquiring students in navigating the path from college into different professional fields and industries. These guided pathways are designed to bridge the gap between academic majors and careers by providing a roadmap of classes, extracurricular activities, resources and alumni connections to help students achieve their goals. The Pathway Center works in collaboration with faculty and Cairn’s Office of Alumni Relations to facilitate connections between current students and alumni, with the aim of fostering professional mentoring, and professional networking.

Spiritual Formation

The entire experience at Cairn University is designed to be a cohesive program that fosters spiritual formation. Chapels and student ministries create a foundation for development. From that foundation, Cairn strives to provide experiences and activities where students can defend and articulate a biblical worldview (1 Pet. 3:13-16).

As God transforms your heart and your mind, spiritual maturation comes in part from the intentional spiritual formation that marks your life. During your time of study at the university, our desire is that you experience spiritual maturation as a result of a well-rounded and purposeful approach. Your classes will expose you to the great wisdom of the Bible that you will be able to integrate into your life. Further, you will be given the opportunity to be actively involved in building your relationship with God through service within Cairn and the community surrounding the university. This blend of knowledge and service helps to forge a strong Christian character. While spiritual maturation is not a by-product of receiving a Cairn diploma, our desire is to provide you with perspective on how to better serve Christ in the church, society, and the world as biblically minded, professionally competent men and women of character (Rom. 12:2).

University Ministry Center

A crucial department in the intentional design of spiritual formation is the University Ministry Center. The purpose of the University Ministry Center is to develop men and women of character by providing opportunities for personal, spiritual, and professional growth through chapel services and ministry experiences which enable students to serve Christ in the church, society and the world. The University Ministry Center is located within the Office of Student Life on the first floor of the Smith Administration Building.


Chapel at Cairn University exists to provide an expression of our worship and identity as an academic community of believers with a deep commitment to Christ as we live out the mission of the university. Chapels provide opportunities for the development of a personal and communal biblical worldview by teaching Scripture, addressing issues related to Christian living, and experiencing corporate worship.

Click HERE to listen to some of our archived chapel messages.

Chapel Attendance

Chapel occurs on Monday and Friday at 10:50 A.M.,  The designated time slot on Wednesday is utilized for community wide chapels and for specific subgroups of the university to hold meetings/seminars for their members. Given the importance of chapel to the overall student experience, we desire to have as much of the student body in attendance as possible. Therefore, chapel is required of all full time students (12 or more credits). Both the Chatlos Chapel and Holmes Hall (livestreaming) provide a venue for our chapel programs throughout the academic semester. However, Holmes Hall is only open for specific larger events unless otherwise noted on the chapel schedule. Undergraduate students should abide by the following guidelines regarding chapel attendance.

  • Students are required to attend 23 (70%) of the student body chapel services per semester. Special audience meetings/seminars scheduled at the 10:50-11:35 time period do not count towards required attendance. Chapel attendance is taken electronically (attendance is taken by scanning student IDs as students enter the Chatlos Chapel and Holmes Hall).
  • Chapel exemption request forms are located on the Ministry Center Portal on eLearning and must be re-submitted each semester there is a desired exemption. If a student is excused from ALL chapels, they would not need to attend. It is possible to be excused from one or two days a week in which case the University Ministry Center will establish a personalized required attendance number.
    • Students living off campus may request a semesterly exemption from chapel when their class schedule is limited to non-chapel days, or when a necessary work responsibility keeps them from chapel.
    • Students living in the residence halls may request a semesterly exemption from chapel when a necessary work responsibility keeps them from chapel
    • Working in a Cairn office or department does not automatically qualify for exemption.
    • Students who have not faithfully maintained attendance expectations for chapel attendance in preceding semesters will not be eligible for chapel exemption in the current semester. Counseling sessions in the Oasis Counseling Center do not automatically qualify for an exemption.
  • Students who do not attend the required number of chapel services per semester can “make-up” up to three chapels per semester. Students will listen to up to three chapels online and complete a “make-up” chapel form and submit it to the University Ministry Center by two weeks prior to the end of the semester. (Click here for a Chapel Make-up Form)
  • Any Individuals who do not attend 23 chapels per semester will pay a fine of $10.00 for each chapel not attended and may be subject to further disciplinary sanctions. Fines are levied through the business office.
  • Any student falsifying attendance or abusing the attendance procedures will be subject to disciplinary sanctions from the Office of Student Life.
  • Students who scan in for attendance yet do not attend that chapel will not receive credit for that chapel, will face sanctions from Student Life since this is a character issue and may actually have their chapel attendance requirements increase.

Any student with excessive absences in repeated semesters will be subject to fines, probation, suspension, and/or dismissal. Further, probationary status for chapel absences will be considered a disciplinary probation and will have all normally sanctioned limitations applied.

Chapel Decorum

The University Ministry Center works diligently to design an overall chapel program and environment that allows for maximum spiritual impact and therefore, will have different and diverse program elements to it. We celebrate the diversity of the body of Christ in styles of worship, challenges from the Word of God, and techniques in communication. We ask that all students abide by the following standards of chapel decorum as we each seek to honor the Lord in chapel:

  • Prepare your heart for worship, spiritual challenge, and reflection.
  • Silence all cell phones and refrain from using electronic devices to communicate or perform tasks that distract you or others around you.
  • Respect the students around you, those on the platform, and the Lord by listening and refraining from studying in chapel.
  • Refrain from eating and drinking in chapel.

Students unable to comply with these standards to the point that they are causing a distraction will be asked to leave and will not receive credit for attending.

Special Events

World Reach Week

As an extension of the University Mission Statement, World Reach Week seeks to creatively engage students in obeying the Great Commission as the natural outflow of their life in Christ through instruction regarding the biblical mandate, introduction to global opportunities, and intentional integration of their chosen vocation and global evangelism. World Reach Week will take place during the each semester and include special academic and extracurricular events during the week. All students are encouraged to take advantage of the many opportunities for exploring your part in global missions this week provides.

Ministry Opportunities

World Reach Teams

The University Ministry Center offers purposeful and meaningful short-term, missions trips that allow students to serve Christ worldwide. These mission trips provide students with opportunities to learn and minister outside of the classroom. We believe that these trips will expose Cairn University students to cross-cultural experiences that will impact the lives of those they serve and broaden the student’s world view. We desire to see many students consider a short-term mission trip during their time here at Cairn.

Cairn mission trips occur during breaks in the university calendar, winter, spring and summer breaks. There is an application process that all interested students must go through to become a mission trip team member. Our teams are led by at least one faculty or staff member from the university.

Local Ministry Opportunities

The University Ministry Center partners with clubs and organizations in providing opportunities for students to serve the greater Philadelphia community in specific areas of service. These are typically events lasting several hours on designated days.

Discipleship Groups

The University Ministry Center encourages students to form and or join small groups in residence halls or elsewhere on campus. Small groups provide you with a time to be challenged, an opportunity to share, pray, and hold one another accountable. These are times where students can come together with a common bond or purpose and spend time in fellowship and growth. We encourage students to invite faculty and staff to be guest speakers or to host these groups.

Local Church Involvement

Cairn University is committed to the local church. Involvement in a local church is an integral element of our academic vision and central to accomplishing the mission of the university.

The local church is a body of professing believers organized to do the work of God. It is the local manifestation of the universal church of which Christ is the Head and Builder. To be involved with a local church is to be involved in God’s work on earth. The local church is the ideal place for personal spiritual growth and equipping for ministry. Ephesians 4:11-16 outlines a biblical philosophy of ministry which includes leaders who equip others for “the work of service” and “the building up of the body of Christ.” Every person in this body has a unique and vital role which contributes to the growth and health of the whole body. How God works through the diversity and uniqueness of the body parts is developed in 1 Corinthians 12. In a local church, each member has an opportunity to exercise his/her “divine design” (personality, spiritual and natural gifts, passions, etc.) to help that local body grow. This involvement also results in personal spiritual growth as individual member’s minister to each other. Therefore, students are expected to attend a local church regularly (Heb. 10:23-25).

Student Ministry and Service

Undergraduate students are required to participate in student ministry and service opportunities during their enrollment. This program is designed to integrate class experience with church related and professional experience. The ministry and service requirement exists to provide students an opportunity to grow personally, spiritually, and professionally through practical experiences. The University Ministry Center coordinates this program and assists students in record keeping and can assist with suggested churches and organizations (1 Tim 4:12; 1 Pet. 4:10-11).

Student Ministry and Service Criteria

A student must have a mentor or advisor (non-student) to oversee the ministry/service experience and adhere to the guidelines of the ministry/service covenant.

A student’s ministry/service must meet one or more of the following criteria:

  • Serving in a church setting.
  • Serving in an organization that supports the church.
  • Serving in an organization that meets the needs of people in a local community (Ex. Habitat for Humanity, Choice One, nursing home).
  • Participating on a mission trip team (at least three days long).
  • Volunteering in a professional setting that utilizes and enhances what students are learning in their curricular program.
  • Participating in Cairn University organizations, activities, office settings, leadership capacities in which you serve the community at Cairn and/or potentially the community at large, by utilizing a combination of professional skills, spiritual gifts, and modeling the Christian faith.

Student Ministry Requirements

  • Full time undergraduate students must satisfactorily register and complete six (6) ministry/service experiences and receive a satisfactory evaluation from a mentor in order to graduate from Cairn.
  • Transfer and part time students will have the number of required ministry/service credits reduced in coordination with course credits transferred into Cairn.
Credit hours Transferred into CairnStudent Ministry Credit Reduction
  • A minimum of two (2) ministry/service credits are to be completed in a local church setting. Exceptions to this expectation are rare and are only granted when an extenuating circumstance prevented some aspect of ministry to a local church.
  • Students may be involved in ministry/service experiences during the fall, spring or summer term.
  • A Ministry/Service Registration Form and Mentor Evaluation Form must be submitted by the due date for each ministry experience in order to receive a satisfactory grade and credit.
  • All students will be required to participate in mandatory training on the protection of minors. This is done during the freshman year as part of our yearlong first year orientation curriculum. Students who are not at the orientation session will be required to make up that training. Many organizations outside of Cairn will require additional clearances and screenings before allowing students to work with minors. The costs of those clearances are the responsibility of the student.

Reporting Procedures

  • Student Ministry/Service experiences are arranged through and approved by the University Ministry Center.
  • Students will submit a signed Registration Form in the fall and spring by the due date assigned by the University Ministry Center (September 30 and February 15).
  • A $25 late fee will be assessed by the registrar for seniors in their graduating semester who hand in late paperwork for previously accomplished ministries.
  • Students will submit a signed Registration Form by May 30 for a summer ministry.
  • Registration Forms will not be accepted after the due dates for each term.

Grading Procedures

  • Students will be assessed by their ministry/service mentor and a grade of S or U will be recorded on the student’s academic transcript.
  • No grade will be recorded if the mentor’s evaluation of the student’s ministry/service is not returned. This grade will be changed when the Mentor Evaluation Form is received.
  • Updates will be provided for students to keep track of how many ministry/service experiences they have successfully completed.
  • Students may not graduate until all six (6) ministry/service experiences are successfully completed (Exceptions will be made for transfer and part time students that do not have six (6) full time semesters at Cairn).

Living in Community

Through the Community Life Covenant and the Student Handbook, the university establishes expectations for community living. When standards are violated or not respected by a student, Student Life staff will approach the student with dignity, respect, and love. Students will be mentored, challenged, lifted up in prayer, and when necessary sanctioned as part of learning and accountability (Matt 18:15-17).

Community Life Covenant

Cairn is an academic community of Christian students, faculty, and staff. As such, and in keeping with the mission and vision of the university, members of the Cairn community are to exhibit biblical wisdom and Christian maturity regarding their personal conduct and behavior toward others. They should be sensitive regarding the testimony of their personal lives in representing the Lord Jesus Christ, His Church, and the university. Members of the university community should live according to 1 Corinthians 10:31: “Whatever you do, do all to the glory of God.”

Christian community involves covenantal responsibility and mutual obligation to one another as members of one body living together before a righteous and holy God. Therefore, members of the university community are to be guided by biblical admonitions to demonstrate Christian love and concern for others, honesty, fairness, justice, kindness, forgiveness, mutual edification, self-control, deference, respect, and social responsibility toward one another and all people (Prov. 27:17; John 15:12-13; 1 Cor. 24b-26).

Because Christian community exists in social and cultural context, members must be careful to demonstrate civility and respect for those with whom they disagree, while exercising wisdom in evaluating the ideas and activities of others. Christians living in harmony share a deep concern for the Body of Christ, defer to one another, reason together, and express genuine Christian love, as outlined in Romans chapter fourteen (Rom. 14:17-18).

Undergraduate Student Standards of Conduct

The following standards, unless otherwise noted, apply to all university students while enrolled at Cairn University. These standards are established on the basis of state and federal laws, biblical teaching, and university policy and tradition. The administration is responsible to, and reserves the right to exercise judgment in interpreting and enforcing these standards and all matters related to them based upon the totality of the circumstances.

  • All Cairn students are subject to the responsibility of academic integrity which demands honesty and giving credit to the proper sources (Ex. 20:15; Prov. 12:22; Rom. 13:7).
  • Hazing is classified as a crime by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania; the university will not allow this type of activity. Hazing is defined as any type of initiation process which includes actions that may potentially cause bodily harm, physical exhaustion, and personal embarrassment, loss of dignity, emotional trauma, or mental duress (Matt. 7:12; 1 Pet. 2:17).
  • Harassment or discrimination against others on the basis of race, national origin, age, sex, or handicap is not tolerated. Intimidation and violence through words or action are prohibited. This includes but is not limited to threats, verbal attacks, vandalism, stalking, domestic violence, cyber bullying and other acts of hatred involving physical attack or sexual misconduct (Col 3:1-5; Col 3:11).
  • All students are to be highly selective in their choices of entertainment and recreation, including television, videos, movies, theater, dancing, sports, reading materials, music, video games, web postings, and file downloads. Biblical standards and discernment, especially in reference to worldly values, profanity, violence, immorality, sexuality, and nudity, should serve as guidelines in making personal decisions in these areas. Pornographic materials, including electronic media, sexually explicit internet sites and chatrooms are not to be viewed, possessed, distributed, or transmitted on or away from campus. Students are to refrain from gambling, including sports gambling and attending casinos (Rom. 12:2; Col. 3:5; Phil. 4:8).
  • Cairn University affirms the biblical teachings that a sexual relationship is intended only within a heterosexual marriage of husband and wife. All students are to abstain from any type of sexual activity or immoral relationship outside of the marriage of a man and a woman (Gen. 1:27; Rom. 1:27; Gal. 5:19-21; 1 Thess. 4:3-8; Heb. 13:4).
  • Undergraduate students under the legal age for alcohol consumption in Pennsylvania (21) may not possess, use, or distribute alcoholic beverages, on or away from campus. Cairn is an alcohol free campus. Students of legal age may consume alcohol in a responsible and appropriate way, but are not permitted to do so while on campus or participating in University sponsored activities. In keeping with Biblical prohibitions concerning the abuse of alcohol (Eph. 5:18; Gal. 5:21), students are to abstain from excessive consumption of alcohol. The University reserves the right to confront and sanction students who exhibit self-destructive patterns, excessive abuse or misuse of alcohol. Likewise, following Pauline principles of Christian discipleship, students are expected to be conscientious of, and show deference to, others in the Cairn community who are abstaining from alcohol (Rom. 14; 1 Cor. 8-18).
  • Tobacco, marijuana, electronic cigarettes (e-cigarettes) or other recreational vaporizers, illegal drugs, including illegally obtained prescription drugs are prohibited on the Cairn campus. Students may not possess, use, or distribute, illegal drugs, including illegally obtained prescription drugs and similar elements, on or away from campus. All state and federal laws concerning these are to be strictly observed. Illegal drugs are those on the list of “controlled substances” published by the Federal Drug Enforcement Administration, which includes, but is not limited to, such drugs as methamphetamine, crack, LSD, cocaine, MDMA (ecstasy), PCP, and heroin. For policy purposes, illegal drugs also include any medications which, while legal, are obtained without physician’s authorization and intended for recreational use or sale (Romans 13:1-2).


Statement on Human Sexuality

Cairn University is a Christian university community, embracing both the authority of the Old and New Testament scriptures as God’s Word, and the historic orthodox Christian understanding of marriage and human sexuality.  As such, we hold that the behavioral expression of human sexuality is intended only to take place within the covenant of marriage between a man and a woman.  We also believe that gender is part of the order of God’s creation from the beginning and that humans are created male and female and that both are very good in God’s eyes.  We seek to honor God by cultivating a community that reflects these biblical commitments and upholds biblical standards related to gender and sexual behavior.

Our foundational biblical commitments are:

  1. Human beings – male and female – are created as gendered beings. The goodness of these distinctions is explicitly affirmed by God (Gen 1:27, 1:31).
  2. Marriage between a man and a woman is a gift from God, with many benefits and with great spiritual significance. Sexual intimacy is to take place only within the marriage covenant, made between a man and a woman.  This is affirmed throughout the Bible, and reaffirmed by the Lord Jesus Christ (Gen 2:18, 21-24; Matt 19:4-9; Eph 5:32; Hebrews 13:4).
  3. Followers of Jesus Christ are to remain celibate outside the bonds of marriage (1 Cor 6:13, 18-20; Heb 13:4).
  4. Scripture expressly forbids certain sexual behaviors, including, but not limited to: fornication, adultery, incest, and homosexual acts (Ex 20:14; Lev 18:7-23, 20:10-21; Matt 5:27-28; Rom 1:20-27; 1 Cor 6:9; Gal 5:19; Eph 4:17-19; Col 3:5).

Cairn University is committed to following the Lord Jesus Christ in all areas of community life.  This means that, in addition to pledging ourselves to the preceding biblical principles of sexual fidelity, we also are committed to being a community governed by love of all people, a community of grace, and a place that allows for repentance and redemption.

Commitment to Sexual Purity

Cairn University is committed to relationships that are sexually pure in keeping with our Statement on Human Sexuality. Keeping relationships pure is the responsibility of all students, faculty, and staff. Conduct between members of the community should be respectful and conform to biblical standards. To avoid morally compromising situations, students are to limit physical contact. Inappropriate displays of public affection are not to be seen on campus. Students are urged to avoid placing themselves in a scenario where standards are lowered or accountability is nonexistent. Students are not to spend the night directly in the presence of members of the opposite sex on or off campus (1 Thess. 4:3-8; Heb. 13:4).

Students that have struggled with past sexual purity, sexual addictions, or dependency on pornography are urged to seek help through Student Life or Oasis staff. Students will be counseled toward accountability and living a life of choices that are in obedience to God and His scripture.


Knowing that the evangelical community has diverse opinions on dance, Cairn University encourages students to use discernment regarding participation in dance off campus. It is recognized that within our culture there are many examples of dance that are used in a dignified manner for artistic expression, athletic competition, worship, choreography in musicals and dramatic productions and in celebrations. However, there are many examples of social dancing which are immodest and not in good taste for followers of Christ.

Therefore, Cairn is selective in the type of social dances that occur on and off campus and at university sponsored events. Specifically, Cairn does permit dance on campus in curricular classes, worship, musical and dramatic productions, athletic events, and the Gala, and other approved university sponsored events.  University sponsorship is to be understood as any activity hosted by entities or persons of the university community which advertise, organize or facilitate an event (Rom. 12:2; Phil. 4:8).

Modesty Statement

As individuals, we enjoy the freedom that we have to dress in a style that expresses our personality. While each of us develops a personal style, we also recognize the need to dress in a manner that reflects our appreciation of the Cairn University community. Cairn is a Christ-centered academic community dedicated to developing professional character and competency in students. As such, we establish expectations of dress to which all students can adhere and which are conducive to an academic setting.

Our expectations on student dress center on two terms: modesty and professionalism.

  • Modesty reflects a desire by the person to dress in a manner that does not accentuate the body, displays decency, and reflects other-centeredness of a Christian community.
  • Professionalism in the context of being a student at Cairn should reflect a level of seriousness, intentionality, and purpose including the student’s willingness to abide by standards that have been established for a particular setting, community, or entity.

The standards of modesty at Cairn University are established to be an outward expression of a heart that acknowledges that care should be taken in the selection of clothing in order to be presentable in a Christian educational community in contrast to the community at large. The biblical expectation of modesty is that the conduct of both men and women serves to enhance rather than detract from the reputation of the Gospel (Rom. 12:2; Rom 14:13-19). Therefore, students are encouraged to exemplify servant attitudes toward Christ and other people in their appearance (Phil. 2:3-5). Cairn students going to class, chapel or any other formal academic activity should dress modestly and with an understanding that the classroom and chapel are not a place of leisure, but a place of learning and as such clothing should be appropriate, presentable, and not attention seeking.

Modesty begins not with a list, but with the desires of the heart. Our hope is that choices made by students in their apparel will reflect the true nature of their hearts – a desire to adorn the Gospel by living with humility in attitude, behavior, and dress (Col. 3:12; 1 Cor. 6:19-20). Accountability is reached when we are willing to be challenged by those with whom we live in a community. A conversation and call to action is the first line of defense. Faculty and staff reserve the right to use discretion regarding the appearance of a student on campus. Students could be asked to leave a class or campus area until appropriate dress is obtained. Faculty and staff reserve the right to establish additional expectations for participation in specific events or in university employment settings. Students needing more accountability in modesty issues will be challenged through normal conduct codes.

The specific guidelines included below are shaped by biblical principles, community preferences, and cultural expectations in terms of modesty and professionalism.

