Summer Institute : Student Life + Housing

Creativity doesn’t stop when classes end. Between impromptu jam sessions, dances, open studio hours or videogame-equipped student lounges, life after class offers something for everyone. Relax in the residence halls, create something new with a student from the other side of the world, or explore one of the 140 museums, theaters or galleries in Center City Philadelphia. Philly is easy to navigate by foot and you will experience city living in an urban campus environment in one of the most artistically flourishing cities in the country.

At UArts, you'll be in the center of it all.  Our campus in Center City Philadelphia stretches for six blocks along the Avenue of the Arts, Philadelphia's main arts and culture district.  Here you will attend performances, gallery shows, lectures, master classes and museum exhibitions as you discover all of the amazing art making we have to offer.


Residence Halls + Community Advisors The Scene
Apartment + Roommate Assignment Health Services
Supervision Facilities
Security Student Lounges
Residential Check-In Supplies + Equipment
Housing Orientation Other Expenses
Dining + Meals Weekends

The Scene
Activities in the Curriculum May Include:

› Guest Artist lectures
› Trips to local museums, theaters and concert halls
› Faculty exhibitions and presentations
› Walking tours of the city
› Student exhibits and performances
› Portfolio reviews, presentations and consultations with UArts Admissions counselors

 Optional Activities

› Trip to the beach at Wildwood, N.J.
› NYC trip to visit galleries, museums and performances
› Trip to Dorney Park
› Open mic nights and events organized by your Community Advisor

Other Local Attractions

Philadelphia Phillies baseball games
Old City Philadelphia galleries, theaters and and the Piazza at Schmidt’s in Northern Liberties
Reading Terminal Market
South Street stores and music venues
Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts
Penn’s Landing on the riverfront

Download a PDF of our Philly Map >>

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Residence Halls + Community Advisors
The residence halls at UArts are apartment style. Spruce Hall features large studio apartments, housing 2 students with a private bath. Juniper Hall features 1 or 2 bedroom units housing 2 to 4 student, with a living room, kitchen and private bath. Students can expect to share a bedroom with other students. In order to provide the best possible atmosphere for success in this program, males and female identifying students reside in separate residence halls, a public safety officer is at the the residence hall 24-7, and all residence halls are accessed using a UArts student ID.

All residence halls are supervised by professional Pre-College staff, including Community Advisors (CAs) and Resident Directors. You will become well acquainted with your CA, who will provide guidance about the city, the school or life in general.

For photos of the Residence Halls, visit our Flickr page.

Apartment + Roommate Assignment
Housing assignments are based on gender, program length, academic program, and the student comments on the housing form. Female identifying students will live in the Spruce Residence Hall located at 1228 Spruce Street; and male identifying students will live in the Juniper Residence Hall, located one block east of Broad Street, behind Anderson Hall.

It is impossible to give out roommate information prior to move-in due to student privacy. Every effort is made to accommodate mutual requests for students to reside together. In such cases, each student's name must appear on the other student’s housing form and be signed by the parents.

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There are a number of undergraduate students and professional staff members who reside in the residential halls and supervise students in the Pre-College Summer Institute. All Residential Life staff members ultimately report to the Director of Student Life, who is actively engaged in the welfare of Pre-College Summer Institute students.

All residence halls are supervised by professional Pre-College staff, including Community Advisors (CAs), Area Coordinators and a Resident Director. You will become well acquainted with your CA, who will provide guidance about the city, the school or life in general.

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Each UArts Residence Hall is staffed with a security officer 24 hours per day. Only the students who live in a particular building may enter that building. Students must wear University issued ID cards around their necks with their photographs and residential hall as identification. No guests are permitted in the residential halls at any time, with the exception of parents on move-in and move-out days only.

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Residential Curfew + Nightly Check-In
For their own safety, all students are required to observe a weekday and weekend residential curfew and check-in. Check-in time is 10:30 pm on weekdays and weekends. Students who miss check-in are in violation of the Student Code of Conduct and may be dismissed.

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Housing Orientation
Separate orientations for parents and students are held on the evening of move-in. The parent orientation is optional, though highly recommended. It takes place simultaneous to the CA floor meeting which residential students attend at 5:00 pm on Sunday, July 9. The parent orientation addresses issues of safety, security and student life, as well as academic issues.

All students attend a mandatory housing orientation designed to provide residential students with information regarding campus resources, rules and regulations pertinent to residential life, as well as personal safety on and around the University campus.

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Dining + Meals
There are several dining areas on campus, including the main dining facility in Terra Hall, where all Pre-College students dine. The menu includes items that meet the needs of every type of diet including vegan, vegetarian, and gluten-free. Students attending the Summer Institute program are required to participate in a meal plan offered by the University Dining Services.  The Dining Services team is committed to providing high-quality food for all types of dietary needs and lifestyles. The meal plan for residents includes breakfast, lunch and dinner Monday through Friday, as well as brunch and dinner on weekends. The commuter student meal plan includes lunch on weekdays. 

Student who do not purchase the meal plan cannot eat in the dining hall.  If your student's class is held in Anderson they can eat their packed lunch on the Mezzanine level and if they are in Terra they can eat on the 16th floor.  There are tables and chair for students to enjoy their meals comfortably on campus.  Also, students may go to Hamilton Hall and enjoy either of our two shaded, outdoor courtyards at one of the picnic tables.

In addition to the meal plan, you can enjoy take out or dining from one of the many restaurants Philadelphia has to offer.

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Health Services
The University and Pre-College community is dedicated to keeping all of our students safe and healthy. Health Services are administered by a certified nurse on campus, at no extra cost to the student. Counseling services are also included and available to students who need or want assistance. Students who need emergency care are taken to Jefferson Hospital, located just a few blocks from campus, at the student’s expense.

All students are required to submit health forms, insurance information and immunization reports before arriving on campus. The Director of Health Services will review all medical information before the start of the summer program to ensure that all student needs can be met.

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Our facilities are a mix of historic and contemporary buildings which have been redesigned and updated to meet the needs of artists and performers. All buildings are located along the Avenue of the Arts. Each campus classroom, studio, lab, performance space and gallery is air-conditioned.

UArts’ extensive on-campus library includes a collection of books, magazines, films, slides, music and more. Philadelphia’s Free Library is also a wonderful resource and is located just a few blocks away from campus.

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Student Lounges
Student lounges provide areas for students to relax and socialize with other students. There are lounges located in each residence hall as well as a large Pre-College lounge located in Hamilton Hall. The Pre-College lounge includes couches and chairs, flat screen TVs, game consoles, movies and magazines, and an eating area.

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Supplies + Equipment
You are welcome to bring your own personal art supplies from home, including laptop computers. Campus wi-fi login information will be distributed upon your arrival on campus. Computer labs are also available for Summer Institute students. In addition to bringing arts supplies from home, you should also expect to purchase necessary supplies from an art store in the campus-area. Pre-College students may be eligible for student discounts with their UArts student ID. Supply lists will be distributed at the beginning of the program and will be posted on our website one month prior to the start of the program.

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Other Expenses

Optional trips to the beach at Wildwood, Dorney Park and NYC are at an additional cost to the student. The estimated cost of additional admission, meals and spending money is $100 per trip. Sign-up forms for these trips will be available to students once they are accepted in the Summer Institute.

Spending + Miscellaneous
Residential students spend an average of $80-$100 per week on additional items including laundry, snacks, personal spending and non-required supplies.

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All students are expected to attend classes and rehearsals scheduled on Saturdays. Sunday activities are optional.  All residential students are expected to stay on campus for the duration of each weekend. There is no weekend release. Please visit our policies page to view the full Weekend Release Policy.