  • Students must dress modestly and appropriately at all times. Choice of clothing is to be consistent with the student’s assigned sex at birth.
  • Classroom clothing should be neat, clean, and not tattered. Midriff and underwear should not show. Clothing with holes should not reveal skin that is normally covered by modest clothing
  • Students are expected to remove hoods and earphones/earbuds before entering class or chapel.
  • Footwear must be worn at all times in academic buildings, chapel, and the dining hall.
  • Shirts must be worn at all times – including in the athletic center – muscle shirts should not be worn on campus, including workout settings (i.e. not in the dining hall, not walking back to the dorm, not on a run outside, etc.) Tops should not be low-cut, skin tight or sheer. Sports bras, bralettes, bandeaus, and similar style tops are not considered shirts. Bras must be worn as the accompanying undergarment with modest and appropriate clothing, outside the dorms.
  • Shorts, skirts, and dresses should cover the upper thigh and buttocks; short shorts are not permitted for men or women. Elongated slits on skirts or dresses going above mid-thigh are not permitted.
  • Pajama pants are not permitted outside of residence halls.
  • Clothing should not advertise products or activities contrary to a biblical lifestyle.
  • University sponsored events may be announced as formal dress. At such events, students are to continue to dress with modesty. Women may wear dresses/skirts that are mid-thigh length or longer. Women may not wear exposed midriff styles or tops/gowns with plunging necklines/backlines. Strapless dresses must be modest in cut and style. Men cannot wear jeans or T-shirts. Button-down shirts, sport jackets, ties, and dress pants are encouraged.


When Do Standards Apply?

The Student Standards of Conduct apply during the entire time that the student is enrolled in a semester or term of study. This includes the fall semester, spring semester and summer sessions.

Note the following clarifications:

  • Fall semester includes fall break and Thanksgiving break.
  • Spring semester includes spring break.
  • Standards apply at any point that a student is in residence when classes are not in session such as: Student leadership training days, pre-season athletic camps, employment, or before final move out.
  • Standards apply to students on university sponsored trips and internships in this country or abroad.
  • Standards apply likewise to commuters, and dual-level students, during the time periods noted above.

Behavior during non-enrolled periods of time should reflect the Community Standards in that students should exhibit biblical wisdom and Christian maturity regarding their personal conduct. Conduct of a student even while not presently enrolled may have impact on the ability of the student to continue enrollment at the university.

The Students’ Role in Community

Student Responsibility

Members of a healthy community who love one another will be willing to confront one another when needed. If you are aware that another student has violated the Student Standards of Conduct, you should speak to that person in a spirit of humility and concern. If the alleged violation is true, it is the responsibility of both students to ensure that the matter is resolved with Community Life or Student Life personnel. If the student who has committed the violation is unwilling to admit the infraction to university authorities, you are encouraged to discuss the matter with a member of Student Life after first informing the student who committed the violation (Matt. 18:15-17).


Students Violating the Law

Cairn University reserves the right to pursue disciplinary and/or enrollment action against an enrolled student who has been arrested, indicted, or charged with a violation of law. Such action is not dependent on the conclusion of legal investigation or trial. A violation of law that occurs when a student is not currently enrolled could jeopardize future and/or further enrollment (Rom. 13:1-2).

Amnesty Policy

Students who struggle with issues that violate Cairn University’s Student Standards of Conduct, and wish to request amnesty, are encouraged to seek help, repentance, and counseling from Student Life. Examples of such issues include, but are not limited to, drugs, alcohol, pornography, and sexual behaviors.

Understanding that students struggling with issues such as drugs, alcohol, pornography, and sexual behaviors, may be reluctant to seek help because of the potential consequences related to violating the University Standards of Conduct, Cairn University has established an Amnesty Policy. This policy allows students who want to receive help and support to work through these issues and accept accountability for these behaviors without going through the normal discipline process. Those students who seek help from Student Life will receive appropriate assistance (mentoring, counseling, etc.). Students requesting help are expected to abstain from the behavior and may be asked to sign an amnesty agreement and/or seek professional help.

Students must request help and amnesty from the Student Life office before any disciplinary conversation addressing the specific inappropriate behavior(s) occurs. Typical disciplinary conversations are carried out by staff members, including student leaders, from the offices of Student Life. Students also must be honest, cooperative, and compliant with Amnesty Policy requirements, and demonstrate a true desire to change. Failure to abide by the terms of an amnesty agreement will likely result in the termination of the amnesty agreement and a transfer to the traditional disciplinary process.

When students request amnesty, they are not disciplined for behaviors they have engaged in prior to their confession and request for amnesty. However, there are instances where a student may be required to withdraw from Cairn University for reasons of safety, because of potential legal violations, or in order to get further help before returning as a student. In addition, there are some instances where student leaders or representatives may be required to step down from their positions of responsibility. The Amnesty Policy is applicable to violations of the Student Standards of Conduct, and cannot be requested for violations of a federal, state, or local law, or for violations of other University policies and jurisdictions (e.g. Office of Safety and Security, Campus Services, etc.).

Student Discipline

Living within a community brings joy and heartache. In our daily interactions with one another, we will occasionally be disappointed by actions of community members. When those actions violate the Student Standards of Conduct or other guidelines, the university must respond in order to maintain order in the community. Student discipline is intended to be an opportunity for personal growth. When we discipline students at Cairn, our focus is to help the student to make better choices and recognize their error in behavior or judgment. Furthermore, mentoring and accountability will be used to discourage additional violations of the Student Standards of Conduct and to provide an opportunity for personal maturation (Col. 1:28).

The Office of Student Life is responsible for the administration of discipline. Whenever possible, you will be disciplined by those who are in the closest supervisory relationship with you. For instance, resident students will most likely meet with their Resident Director for most minor disciplinary conversations. More significant issues and issues involving commuters will deal directly with the Director of Community Life and potentially the Dean of Students.

When a discipline situation develops you will always be dealt with directly. In some situations, reports from members of the university community may be forwarded to a member of Student Life. Reports may come from security personnel, faculty, staff, or other students. Regardless of who documents the alleged community standard violation, the person who receives the report will talk with you face to face. In most cases, you will be notified to make an appointment to meet with either your Resident Director or the Dean of Students, within 24 business hours, in order to provide you an opportunity to explain your actions. In some cases, that conference might be the end of the disciplinary process.

At other times the university will need to respond with more than a conversation. To assist with identifying community standard infractions the university has created a violation form known as the “Community Standard Infraction Report.” These are written citations that inform the student that they were observed violating a community standard. The Resident Staff, or other university personnel, will issue these citations.

Resident Directors, Director of Community Life, and/or the Dean of Students will meet with students who have violated the community covenant in order to make a determination that a community standard violation occurred. When it is determined that a situation occurred, students will be appropriately sanctioned pending the nature of the infraction. Students who wish to appeal a Community Standard Infraction Report may do so by first approaching the person issuing the form and then consulting with one of the Resident Directors, Director of Community Life, or the Dean of Students.

In any student disciplinary situation, as noted above, the desired outcome of the disciplinary response is to encourage students to recognize their error in decision making in order to make better choices in the future. The university utilizes disciplinary sanctions as a means to develop this outcome. A sanction is a disciplinary consequence for violating the standards of the university community. Sanctions that are imposed upon Cairn students include, but are not limited to those listed below under the section headings: minor/major disciplinary sanctions.

All disciplinary responses will take into account the intent of the accused, the effect of the conduct on the victim and or university community, the student’s disciplinary history, and the student’s overall participation in the disciplinary process. While attempting to be consistent in its disciplinary decisions, the university also seeks to be fair and sensitive to the facts and circumstances of each individual case. Consequently, some minor disciplinary incidents may result in more severe sanctions (Prov. 27:17; John 15:12-13; 1 Cor. 24b-26; Matt. 18:15-17.

Failure to Comply

It is the responsibility of students to comply with the requests of university officials, whether specific to a disciplinary meeting or otherwise. Students who fail to comply with the electronic, written and/or verbal directives of the university officials will receive additional, disciplinary sanction(s). Failure to comply includes timely response to communication sent to the student asking for a meeting or failure to attend scheduled appointments (Rom. 13:1-2).

False Reports

In the course of a disciplinary, Title IX, or any other investigation, Cairn University takes the validity of information very seriously. Consequently, any report given by a student during an investigation that contains deliberately false and/or malicious accusations will result disciplinary action. This provision does not apply to reports made in good faith, even if the facts alleged in the report are not substantiated by an investigation. Similarly, after the conclusion of an investigation, anyone who is later proven to have intentionally given false information by fabricating stories or by purposely misleading an investigation during the course of an investigation or disciplinary hearing may be subject to disciplinary action (Ex. 20:16; Prov. 12:22).

Judicial Sanctions

When a student fails to uphold the Student Standards of Conduct outlined in the student handbook or other policies, the university has an obligation to help them come to a deeper understanding of how their behavior impacts the campus environment.  This developmental and educational process is one wherein the institution strives to instill in the students an understanding that they are responsible for their actions.

Consequently, after a meeting with a member of Student Life, the following judicial sanctions may be issued to students who have been found in violation of university policies and regulations if there is sufficient evidence to indicate that a violation has occurred. The sanction(s) will be presented in written form to the student with a copy placed in the student’s educational file in the Office of Student Life.  All imposed sanctions shall become effective immediately at the completion of the student meeting unless otherwise stipulated.  Sanctions may be assigned cumulatively depending on a student’s prior record.  Any sanction(s) may be appealed in accordance with the procedures detailed in Student Handbook (Matt. 18:15-17).

There are several reasons for imposing judicial sanctions:

  • To provide a context wherein students can evaluate, compare, and/or redirect their behavior in light of the Student Standards of Conduct;
  • To protect the university community from possible harm or injury;
  • To require restitution for university property that is lost, stolen or damaged; and
  • To give support for financial redress to a victim for loss, harm or destruction of his/her personal property.

The following is a list of sanctions that the university may impose on a student:

Judicial Reprimand: A judicial reprimand does not necessarily restrict the student in any manner, but does signify that any further violation may result in additional judicial sanctions. A written record of the reprimand will be placed in the student’s judicial file.

Mentoring: Students are assignment to a faculty, staff, community, or student mentor to provide support in the areas of personal and academic development.  The frequency and duration of the mentoring relationship will be established by the Office of Student Life, but may be deferred to the assigned mentor.  Any missed appointment with an assigned mentor will be considered a violation of this sanction.

Restitution: The student is required to provide monetary reimbursement for repair/replacement of property or service rendered. Restitution, however, generally is not considered sufficient penalty for willful damage or destruction of property.

Community restitution: A task that benefits the individual, campus, or community (such as a service-related activity) is assigned to the student.

Fine: The student is required to pay a financial penalty for his/her violation.  Restitution and fines are payable in cash or check payable to “Cairn University” and delivered to the Business Services office.

Educational project or paper: An educational project designed to assist the student in better understanding the overall impact of his/her behavioral infraction(s) may be imposed The student is required to write an essay or a paper on a given topic, or to complete a project of benefit to his or her community, such as creating educational flyers or bulletin boards, or organizing an educational program all of which must be related to the violation(s).

Disciplinary Probation: This type of probation is a written statement to the student indicating that the student’s behavior is of such a nature as to jeopardize continued enrollment at the university.  Disciplinary probation can be for a specified period of time or for as long as the student is enrolled.  Any behavioral infraction during the probationary period may cause the student to be removed from the university.

Social Restrictions:

  • Loss of visitation: The student loses his/her visitation rights for a specific period of time. For example, a student under this sanction may not enter into to another hall or have a visitor, etc.
  • Social probation: The student loses his/her social rights on campus for a specific period of time. No student under this sanction may enter the following areas including, but not limited to: the Gym, Fitness Center, or any campus-sponsored social activity, concert, theatrical production, etc.
  • “No contact” order: The student is directed to have no physical, verbal, or written contact with another individual. “No contact” requirements may be placed at the discretion of the Sr. Vice President for Student Affairs, Title IX Coordinator, or the Dean of Students.

Housing Restrictions:

  • Relocation within residence halls: The student must move to a different room or building (as specified), subject to the availability of appropriate alternate vacancies.
  • Suspension from the residence halls: The student loses the privilege of living in a university residence hall for a specified length of time. At the end of this time, after receiving approval from the Dean of Students or designee, the student is allowed to reapply for residence hall living. The student may be admitted to a residence hall provided there is space available. During the suspension period, the student may not visit or enter any residence hall at any time for any reason unless otherwise specified. Persons responsible for payment of the student’s university bills will be notified by the Dean of Students or designee when a student is suspended from the residence halls. When suspended from living in the residence halls, the student must leave the hall according to the terms of the sanction or within 36 hours after the sanction has been imposed.
  • Expulsion from the residence halls: The student permanently loses the privilege of living in, visiting, or entering university residence halls. Persons responsible for payment of the student’s university bills will be notified by the Dean of Students or designee when a student is expelled from the residence halls. When expelled from the residence halls, the student must leave the residence halls according to the terms of the sanction or within 36 hours after the sanction has been imposed.
  • Behavioral Suspension: A suspended student must carry out a total and immediate separation from the university for a required period of time and/or until particular conditions for readmission is met. Individuals responsible for payment of the student’s university bills may be notified by the Dean of Students or designee to the extent allowed by FERPA. A letter will be sent to the student, and copies kept on file in the Office of Student Life. Suspension may include various prohibitions regarding a student’s ability to be on university property or participate in university activities.  At the end of the suspension period and/or once the student can demonstrate that the conditions for readmission have been met, the student may be required to meet with the Dean of Students or other designee before being readmitted to the university.Students may be suspended from the university for serious and/or repeated violations.  A student suspended for disciplinary reasons may be prohibited from visiting on campus or attending university functions.

DismissalStudents may be dismissed from the university for serious and/or repeated violations. A student dismissed for disciplinary reasons may be prohibited from visiting or attending on campus, or attending university functions. The student may submit after one year, a written request to Student Life for advance permission to visit campus. To gain re-entry to the university, such students must follow regular admissions procedures.

Expulsion: Permanent removal of the student from the university. Persons responsible for payment of the student’s university bills may be notified by the Dean of Students or designee to the extent allowed by FERPA. A letter will be sent to the student, Registrar, and Office of Business and Finance, and copies kept in the permanent file in the Student Life Office. When expelled, the student must leave campus within 36 hours after the sanction has been imposed, except as otherwise specified. The student is banned from campus, and may only visit administration buildings for business purposes with prior clearance from the Dean of Students or designee. A student expelled from the university is not eligible for readmission.

Please note that students who do not successfully comply with judicial sanctions by given deadlines are subject to further judicial action and may receive an administrative hold placed on their educational records. Students with administrative holds in place cannot register for classes, receive official grade reports, or have official transcripts sent.

Sanctions on Groups, Clubs, Organizations
There are rare occasions when a group or organization may collectively violate the expectations of Cairn University. Student Life reserves the right to select from previously mentioned sanctions to administer in a group context to a group, club, or organization in order to bring about proper responses and attention to required expectations.

Disciplinary Appeal Process

Students have the right to appeal a disciplinary decision to the appropriate university personnel. Appeals are evaluated on the merit of evidence and procedure as noted in the conditions below. Consequently, an appeal is an evaluation or review of a final disciplinary decision on the grounds of one or more of the conditions found below. It does not constitute a secondary opinion of the conduct of a student, only an evaluation of the disciplinary decision.

  • The sanction imposed is disproportionate to the offense (including consideration of the student’s prior offenses or willingness to cooperate).
  • The student was not accorded his/her procedural rights as outlined in the Student Handbook, and this failure significantly affected the student’s right to receive a fair hearing.
  • The decision was not supported by sufficient evidence.
  • New evidence has become available that would have significantly altered the disciplinary outcome.

The level at which a disciplinary response is initially made will determine the Student Life staff member to whom the appeal is addressed. Appeals will be addressed to the supervisor of the individual making the disciplinary response (e.g., disciplinary responses made by a Resident Director will be appealed to the Director of Community Life; responses made by the Dean of Students will be appealed to the Sr. Vice President of Student Affairs).  An appeal must be submitted to the supervisory staff member within two (2) days of the disciplinary response. All appeals must be written and include copies of all documentation, information, and written support statements to be considered in the appeal.

The Sr. Vice President of Student Affairs is the final authority for all Student Life disciplinary appeals with the exception of a dismissal or expulsion from the university. A dismissal or expulsion may be appealed to the university Provost. However, in order to appeal this form of disciplinary response, a student must submit notification of their appeal by 4:30 p.m., one school day after notice of the decision to the Office of the Provost. A copy must also be sent to the Senior Vice President of Student Affairs. This letter should address the following items:

  1. The student’s desire to appeal the decision
  2. Specific objections to the disciplinary decision
  3. Any material relevant to meet the appeal conditions (see the four grounds for an appeal listed above).

The Senior Vice President for Student Affairs shall provide the Office of the Provost, the record of the case maintained by the Office of Student Life, as well as other materials deemed relevant to the appeal. The University Provost shall decide the appeal on the basis of the written materials submitted by the student and the record submitted by the Office of Student Life and shall notify the student involved and the Vice President of Student Affairs of the decision in writing within five business days after receipt of the record of the case. The decision of the university Provost is final and not subject to further appeal.

In most cases, any disciplinary action will be placed on hold during the appeal process; however, if the university decides that the student is a threat to himself/herself, the community, or to the peaceful existence of the campus, the student could be temporarily removed until the appeal process has been resolved.

Student Grievance Policy

Cairn’s student grievance policy is written to cover prompt resolution of procedural issues including but not limited to academic and disciplinary issues. This policy also attempts to ensure that the student is directed to the proper process depending upon the differing types of potential grievances that can arise on a university campus. The scope of this policy is limited to bona fide institutional grievances as reported by a student towards the actions or decisions of employees of Cairn University not consistent with established policy or practice. It should be noted that such grievances are significantly different than complaints and appeals. Disputes between students and actions made by non-Cairn University personnel are not considered grievances under this policy. Students are not permitted to file a grievance on behalf of other students or on behalf of a group of students.

Cairn urges the use of informal direct communication as an attempt to resolve grievances before the beginning of formal process. More information is available by asking Student Life for Cairn Policy 5401-15.

Parental Notification Policy

Cairn University may notify the parents/guardian of dependent students under the age of 21 for disciplinary actions of suspension, dismissal, expulsion and/or for violations related to alcohol or controlled substances. The university also reserves the right to contact parents when the administration believes that parental contact is in the best interest of the student and/or the university.

In all disciplinary matters, the context of individual circumstances is considered when deciding whether or not to contact parents. When possible, students will be encouraged and given the opportunity to discuss the situation with their parents prior to the institution’s notification.

Also, the university may elect to notify the parents, guardian, spouse, or emergency contact of students in the event of serious health concerns such as illness, injury, self-harm, suicidal ideation, or hospitalization. This notification will take place if the student is unable to communicate or if the university believes it is in the best interest of the student, parent, guardian, spouse, emergency contact, and/or the university.

Compliance with University Officials and Policies

Students who violate procedural policies established by, including but not limited to, the Academic Resource Center, Registrar’s Office, University Ministry Center, Office of Safety and Security, Campus Services or Student Life may be issued fines and/or disciplinary sanctions. Such fines should be paid promptly. If the fine is not paid, the student may be unable to register for subsequent semesters and graduates will not receive transcripts or diplomas.

Further, the university cannot operate in an environment where students refuse to cooperate with reasonable requests such as the request to identify one’s self or the request to refrain from inappropriate behavior.  Therefore, all students and their guests are expected to comply with all reasonable directives from university staff.  Specifically, no student shall fail to identify oneself, or show respect to security personnel, residence hall staff, other university officials, or public authorities (e.g., police) acting in performance of their duties or with any disciplinary conditions imposed by an authorized university official or group.  Failure to identify yourself, or comply with university staff official’s reasonable request, is a violation of the Student Code of Conduct and may result in disciplinary action (Rom. 13:1-2; Heb. 13:17; 1 Pet. 2:13-14).

Safe Campus Policies and Initiative

Provision of a safe campus at Cairn is the responsibility of the entire educational community. When dealing with an open campus in the midst of a larger community and simply as we deal with one another we must anticipate that dangers and threats exist. Cairn conducts a “Safe Campus Initiative” that has been created by governing policies a team of professionals to train students, staff and faculty about policies, prevention, reporting and wellness resources.

Behavioral Intervention

Cairn University is committed to providing an environment that both supports students and challenges them to realize their full potential.  Ensuring the physical and emotional safety for all students, faculty and staff is of utmost importance in promoting an atmosphere that encourages learning and productive employment.  Behavior or the threat of behavior, that presents a danger to oneself or others in the campus community will be addressed by the appropriate university personnel.

Cairn University has created a team of professionals from across campus that are committed to a caring, confidential program of identification, intervention and response in order to provide our students with the greatest chance of success and to protect the safety of our community.

The Behavior Intervention Team (BIT) is an advisory group of administrators who may assist one another in the identifying, assessing and monitoring of high risk behaviors exhibited by members of the campus community and individuals from outside the university who could pose a concern or threat to the campus community.  This team is responsible for assessing reports of troubling behavior on the part of students, faculty, or staff, and implementing interventions that are in the best interest of the University and the individual. Team members include:

  • Dean of Students
  • Director of Safety and Security
  • Director of Oasis Counseling Center
  • Director of Community Life
  • Academic affairs/Registrar (as needed)
  • University Nurse

All members of the university community are encouraged to be alert to students that seem in personal psychological/mental health distress or evidence the possibility of violent acts on the part of students, employees, visitors or others.  Information regarding violence, the threat of violence or other behavior of concern should be immediately reported to campus officials.  Reports will be handled in a confidential manner to the extent possible.  For more information about our Behavioral Intervention Team or how to identify when to report incident please refer to Cairn’s Behavioral Intervention Team webpage.

Anyone can report a concern by filling out a BIT online form. However, for an immediate threat or emergency call the office of Safety and Security at 215-702-4350.


Inappropriate Student Behavior Policy

There are times when the university must act on behalf of all members of the community, students, faculty and staff, to prevent the further disruption of the campus community. Any student who behaves inappropriately, including those who have mental disabilities or disorders, is subject to disciplinary and corrective action by the university in accordance with the procedures set forth in this Handbook.

Inappropriate behavior by a student consists of actions or words that: violate the Student Standards of Conduct or handbook expectations, endanger the health and safety of that individual or others, interfere with that student’s or others’ opportunity to participate in or fully benefit from academic, administrative, residential housing, co-curricular or extracurricular activities or make inordinate or inappropriate demands on the time or attention of faculty, staff or other students.

The University response to any student with inappropriate behavior will be prompt and in accordance with the disciplinary procedures set forth in this handbook. Students with diagnosed and identified mental disabilities or disorders are given a reasonable amount of time to secure the medical or psychological services necessary to modify their inappropriate behavior. When possible, Cairn will grant students with disabilities or disorders, reasonable accommodations of available university services or programs that could enhance the students’ ability to modify their inappropriate behavior. Students with mental illness or under mental disorder/duress will be subject to the same range of disciplinary consequences at Cairn that any student with inappropriate behavior is subject to. These can include, but are not limited to, disciplinary probation, suspension from classes, suspension, temporary or permanent removal from university housing, and/or full dismissal from the university (1 Thess. 5:14-15; Luke 17:3).

This full policy is available for review in the Office of Student Life.

Sexual Harassment and Misconduct Policy

Cairn University is committed to promoting and maintaining a safe and respectful environment for the campus community. The University seeks to build and maintain a community honoring the principles of Biblical teaching on sexuality and human relationships. Due to the unique mission of Cairn University and our Community Life Covenant with which community members are asked to conform, the University affirms the biblical statements that God intends sexual activity to take place within the bond of a monogamous heterosexual marriage.  Sexual activity apart and/or outside a marital relationship is a violation of Biblical teachings and therefore a violation of Cairn community standards.

Cairn will not tolerate inappropriate sexual contact including but not limited to sexual harassment, sexual violence, domestic violence, dating violence, or stalking (collectively “Sexual Misconduct”) perpetrated by or against any university students, university employees, participants in university programs and activities, or visitors to its campus. This policy prohibits Sexual Misconduct by university employees (which include all faculty, staff, and administrative employees) and students, whether the behavior occurs on or off campus. This policy also prohibits Sexual Misconduct by or against visitors to the university (such as independent contractors, vendors, visiting lecturers, and visiting student-athletes).

Cairn will take immediate and appropriate steps to stop Sexual Misconduct, prevent its recurrence, address its effects, and prohibit retaliation. Any person who violates this policy may be subject to discipline up to and including termination of employment, suspension, dismissal, and a ban from campus, depending on the circumstances and the severity of the violation and the violator’s status as an employee, student, or visitor.

Cairn will work to prevent Sexual Misconduct and address reports of Sexual Misconduct by:

  • educating members of the Cairn community about this policy and applicable laws in the employee and student orientations, and with continued educational reminders;
  • promptly addressing and resolving reports of Sexual Misconduct in accordance with this policy;
  • protecting the rights of both the complaining and responsible parties involved in a complaint;
  • imposing appropriate discipline against those who have engaged in Sexual Misconduct.

As required by Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 and Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the university prohibits sex discrimination in its educational programs or activities, admission, and employment.

“No person in the United States shall, on the basis of sex, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any educational program or activity receiving federal assistance.”

Discrimination in education includes actions that can be categorized as sexual harassment and/or sexual misconduct. Enforcement of this policy is meant to honor and be consistent with the expectations of the Clery Act, updates to the Violence Against Women Act and the May 2020, Department of Education, Office of Civil Rights regulations.

Members of the Cairn community who believe they have been subjected to any form of discrimination, harassment, or misconduct in violation of this policy should follow the procedures outlined below to report or give “notice” of these concerns. The process involves an immediate intake “preliminary investigation” to determine if there is reasonable and sufficient evidence to believe the Sexual Misconduct Policy has been violated. If reasonable and sufficient evidence exists, the University will explore whether mediation or the launching of a prompt, thorough, and impartial formal investigation is the best course of action.

Each step of mediation or investigation is designed to provide fair and reliable determination about whether policy has been violated and how to introduce appropriate supportive measures. In the event the University determines the misconduct policy and/ or expectations of Title IX has been violated, the University implements a prompt and effective remedy designed to end the discrimination/harassment, prevent its reoccurrence, and address its effects.  The University does not tolerate retaliation against any student or employee who complains of sexual misconduct, discrimination or harassment or provides information in connection with any such complaint.

Internal Cairn University Report of Sexual Misconduct

In the event an individual within the university community desires to make a formal report of an incident to a non-confidential person, they should be directed to go to the “Make a Report” links on the Cairn Safe Campus Website. They may also make a report verbally or in writing to any “Responsible Employee” who will then forward the incident to the Title IX Coordinator within an expected window of 24-48 hours. In addition the report can be made directly to designated members of the university Title IX Team.

Cairn University Title IX Coordinator
Scott Cawood, Senior Vice President for Student Affairs and Administration
200 Manor Avenue, Langhorne, PA 19047-2990
Email: [email protected]; Phone : 215-702-4216

Cairn University Office of Safety and Security
Chris Lloyd, Director
200 Manor Avenue, Langhorne, PA 19047-2990
Email: [email protected]; Phone: 215-702-4535

Cairn University Title IX Deputy Coordinator
Mary Boyer, V.P. of Human Resources
200 Manor Avenue, Langhorne, PA 19047-2990
Email: [email protected]; Phone:215-702-4541

External Report of Sexual Misconduct

Many forms of sexual misconduct can also be violations of the Title IX rights of the student. Therefore it should be noted that students who first make an internal report of an incident of misconduct and believe the university or employees therein have not taken their report seriously can also file a report with the Department of Education.

Office for Civil Rights (OCR)
400 Maryland Avenue, SW
Washington DC 20201-1100
Customer Service Hotline #: (800)-421-3481
Fax: (202)-453-6012; TDD# (877)-521-2172
Email: [email protected]; Web: http://www.ed.gov/ocr

Each year the university reviews the Sexual Misconduct 5501-01, Non-Discrimination 5501-02, and Judicial Hearing Panel 5401-18 policies. Students who would like to review these official policies may get a copy from the Office of Student Life. These policies articulate support for victims making reports, the immediate seeking of remedy from a reported situation, preventing retaliation and the procedural details of how informal and formal investigations take place.

Students who are victims of any form of sexual harassment are afforded rights by the federal and state government. These rights recognize the impact of violence on its victims, and the surrounding community, can be severe and long lasting. Thus, the following statement exists to not only comply with federal and state laws, but also exists as a part of the campus security reporting requirements, commonly known as the Jeanne Clery Act.

According to the Federal Campus Sexual Assault Victims’ Bill of Rights, commonly known as the, Jeanne Clery Act, victims of sexual harassment are entitled to the following rights:

  • Victims shall be notified of their options to notify law enforcement.
  • Accuser and accused must have the same opportunity to have others present.
  • Both parties shall be informed of the outcome of any disciplinary proceeding.
  • Victims shall be notified of counseling services.
  • Victims shall be notified of options for changing academic and living situations.

Amnesty for Victims and Witnesses

Understanding that students may be reluctant to report incidents of sexual assault or sexual harassment involving drugs or alcohol because of the potential consequences related to violating the Student Standards of Conduct, Cairn University has established an Amnesty Policy for Title IX incidents. Any victim or witness of sexual assault or sexual harassment, who reports the incident in good faith, will not be sanctioned by the University for admitting to violating the Student Standards of Conduct regarding drugs or alcohol.

Notice of Non-Discrimination

Cairn University is a conservative evangelical Christian institution within the Protestant tradition that employs faculty and staff, and admits students, who profess personal faith in Jesus Christ as Savior. Employees and students agree to Cairn’s Statement of Faith and Community Life Covenant including Cairn’s Statement on Human Sexuality, and teach, learn, and work together in a community in which Christ and His Word are central. Members of the faculty are required to integrate biblical instruction in their respective professional subject areas. Faculty and staff serve in a ministerial capacity by contributing to the educational and spiritual development of students through instruction, prayer, and discipleship.

Cairn does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national or ethnic origin, sex, age, or known disability in the administration of its employment practices, educational policies, admissions practices, scholarship and loan programs, and athletics, or and other school-administered programs.

Minors on campus policy statement

The educational mission of Cairn University includes programs that involve minors whether run by the University or as part of a program run by external organizations using Cairn facilities. The university has developed a policy that establishes guidelines for the safety and protection of minors in compliance with federal, state, and university expectations. In establishing this policy Cairn University does not seek to limit effective programs for minors, rather the focus is on safety, preparation, and oversight.

Cairn is committed to maintaining an appropriate educational environment for collegiate-level teaching and learning, co-curricular activities, and all of the related work that supports the academic life of the university.  In light of this point, Cairn campus is not an appropriate environment for children unless they are enrolled in a program specifically designed for children, participating in a sanctioned university program, and appropriately supervised by adults with the proper training and credentials, also subject to required criminal background check clearances.

Lastly, in light of the statements above, students must adhere to the following expectations:

  • No child may be left alone on campus at any time for any reason. Children need to be supervised. Cairn will call the police if any child is found locked in a car or wandering alone around the campus.
  • Children may not accompany Cairn students to class; any class missed for the inability to find childcare, or related issues, will result in an absence for the student.
  • Unless they are enrolled in a specific program approved by Cairn with appropriate adult supervision, children may not be unsupervised and in the library, classrooms, computer labs or athletic facilities/fields; children may not be present on residence hall floors;
  • Resident students may not “babysit” children in their rooms. In addition, resident students may not have guests in their rooms who are legal minors, under the age of 18, including relatives except in the event that the minor is a perspective student, or being hosted through the Admission’s department.


Cairn University is an educational institution where teaching and learning are core components of the overall degree programs. Not all learning takes place within the walls of the classroom. Student Life has a responsibility to support the development of scholarly habits, a studious environment, integrity of learning, and academic support services that give students the tools to learn.

As a student, you will select a major and begin to take courses within the established curriculum. Your progress through that curriculum in pursuit of your degree will be governed by the administrative leadership of the Provost and the Academic Leadership Team. This leadership provides information upon which academic policies are based and execute established academic procedures. The Registrar produces a roster of courses each semester and is available to answer questions regarding grades and credits.

The university has set guidelines and expectations for the academic environment. The standards for etiquette, decorum, integrity, and methods for addressing grievances are designed to help students grow in maturity and wisdom (Col. 1:28; Rom 12:2). As you navigate the realm of academics, you will be able to seek guidance from the Undergraduate and Graduate Academic Catalogue, faculty, staff, and your own advisor.

Below you find a number of references to academic policies and other resources that can provide you with information and support for a host of academic questions.  When appropriate the student will be provided a link that will take you to the appropriate academic Catalogue and relevant topic.  Cairn’s academic catalogue establishes the academic requirements necessary to complete a program of study and details academic policies.

Academic Etiquette

Being a student at a university that has a mission of producing students who are biblically minded, well-educated, and professionally competent men and women of character demands that the student anticipate a level of etiquette and decorum in the classroom (Col. 1:28; Rom. 12:2). Each professor has the ability to place specific demands of etiquette within their course syllabus. As a university, we expect our students to be able to do the following on a daily basis:

  • Make entry to class on time. If you arrive late or are in need of leaving early, do so with concern for the learning environment of the class.
  • Students should sit in a manner that is indicative of a person with manners. Being alert and sitting up in the chair are normal expectations.
  • Students are asked to be ready to learn. Each class has distinct dynamics and thus will require different levels of readiness. At the least, a student should be ready to write and participate in the learning. Each professor will dictate what additional items are necessary.
  • Students are invited to use technology in the classroom as permitted by the professor. The use of technology should never be a distraction to yourself or others around you. Use of one’s cell phone and/or computer for email, web browsing, game playing, texting, displaying streaming or filed video is unacceptable in a classroom during instruction. Students can face academic penalty by the professor for inappropriate use of technology.
  • Recording any aspect of a class or the materials of a class is prohibited. No pictures, videos or audio recordings are permitted without written permission of the instructor.

Academic Integrity

At Cairn University, a high value is placed on academic integrity. Faculty members are expected to maintain this integrity personally and insist on it in the academic performance of their students. Academic integrity is violated in a number of ways, but some illustrations include: cheating on examinations and quizzes, fabricating or altering data used in an assignment, facilitating academic dishonesty, multiple submissions of the same work, and disregarding other rules of academic integrity established by a faculty member (Ex. 20:15; Prov. 12:22; Rom. 13:7).

Students who violate standards of academic integrity do not fulfill the character prerequisite for graduation from the university. Dishonest academic practices will therefore be tracked, and Student Life will maintain a central record of occurrences of academic dishonesty.  Repeated offenses will result in increasingly severe consequences (see below).  Students with three academic integrity violations may be subject to disciplinary dismissal from the University (Heb. 12:11; Luke 17:3a; Matt. 18:15-17).

If an act of academic dishonesty is determined to have occurred, one or more of the following sanctions below will be imposed by the reporting faculty member, depending on the severity of the offense.  The decision of the faculty member will be communicated in writing to the student as well as be reported to the Office of Student Life, which is responsible for maintaining student conduct records.

  • Warning
  • Requiring student to redo assignment, re-take exam, etc.
  • An “F” on the assignment or exam
  • Reduction of course grade
  • Failure for entire course
  • Combination of any of the above sanctions.

Multiple, or additional offenses (in the same or other courses) will bring, in addition to the above academic consequences, disciplinary action by Student Life.  Further, students with third offenses may be subject to disciplinary dismissal from the university.  A violation of the Academic Integrity policy discovered after the conferral of a degree is grounds for Withdrawal of (rescind) the degree.  Any dispute arising out of charges of academic dishonesty should be resolved through the process set forth in the “Academic Grievance Procedures” as outlined in this Handbook.

Academic Advising

All students will receive academic advisement to assist in their academic, professional, and personal decision making. Advising is provided by an assigned faculty member.

Academic Grievance Procedure

If a conflict occurs between a student and faculty member, the two parties should make every effort at resolution. If the conflict cannot be resolved, the student may make a written appeal to the chair of the program in which the faculty member serves. In case of a disagreement related to a specific course the appeal should be made to the chair of the program in which the course is offered no later than 2 weeks following the posting of the final grades for the course. The appeal process may proceed to the dean of the appropriate school and finally to the Provost who will make the final determination in such conflicts. In this process, an appeal to the next level must be submitted within 2 weeks of the written outcome of the previous level of appeal. All appeals must be in writing and include a brief statement of the problem and previous steps to resolve it. All administrative decisions will be sent to the student in writing. These procedures are part of the Student Grievance Policy 5401-15 which can be reviewed upon request in the Office of Student Life (Matt. 18:15-17).

Enrollment Status

Full-Time/Part-Time Status
Traditional Undergraduate students are classified as full-time when enrolled for 12 or more credits in the fall or spring semester. Students enrolled for fewer than 12 credits are classified as part-time.

Non-Matriculating Status
A student who does not intend to seek a degree may be admitted as a non-matriculating student. Non-matriculating students are designated as “part-time only” and are limited to a part-time credit load. Part-time only, non-matriculating students are required to complete the admission process for matriculation (1) if they intend to enroll as full-time students or (2) when they have successfully completed 30 credits.

Audit/Credit Status
Students may change classification from audit to credit or credit to audit in a course during the first half of the course with the permission of the professor. A form for this is available in the Registrar’s Office. Permission will be given only if the student is maintaining a passing grade at the time of the request.

Planned Transfer Credit (After Matriculation)
Students who find it advantageous to take a course at another university to meet a graduation requirement at Cairn must obtain approval prior to enrolling in the course. The appropriate signature required on a Planned Transfer Form available in the Registrar’s Office and a grade of “C” or above in the course, assure the student of the course’s transferability.

  • Credit will be granted for up to 12 credits taken by CLEP (College Level Examination Program). The subject material must be appropriate to the student’s Cairn University curriculum. A minimum score of 50 is required for credit to be awarded.
  • A maximum of 12 credits of the Liberal Arts and Sciences core curriculum may be taken at other academic institutions by Cairn students from the time they first matriculate at the university until they graduate. This limit includes both planned transfer credits and CLEP. Credits earned prior to matriculating at Cairn are not counted toward this limit.
  • All transfer credit, including planned transfer credit, CLEP, and credit for prior learning must be completed prior to the semester in which a student will graduate. In addition, official transcripts of this transfer credit and/or other required paperwork must be received by the Registrar’s Office prior to the graduation application deadline for that semester.


Academic Classification

Students are classified academically according to the following guidelines:

CLASSIFICATIONMinimum Credits Passed
5th Year Senior128
FreshmanFewer than 28


Social Classification

Students are normally considered in the same social classification as their academic classification; however, second semester entrants are permitted to be classified socially with the class which entered the preceding September, provided they have completed the following number of credits:

CLASSIFICATIONMinimum Credits Passed
5th Year Senior104

Course Enrollment

Course Load

A full academic load is considered to be 12-18 credits. Students wishing to take 19-21 credits may do so with permission from their faculty advisor, provided their GPA is 3.0 or above. Students may not take 22 or more credits unless their GPA is 3.5 or above.

In-Residence Requirement

The university requires 60 credits in residence to qualify for the baccalaureate degree program. Various schools within the university have required in-residence credits/courses. See the undergraduate catalog and the Academic Policy Manual for more detailed information.

Repetition of Courses

A course in which an “F” has been earned may be repeated twice; a course a student has passed but received a grade below “C” (2.00) may be repeated once. Courses repeated or taken for the third time may not be used to determine eligibility for financial aid. For repeated courses, only the higher grade will be calculated into the student’s cumulative grade point average.

Independent Study

When a student’s graduation is jeopardized as a result of a scheduling problem caused by an action of the university, the student will be eligible to take the course by independent study, under the guidelines outlined in the Academic Policy Manual. Students who postpone regularly scheduled courses and then later experience a schedule conflict will be able to take an independent study only at the discretion of the professor and will be charged an additional fee beyond the regular tuition.

Juniors or seniors whose GPA is 3.0 or above, and who desire to do an independent study in a content area not covered in an established course, may request permission by completing the forms available in the Registrar’s Office. Specific requirements for both the cooperating professor and the student are stipulated in the Academic Policy Manual.

Audit Policy

Students taking 12 or more credits will be permitted to audit one course of their choice, without fee, provided there are openings in the course. The option to audit will be made available to students only after registration has been completed and it is determined that auditors will be permitted in the course.

Add/Drop Policy

Students are permitted to drop and add courses for no charge during the first two weeks of the semester. Following this period, students must use the course withdrawal process. A $25.00 charge is imposed if changes are made without approval.

Students may not drop their last or only class in a term after having attended the course. In such an instance, students must follow the university withdrawal procedure.


Graduation Requirements

The university confers baccalaureate degrees on students who have fulfilled the following conditions:

  • Completion of one of the programs offered by the university with a grade point average of 2.0 (C) or above. A minimum of 60 credits must have been taken at Cairn University for a bachelor’s degree.
  • Evidence of dependability and progress in Christian ministry as mutually evaluated by the directors of the University Ministry Center and of the candidate’s chosen program.
  • Approved Christian character as evidenced by stability, maturity, and cooperation.
  • Approval of the faculty and board of trustees.
  • Submission of a completed application for graduation.


Commencement Participation

In order to participate in the fall or spring commencement exercises, students must complete all requirements, as stated above, with a cumulative grade point average of at least 2.0 (C) by the graduation date and have completed all other graduation requirements, including student ministries, summer courses, student teaching, or social work field placement. All transfer credit, including planned transfer credit, CLEP, and credit for prior learning, must be completed prior to the semester in which a student will graduate. Official transcripts of this transfer credit and/or other required paperwork must be received by the Registrar’s Office prior to the graduation application deadline for that semester. Students who are unable to participate in the May commencement must defer participation until December. Likewise, students who are unable to complete requirements by December must defer commencement until May.

Candidates for graduation must meet all financial commitments to the university by November 1 (for the December ceremony) or April 1 (for the May ceremony) in order to participate in commencement. In addition, those with unpaid student account balances and/or outstanding fines will not receive their diploma, certificate, or transcript until full payment is made.


Attendance Requirement

The university requires attendance at a minimum of 70% of class sessions, whether credit or audit. All absences for any reason are to be included in the 30% allowed; these include illnesses, personal problems and university-sponsored activities (intercollegiate athletic events, field trips, tours of musical groups and similar activities). Students who do not attend seventy percent of class sessions will receive a failing grade for the course. Professors may set attendance requirements higher than the 70 percent established by the university. Absences in excess of the stated attendance policy of either the university or the individual faculty member can result in a final grade of “F” for the course. Appeals for special consideration should be directed to the dean of the school in which the course is offered.

Absences Due to Illness

Students who are unable to attend classes because of illness or hospitalization should follow up personally with their professors. Missing class due to illness is part of the collective 30 percent absences allowed in a course.

Class Cancellation

Unexpected class cancellation due to illness or emergency will be announced as soon as known. Notice will be posted in the classroom by the appropriate office. Should weather warrant cancellation of classes, students will be notified using the emergency text alert system. Students can, and should, update their information and subscribe to emergency alerts here.

Class Dismissal

Students are required to wait 15 minutes after the scheduled start of the class for a professor who has not arrived. Normally the class will be notified of a cancellation due to illness or emergency for the professor.

Class Visitors

Students who wish to bring visitors to class must obtain permission from the professor before the beginning of class. Visitors should also be registered with University Admissions.


Withdrawal from a Course

Students may withdraw from a course through the first two-thirds of a course with approval from the faculty member and academic advisor. Paper forms are available in the Registrar’s Office. An electronic form is also available at www.cairn.edu/registrar Registration adjustments during the first two weeks of a semester are handled via the add/drop process. Following this period, students must submit a course withdrawal form ($10.00 fee/form). The course from which a student withdraws will be graded with a “W”. Any student who unofficially withdraws himself from a course due to excessive absences will receive a grade of “F”.

Financial Adjustments from course withdrawal applies only when the withdrawal is official and the student is taking fewer than 12 credits or more than 18. If withdrawal from a course during the established add/drop period drops a student below 12 credits, tuition and financial aid will be adjusted accordingly. This tuition adjustment is based on the difference of original tuition amount and the new tuition charge. If withdrawal from a course occurs during the period following the established add/drop period, tuition will be adjusted based on the refund chart under the university Withdrawal Refund Policy (see Business Services).

In cases involving enrollment in one summer session, withdrawal constitutes a course withdrawal, not a university withdrawal, and a “W” grade will be issued.

International students holding an F-1 visa may not take fewer than 12 credits in a fall or spring semester.

Withdrawal from the University

Withdrawal from the university during the semester is generally inadvisable. Nevertheless, unavoidable circumstances occasionally make withdrawal necessary; therefore, a student feeling it necessary to withdraw should follow the procedure outlined below:

  • Students are considered on record until they officially withdraw or are notified by default that they have officially withdrawn themselves. All pertinent school regulations are binding until there has been an official withdrawal or notification by the university of official withdrawal.
  • The preferred procedure is to complete the university withdrawal form, which includes an interview in the Office of Student Life, and submit it to the Business Services Office. However, an oral or email statement of intent to withdraw from the university made to the Registrar’s Office will also be considered official.
  • A refund will not be given (see Tuition Refund) until the official withdrawal procedures are completed.
  • Upon official withdrawal from the university, the student’s academic record will show a “W” for courses in progress. Failure to complete the necessary withdrawal procedures results in a final grade of “F” for all courses in progress.
  • For financial regulations affecting withdrawals, see Business Services.

Additional Policies

Academic Policy Manual

The university rules, regulations, and procedures relating to academic policies are described in the Academic Policy Manual, copies of which may be found in the Registrar’s Office.

Academic Program Changes

Students desiring to change their academic program should secure a Change of Program form at the Registrar’s Office and then confer with the director or chair of both the old and new programs for further instructions An electronic version of the form is also available at cairn.edu/registrar.

Registrar’s Office

Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act

The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) affords students certain rights with respect to their education records. These rights include:

  • Students have the right to inspect and review their own education records within 45 days of the date the university receives a request for access. Students should submit to the registrar, dean, head of the academic department, or other appropriate official, written requests that identify the record(s) they wish to inspect. The university official will make arrangements for access and notify the student of the time and place where the records may be inspected. If the records are not maintained by the university official to whom the request was submitted, that official shall advise the student of the correct official to whom the request should be addressed.
  • Students have the right to request the amendment of education records that the student believes are inaccurate or misleading. Students may ask the University to amend a record that they believe is inaccurate or misleading. They should write the University official responsible for the record; clearly identifying the part of the record they want changed, and specifies why it is inaccurate or misleading. If the university decides not to amend the record as requested by the student, the university will notify the student of the decision and advise the student of his or her right to a hearing regarding the request for amendment. Additional information regarding the hearing procedures will be provided to the student when notified of the right to a hearing.
  • Students have the right to consent to disclosures of personally identifiable information contained in the student’s education records, except to the extent that FERPA authorizes disclosure without consent. One exception which permits disclosure without consent is disclosure to school officials with legitimate educational interests. A school official is a person employed by the university in an administrative, supervisory, academic or research, or support staff position (including law enforcement unit personnel and health staff); a person or company with whom the university has contracted (such as an attorney, auditor, or collection agent); a person serving on the Board of Trustees; or a student serving on an official committee, such as a disciplinary or grievance committee, or assisting another school official in performing his or her tasks. A school official has a legitimate educational interest if the official needs to review an education record in order to fulfill his or her professional responsibility. Upon request, the university may disclose education records without consent to officials of another school in which a student seeks or intends to enroll.
  • The university considers some information to be directory information which may be disclosed to others without student permission. This includes items such as name, address, telephone number, email address, dates of enrollment, classification, degree(s) received, awards, honors, program of study, previous institutions attended, date and place of birth, participation in activities, height and weight of members of athletic teams, and photographic image of the student. However, if a student does not want this information released, he or she must fill out the “Request to Withhold Directory Information” form. This form must be filled out each year by October 15 in order for the university to withhold this information.
  • Students have the right to file a complaint with the U.S. Department of Education concerning alleged failures by Cairn University to comply with the requirements of FERPA.

Waiver of Privacy of Educational Records

Students have the right to the protection of the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA). However, students may choose to waive this right and allow information to be shared with those that they designate by completing a waiver form. This form will be given to students as they enter the university. Students may rescind the waiver or change designated individuals at any time during their enrollment by completing another form and submitting it to the Registrar’s Office.

Student Location Policy

Each student is responsible to communicate to the University their permanent home address and any current address if their location is other than their permanent address or University residence hall. An active status student should submit a Change of Address Form found on the Student Resource Hub if their permanent home address changes or their current/temporary address changes if their location is other than their permanent home address or University residence hall.

A student enrolled in a program leading to licensure or certification should be aware that changing their physical location may impact their ability to meet state licensure of certification requirements, which vary by state. The student should review the Licensure and Certification Disclosures on Cairn University’s website and consult their advisor regarding state licensure and certification requirements.

Academic Resource Center

It is our desire that you have every opportunity to succeed in completing your degree at Cairn. As a university student, you assume the responsibility for your progress; however, we do not want you to feel overwhelmed by the pace or load of work. To that end, the university provides essential services to aid you in your studies. The Academic Resource Center (ARC) exists to serve the entire student body at Cairn University through provision of Academic Support Services in the ARC and the provision of accommodations for qualifying students through Disability Services. Personal care is given to each student through an individualized plan. Students interested in utilizing ARC services may fill out an intake form in the ARC or can fill out an electronic form on the ARC webpage (https://cairn.edu/arc/).


Disability Services

Students interested in receiving ADA accommodations must complete and submit an Application for Accommodations along with appropriate documentation and meet with Academic Resource Center staff. Forms and guidelines for documentation can be found in the Academic Resource Center or on the ARC webpage (https://cairn.edu/arc/).


Academic Support Services

The Academic Resource Center works closely with specific student groups such as those in the Academic Success Program or those on academic probation, however all students are encouraged to take advantage of the services available. ARC Support Services help students develop academic skills, better understand course content, and are all free of charge. Services include:

  • Study Skill Sessions: Study Skill Sessions help students evaluate their own study habits as well as develop new study skills to help them become successful learners and test takers.
  • Time Management Sessions: Time Management Sessions help students plan their time and use it well. In Time Management Sessions, Academic Coaches show students how to use class syllabi in conjunction with online and paper tools to manage their time better. This can be a one-time or weekly recurring session.
  • Writing Lab: The Writing lab is a tutoring service open to students at all levels of writing ability. It is a resource for honing organizational, grammar, and formatting skills, while learning to build a writing style.
  • English Language Partners: English Language Partners helps student develop their English skills through real conversations and exercises.
  • Math Lab: The Math Lab is a tutoring service open to students at all levels of mathematics can utilize the Lab as a resource for honing mathematical skills and better understanding material from class.

Academic Opportunities

Honors Program

The Honors program at Cairn University is a traditional undergraduate student program that seeks to develop Christian scholars who integrate biblical studies with their general and professional education. The essence of the program is a biblically centered, inter-disciplinary community. The program provides an enriching and challenging education for academically accomplished students. Students accepted into the program are generally those who have graduated from high school with a superior academic record. Honors students are expected to be well-read and to demonstrate good writing skills, as Honors work revolves around effective communication in the English language.

Study Abroad

The university offers qualified traditional undergraduate students an opportunity to complete part of their coursework studying abroad. It is strongly recommended that this take place in the student’s third year. Cairn requires that a student have a minimum grade point average of 2.50 to participate.

To facilitate studying abroad, Cairn has affiliations with five organizations: BestSemester, GO ED, Jerusalem University College, Rome with Purpose, and Veritas Christian Study Abroad. Although students are not on the Langhorne campus while participating in these study abroad programs, they are nevertheless fully matriculated Cairn students.

The cost for these study abroad programs varies depending on the program and location chosen. Financial aid in the form of state and federal grants and student loans can be used toward the university’s study abroad programs.

Students interested in a study abroad program must complete a Cairn study abroad application prior to applying to the program. These applications are available in the Registrar’s Office. Further information is available in the Undergraduate Catalog.

Academic Standing

Grading System

Cairn follows the 4.0 grade point system and requires a 2.0 (C) average for graduation.


Grade Point Average

Per Semester Credit

A- 3.67
B+Above Average3.33
B 3.00
B- 2.67
C 2.00
C- 1.67
D+Below Average1.33
D 1.00
D- .67
F 0.00


Additional Grade Report Terminology

CRCredit Granted
NCNo Credit
WWithdrew from university
SSatisfactory grade in non-credit course
UUnsatisfactory grade in non-credit course
IAInsufficient attendance while auditing
NRNo grade reported

*An incomplete (I) grade may be issued by a faculty member in lieu of a final grade when course requirements have not been met by the end of a semester. An Incomplete Grade Contract must be completed by the faculty member and signed by the student. A maximum of 12 weeks will be allowed for completion of course requirements. Removal of an “I” or “NR” is the responsibility of the student. No student may graduate with an “I” or “NR” in any course.


Warning Notices

Any student whose grade is “D” or “F” in a course at mid-semester will receive notification. Upon receipt of this notice, students should consult with their academic advisor and course professor.


Dean’s List

Matriculated students who are carrying a minimum of 12 hours, whose semester grade point average is 3.67 or above, and who are approved by Student Life and the University Ministry Center, will be placed on the Dean’s List.

Good Academic Standing

A student is considered to be in good academic standing when he or she meets the following qualitative criteria:

Attempted CreditsMinimum GPA
61 +2.00

Students who fall below these thresholds will be placed on Academic Probation.


Academic Probation Status

Students who do not maintain good academic standing will be placed on academic probation for the following semester. Entering students taking their first semester of university work may be placed on probation at mid-semester if their grades warrant such action. Academic probation consists of the following requirements and restrictions:

  • Probationary students are required to meet with the Academic Resource Center for an academic evaluation and to develop a student success plan. In addition, students are expected to meet subsequently with their academic advisor to discuss the implementation of the success plan.
  • Probationary students are not permitted to participate in intercollegiate athletics during any semester that they are on Academic Probation.
  • Probationary students may participate in only one extracurricular activity pending approval in writing by Student Life.
  • Probationary students are not permitted to hold office in student organizations.


Academic Dismissal

Students whose cumulative grade point average is below the academic minimum at the end of a semester will be subject to academic dismissal and will be notified if dismissal action is taken. The minimum requirements are as follows:

Attempted CreditsMinimum GPA
1-18no minimum

If extenuating circumstances are present, the student may appeal an academic dismissal decision to the dean of the respective school within two weeks of receipt of the dismissal letter.

Student Resources

The Office of Student Life recognizes that, for most students, this is the first occasion for life apart from family care. This freedom and adjustment is therefore tempered by services that are offered by the university to provide safety and care on campus. Providing a safe campus, quality food choices, well-maintained facilities, and health and counseling services are core services rendered.

When you are a student at a university, the focus is often on the courses, the curriculum, and the work that must be completed. While this is a large component of what you will accomplish, much of your time will be spent in human interaction. As a university, our focus is not just on you as a student, but also on the daily needs you will have as a person. Just as it is important for us to be deliberate in planning academic and spiritual components to our university, we must also plan deliberate components of care. Every student represents common and individual concerns. Our goal is to meet daily corporate needs of students from the meals that we offer to the upkeep of the facilities. Likewise, it is our intention to be prepared for your personal needs of healthcare, counseling, and employment. We have professional care providers ready to assist and direct you during your time as a student.

Student Health Services

The university has designed a comprehensive plan to meet your health needs. While our systems are designed to take care of the immediate health needs that develop through the course of your enrollment, we have also designed preventative programs that encourage healthy living and make you aware of health related issues. The two divisions of our Student Health Services are the Health Center and the OASIS Counseling Center. Together the personnel that staff these offices are committed to finding healthy solutions. When more critical needs arise, students will be referred to professional care providers in the community. Cairn has built relationships with area providers to ensure that our students have the opportunity to take advantage of local health related resources.

Health Center

The University Health Center exists to advance the health of students by providing primary health care, prevention-focused services, and learning experiences which develop health knowledge and skills. The center is staffed by a registered nurse. Hours are set according to campus needs; Monday through Friday, 8:00 am to 4:30 pm. The following services are provided:

  • Outpatient nursing care and first aid to students with medical concerns.
  • Over the counter medications as ordered by a physician.
  • Nebulizer treatments as ordered by a physician
  • Tb testing
  • Inpatient beds for observation during daytime hours when needed
  • Blood pressure screening
  • Health promotion and disease prevention information
  • Weight management information
  • Wellness initiatives
  • Natural wellness options and education

Referrals for health care needs that are beyond the scope of practice for Cairn University’s Health Center, such as referrals to area specialists, radiology facilities, urgent care facilities, or local emergency departments will be made by the Health Center nurse.

Health situations that develop during non-office hours can be addressed through resident personnel or the Office of Safety and Security. Life-threatening medical emergencies should be handled by dialing 911, the Office of Safety and Security at 215.702.4350, and the responsible resident staff. In order to assist our Health Center and be in compliance with health regulations, all students are required to complete a health form which documents medical history and immunization records. Students are to report any changes in health information or newly prescribed medications to the nurse for inclusion in his/her health record. Students who have not completed the health form will not be permitted to attend classes or live in the residence halls. Be aware of the following:

  • Medical services are rendered for illness or accidents that occur at the university during a semester or alternate session.
  • Spouses and children of students along with alumni are not eligible to receive treatment.
  • Any student under the age of 18 must have a parent sign a consent and release form allowing the student to receive health services.
  • Students who are on prescription medication should inform the Health Center of the medication, the dosage, and the diagnosis.
  • Students who must use syringes or any other “sharps” must report this to the Health Center immediately upon arrival. Medical documentation is required. Proper disposal of this equipment must be maintained. A disposal container must be arranged through the nurse. Students must deliver containers back to the nurse upon completion or in order to exchange containers.
  • The Health Center does not disperse prescription medications.

There are occasions when a medical condition may prohibit you from attending classes, living in the residence halls, or being on campus. Any outbreak of Chicken Pox, Measles, Mumps, or COVID-19 will bring about immediate care and isolation issues. There are scenarios when you might be required to leave and other scenarios when you would be quarantined and not permitted to leave or travel.

Students will be evaluated on an individual case by case basis in the event that a medical condition interrupts the semester. When possible, the university will work with you and your professors to allow additional time to get work accomplished. There may be scenarios when the best course of action will be for you to withdraw from the university for the semester until your health is stabilized.

After-hours Health Related Issues

Health situations that develop during non-office hours can be addressed through Residence Life personnel or the Office of Safety and Security. Professional Residence Life staff are trained and certified in first aid, cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) and automated external defibrillator (AED) use. Life-threatening medical emergencies should be handled by dialing 911, the Office of Safety and Security at 215.702.4350, and the responsible resident staff.

OASIS Counseling Center

Oasis provides personal, spiritual and emotional counseling support and direction to university students. Students are provided with four sessions at no cost. Subsequent sessions are $25 per session. If the fee is a hardship, let your counselor know, as Oasis may be able to help. Counselors are prepared to help you work with a wide range of issues including anxiety, depression, body image, relationship counseling, pre-marital counseling, family conflict, adjustments to college, and more. Most of the resources of the center are focused on individual counseling needs.

The mission of OASIS is to provide care, support and guidance for the emotional, spiritual, social, and psychological growth and well-being of the students of the university.

  • OASIS is a safe place where students can seek assistance in the challenging circumstances of life.
  • OASIS staff will provide professional guidance that is biblically centered, designed to support the students and morally responsible before God.
  • All conversations with OASIS staff are kept in strictest confidence as defined by the American Association of Christian Counseling Code of Ethics and the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.
  • The ultimate goal of the OASIS is to assist all Cairn students along the path of growth and sanctification, making each student better prepared to live out God’s calling upon their life.
  • OASIS will strive to assist the student to the limit of their abilities and expertise. When the needs of the student exceed the limits of the counseling staff, partnerships with both internal university services and qualified external resources will be explored.

You can make an appointment by stopping in at the Center located on the first floor of the Smith Building. For more information call 215.702.4224 or email [email protected].

Health Services Wellness Initiatives

Wellness Initiatives are a means of the university combining the efforts of several departments to promote healthy living and fitness. The Office of Student Life, the Health Center, OASIS, and the Athletic Department are the driving force in these initiatives. Our goal is to offer several events and seminars each semester. We desire to offer every student an area of interest and participation. Cairn will bring in professionals in the healthcare industry to provide expertise and training. Creating knowledge and dialogue are vital aspects of healthy choices. Students will be informed of these programs through internal communication and advertising.

Cairn Fitness Center

The Fitness Center is designed for fitness, athletic training and recreational use by members of the Cairn community.  The Fitness Center offers a facility that provides a quality fitness area which services Cairn students who are currently enrolled in classes, alumni, employees, and their spouses and dependents age 16 and above. Authorized non-matriculated guests may purchase an ID by paying a small annual fee of $25.00 to the Business Services office and then going to the Office of Student Life to get the photo ID. The ID policy is designed to maintain the security of the building, prevent unauthorized use of the facilities, protect the university from liability from unauthorized users, and provide a safe and comfortable environment for the Cairn University community.

As a community-oriented facility, the rules of Fitness Center are designed for the protection of our Fitness Center users, employees and facilities.  Please observe all posted signs and directions given by Fitness Center staff.  The Fitness Center staff is university employees, and all Fitness Center patrons are expected to comply with their requests. For more information regarding specific Fitness Center policies and procedures please contact the university’s Athletic Department.

Fitness Center Regulations:

  • Individuals may gain access with a valid Cairn ID.
  • Unauthorized use of the Cairn Fitness Center is strictly prohibited.
  • Allowing access to unauthorized persons is strictly prohibited. Those violating this regulation may have their own access rights to the fitness center revoked.
  • No one under the age of 16 is allowed to use the Fitness Center at any time.
  • Under no circumstance will the Fitness Center be used for personal training.
  • If an individual refuses to leave, the fitness center supervisor will call the office of Safety and Security.
  • Proper attire must be worn at all times (no halter tops, sports-bras only, half shirts, plastic or rubberized suits, cut-offs, or street clothes are allowed). Proper attire includes proper footwear and shirts. Sandals, bare feet, street shoes, flats, boots, Jeans, slacks, and skirts are unacceptable.
  • Physical education classes, as well as athletic teams, will have priority on all machines during scheduled class/practice time(s), which may include private use of the facility.
  • The equipment is to be used properly at all times. Any violation of abuse will result in the revocation of Fitness Center privileges.
  • Weights are to be re-racked after use.
  • Users are required to clean the machines/benches/weights after each use. Cleaning stations are available throughout the Fitness Center for your convenience.
  • Personal towels will not be supplied at any time. If you wish to use a towel while you work out, you need to bring one with you.
  • No food or drinks are permitted in the Fitness Center, with the exception of water bottles and fitness drinks with closable lids.
  • At no time will an unauthorized public stereo system be allowed in the Fitness Center. However, you may bring personal listening devices and utilize the charging stations on the aerobic equipment.
  • At no time will Fitness Center users be permitted to operate the televisions. Access to the remote will be restricted to the Fitness Center student worker at all times.
  • Yelling, abusive language, or any other behavior that disturbs other users of the Fitness Center will not be permitted.
  • Please utilize the cubbies along the wall for storing personal items. Whenever possible, users should utilize the locker rooms.  Cairn is not responsible for any lost or stolen items.
  • Report any inappropriate activity, problems, or injury immediately to the Fitness Center student worker or contact the Athletic Office.

Accessing Fitness CenterTo gain access to workout you must:

  • Scan in with a valid Cairn ID.
  • A valid CU ID is issued by the university, is current and is in operational condition. Any non-operational ID cards must be replaced prior to the person using the Fitness Center.
  • For alumni, spouses, and dependents the membership card/ID is required, and must be presented.  To obtain this membership card please pay the fee to Business Services and go to Student Life for the card.
  • Complete a liability form at the front desk.
  • In the event that a liability form has not been completed, it must be completed in its entirety prior to use of the Fitness Center.
  • Be wearing the proper workout attire.
  • Please refer to the Fitness Center rules and regulations above for further clarification regarding attire.

The Cairn University Fitness Center staff reserves the right to deny access to Fitness Center users who do not follow the above policies and rules. Repeated violations of the above expectations may result in the loss of Fitness Center privileges and/or disciplinary sanctions.


Prevention of Alcohol and Drug Abuse

Cairn recognizes the wisdom of biblical teaching on self-control, indulgent or excessive behaviors, and maintaining the human body; therefore, the university has established that the campus is alcohol, drug, and tobacco free. Cairn operates in compliance with the Drug-Free Workplace Act of 1988 and the Drug-Free Schools and Communities Act of 1989. In addition to these Acts, we comply with all state and federal statutes and regulations regarding alcohol and drug use.

Tobacco, alcohol, illegal drugs, including illegally obtained prescription drugs are prohibited on the university campus. All state and federal laws concerning these are to be strictly observed. In addition, the possession or use of electronic cigarettes (e-cigarettes) or other recreational vapes in any context, on or away from campus, is strictly prohibited. As well, undergraduate students will not possess, use, or distribute tobacco, alcohol, illegal drugs, including illegally obtained prescription drugs and similar elements, on or away from campus. Attendance at clubs, bars, and similar places is prohibited.

Substance abuse is a major social and medical problem in the United States. It is known that serious consequences result from abuse for the abuser. Abusers create problems for themselves and also indirectly for employers, coworkers, classmates, family, and society in general. Substance abuse problems can develop in men and women of all ages, races and occupations.

The university, through the Office of Student Life, Health Services, and the Human Resources Department, distributes literature informing students and employees of the dangers of drug and alcohol abuse and provides information on available alcohol and drug counseling, rehabilitation and student assistance programs.

The university has two levels of prevention programming. The primary level of programming is directed towards education, decision making, discussion, and healthy living. The secondary level of programming is aimed at individuals who have acknowledged abuse and are seeking treatment. When possible, the university seeks to have students confront the abuse and begin a recovery program. Violation of the university policy will result in immediate disciplinary action including, but not limited to, a written reprimand, educational training, suspension, mandatory rehabilitation, or dismissal. In some occasions, the university may decide that a student can no longer be part of the Cairn community based on their substance abuse and decision making. A copy of the University Alcohol and Drug policy is available through any of the Health Service offices, the Office of Student Life, or the Office of Safety and Security.


Self-Harm Policy

The Bible teaches us that each person’s life is precious to God; yet in times of great distress, people will occasionally engage in harmful, self-injurious behaviors. Cairn recognizes that those who are finding self-harm a reasonable alternative to facing the difficulties of this world need others to come alongside them and lend direction and support during crisis. Cairn has created a response plan to address and provide guidance in situations where a student engages in self harm. Depending on the nature of the situation, the university may choose to respond in a variety of ways which may include accountability, counseling, and psychological assessment. In every situation, the university will attempt to allow the student to have the opportunity to choose a healthy response.


Body Image and Eating Disorder

Students who arrive on campus struggling or sometime thereafter begin to struggle with issues of body image and eating disorders are encouraged to receive counsel and support. Students can reach out to RAs, RDs or any member of Health Services including the nurse and the OASIS Counseling Center. The goal of university support is to provide encouragement, accountability and healthy living. In severe cases, the university reserves the right to establish a baseline weight and set up monitoring to ensure that the student remains in a healthy disposition and can live in Cairn resident sites.


Student Insurance

All full-time students are required to have health insurance coverage. Students will receive an email from Academic Health Plans (AHP) with a link to submit their insurance information.  The student must login to Cairn’s Academic Health Plan website (cairn.myahpcare.com) to either enroll in the University Student Health Insurance plan (for students without coverage) or provide proof of existing health insurance coverage to waive the USHI.

Please be advised that the Health Insurance Waiver must be submitted by August 1 for fall students or January 1 for spring students to avoid a non-refundable charge for the university’s Student Health Insurance Plan to your student account.

Food Services

Furman Dining Commons Hours of Service

Unlimited Meal Hours

Mon-Fri – 7:15 am – 7:00 pm

Sunday – 12:00 pm – 6:00 pm

Full Service Hours

Hot Breakfast7:15-8:45 am8:30am-9:30am8:30am-9:30am
Cold Breakfast7:15-10:00am8:30am-10:00am8:30am-9:45am

Highlands Hours of Service

Monday-Friday 7:30AM -8:30PM

Meal Costs for Non-Meal Plan Students and Guests

MealApplicable TimesEntry Cost for Non-Meal Plan StudentsEntry Cost for Guests
Breakfast7:15-10:00 am$5.25$5.75
Lunch10:00 am-5:00 pm$6.25$6.75
Dinner5:00-7:00 pm$7.00$7.25

Your dining experience at Cairn focuses on two facilities: the Furman Dining Commons  and the Highlands. Pioneer College Caterers Inc. are contracted to provide meal services to the campus. To meet your needs, the university has designed a food service format that is student friendly and cost effective. Resident students must purchase a meal plan unless they receive a medical waiver.


Meal Plan Options

Two meal plans are available: The unlimited access continuous service plan allows board plan students to enter the Dining Commons as often as they like from 7:15 A.M. to 7:00 P.M. Monday through Friday and during the scheduled hours of operation on weekends.

The “9-meal plan” allows admission to any 9 meals served each week. This plan is provided only for Social Work and Education majors during the semester in which they have field placement and student teaching.

The Dining Commons can accommodate a wide variety of dietary needs. Students with special dietary needs should discuss those needs with the Food Service Director. Those who believe their specific needs cannot be met by the university’s meal plan for medical reasons should contact the university nurse. Each request for a medical waiver will be evaluated individually. Medical documentation is required.


Meal Plan Schedule

Meal plans are designed to serve students throughout the normal period that the university is holding classes. You will find the schedule updated and posted each time the university schedule approaches a break. Students staying on campus during breaks will not be on the meal plan. During small breaks, food services are limited to lunch or not provided at all. The schedule of operation for meal plan service is usually:

  • From dinner on the Saturday two days before the first day of class in the fall semester through dinner on the Friday before fall break.
  • From dinner on the Tuesday after fall break through dinner on the Tuesday before Thanksgiving
  • From dinner on the Sunday after Thanksgiving through dinner on the day of the last exam of the fall semester.
  • From dinner on the Saturday before the first day of class in the spring semester through dinner on the Friday before spring break in the spring semester.
  • From dinner on the Sunday after spring break through dinner on the Thursday before Easter.
  • From dinner on the Monday after Easter through dinner on the day of the last exam of the spring semester.


Furman Dining Commons

Schedule: The Furman Dining Commons offers unlimited access and continuous service for unlimited meal plan students Monday through Friday. This service is available from 7:15 A.M. until 7:00 P.M. During peak meal hours, the Dining Commons will offer full meal service. Outside of these hours Monday through Friday, the toaster, cereal, soup, salad, and deli bar(s) will be open continuously. Additionally, Monday through Friday, at least one hot entree will be available during the period between the traditional lunch and dinner hours.

Realizing the schedule challenges associated with church attendance and ministry responsibilities on Sundays, the Dining Commons will be open between the Sunday lunch and dinner periods shown above and will offer appropriate hot food in addition to the normally available bars. This schedule should accommodate the needs of all students.

Format: The Dining Commons operates on a self-service, “all you can eat” basis, but good stewardship dictates that students should only take food which they will eat.

Unlimited meal plan participants may enter the Dining Commons as often as they want any time the Dining Commons is open and must have their ID card scanned each time they enter. If a meal plan participant doesn’t have his/her ID card, he/she must pay the Dining Commons cashier for the meal and obtain a receipt. The Dining Commons cashier will refund the amount paid when the meal plan participant returns with his/her ID card.

All plates, silverware, cups, and mugs are to remain within the Furman Dining Commons . Students found to be removing these items may be subject to a disciplinary response.

Non-Meal Plan Diners: Commuter students and anyone else not on a meal plan may enter any time the Dining Commons is open by paying the posted cash price or by having the cash price deducted from the Flex $ balance they have placed on their ID card.

Eating Dining Commons food which the diner has not paid for is theft. Patrons may not share or give Dining Commons food or drink to nonpaying guests. Students who are found to be providing food to non-patrons of the Dining Commons will be subject to disciplinary sanctions.

Entrance: The only entrance to the Furman Dining Commons  is located by the register/ID station. It is inappropriate to allow, or provide an opportunity for, anyone to enter into the Dining Commons through the back door.

Decorum: The Furman Dining Commons  is the university’s dining room – those eating in the Dining Commons  should conduct themselves appropriately.


Food Service Procedures

Green on the Go
The “Green on the Go” containers are available to use for takeout meals in both the Furman Dining Commons  and the Café. These “green” friendly containers are provided to students in the event that they are unable to eat in the cafeteria. The cost of the container is a $5 deposit which will be refunded at the end of the semester when a student returns either a “Green on the Go” card or the complete “Green on the Go” take out container (which includes the container a fork, knife, and spoon). This container can be purchased at the register in the Furman Dining Commons.


As part of efforts to bring you responsible care, the university has an Office of Safety and Security (OSS) which patrols all grounds and facilities, and supervises the oversight of video monitoring around campus and within Cairn’s facilities. This security force is made up of full and part-time employees who direct the services provided. Students are also hired to fill the role of security officers throughout campus. Security officers are prepared to handle most student and campus emergencies or incidental needs. They work in connection with neighboring municipal police and fire officials to provide efficient services and protection.

Officers patrol the grounds of the campus 24/7/365. Their office is located in the Carriage House on the Fairview Manor property just north of the intersection of East Fairview Avenue and South Pine Street, as well as a satellite office on the first floor of the Mason Activity Center (MAC).



Security Phones

Courtesy phones are located throughout each building for dialing an on-campus line. The number to reach the Office of Safety and Security is posted at each location. In the case of an emergency, security call boxes are located at the entrance of Stillman, and Memorial residence halls.

Fire and Emergency Safety

All educational institutions must practice for fires and other emergencies. The OSS takes the lead in helping prepare for your safety. Regular drills and exercises will be scheduled. Drills are required by law and help us be prepared in case of emergency. These drills may be announced or unannounced. Although these exercises can be at awkward times and in inconvenient weather, they must be held and all community members must participate. A fine could be issued to anyone who willfully fails to evacuate a building or follow other fire drill instructions.

Any tampering or defacement of fire equipment is a serious offense and will result in a fine or penalty of $150.00. Equipment includes automatic door closers, pull stations, fire extinguishers, fire panels, and sounder boxes. Violating state and local fire codes, including pulling fire alarms, propping open fire doors (except in cases of emergency), and/or placing false 911 calls from a phone on campus are subject to fines and disciplinary sanctions. Further, students are not to attempt to dismantle or take batteries out of smoke detectors. Additional policies regarding fire safety are located in the handbook’s Residence Life section.

Vehicle Regulations and Parking

Students are welcome to bring a car onto campus. During your initial orientation and at the start of every semester, the Business Services Office will facilitate the registration of vehicles. This process is accomplished with the completion of an on-line registration request form. There are set fees for different types or locations of registration as indicated below. You will receive a parking permit decal which must be posted on the driver’s side rear window of the vehicle.

As you drive on campus please be aware of the following:

  • OSS is responsible for enforcing the motor vehicle rules and regulations. Any violation of parking regulations, speeding, recklessness, or other prohibited actions will be enforced via a citation from security.
  • All motor vehicles on campus must be insured with coverage meeting the requirements of the no-fault law.
  • All fine payments should be directed to the Business Services Office.
  • Any appeals or questions concerning a motor vehicle rules and regulations should be directed to the Office of Safety and Security.
  • Parking is limited at Heritage Hall and is permitted only by the proper color decal granted by the Office of Safety and Security.
  • The university currently has more than enough parking spaces. Be reminded you might not be able to park as close to the destination as you desire.
  • An annual registration fee is charged as listed below; additional or replacement parking permits may be purchased for a $1 fee.
Parking Permit TypeColorCost
Manor CampusBlue$50/year
Heritage HallOrange$50/year
  • Basic Parking Regulations:
    • Students may park in lots A, B, C, D, G, H, I, J, and K.
    • Students parked in or Lot E (visitors lot), between the hours of 6am and 5pm will be cited. Students may park in lot E between 5pm and 6am. Lots F and L are reserved parking only 24/7/365.
    • There is no parking allowed on Langhorne Manor residential streets. This disrupts our neighbors and inconveniences them, their parking needs, and normal community life. Violators will be cited.
    • All student vehicles must be registered with Cairn. Parking permits can be obtained from the Business Services Office. Vehicles parked on campus without a parking permit will be cited.
  • Students are expected to read, know and abide by the University’s Motor Vehicle Rules and Regulations. This publication is made available each August in preparation for the new undergraduate term. Additional information is also available on the university website.
Student ID Cards

Each student, faculty, and staff member is issued a photo identification card by the Office of Student Life upon entry into the university. The student’s ID card does not have to be visibly displayed at all times throughout the day, but does need to be carried at all time in order to assure access rights to the campus and facilities. Specifically, these cards are required for resident students to gain entrance to their residence hall, as well as for all students to be able to check books out of the Library, scanning attendance at Chapel and some classes, and for the use of the meal plan in the Dining Commons . As the university’s official form of identification, you are required to provide this ID in the event you are requested by any university official. Failure to provide identification to a university official upon request will result in a disciplinary sanction(s) and potentially the immediate removal from campus. In the event a student loses or damages an ID card (to the point of not operating), they may purchase a replacement within the Student Life office. The replacement cost is $10.00.


Community Relationships

The Cairn campus is located in Langhorne Manor Borough and Middletown Township. Cairn neighbors include local residents, the Woods School (a facility dedicated to the service of disadvantaged and trauma persons), and Langhorne Gardens Rehabilitation and Nursing Center. It is very important that all members of the Cairn community respect the rights and concerns of those who live in the broader community. Good citizenship for members of the community extends to little acts of kindness. The following are expected:

  • Obey all automobile traffic laws, such as the 25-mph speed limit on adjacent streets and the 15-mph on-campus roadway, and 10-mph parking lot speed limits, and stop at posted stop signs.
  • Refrain from parking on Manor and Fairview Avenues, and Park and Pine Streets.
  • Do not park in Langhorne Gardens Rehabilitation and Nursing Center parking lots.


Crisis Preparation

Critical Incident Response

Over the past decade Cairn has been actively planning and preparing for any type of critical incident that could cause disruption to the campus or danger to the members of the campus community. Crucial in this planning has been the organization of systems and procedures that would be implemented the moment any type of crisis has been declared. University personnel have been trained to follow a critical incident plan that is constantly evaluated and practiced to ensure the plan will work.

In the event of any type of emergency, students should immediately contact 911 and the Office of Safety and Security. This will set in motion the proper internal and external emergency responses. In the event the emergency constitutes a critical incident, the university will immediately implement the Critical Incident Response Team and communication messages will be promptly launched. At the time of a declared critical incident, the students, faculty and staff will need to be prepared to take immediate action, following the orders of those in command, whether they be civil authorities or campus officials.

Resident students are always considered to be part of their respective residence hall community, and as such, whenever a record of student presence needs to be established, the student should attempt to make contact with their resident team to verify safety and presence.

All students are required to have their university issued identification card with them at all times. The ID card does not have to be visibly displayed at all times throughout the day, but does need to be carried at all times in order to assure access rights to Cairn’s campus and facilities.

Emergency Communication

Cairn utilizes a comprehensive strategy for emergency communication during any type of campus crisis, severe weather event or infrastructure failure. The goal of this emergency system is threefold:

  • To notify as many individuals and locations as possible using conventional communication tools in normal situations.
  • To notify as many individuals and locations as possible without normal communication systems being operable.
  • Have constant updates of emergency information to specific groups.

With these goals in mind, the university uses a combination of phone, text, email, and web-based messages as the first tier of notification. When an emergency message needs to be communicated, a brief audio message will be sent to Cairn office and classroom phones, a written message will be sent to Cairn email clients on computers, a text message will be sent to the cell phones of those who have registered their cell phones and a written alert will appear on the Cairn intranet. The majority of the actions above will take place without any preliminary effort of the student. In order to receive text messages, the student must give the university their cell number and consent to be part of the text notification system. This is done at the beginning of each academic year as part of the initial access rights to Self-Service. The university also utilizes other forms of notification for particular types of emergency and will, if necessary, utilize an exterior audible campus emergency broadcast system for university wide notifications and alerts

When an emergency message has been received, the students should quickly obey the message communicated. Further updates will follow by way of conventional means and additional resources. These systems are tested numerous times throughout the year to ensure their efficiency and effectiveness.


Active Threat

Active threat situations are unpredictable, quickly evolving events. Cairn University has adopted the concept of Run, Hide, Fight as its response protocol to an active threat situation.  In the event of an active threat on campus, students should choose the option(s) available to them which may best ensure their survival:

  • Run:  Have an escape route and plan in mind; Leave your belongings behind; Keep your hands visible.
  • Hide:  Hide in an area out of the shooter’s view; Block entry to your hiding place, turn off lights and lock the doors; Silence your cell phone.
  • Fight:  Only as a last resort and only when your life is in imminent danger; Attempt to incapacitate the shooter; Act with physical aggression and throw items at the active shooter; commit to your actions.



Firearms and Weapons

Students may not have on campus, in their private vehicles, or in the residence halls any weapons (or “toys” which resemble weapons), including but not limited to, registered and unregistered guns, stun guns, live ammunition, fireworks or other explosive devices, pellet guns, BB guns, airsoft guns, paintball guns, CO2 guns, bow and arrows, crossbows, wrist rockets, water balloon launchers, swords, martial arts devices, whips, spears, dangerous chemicals, and knives over three inches long. This regulation also includes malicious use of any instrument capable of inflicting bodily harm to any person. Cairn reserves the right to confiscate these or other devices which are deemed dangerous to the students. Confiscated items may be returned at the end of the semester or disposed of at the discretion of the university. Students who have a question about a particular item should ask a member of Student Life before bringing it to campus.

Personal Property

The university cannot assume responsibility for loss due to theft of money, valuables, or personal property left in private rooms or public areas. Students are urged to lock their doors whenever they leave their residence hall room in order to protect their property. Thefts should be promptly reported to the Office of Safety and Security.

Students should not keep any sizable sum of money in their residence hall room. Several banks are near the campus for convenient banking and an ATM machine is available in the Student Lounge located in the Smith Administration Building. Information regarding local banks may be obtained from the Business Services Office.

University insurance does not cover the property of students for loss by fire, theft, or other natural disasters. Most family homeowner’s/tenant’s insurance covers students’ property away from home up to a specified limit as written into the policy. Students should check with their insurance company to see they are adequately covered for the value of their property while living on campus. Students can purchase commercial renters insurance as additional protection.

Federal Campus Security Act (Clery Act)

Each year the Office of Safety and Security releases a document in compliance with the Jeanne Clery Disclosure of Campus Security Policy and Campus Crime Statistics Act. Published in this document are statements of current campus policies regarding safety and security. The university must publish any incidents in the past 3 years in specific crime statistical categories and violations of substance abuse. 


Students are asked to help maintain a quiet atmosphere conducive to instruction in the classroom, business, and office areas. Student cooperation is needed in maintaining the cleanliness and orderliness of university facilities. The simple act of placing trash in the appropriate containers will make a difference. Any damage to public areas in any university building should be reported to the Campus Services Office during business hours or the security guard on duty after business hours. This also includes custodial services-type matters such as food or drink spills.


Reservation of Facilities

The number, variety, and overlap of events requiring facilities reservations occurring on the university’s campus significantly increases each year. Consequently, in order to maximize the success of coordinating these events and enhance our ability to efficiently and effectively meet staff, faculty, and student needs it is important to properly and promptly reserve your desired facilities.

Any event or activity must be approved through the Facilities Use Coordinator by filling out and submitting a “Campus Event Scheduling Form” (obtain this form in the Office of Student Life) one month before the event will be scheduled and rooms may be reserved. Keep in mind that reservations will be made based on the availability of space and the nature of the activity. Room reservations for semester-year activities must be re-requested, or reconfirmed, at the beginning of each semester. Special room configuration or seating arrangements, as well as all technology needs, may be made through Campus Services and Technology Services once an event is confirmed. Minor room changes may be made by the reserving party as long as the room or area is restored to its original set-up and cleanliness.



The facilities of Cairn University conform to Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 regarding provisions for the disabled in existing buildings. Locations within the Main Education Building, the Biblical Learning Center, and Mason Activity Center are accessible to disabled students by way of service elevators. Designated male and female residences also have appropriate accommodations for the disabled. The Library has Bibles in Braille and listening facilities for the blind. A branch of the Bucks County Library especially designed for the disabled is located within one mile of the university. Every effort to accommodate disabled students is made by all faculty and staff through the coordinator of the Academic Resource Center.


Building Use and Closure Times

Many of our buildings are open for you to use from the early morning through late night. Actual hours of closure are posted below and are subject to change. Students must arrange for permission to use a facility after the normal operating hours. Forced entry into a building or facility will be viewed as criminal behavior and may result in criminal prosecution and/or disciplinary sanctions.

Students who need access to an office when a faculty or staff member is not present should make the necessary arrangements with the person involved. Maintenance, housekeeping, and security staff members are not permitted to provide entrance without written authorization.

Building Hours
Smith Administration BuildingMonday through Saturday6:00 a.m. – 11:00 p.m.


Library and Student Lounge only

12:00 p.m. – 11:00 p.m.
Biblical Learning CenterMonday through Friday6:00 a.m. – 10:00 p.m.
Saturday7:00 a.m. – 8:00 p.m.
Music BuildingMonday through Sunday7:00 a.m. – 7:00 p.m.
Monday through Friday*7:00 p.m. – 1:00 a.m.

Saturday & Sunday*

*building accessible by student or faculty ID only

7:00 a.m. – 1:00 a.m.
Mason Activity Center

Monday through Sunday

*Card access only after 9:00 p.m.

6:00 a.m. – 11:00 p.m.
Fitness CenterMonday through Saturday6:00 a.m. – 11:00 p.m.
Sunday3:00 p.m. – 11:00 p.m.


Campus Facilities

Biblical Learning Center
The BLC is Cairn University’s primary classroom building. Its nineteen classrooms are equipped with SMART technology for educational purposes. The BLC also houses the Lewis Holmes Recital Hall, a conference room available for reservation, and the Connie A. Eastburn Gallery, which hosts art exhibits on a rotating basis.

Smith Administration Building

The majority of Cairn University’s offices are housed in the Smith Administration Building. Administrative offices, Student Life, Communications and Marketing, and the OASIS Counseling Center are housed in the Administrative Wing, while Admissions, Financial Aid, Business Services, the Registrar, the Schools of Arts and Sciences, Education, Bible and Ministry, and Business and Leadership, and the Departments of Christian Counseling and Social Work comprise the Educational Wing of the building. The two wings are joined by the Stearns Mission Center lobby and Chatlos Chapel.

Masland Library

Connected to the Smith Administration Building by the Stearns Mission Center lobby, the Masland Library supports the institutional mission and objectives of the university by providing access to information, materials, and services that are integral to the instructional, research, and community service activities of the university. Also housed within the library are a computer lab, a curriculum lab, and the campus Writing Lab. More information about the library is available https://lib.cairn.edu

Music Building

The School of Music is housed in the Music Building next to the Biblical Learning Center. Offices and classrooms are used by the SMPA faculty and students. Non-music students are welcome to request time in the practice rooms. Cairn is one of only a handful of evangelical colleges or universities in the United States to be designated an “All Steinway School.”  This designation indicates that approximately 90 percent of all pianos are Steinway.

Lounges and Recreational Areas

Lounges and recreation rooms are to be regarded as places of relaxation for groups of students. Students are expected to use good taste consistent with biblical principles in using the lounge and recreational facilities. Students should clean up the lounge after each use. Items left in the lounge, Library or lobby will be temporarily placed in the “Lost and Found” closet, located in Student Life.

Mason Activity Center
The Mason Activity Center (MAC) is a multi-use student facility with the following student services housed within the building: Campus Store, Auxiliary Dining Room (ADR), Fitness Center, Classrooms, Athletics Department, Gymnasium and locker rooms.  The MAC is a major activity center where students can study, hang out, attend athletic events, work out, and enjoy unlimited daily meal service!  The building is generally open during the business day and for special events, but is only accessible by student ID after hours.

Athletic Fields

The athletic fields exist primarily for use by the Cairn intercollegiate teams. Other individuals and groups wishing to use the athletic fields must make arrangements through the Athletic Department.

Campus Pond

Due to concern for the safety and protection of students and visitors, swimming, wading and skating are prohibited on the pond. Fishing is permitted with the proper local and state licensure. Permission for any other use of the pond must be obtained from the Office of Student Life.

Commuter Lounge

Located on the lower level of the Smith Administration Building is an area designated as a Commuter Lounge. This area has vending machines, microwaves, refrigerators, and tables for student use. Commuters are able to use lockers which are located within the lounge. You may arrange for a locker by contacting the office coordinator in Student Life. There is a nominal annual fee for lockers.


Each student is assigned a mailbox by the Office of Student Life at the onset of the year. This mailbox  is to be used only by the student assigned to it as long as they are enrolled at the University. Please use the school address as your shipping address making sure your first and last name are on the order.  Do not order anything under an alias, you must use your name. If someone else orders for you make sure they put your name on the package, otherwise you will be delayed in receiving it.  No one else is allowed to pick up your mail. If for some reason you cannot pick up your mail before the Mailroom closes, you  may email the Mailroom at [email protected] using your Cairn email to give permission for someone to pick it up. We WILL NOT give your package to anyone but you without your written permission.  For your protection please keep your mailbox locked. The mailroom is located next to the Student Lounge in the Smith Administration Building. Permission must be obtained from Student Life before any advertising or promotional material may be distributed in mailboxes. Students may also send mail out of the university via the mailroom.


Advertisements and Postings

Due to the large amount of student advertisements and non-university posting requests, students, as well as non-students, are expected to abide by a few general guidelines when posting advertisements within any university facility.

  • All signs must be approved and stamped by Student Life prior to posting.
  • Signs are to be displayed in sign holders and on the designated posting bulletin boards ONLY. Nothing is to be taped to any door, window, wall, or outside of plastic sign holders. For specific information regarding appropriate posting locations, please contact Student Life.
  • Signs must include: name of organization sponsoring event/organizer, date, time, location of any event, and the posting date of the ad.
  • All signs must be removed after the event, or within two weeks of posting date.


Technology Services

The purpose of the Technology Services department is to support the institutional goals of Cairn University and to provide a university-wide technical strategy that empowers students and employees in the use of technology for instruction, research and service.  Technology Services supports the design, development, and implementation of technology solutions, and it is the commitment of each staff member to apply successful methodologies that enhance the experience of each computer user through the responsible, ethical, legal, and secure use of technical resources.


Student Computing

Students are granted access to a broad base of technology applications. As a member of the university community, the student exercises the rights, privileges and responsibilities of conduct that conform to the Undergraduate Student Standards of Conduct and the policies set forth by the university. Impropriety may result in the curtailment of technology privileges.



Students are provided with a Cairn University email account via Google Apps. The Cairn Gmail account is the primary means for communicating university information about your program, courses, registration, class cancellation or other important announcements.  Students should check email daily.  The account username and password are used for all university web-based applications.  To activate an email account and obtain your username, simply go to http://selfservice.cairn.edu

  1. Click on the Student/Alumni Password Change link on the left side of the screen
  2. Follow the prompts to assign a password and derive your username
  3. Login with your new username and password at http://gmail.cairn.edu



Students are provided secure, real-time access to academic and financial information via the Self-Service web application. Access to class schedules, grades, online registration and financial activity are just a few of the many options available at https://selfservice.cairn.edu.

Student Resource Hub

The university Student Resource Hub provides community information specifically directed to the student population, including academic announcements, forms, policies, and more. Visit https://cairn.edu/students.


Students may access the Internet via the university’s wireless network. To activate a wireless connection, be sure the wireless adaptor in the computer is activated and connect to the Cairn-Internet wireless network.


Online course management is provided by the eLearning web application. Instructors may use eLearning to produce online courses in conjunction with traditional classroom instruction. Students may be required to retrieve course material and/or submit assignments via eLearning at http://elearning.cairn.edu.

Library Resources

Students are provided access to the online library catalog, course reserves and research databases at http://library.cairn.edu. Certain resources will require additional authentication; enter your name and 14 digit barcode as it appears on your student identification card.

University Website

Students are typically familiar with the university website prior to enrollment. In addition to supporting prospective students, the website provides information and resources for current students. The university website can be accessed at https://cairn.edu.

University Computers

Students may use University computers that are located in the Commuter Lounge, the central lounge in Heritage Hall, and the Computer Lab in the Masland Library.

Student Print/Copy Allowance

Students are provided a per-term print/copy allowance to assist with academic requirements. The student’s identification card provides secure access to print/copy jobs, and printing to on-campus equipment may be initiated either in a computer lab or from any location with Internet connectivity. WebPrint tutorials are available on the university’s intranet.

Technology Awareness

The use of technology is unprecedented. It is, therefore, important for each student to understand the benefits and hazards of using networked technology. While the academic application of technology is subjected to numerous safeguards, the social use of technology has the potential for vulnerability. Students are expected to exercise good judgment in all areas of life, and one must be especially careful when sharing personal information on any system (e.g. Internet) that communicates beyond the immediate, personal computer.

  • Protect your password; use a unique combination of letters and characters.
  • Protect your social security number and birth date. Do not provide this information to web sites or in online communication.
  • Protect your computer with reputable Anti-Virus software.
  • Protect your computer by restricting Internet downloads. Do not install any application that contains a Peer-to-Peer (P2P) architecture.
  • Downloading and distributing copyrighted material is a legal infringement, unless express permission is granted by the copyright holder.
  • Backup your data; use a USB flash drive or free online service to safeguard your data.


Use of Social Media and University Technology

Cairn University supports the use of social media by its students as a way to facilitate communication. However, students should be aware of the content that they are uploading online.

Acceptable content may be positive or negative in context to the conversation, regardless of whether it is favorable or unfavorable to Cairn. However, language or images that are illegal, obscene, sexually explicit, defamatory, threatening, infringing of intellectual property rights, invasive of privacy, profane, libelous, harassing, abusive, hateful or embarrassing to any person or entity, or injurious or objectionable, as well as behavior inconsistent with Cairn’s Community Life Covenant is unacceptable and may result in a disciplinary response from the university. Students are granted access to a broad base of technology applications. As a member of the university community, the student exercises the rights, privileges and responsibilities of conduct that conform to the Community Life Covenant and the policies set forth by the university. Impropriety may result in the curtailment of technology privileges, and/or disciplinary sanctions.

Further, please be reminded that how we use the particular forms of technology mentioned above is telling of our Christian character within our university. Fundamentally, as is noted with the Community Covenant, the university expects that students understand that technology is a privilege and not a right. As students use technology and the network at Cairn, the university expects the will do so in ways that are not only lawful and ethical but responsible and courteous as well. That requires respect to be given to the principles maintained with our Community Covenant. Consequently, inappropriate use of university technology including, but not limited to, Cairn’s network, email, Internet services, etc. may result in disciplinary sanctions (Rom. 12:2; Phil 4:8).


Student Communication

The University wants you to feel connected to the community at all times. The university will utilize the following procedures in order to make students aware of vital information:

  • Email and the intranet are the primary resources for the university to communicate daily announcements to students.
  • Students wishing to make announcements to the university family via email should submit them to the office coordinator in Student Life at [email protected] All email/notices are subject to editing by Student Life, who also reserves the right to limit the number of notices per event.
  • Bulletin boards and plastic sign holders are provided for signs, posters, and advertisements. Advertising for events should not be posted on doors, windows or walls. All notices and posters for designated display areas need to be approved and signed by a Student Life staff member before being placed in the proper area. Misplaced or unauthorized announcements will be removed.


Technology Services Support

Technology Services provides support for student computing needs. If a computer-related issue is encountered, students may either send an email to [email protected] or call the Technology Services Help Center at (215) 702-4554. Office hours are daily from 8:00 A.M. through 5:00 P.M.; however, Technology Services personnel are on call 24/7 for urgent technical issues.  A live chat feature is also available from 8:00 a.m. through 11:00 p.m. (Monday through Saturday) by clicking on the green “Live Help” button on Self-Service and eLearning. Support is provided in the following areas.

  • On-campus wireless connectivity.
  • Issues related to university technology applications; Email, Self-Service, eLearning, Intranet, Internet, Library Resources and the university website.
  • Diagnostics and recommendations related to student-owned computers.

Business Services

The Business Services office exists to serve students through student accounts, accounts payable, records of student organizations, insurance and some payroll matters. The office is located on the first floor of the Smith Education building, down the hall from the Admissions and Financial Aid offices. The Business Services office is open Monday through Friday 8:30 A.M. to 4:30 P.M. Business Service representatives are available Monday through Friday, during the hours posted.

Student Accounts

Student account information may be accessed online at http://selfservice.cairn.edu. Financial registration is not complete until full payment of all tuition, fees, room and board charges, and/or the submission of an approved financial payment plan with Tuition Management Systems http://cairn.afford.com is done

  • It is necessary for students to know the status of their account at all times. Information is available on the student’s Self-Service. If there are questions regarding the Self-Service account information, they should be directed to the Student Accounts Manager or Business Services representatives.
  • The semester billing that is shown and due would include only that approved financial aid that is listed on your Self-Service account.
  • Payments for the students account can be made three ways:
    • Semester in full, directly to Cairn by check, ACH, credit card(Visa, MasterCard, Discover or American Express) in person or by credit card (Visa, MasterCard, Discover or American Express) on the web. NOTE: A 3% convenience fee applies for online and over the phone charges.
      • Due dates are August 1(fall semester) and December 15 (spring semester).
    • Tuition Management Systems payment plan (http://cairn.afford.com). This is a monthly payment plan ranging from 6 to 12 months (you must budget the year amount, not just the semester for these number of months). Please log onto website to see options.
    • Approved Financial Aid (scholarships/grants/loans). Please contact Financial Aid Office for procedures.
  • Normally, students whose bills are not paid in full 5 days after the end of the add/drop period will not be permitted to continue in classes unless an approved payment plan has been established through the student accounts manager. Upon approval of this plan, the student will receive written permission to continue in classes. Also, students will not be permitted to register for the next semester with an outstanding balance exceeding $100.00
  • Students with credit balances on their accounts (after all costs for the current semester are paid) may withdraw those monies by making proper application in writing through the student accounts manager and logging onto the TMS-refund portal (http://www.cairn.afford.com) to choose their refund preference (Direct Deposit or Physical check). Otherwise, the credit will remain in the student’s account for use against future billings.
    • Credit balances created by Title IV aid (PELL Grant, Direct Federal Loans, Direct PLUS Loans) after educational expenses are charged, are refunded to the student as required by federal regulations.
  • Diplomas and transcripts will be withheld until all financial obligations to the university are satisfied. Candidates for graduation must meet all financial commitments to the university by December 1 (for the December ceremony) or by April 15 (for the May ceremony) in order to participate in commencement.
  • Any student account that has to be forwarded for outside collection assistance due to outstanding balance will be assessed with collection costs and fees. The student then becomes responsible for the full balance of their account and all collection charges and fees.

An ATM, located in the Commuter Lounge of the Smith Administration Building, is available for cash withdrawals. A nominal fee is charged for this service by your bank.

Financial Aid

The university recognizes that almost all of our undergraduate students need financial assistance to meet the costs of education. In order to help obtain the needed resources, the Financial Aid Office is prepared to offer information and assistance. We provide a comprehensive program of grants and scholarships. In addition to these resources, widely used forms of federal and state grants, loans for students and parents, and work-study opportunities are available for students who qualify.

In order to receive financial aid, a student must meet the following eligibility requirements:

  • Enrollment as a regular (matriculating) student in a degree or certificate program.
  • Maintenance of Satisfactory Academic Progress as defined below. Note that satisfactory progress standards for receipt of financial aid may differ from minimum university academic standards for continued enrollment.
  • For federal aid programs, status as a US citizen or eligible noncitizen, in addition to certification that the funds will be used only for educational expenses.
  • Certification that the student is not in default on any federal student loan and does not owe repayment on a federal student grant.
  • Any other specific requirements of the program providing the aid.

Satisfactory Academic Progress

Students must achieve a minimum cumulative GPA based on the number of credit hours earned as follows:

Cumulative Hours EarnedGrade Point Average
Level I –           1-231.50
Level II –         24-471.65
Level III –        48-711.85
Level IV –        72 or more2.00
  • Students must also pass a minimum of 67% of credit hours attempted.
  • The maximum time frame for which a student may be eligible for Federal Title IV aid is 150% of the normal time for degree completion, measured in the number of credit hours attempted. Transfer hours are included in calculation of total hours completed and used in determining an individual’s maximum time frame.
  • Students falling below the established standards will no longer be eligible to receive university aid, the Federal Pell Grant, Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant, Federal Work Study, or participate in the Federal Direct Loan Program.
  • Students in this category may reestablish eligibility the semester following demonstration of satisfactory academic progress.
  • All federal, state or university funds will be credited to the student’s account following the add/drop period of each semester or as soon as the federal and state funds are made available.

Withdrawal Adjustment Policies

Course Withdrawal

  • Tuition Adjustment: Adjustment for course withdrawal applies only when withdrawal is official and the student is taking fewer than 12 credits or more than 18 credits. If withdrawal from a course during the established add/drop period drops a student below 12 credits, tuition will be adjusted accordingly. If withdrawal from a course occurs after the established add/drop period, the adjustment will be made on the difference between the original tuition amount and the new tuition amount. The adjustment amount will be based on the chart below.
  • Financial Aid Adjustment: Students who withdraw from courses during a semester, but after the end of the published drop/add period, will not have their aid adjusted unless the withdrawal results in a reduction of tuition charged. In cases where tuition charges are reduced, university financial aid will be adjusted based on the percentage of tuition adjustment.  Withdraw from all courses in a semester is treated the same as a university Withdrawal (see below.)
  • The date of official course withdrawal is the date the signed withdrawal form is submitted to the Registrar’s Office. Notification of course load adjustment and date is given to the Business Services office and Financial Aid office by the Registrar’s Office and appropriate adjustments, if necessary, will be made.


University Withdrawal

  • Tuition Adjustment: Students who withdraw from the university are entitled to an adjustment on their semester bill, as listed below, provided they notify Student Life of their intentions. A personal interview with the Dean of Student Life is also important in order to facilitate this adjustment. If a withdrawal then follows, the official date of withdrawal shall be the date established by the Registrar’s Office as the last date of attendance. A student may give oral or written notification of their intent to withdraw to the Registrar’s office. However, the preferred procedure is for a student to complete a “University Withdrawal Form,” and obtain all required signatures for approval/clearance. No adjustment is made until withdrawal forms are properly signed and submitted to the Business Services office. Forms may be obtained from the Registrar’s office.

Adjustment for tuition is made in accordance with the following schedule:

Student Withdraws:The University RetainsAdjustment to Student
Prior to beginning of classes0%100%
Within 1st 10% of enrollment period10%90%

Within 25% of enrollment period,

after 1st 10%


Within 50% of enrollment period,

after 1st 25%

After 50% of enrollment period100%0%
  • Room Charge Adjustments: Room fees are charged for the entire semester. There is no refund for a change in residency status. Students no longer attending class due to pending withdraw or once it has taken place must make immediate plans to vacate residence halls.
  • Financial Aid Adjustment: Students withdrawing from the university prior to completion of a semester will have financial aid adjusted as follows.  Calculations will be made following the student’s completion of the withdrawal process.
    • Federal financial aid funds will be adjusted according to federal guidelines if the date of withdrawal is within the first 60 percent of the semester.   Using a pro-rata schedule, the date of withdrawal within the semester determines the amount of financial aid earned.  Unearned aid will be returned to the federal aid programs up to the amount received in the following order:
      • Federal Direct Unsubsidized Loan
      • Federal Direct Subsidized Loan
      • Federal Direct PLUS Loan
      • Federal Pell Grant
      • Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (SEOG)
      • Other Federal Aid funds
    • University financial aid funds will be adjusted based on the same percentage as the tuition adjustment.

Other financial aid funds from state, private and other sources will be adjusted according to program guidelines or as requested by the source of the funds if a credit balance remains after other required adjustments.

Masland Library

The Masland Library (https://lib.cairn.edu) supports the institutional mission and objectives of the university by providing access to information, materials, and services that are integral to the instructional, research, and community service activities of the university. Cairn students have access to nearly 150,000 print materials, 84,000 electronic journals and 700,000 eBooks as well as, CDs, DVDs, and over 1 million streaming media tracks. The online databases and the library catalog can be found at http://lib.cairn.edu; you will need your student email and password to access the online databases from off-campus. Professional librarians and other library staff are available for reference consultations, bibliographic instruction, and other assistance. Reach out to the library at [email protected], 215.702.4370, or via LiveHelp from the library home page.

The library offers a computer lab, open to all students and additional chrome books for checkout, to be used throughout the library. There is designated space for biblical reference, reference, juvenile and curriculum materials.

The library’s policy for checking out books and other materials, including charges for late and lost items can be found under the policy section (http://libguides.cairn.edu/about/policies) available on the library homepage. Students can renew items online via their library account. All electronic material is available 24/7 from anywhere, on any device with an internet connection. Print reserve materials are available within the library for a two-hour loan and may also be checked out two hours before closing time and due back one hour after the library opens the following morning.

The library hours are posted within the library and on the library website.

Campus Store

The Cairn University Campus Store serves the needs of the campus community and offers textbooks, clothing, gifts, snacks and other items. The campus store staff is eager to meet your needs. The store is open from 10:00 A.M. to 6:00 P.M. on Monday, Tuesday and Thursday; from 10:00 A.M. to 5:00 P.M. on Wednesday and Friday; and 10:00 A.M. to 1:00 P.M. on Saturday. Hours are extended as requested to meet the needs of the Degree Completion and Graduate programs, at the beginning of the fall and spring semesters and for special occasions. Texts and other items can be purchased online, 24/7 at ecampus.com/cairn. You can contact the bookstore after hours by leaving a voice mail at 215.702.4300 or by e-mail at [email protected]

Student Leadership and Activities

The Office of Student Life desires to develop student leaders; equipping individuals to lead and serve one another and the greater community. Students have the opportunity to get involved with student organizations, which focus on special interests and professional preparation. Leadership on campus is demonstrated through representation of the student body and service to the community.

What makes a university experience most rewarding is when the student takes advantage of learning and allows it to be implemented in life experiences. The Cairn journey is designed to be more meaningful the more that you get involved as a student beyond the classroom. The university offers multiple organizations that provide you with a chance to lead, a chance to participate, and a chance to serve. Opportunities cross many fields ranging from the arts and music to outdoor activities and service organizations. The time that you spend in a university ought to be rich through the relationships you develop, the learning that takes place, and the investment you make in others.

Leadership Development

Cairn University offers students many opportunities to develop leadership skills both through formal and informal settings. You will find student leaders on campus in Student Government, Residence Life, student groups and organizations, and also in informal settings and gatherings.

Student Government Association

The Student Government Association, and its cabinet, serves the university and leads the student body in several different ways. The Student Government Cabinet members provide a consistent face and voice of the student body and informal university settings, represent the interests and concerns of the student body to the University administration, engage the student body in community service, and provide vision and oversight to all university student organizations.

The Student Government cabinet features several selected leadership positions commonly found in organizational government. The broader membership is composed of any interested students, non-voting representatives from every student organization, and voting members of the elected cabinet, two res life reps and a commuter council representative. Cabinet members serve a one year term beginning at the House meeting closest to April first. Each spring, students seek nominations and participate in an election and selection process to determine the leadership of the Student Government Cabinet.

Student Government Association (SGA) 

The Student Government plays an important role at the university as one of the representative’s students’ needs and concerns.  However, the role goes further than just representation, but embodies the following four goals:

  1. Represent on behalf of Cairn University undergraduate students.
  2. Charter and regulate student organizations and clubs.
  3. Develop and maintain student-oriented campus wide programming focused on community activism.


Student Officer Qualifications

Any student is encouraged to become involved with student leadership through Student Government positions or through leadership of organizations. There are different qualifications for various elected and appointed officers. The minimum qualification for leadership in Student Government is a 2.5 GPA and a character assessment approval by the Office of Student Life. Qualifications for other leadership positions vary, and can be obtained by contacting each organization and seeking further information from Student Life.

Student Organizations

The university officially recognizes many student organizations that are led by schools within the university or by student leaders. You are able to join most of the organizations on campus without any prerequisite. A few organizations require membership within a school or sector of the community. As with all of your decision making as a student, you should carefully measure how many organizations to be involved with in any semester.

Cairn student organizations and groups serve the university and surrounding communities under the oversight of Student Government. There are also standard student ministry opportunities that arise each year.

Approval of New Student Organizations

All Cairn organizations are sanctioned to promote unity and fellowship around a common theme or task. As students sense an increased need or desire for a new group to serve a common interest or task, there are opportunities to consider forming new official student groups. Students who desire to form a new organization must schedule a meeting with the Director of Community Lifein order to discuss the purpose and parameters of the proposed organization. At this meeting, the Director of Community Life will help the student assess the potential for the new group, and give all needed information to guide them in the organization approval process. Upon completion of the necessary paperwork, the Director of Community Life will submit the application to the Student Government.

The following criteria must be considered and developed: the purpose of the organization, the qualifications (if any) for involvement, the goals and objectives, a written constitution, a Cairn faculty or staff advisor, cabinet officers to lead the group, a list of students interested in participating in the group, and whether the proposed group has long term viability beyond the present student interest.

Student Government will make a recommendation of approval or (disapproval) to the Director of Community Life who will submit the application for final approval to the Dean of Students.


Student Activity Fee

Each semester that you are a full time student, you will be assessed a student activity fee. This fee funds student-focused events and organizations on campus. The majority of social events and campus-wide activities are free or significantly discounted through this fee. This also helps to limit the necessity for student organizations to fundraise as the university funds many of the organizations through this fee. Students who have paid the activity fee can sign up to receive the Milestone.


Organization Finances

All of our student organizations are accountable to the Office of Student Life and the student body for wise use of their funds, and are responsible keep accurate financial records and document financial expenditures. The faculty/staff advisor of the organization is responsible for oversight in financial matters. At the conclusion of the fall and spring semester, the treasurer of each organization submits a financial report to the Student Government and to the Director of Student Programs.


Intercollegiate Athletics

Cairn University’s athletic program aims to provide intercollegiate athletic competition that complements the university’s academic programs by developing essential leadership skills for men and women of character. The athletic program is conducted in such a way that facilitates excellence in the field of play, fosters positive character development and high standards of personal honor, sportsmanship, and fair play. Student athletes are challenged to both compete and live their lives in a manner which reflects a strong Christian character, and a high level of excellence both in and outside of the classroom (2 Pet. 1:5-7; Col 3:23-24).

Cairn maintains active membership in Division III of the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA). The university is a member of the Colonial States Athletic Conference. Participation in intercollegiate athletics is dependent upon good academic standing as determined by the Registrar’s Office and in accordance with the regulations of the NCAA.

Cairn offers fourteen intercollegiate athletic programs. Participation on these teams is contingent on determination of eligibility, proper submission of all required forms including medical release, team tryouts and team selection. Team assignments are made based on one’s assigned sex at birth.

Intramural Athletics

The Athletics Department offers a variety of intramural athletic leagues and tournaments in which all students are invited to participate. Teams are formed through an open sign-up process. Once sign-ups are complete, a schedule is established, and competition begins. The purpose of the Cairn Intramural program is to provide the opportunity for undergrad students, faculty, and staff otherwise not involved in sports to play in a fun and competitive league.  It also provides student athletes already participating on intercollegiate teams with additional opportunities to play in accordance with athletic policies, intramural seasons, and guidelines.

For instance, athletes may play intramurals sports before or after their full season of intercollegiate sports has been completed, but not during that season. All of our intramural teams are open to male and female students, faculty, and staff. Intramural sports that are offered include: flag football, indoor soccer, men’s and women’s basketball, ultimate Frisbee, and tournaments in ping pong, billiards, volleyball, softball, tennis and dodgeball.  Other intramural sports may be offered if enough student interest is generated.

Performing Arts

Music Ensembles

Interested in auditioning for a musical ensemble?

Most performance ensembles are open to all students, regardless of major.

Click here to learn more.

The university offers students the opportunity to participate in musical ensembles organized each year by the School of Music. Most groups and ensembles are open to all students on the basis of an audition and interview. Rehearsal schedules and performances vary according to the nature of the ensemble. Performances are on campus and in churches, schools, and other off-campus settings.

Opera Theater

This organization presents multiple performances each year: in the fall semester, an operetta or a collection of opera scenes; in the spring semester, a Broadway-styled musical. As an educational experience, the ensemble introduces students to the world of opera and musical theater, giving attention to dramatic movement, emotional interpretation, staging principles, scenery, props, costumes, makeup and lighting.

Drama Performances

The School of Liberal Arts and Sciences occasionally offers a fully staged play. Auditions are open to all students, and sometimes to faculty and staff. Students have the opportunity to engage with each other and the community using the dramatic and comedic art forms.

Residence Life

Residence Life at Cairn is a dynamic part of the university experience. Resident sites provide a learning environment where that which is learned academically and understood biblically can be applied to practical, real life circumstances. Resident Directors lead teams of student leaders in bringing safety, care, mentoring relationships, and social events to the residential community (Prov. 27:17; John 15:12-13; 1 Cor. 24b-26; Rom. 14:17-18).

Residence Life desires to create a living-learning environment in collaboration with other departments in order to provide spiritual growth, academic faithfulness, holistic care, and the development of character.

We hope students: Discover a Christ-centered view of self and their role within the greater faith community. Develop a sense of belonging and engage the world around them. Deepen their curiosity for learning inside and outside of the classroom.


  • Celebration
    It’s important to have fun together! It is the desire to create communities that are celebratory in nature, ones that recognize the achievements of our students and staff. We strive to accentuate the positive attributes our students and staff possess, focusing on strengths and accomplishments. We help plan ceremonies and celebrations that unite others and give students a sense of belonging to the communities in which they live. These affirmations occur publicly and privately, individually and collectively, and through formal and informal ways.
  • Commitment to Learning
    “All truth is God’s truth” was the famous claim of the Christian theologian, Augustine of Hippo. It is our belief that learning does not happen solely in the classroom but expands outside of it to other parts of life. We encourage our students and staff to pursue the truth revealed to us by the God made known in Jesus. Through prayer, programs, and conversations in the residence halls, we walk with students and staff as they grow in knowledge, gain wisdom, develop critical thinking skills, and enhance their decision making abilities.
  • Spiritual Formation
    Worship is a way of life! Spiritual formation, when properly understood, is multifaceted and all parts assist in our spiritual maturity. Liturgical formation happens mostly in local faith communities when we gather together and is an important time where we are reoriented together to the story of God through the Scriptures, worship, prayer, baptism, and communion. Personal formation takes place when we relate to God intimately through spending regular time with him. Relational formation reminds us we are not called to follow Jesus alone. We intentionally seek relationships where we are encouraging one another on towards Christ-likeness. Educational formation occurs when we seek truth together and a knowledge that leads to faith. Missional formation happens when we see ourselves as missionaries to the world and seek to love and serve others in word and deed.
  • Meaning-Making
    Practice what you preach! Steve Garber in his book The Fabric of Faithfulness suggests, “The College years need to help students develop ways of thinking and living that are coherent and make sense of the whole of life” (125). We do not only seek to give students marketable skills for their future careers but are more interested in walking alongside students as they find meaning for their lives, grow in integrity and wisdom, and serve others. We create an environment for our students and staff where they can develop a worldview that answers the challenges of today’s world, identify mentors and teachers who incarnate such a worldview, and build lifelong friendships and partnerships with others who are embedded in that worldview (124).
  • Healthy Community
    We shouldn’t do life alone! We are committed to creating supportive and nurturing living and learning environments which value innate individual uniqueness, identity, values, and experiences. We are passionate about creating a diverse community that is focused on respect, mutually-beneficial relationships, truth, interdependence, unity, and vulnerability. Through diverse programming and everyday conversations, we encourage our students and staff to “spur one another on toward love and good deeds” (Hebrews 10:24), and to learn and appreciate our unique cultures and differences essential to cultivating human flourishing.

Residence Life Staff

The provision of care to resident students is accomplished through a team effort. Each resident site is managed by a team who lives and works on site. These teams work to provide a unified Residence Life Team across campus. Along with providing assistance for the everyday challenges of academic life, the Residence Life staff members maintain accountability to the community standards of Cairn University. By serving as role models and mentors, the Residence Life staff helps to shape an environment that is conducive to personal growth, academic success, and spiritual maturity. The team is composed of the following members:

  • Director of Community Life – The entire Residence Life program of the university is directed and planned by the Director of Community Life. This person leads the resident teams and works with other university departments to provide resources needed to operate Cairn’s two resident sites. The Director of Community Life oversees all matters of Residence Life policy and appeal.
  • Resident Directors – Each residential site is advised by a full-time Resident Director (RD) who serves as a professional member of the Office of Student Life in overseeing the community development, administration, and spiritual formation of the resident area. Available for mentoring and discipleship, emergency intervention, leadership training, and other resident needs, Resident Directors live on site and provide leadership to a student Residence Life team.
  • Assistant Resident Directors – The Assistant Resident Director (ARD) lives in a designated residence hall and serves as an experienced resource to a Residence Life team as he or she seeks to develop new Residence Life initiatives and creative ways to implement the Residential Education Model. This person reports to the residence hall’s Resident Director and steps in for the RD when necessary. The ARD is responsible for ongoing communication with the RD, aspects of student and community development, staff development, and administrative support for residence hall staff. The ARD is an intricate part of selecting and training staff, supporting his/her respective team, and advancing Residence Life.
  • Resident Assistants – The Resident Assistant (RA) holds an integral role in the development of his or her residents and the formation of his or her community. The Resident Assistant is a part-time, student position that assists the Office of Student Life in matters relating to student affairs, particularly Residence Life and residence hall management. The RA facilitates the implementation of the Residential Education Model and carries out the following responsibilities under the supervision of his or her Resident Director and the Director of Community Life.

Resident Communities

Manor Residence Halls

Located in the center of Cairn’s campus, just north of the walkway, are the five buildings that make up Manor Residence Halls. These residence halls feature suite-style living with four students in each suite. Each suite houses four students living in two bedrooms joined by a common bath.

Heritage Hall

Located on the south side of the campus on Manor Avenue is Heritage Hall. This residence hall is comprised of six wings, three on each side of a central Great Room. Female students occupy one side and male students occupy the other side. Rooms are a mix of both suite-style and traditional rooms equipped with private baths.

General Residency Information

Room Assignments

Most first-year students are assigned a roommate based on personal preference and/or the recommendations of the Residence Life team. Cairn is usually able to accommodate students who have a preference for a specific roommate, but these are not guaranteed. New students are also allowed to request a specific resident facility; however, first choice goes to upperclassmen and students who are continuing at Cairn. Returning students may request specific room assignments and roommates during the housing selection period in the spring semester.

Roommate Conflict

Residence Life understands that conflict can occasionally arise between roommates. This can happen for a number of reasons. However, it is our desire that students work through their conflicts, not just avoid or suppress them. Students who are experiencing conflict are strongly encouraged to bring this conflict to the attention of his or her Resident Assistant immediately. In the event that the relationship between roommates begins to be challenging, the Residence Life staff can help both residents identify concerns and resolve conflicts before they become insurmountable obstacles. Resident Assistants along with Assistant Resident Directors and Resident Directors are trained to provide wisdom and mediation to conflict. The vast majority of conflicts are resolved with the help of Residence Life (Matt 18:15-17).

Room Switches

A small number of conflicts can be resolved only with a change in one’s housing. In instances of extenuating circumstances, a room switch may be considered after attempts to reconcile the concerns and/or conflict(s). Further, within these types of extreme rooming situations, the potential outcome will be made on a case-by-case basis by the Resident Director of the respective residence hall.

One should be aware, however, of the following:

  • Room switches are not permitted within the first six (6) weeks of the semester (unless directed by the Office of Student Life for reasons determined by the office).
  • Student-initiated room switches must be pre-approved mutually by the Resident Director(s) and the Director of Community Life.
  • The student initiating the room switch will generally be the one required to relocate, except in circumstances deemed necessary by the Office of Student Life such as, but not limited to, judicial sanctioning. The student’s new housing assignment will be provided by the Office of Student Life.
  • For the student’s well-being, the student initiating the room switch will be required to relocate within 48 hours to a different residence site (e.g., from Manor Residence Halls to Heritage Hall) unless determined otherwise by the Office of Student Life.
  • Student requests for a housing change must be received via a detailed written request from the student’s Cairn e-mail account to the student’s Resident Director. The request must include a rationale for the need to move. Residence Life will work to accommodate the request, but cannot guarantee that a student’s request will be met.
  • Any student who moves without permission from his or her originally assigned Resident Director will be required to return to his or her room and will receive disciplinary action.
  • Residence Life will never move any student from a room he or she has been assigned at the request of a parent, or guardian. The request must come directly from the student desiring a room switch.

Arriving Early

Students are not encouraged to arrive early to campus; however, in some cases special arrangements are required for university-related activities (e.g. pre-season athletics, university employment, etc).  Those with extraordinary travel needs (e.g. international students, etc.) are required to make appropriate and explicit arrangements with Cairn through the Office of Student Life at least 45 business days prior to the proposed arrival.  Those arriving early may be charged a nominal fee for each night’s stay before the semester begins.  Meals would be paid for out of pocket by those arriving early and not enrolled in a university activity. Those arriving without permission, as outlined above, will be denied entry to the residence hall.

Moving In

Students are usually eager to move into their residence hall.   Those who are new to Cairn are permitted to move into their room during the Student Welcome and Orientation or fall pre-season athletic week.  Returning students and upperclassmen are permitted to begin moving in two days before the first day of class in the fall semester during designated times provided by Residence Life.  Students are asked not to arrive before this time; however, in some cases, special arrangements are made for those coming early for university-related activities (i.e. pre-season athletics, university employment) or those with unusual travel needs (i.e. international students).

All students who arrive early without expressed permission from the Office of Student Life will be charged a per night fee consistent with the nightly summer housing rate of the current year.  Students who do arrive early are subject to the community standards that are in place for Cairn undergraduate students.  Each student will sign a Room Assessment form that verifies the condition of the room at check-in.

Moving Out

When students move out of a residence area at the end of the semester, all personal property must be removed and a check-out inspection conducted by a member of the Residence Life team.  In order to uphold a system of damage and recovery, students will sign off on the original inspection report from the move-in period to verify the room’s move out condition. This allows all parties to indicate any damage that was pre-existing or took place during student use. Fines will be levied to residents who:

  • Do not appropriately check-out.
  • Do not leave within the given university-approved time.
  • Inhabit rooms that sustain damage and/or are not properly cleaned.
  • Do not return their key at the end of the semester.
  • Do not remove furniture that was moved-in during their habitation of a given room.

In the event a student withdraws or is dismissed during the academic semester, the accommodations must be vacated within 48 hours after the withdrawal/dismissal.  Cairn University is not responsible for personal belongings remaining after withdrawal or dismissal. For unique or medical situations, a collaboratively-determined time frame can be established for the removal of personal items. Failure to vacate within the appropriate time frame and/or check-out properly may result in additional charges.


Lost Keys

Lost keys must be reported to the Office of Student Life. A charge of $75.00 is required for a replacement key.

Vacation Residency

Students who are employed by Cairn departments are permitted to stay in residence halls during vacation periods. International students desiring to stay in residence over vacation periods are required to be employed by the university or obtain specific permission. Since the semester residence fee does not cover the use of rooms during inter-semester (e.g. Christmas) periods, resident students who stay during vacation periods are required to pay rent. During vacation periods, residents are expected to maintain the same standards of conduct and residence regulations as those enforced during the university year. All students who desire to maintain residence at Cairn during vacation periods must maintain university employment, be enrolled in summer classes or have specific permission. Students seeking to stay in the residence hall during a vacation period must receive approval from their Resident Director or the Director of Community Life and are subject to additional charges. Those involved in student internships and/or ministry similarly must appeal to the Director of Community Life for permission. Further, approved summer students and university employees are required to pay applicable summer housing rates.

Room Consolidation

If at any point within the first 14 calendar days of the fall and spring semester a resident’s room in Manor Residence Halls or Heritage Hall should have a vacant bed, the remaining resident(s) may be required to comply with one of the following:

  • Relocate to another room with a vacant bed(s).
  • Be assigned a roommate(s) to fill the vacant bed(s).

This is done to consolidate housing and provide for the best use of the facility for all student needs. While this is a step examined at the start of each semester, Cairn University reserves the right to make changes for consolidation, illness, pest containment and other issues which dictate the need for room changes.

Depending on the conditions, students will be given a 48 hours to decide the option most appropriate for his or her situation. Any attempt on the part of a student to discourage, refuse, or intimidate another student being assigned to a room or apartment will be not permitted and may result in disciplinary action. Any student who feels such is the case should contact the Director of Community Life immediately.

If a student ignores or refuses attempted contacts by the Director of Community Life, consolidation will be made at the discretion of the Director of Community Life. This may also result in possible fines and judicial action.

Right to Adjust and/or Terminate Occupancy

Residence halls are property of Cairn University and as such the university reserves particular rights in regards to occupancy. The university reserves the right to adjust a student’s residency at the discretion of Student Life including, but not limited to, consolidation and increase in residency. The university also reserves the right to terminate a student`s Residence Hall Agreement if the conduct of said student is disruptive to other residents, is in disregard of the rights of other residents, is jeopardizing the safety and well-being of others, or is in violation of the terms of this agreement.  The resident will be given a notice of termination for just cause by Student Life and must vacate the premises by the date set by the notice.

Guidelines for Furnishings and Decorations


Residence Halls at Cairn are equipped with a desk and chair, a bed (bunk or captain depending upon location) and mattress, a chest of drawers, and closet(s) to accommodate the standard number of residents per room at the site. Furniture that is owned by Cairn must not be removed from or exchanged between rooms and must be used in a manner the manufacture intended. Within the confines of a resident’s room, furniture may be arranged to suit personal taste, in so far as the furniture does not create a fire or safety hazard or exceed occupancy limits. All bunk beds must remain bunked. For health and safety reasons, students are discouraged from bringing used or second-hand furniture onto Cairn’s campus. Items that are discouraged include any used or second hand upholstered chairs and sofas, futons, bean-bag chairs, and any other furniture containing cushions or stuffing. For this reason, and because of space limitations in the residence hall rooms, students are strongly advised to bring minimal furniture to campus and to bring only furniture that was originally purchased new by the student/family. Discarded furniture and/or furniture that cannot be fully accounted for since its purchase should not be brought to campus. In the event that you have a specific question about your furnishings, contact your respective resident director.

What Furnishings NOT to bring:

Although some items are essential to a quality residence hall living experience, the following items are prohibited within your residence hall: Halogen lamps, octopus lamps, or space heaters

  • Non-UL listed electronics
  • Microwave ovens
  • Toaster ovens or Foreman Grills
  • Cooking appliances with exposed heating coils
  • Cooking appliances that do not shut off automatically (e.g. crock pots, etc.)
  • Pets (fish only are allowed, c.f. next item)
  • Aquariums over 10 gallons
  • Weapons or fireworks of any kind
  • Candles and/or incense

Homemade lofts and other furniture platforms are prohibited within Cairn residence halls. Prior to a resident’s year end check-out, all furniture must be returned to its original location within the room.

Damage to the university-owned furnishings will result in a fine to the individual resident(s) of that room and will be in an amount equal to the cost of repair or replacement (including labor). Unacknowledged damage to the residence areas will be charged to all of the occupants upon the recommendation of the Residence Life team. Lounge furniture must remain in the designated area and should not be removed. Charges for damage to the lounge furniture that is considered to be excessive will be assessed to the entire resident population of the facility, unless the damage can be assigned to a particular resident(s) of the building or wing.

Decorations Within Your Room

Cairn encourages residents to consider wisely their choice of decor. All decorations, including but not limited to pictures, wall hangings, posters, computer wallpaper, and screen-savers should be in agreement with the Cairn Community Life Covenant and Undergraduate Student Standards of Conduct (Rom. 12:2; Phil. 4:8). Students with objectionable material used as decor will be confronted and asked to remove the item(s) in question. Students are prohibited from having authentic (live) Christmas trees within their residence rooms. Decorative lights should not be used in excess during the holiday season and should never be left on when the room is unattended.

  • Students are not permitted to paint or wallpaper any portion of their residential areas.
  • Residence rooms, hallways, and/or doors can be easily defaced by the use of thumbtacks, push pins, staples, nails, contact paper, tape, rubber cement, or similar adhesive substances; therefore, they are not to be used. Fines will be levied during check-out for any damage to a resident’s room caused by hanging decorations.
  • 3M Command and similar products, when properly removed, have been used successfully by students to hang decorations without causing damage. These products are readily available at local stores and we recommend them for adhering items to walls, woodwork, and doors. While recommended, damages caused by 3M Command and similar products are subject to fines as indicated above.
  • Under no circumstances should anything be attached to the ceiling.
  • For fire safety reasons, no more than 25% of any wall should be covered by decorations that are considered flammable, and door decorations may not extend around the corners of the door.
  • For health and sanitation reasons, pets, with the exception of fish which can be kept in a small aquarium, are not allowed in any Cairn residence facility. Aquarium size must remain under 10 gallons.

Living with your Roommate:

For many Cairn students, university life will be the first opportunity to share a room for an extended period of time. Your relationship with your roommate could range from delightful to disappointing. Most roommate relationships at Cairn, however, fall somewhere in the middle. Here are some guiding principles to keep in mind as you attempt to build strong roommate relationships.

  • Give it time. Relationships do not occur overnight and most roommates never become best friends.
  • Talk…about your likes and about what you do not like.
  • Realize that differences are inevitable, but they can be worked through.
  • If there is trouble in the room, see your roommate first. Do not talk to your Resident Assistant, Resident Director, your other friends, etc., until you have communicated with your roommate.
  • If you have a persistent problem in your relationship with your roommate, get some help. See your Resident Assistant about ways that Student Life can provide you with extra help.

Resident Community Expectations

Room Privacy

Living as a student resident at Cairn offers an opportunity for growth and personal development during your collegiate experience. As such, Cairn values students’ needs for privacy and security. The Office of Student Life and Cairn’s Office of Safety and Security do, however, reserve the right to conduct searches of student’s residence hall rooms, as well as any Cairn-owned and operated facility. If such a search is carried out, student’s personal property is subject to search, including cars, bags, computers, etc. Searches of this nature will only be conducted when there is reason to suspect illegal activity and/or violation of the Cairn Community Life Covenant and standards, for disciplinary reasons, for health and safety purposes, or in order to maintain a positive educational atmosphere. Searches of student property or Cairn-owned housing may be conducted at any time, without notice, without student consent. A search is always done with two Cairn personnel present.

At other times, it may be necessary for a member of the Cairn Campus Services team to enter a room in response to a campus work order. When possible, Cairn will attempt to contact the student; however, some situations of emergency may prevent advance notification.

Quiet Hours on Campus

One of the major goals of the Residence Life  community at Cairn is to provide an atmosphere that encourages the academic and social experience of our residents. The implementation of quiet hours on campus is to encourage courtesy and respect for one’s fellow classmates in the pursuit of academic excellence. Students who reside in and/or visit residential areas should, at all times, be sensitive to what effect their behavior has on the community around them. As a general guideline, noise levels should not interfere with fellow students’ ability to sleep or study at any point during the day. While consideration should be afforded at all times, students and/or visitors should be particularly careful about noise levels between the campus quiet hours of 11:00 P.M. and 7:00 A.M. During the week of final exams, students should have an added amount of respect and sensitivity. As such, campus quiet hours will be in effect from 8:00 P.M. to 8:00 A.M.


Overnight Notification and Visitation

Cairn is genuinely concerned about the student body. As such, we believe it is our duty to create a living environment that promotes our students’ academic, personal, social, and spiritual development. We strive to promote this development within our residential communities. Consequently, visitation is a privilege, not a right. Visitors may not infringe on the rights of other residents to study, sleep or to socialize in their room/suite/building. Residents are fully responsible for the actions and behaviors of their visitors.

The following standards should be followed when requesting, and/or housing, overnight visitors:

  • When entertaining an overnight visitor on campus, prior consent must be obtained from the host, the host’s roommate(s), and the Resident Director. The host and guest should consider those who inhabit the room over the personal right to entertain a guest.
  • The resident host must complete a guest request form and give it to his/her Resident Assistant at least 3 days in advance.
  • A guest of the university may stay for no longer than two (2) consecutive nights, with no single guest staying more than 5 nights per semester.
  • No guests of the opposite sex are permitted to stay overnight (1 Thess. 4:3-8).
  • Guests must abide by university regulations. The student host is held responsible for the guest’s actions while on campus.
  • No one under the age of 18 should be visiting overnight unless as a prospective student in an authorized admissions program.
  • Parents and Guardian(s) of a student are not permitted to reside overnight on campus.
  • Guests will not be permitted to stay during any final examination week.
  • Students who entertain guests without following proper procedures are subject to disciplinary action.
  • The Director of Community Life has the right to retract visitation rights to guests and resident hosts.

Cairn University also does not permit subleasing or renting of housing units or beds within any of the residence halls to any persons on or off-campus or online such as AirBandB.


Open Hall Policy

Due to the unique characteristics inherent within both Manor Residence Halls and Heritage Hall, Residence Life staff does provide occasional opportunities wherein students living in sex-specific housing can have students of the opposite sex come into their particular floors.
However, all halls/wings who participate must comply with the following guidelines:

  • All open floors must be approved by the respective Resident Director and be scheduled in advance.
  • All RAs for the prospective floor hosting the Open Hall will be present for the duration of the event.
  • An Open Hall may be held three times per semester at any time between 4:00 pm – 11:00 pm.  Open Halls are to be a maximum of 3 hours in length.
  • During an Open Hall, all participating rooms must leave the doors fully open.
  • Throughout the Open Hall the RA(s) of the hall/wing on will be circulating through the halls to monitor the rooms that are open.  The RA(s) duty will do a sweep through the hall at the end of the event to make sure all visitors have exited the floor.

Open Hall at Manor Residence Halls

On specific weekends designated as open halls, Residence Life staff will provide opportunities for co-ed visitation at Manor. A rotation of floors will be determined in advance with co-ed visitation hours on Fridays and Saturdays from 9:00 PM-11:00 PM. For example, Davis is open Friday and Saturday one weekend, next weekend Stillman, and so forth. Residents will be informed through email and a posted calendar of which building is open for the weekend.

When participating in co-ed visitation at Manor, one must follow these guidelines:

  • Residents visiting of the opposite sex will not be permitted to sit in or lay on the bed together.
  • All rooms with co-ed guests should leave their doors completely open (Titus 2:6-8).
  • Guests of the opposite sex should only be in the main living area of the room (Titus 2:6-8).
  • Guest must be accompanied by their host at all times and may not be unaccompanied in common areas such as the stairs or floor landings.
  • RA’s may use discretion for ambiguous situations involving guests and residents.
  • If a room wishes to not participate in visitation, the main entrance of the room and adjoining bathroom door should remain closed.


Entertainment in the Resident Community

Life in community requires individuals to love, have patience, demonstrate humility, and exercise sensitivity to the needs and desires of the other members within that community (John 15:12-13; 2 Cor. 1:10; 1 Peter 3:9). Perhaps no greater awareness is needed than in the area of personal entertainment. When students at Cairn are considering entertainment, biblical standards must be exercised so as to recognize respect for individuals. Cairn encourages students to take seriously their evaluation of entertainment, considering content, use of resources, and the effect that entertainment will have on the future shape of one’s character as well as their community (Rom. 12:2).

Music is a very powerful medium; however, it can also be very divisive. Within the confines of the residential area, music volume levels should be controlled so as to not bother others outside of the room. Students who fail to respect the rights of others in the community by keeping the volume too loud could lose the right to have the piece of equipment in the residence hall. The message or text of music must be evaluated by each student and sensitivity to the opinion of others must be exercised as a demonstration of love and submission to God and His people (Phil. 4:8).

Television and Movies. Cairn prohibits the residence hall lounge viewing of movies rated “R” without the express permission of the site’s Resident Director. Students are expected to use good judgment in the viewing of all movies so as not to offend the conscience of others who are viewing the film. When content is questionable, students are asked to refrain from showing and/or viewing the material. The same expectations of volume are present with televisions as with stereos or other electronic equipment (Rom. 12:2; Phil. 4:8).

Video-Gaming. In much the same way as television and movie viewing, some games contain action and content that can be destructive to an individual’s moral fiber and success as a student. In light of this, Cairn allows video games with a rating of E, T, and M on campus and encourages that students be mindful of their time when involving themselves in video-gaming (Rom. 12:2; Phil. 4:8).

The university encourages open dialogue among students who question the content and/or appropriateness of another resident’s entertainment. Students are encouraged to approach one another in a spirit of brotherly love when concerned with content, volume, and/or offensiveness of entertainment. When necessary, members of the Residence Life team will involve themselves in order to reach a resolution in the matter (Matt. 18:15-16).

The use of illegally copied or downloaded media is prohibited by federal law. Students who are active in these practices will be confronted and will be subject to disciplinary action in accordance with Cairn policies (Ex. 20:15; Prov. 12:22; Rom. 13:7).

Lounge Use

The Great Room in Heritage Hall is accessible by all Cairn resident students. The basement of Heritage Hall also houses vending machines and seating areas. These facilities are designed for use by the entire Cairn student body. The Great Room, basement lounge, and the laundry room located in Heritage Hall are closed from 1:00 AM until 5:00 AM.

Lounge furniture must remain in the designated areas and should not be removed. Cairn understands that furniture will be moved within these areas; however, it is expected that care will be used when this is done and that all furniture will be returned to its appropriate place. Lounge furniture should never be removed from its designated room.  Damage that is considered beyond normal will be charged to the entire resident population, unless the damage can be assigned to a particular resident(s).


Heritage Hall Lounges

While the Great Room in Heritage Hall is accessible by all Cairn students for social activities, studying, and other student events, individual lounges are available on each individual wing for use by residents of that wing.  Access to the wing lounges requires a Student ID coded to access either the female or male wings in Heritage Hall. Any student using the wing lounges in Heritage Hall must be accompanied by a resident of Heritage Hall and must be the same gender as the respective wing. No coed visitation is allowed in the wing lounges.


Manor Lounges

Manor Residence Halls are all equipped with a lounge for the residents of each building.
Each lounge is equipped with furniture and appliances that includes a full-size refrigerator, a microwave, and a cable equipped television. Lounge furniture must remain in the designated area and should not be removed. Students wishing to use the lounges on Manor Residence Halls must be a resident of Manor or be accompanied by a resident of Manor.

The lounges located in Schofield, Souder, and Memorial are strictly reserved for students of the same gender assigned to the respective building. Coed visitation is available in any of the Manor Residence Halls between 12:00 PM and 12:00 AM.  Students visiting the lounges must be accompanied by a Manor resident of the same gender as assigned to the building being visited.

Maintenance Work Requests

Maintenance and normal wear and tear is a natural portion of every resident’s experience.  In many cases, however, a student’s response to maintenance can have a large impact on the longevity of a facility and how students and guests view the campus buildings.  When you notice something on campus that needs repair, please follow these simple steps:

  • If the situation is urgent, contact a member of the Residence Life team immediately.
  • On the Cairn Intranet, click on Campus Services and complete a new Work Order.  If deemed necessary, tell your RA of the service that you requested.
  • To check on the status of your Work Order, go to the Intranet and click on the check status tab.
  • If the Work Order that you placed is not acted upon within two weeks (for non-urgent work), tell your RA about the situation and ask them to submit a second Work Order for the problem.

Laundry Facilities

Residents should keep track of their laundry at all times so as to not prevent others from using the machines.  Clothing should not be left unattended and should never remain in the laundry rooms for more than 24 hours.

If a problem arises with any of the machines, please submit a maintenance work order.  If the problem results in monetary loss (i.e. the machine eats your coins, etc.), please contact one of your Resident Assistants or your Resident Director.

Heritage Hall

Washers and dryers are available in the basement laundry room of Heritage Hall.


Washers and dryers are available in each basement laundry room, adjacent to each Manor building lounge.

Cleaning Supplies

Basic cleaning equipment is supplied by Cairn and located in common areas in each of the residence halls.  The supplies must be returned to the appropriate area immediately after use to allow for other residents to use.

This equipment is kept in the utility areas located in the back section of the first wing. These materials are for the use of the entire community and, as such, must be returned immediately after use. If the Heritage Hall cleaning equipment is damaged, missing, or cleaning supplies need to be restocked, residents should submit a Campus Services work order and report the damage/need to their Resident Assistant.

In the Manor Residence Halls, this equipment is kept in the utility closet on the second floor landing. These materials are for the use of the entire building and, as such, must be returned immediately after use. If the Manor cleaning equipment is damaged, missing, or cleaning supplies need to be restocked, residents should submit a Campus Services work order and report the damage/need to their Resident Assistant.

Trash and Dumpsters

Students can create a lot of trash and, if not properly attended to, this can become overwhelming. Residents are expected to be responsible for the regular collection and disposal of trash that is generated in their residence hall and any that you might create while using any of the student lounges. Trash is to be removed regularly and taken to the respective garbage dumpster and recyclable materials are to be regularly taken to the respective recycling dumpsters. Do not place trash in the recycling dumpster or recyclable materials in the garbage dumpster. If students are found to be depositing trash in any community-use trash receptacles, including those in the Heritage Hall Great Room or any of the lounges, then a fine will be levied for this action disposing of personal furniture in or around the dumpsters is prohibited.

Student should be particularly aware of trash cleanout during check-out at the end of the year and during Health and Safety Assessment events. Measures should be taken to frequently remove garbage before these periods to avoid dumpster overflow.

Students are expected to carry all trash and recyclable materials to the designated dumpsters behind Heritage Hall. There are two dumpsters, one for trash and one for recycling.

Students are expected to carry all trash to the designated dumpster, located behind Stillman.  There are two dumpsters, one for trash and one for recycling.

Pest Control

Residents are responsible for keeping their suites and bedrooms clean and safe. However, in a large group living environment, such as a residence hall, pest control can become a concern. In order to quickly and efficiently to respond to pest problems, the residence hall buildings are under contract with a pest control service. Pest control for the entire residence hall is provided periodically, and on an as-needed basis for individual rooms. It is imperative upon the resident to report any pest infestation and/or problems as immediately.  Pest’s include, but are not limited to bedbugs, roaches, ants, carpenter ants, termites, rats, or mice. Residents needing their rooms treated should submit a Cairn Campus Service work order through the Cairn intranet and notify their Resident Assistant of the issue.  The pest control representative is on-site as requested. Prior to full pest control service, all food should be securely contained and placed in a refrigerator, and all furnishings moved away from the walls. Residence Life and Campus Services may require additional measures in order to effectively assess and treat a room or apartment.

Residence Hall Safety and Security

The cooperation of the entire campus community is critical to the safety and protection of both persons and property at Cairn University. It is essential that everyone follow established regulations and take simple precautions to avoid more serious situations.
Community members should:

  • Always lock doors when leaving the room
  • Not leave valuables or cash unprotected
  • Mark valuables such as stereos, cameras, and computers with engraving instruments
  • Park cars, motorcycles and bicycles in the designated areas and keep them locked at all times
  • Store valuables in the trunk of a car rather than in plain view
  • Walk at night only in lighted areas with a friend.  Good judgment is the best defense.
  • Challenge the presence of strangers in the residence hall
  • Report anyone looking or acting suspicious to campus security or to a Resident Assistant
  • Never prop open an exterior door or fire door
  • Not give unidentified persons access to any residence hall
  • Carry your keys and not lend them to anyone
  • Not give residence or personal info to anyone whom they do not know well
  • Be aware that security guards will report security violations to the Office of Student Life.
  • Not cross the railroad tracks except at authorized pedestrian crossings.   Students must never cross the railroad tracks behind Heritage Hall.  Fines will be levied for violations of this policy.


Fire Safety

Prevention is the best resource to avoid the potential tragedy that a residence hall fire would cause. Resident students are asked to use good personal judgment and follow the guidelines below to reduce the risk of fire:

  • Students should never tamper with smoke detectors. Removing the batteries from smoke detectors is a serious residence violation and appropriate action will be implemented.
  • Fire drills are required by law and help the members of a residence community prepare in the case of a real emergency. Any student who willfully fails to evacuate a building or disregards fire drill instructions will be fined and potentially subject to disciplinary action.
  • Any individual who knowingly causes the fire alarm to be activated, places a false call to 911, tampers with any part of the fire alarm system, equipment (including, but not limited to, automatic door closers, fire extinguishers, and fire alarms, etc.), or defaces an emergency call station box will be subject to serious disciplinary action. Further, the minimum fine per occurrence will be $150.00.
  • All appliances used within a resident community must be UL approved.
  • Grounded extension cords that are 15 feet or less in length are approved for use at Cairn. The burning of candles, incense, or other materials is never permitted within a resident facility.
  • Sun lamps, halogen lamps, and space heaters may not be used within any Cairn residence hall.


Evacuation Meeting Area

In the event of a fire, or fire drill, residents and guests of Manor Residence Halls should go to the large circle on the Campus Walkway. Students should find their RA and wait for instructions.

In the event of a fire, or fire drill, residents and guests of Heritage Hall should take the nearest exit and go to the grass across the street from the front door of Heritage Hall (Manor Avenue) next to the side walk. Students should find their RA and wait for instructions.

Bike Registration and Storage

Cairn encourages residents to bring their bicycles with them to the university. Not only does this help parking lot buildup, but it also complements our desire to bring life and energy to the campus. Here are a couple of reminders for those who do bring their bikes:

  • Just like any vehicle, bicycles must be registered with the Office of Safety and Security. There is no cost to students for this, but it enables Cairn to keep track of what bikes are on campus and what additional accommodations are needed for bicycles/owners. Bikes that are registered can be identified by a Cairn bicycle identification sticker.
  • Any bike parked outside of a residence hall or university apartments must be on the residence hall’s designated bike rack.
  • Bicycles may not be ridden in the residence halls, university apartments, or any other university building.
  • Bicycles left on university property at the end of the school year will be considered abandoned by the owners and will be disposed of by Campus Services.

At Heritage Hall there is bike parking located at the front left of the residence hall.

Manor bicycle parking is located between the Memorial and Schofield residence halls.

Residence Hall Parking

Cairn allows all students the luxury of a vehicle. In order to maintain this policy, Cairn requires that all vehicles be registered at the beginning of the semester. Once this process is completed, it is important for all students to park in the appropriate location(s).

Parking at Heritage Hall

Heritage Hall has a number of reserved spaces for members of the custodial/maintenance department, along with four designated Resident Director parking spots. Students who park illegally in these spots will be ticketed and potentially towed.
Visitor Spots at Heritage Hall should be used for those who are guests to the campus. Visitors should hang a visitor’s pass in the window of their vehicle in order to avoid citations. A visitor’s pass can be obtained at the Security office during business hours.
All reserved spots should be avoided by residents of Heritage Hall. All other open parking adjacent to the residence hall is open for students to park. However, once Heritage Hall’s lot is full, the overflow lot is parking lot A.

Parking at Manor Residence Halls
Students who reside in the Manor Residence Halls should park their vehicles in the parking lot G, located behind Stillman Hall and adjacent the tennis courts. However, Manor students may also park in lots A, B, C, G, H, I, J, and K, but are encouraged to park in their primary parking area.

Solicitation in the Residence Halls

Cairn University does not permit solicitation in the residence halls. This includes but is not limited to fundraisers, babysitting, personal businesses, and other similar financial transactions within the residence hall. Exceptions to this policy include university-driven fundraisers and online businesses such as eBay, etc.

Residency Requirements

Cairn University is geographically situated to handle both resident and commuter students. Off-campus students make up about 30% of our undergraduate student population and are an important part of the university community. Due to the important role of Residence Life in the overall university experience, students who are under 22 years of age and not living with their parent(s)/legal guardian(s) are required to live in university housing. Residents who are 22 prior to the beginning of the fall semester are welcome to apply to live off-campus through Residence Life. Further, housing assignments and policies are to reflect a student’s sex at birth. Additionally, all students who live in university-owned housing are required to sign the Residence Hall Agreement prior to receiving access to their assigned rooms. Cairn values its mission and the example that students set in the local community. As such, all students, whether resident or off-campus, are subject to all community standards of the university.

Exemptions from the residency requirement are rare, but when issued they are given to students with the expectation that they will uphold and value the same community principles off-campus during the semester, as they if they lived on campus. Consequently, when students are provided an off-campus housing exemption they must realize that they may be held responsible for conduct that occurs in their homes and apartments. As well, off-campus, nonresident students, are expected to be especially considerate of neighborhood expectations in the areas of noise control and parking. Failure in these or similar responsibilities that violate the spirit of the Community Covenant may result in disciplinary actions, including forfeiture of off-campus housing approval. Upperclassmen who do not meet the eligibility requirements and are facing extreme circumstances, may apply for residence exemptions in the Office of Student Life. Residency is for the entire academic year. Residency exemptions are granted in the spring semester proceeding the academic year for which they are requested, and exemptions are not granted beyond the spring semester deadline. Students under 22 must reapply for residency exemption annually. For more information, contact Residence Life.


Health and Safety Assessments

Health and Safety Assessments will occur during the check-out process of each university break (Fall, Thanksgiving, and Spring, in addition to the end of each semester).  Once a room is completely vacated, Residence Life will assess each room and suite on campus to ensure fire safety guidelines are being followed, maintenance needs are being brought to the attention of Campus Services and Residence Life, and to determine if students are adhering to the Residence Life policies and campus standards.

Cairn University encourages all residents to maintain clean and safe rooms throughout their residency. Living within a community can be difficult when different residents have dissimilar ideas about cleaning standards and needs. Residence Life encourages discussion about cleanliness expectations between roommates through Roommate Agreements at the beginning of the year. Residence Life staff such as Resident Assistants and Resident Directors reserve the right to request improved cleanliness of any resident room throughout the year. Failure to follow through with expectations may result in disciplinary action.

During Health and Safety Assessments, students are responsible for cleaning their room, including the cleaning of in-room or in-suite bathrooms, making sure personal beds are tidy, emptying the waste receptacles into the appropriate dumpster, and making sure that personal items are stowed as necessary. Empty food and beverage containers should always be removed immediately from the residence hall room and unfinished food should be labeled and stored appropriately. Additionally, to steward the resources of the university and the student, while students are away from campus for an extended period of time, students will be assessed on the unplugging of all electronics, closing and locking of windows, and turning off or setting A/C or heat to a normal setting. The Residence Life staff member in each residential area will explain where to obtain cleaning resources, cleaning procedures, and Cairn standards at the beginning of each semester and before each university break.

Having a room in disarray can lead to community tension, health and safety hazards, as well as long-term facility maintenance issues. Disorderly or unclean rooms/suites will be grounds for a warning and/or the issuance of a Health and Safety fine. The punitive consequences for Health and Safety fines are as follows:

  • Notice # 1 – Issuance of an official warning
  • Notice # 2 – $25 fine; payable to Business Services
  • Notice # 3 – $25 fine; 2 on-campus work hours, RD Accountability*
  • Notice # 4 – $25 fine; meet with Director of Community Life

*Accountability action plans are implemented upon the issuance of the third room violation in a single semester. When this action is instated, the resident of the room will set up meeting times with the Resident Director of his/her residence hall and will develop a personal action plan to assist the student in making the necessary changes in the care of their room. This relationship enables the RD to partner with the student in creating steps toward improvement in necessary increments. The length of this accountability relationship will be determined by the Resident Director and can be carried over into the next semester, if necessary.

The university reserves the right of Resident Directors, Campus Services, the Office of Safety and Security, and other authorized representatives to enter the room premises at any time for the purpose of supervising conditions regarding maintenance, repair, damage, health, safety, compliance with university policies, or federal, state and borough laws. Additionally, the university reserves the right to inspect all residence halls rooms to insure compliance of rules, regulations and laws, whether or not the occupants are present at the time of inspection.