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Student and Family Guide

  • Welcome

    Welcome to Catholic University! 

    This is a very exciting time for you and your family. You will find that Catholic University has a lot to offer you — outstanding faculty who are ready to engage you in new ideas, a variety of student organizations and service projects, spiritual engagement, and many internship opportunities in Washington, D.C.

    Here you will develop and shape your intellect and learn to accept the challenges of being a committed citizen serving others. We hope that you will challenge yourself and lead others, taking responsibility for your Catholic University experience and making it everything you have dreamed. Faculty and administration are here to assist you in achieving your goals and reaching beyond them. All of this starts with Orientation.

    Over the course of the next few weeks you will receive information from Orientation and other University offices. Please review each item carefully for deadlines. The Catholic University of America is preparing for your arrival and we are ready to address your questions and assist with your transition.

    Please contact the Orientation office at 202-319-6003 or any other University office listed in this guide at any time. On behalf of the Orientation staff, I welcome you. We are committed to supporting you and helping you make the transition to life on campus and in Washington, D.C.

    We look forward to seeing you in January!

    Steve Kreider
    Director of Campus Activities

  • What's Orientation? (Fall)

    Orientation for all new students and families begins on Thursday, August 22, 2024. Students are expected to attend the entire Orientation. Orientation will help you take your place within the Catholic University community as a responsible, independent student.

    Orientation will help you:

    • Become familiar with the campus and surrounding community
    • Engage as an active member of a rich academic community
    • Learn what it means to be a student citizen who respects the campus community
    • Learn about the many service opportunities available to students

    Sessions for families will provide a summary of:

    • Catholic University’s commitment to academic achievement
    • The University’s expectations for student citizenship
    • The changes and challenges parents experience as their student joins the Catholic University community
    • Spiritual opportunities on campus

    Orientation Mission Statement

    The Orientation program facilitates the successful transition of new undergraduate students into Catholic University’s intellectual, social, and faith-based communities; promotes student learning and development; encourages independence and individual responsibility; and facilitates continued student success to graduation. This is accomplished through programming that emphasizes the University’s academic and community expectations as well as its social and developmental resources and opportunities. Through personal connections with peer leaders, faculty, and administration, new students and their families will develop an introductory understanding and appreciation of the intellectual, social, and service opportunities available and gain knowledge of campus and community resources.

  • Registering for Orientation

    Registration for Orientation 2024 will open on May 1, 2024.  Review the following directions for future reference.

    1. Visit Cardinal Students
    2. Sign-in using your Catholic U username and password.*
    3. On the main page, select the tile that says “Register for Orientation”
    4. Follow the steps for registrations within Cardinal Students.

    *Visit https://technology.catholic.edu/resources to find your Cardinal Students User ID information.

    You will receive an email confirming your registration for Orientation. Review the Orientation 2024 schedule online here beginning in July or in the Catholic University app to find out when you are assigned to attend the opening session. If you or a family member will need special accommodations while attending Orientation, please call the Orientation office at 202-319-6003 or email cua-orientation@cua.edu.

    • Handicapped parking spaces are located throughout campus. A vehicle must display a state-issued plate or placard to park in one of these spaces.
    • Materials in alternative formats and sign language interpreters or transcribers will be provided upon request. Please contact the Orientation Office at the number or email above with any request for accommodations.
  • Arrival

    Housing Services and Residence Life have been busy preparing for your arrival to campus and are excited to have you join the Catholic University residential community. Information for arrival timeslots and instructions will be sent via email from Housing Services, and general arrival information can be found here, on the Residence Life page.
  • Cardinal Countdown To Do List

    Things to do before you arrive on campus:

    Cardinal Mail Account

    • Student e-mail at Catholic University is provided in Cardinal Mail. All messages for Catholic University students are delivered to Cardinal Mail, and your Catholic University e-mail address is your username@cua.edu. For more information, on accessing your Cardinal Mail account, click here. If you have trouble accessing your account, contact Technology Services. You can also visit Technology Services at Leahy 117. Click here to find contact information.

    Cardinal Card Photo

    • Your Cardinal Card is your official University identification card. This card displays your photo and student ID number. You may go to cardinalcard.catholic.edu to upload your own ID photo. Please do so ASAP. Guidelines regarding acceptable ID photos can be found at the link provided. Uploading a photo before arriving on-campus saves you time and allows you to control the camera. We do not take ID photos in-person, so please note that if you do not submit a photo via the link above you will be required to do so on your own once you arrive on-campus. Should you have any questions, please contact the Office of Transportation and Parking at 202-552-7275, or email cua-transportation@cua.edu.   

    Financial Aid Awards

    • To accept or decline your financial aid awards, log into Cardinal Students and select the Financial Aid tile followed by the option to Accept/Decline.

    Statement of Financial Responsibility

    • Read and accept the Statement of Financial Responsibility by logging into Cardinal Students and selecting the Student Account tile, followed by the menu option for Financial Responsibility.

    Authorized Users and Student Accounts

    • Cardinal Pay is the university's billing and payment platform and can be accessed by students via the Student Account tile in Cardinal Students. Students who wish to grant parents or guardians access to their account information must establish those individuals as Authorized Users in Cardinal Pay.  The university is unable to discuss account information with any person other than the student unless this access has been granted. Instructions for how to establish Authorized Users can be found here.
    • Catholic University does not send account statements; however, students and Authorized Users can generate statements-on-demand via the Account Activity tab in Cardinal Pay. Statements for each semester can be generated beginning on the following dates: June 15th for fall, November 15th for spring, and April 15th for summer.

    Optional Monthly Payment

    • A monthly payment plan option is available in Cardinal Pay. This interest-free option allows students to pay their balance in monthly payments instead of in full at the start of each semester.  For more information on this option, visit paymentplan.catholic.edu.

    Tuition Refund Plan 

    • Given the substantial financial commitment that students and families make to pay for education, the University offers an insurance program designed to protect that investment should a student need to withdraw. Students who do not wish to purchase this insurance coverage must opt-out by the add/drop deadline of January 19th. Visit https://www.tuitionprotection.com/catholicu for more information.

    Authorize Access to Your Student Record

    Student Medical Insurance 

    Athletic Medical Forms 

    • If you will be participating in intercollegiate athletics, please return athletic medical forms to the athletic training department by August 1st. Visit https://catholicathletics.com/sports/2023/7/24/sports-medicine.aspx or call 202-319-6049 for information on how to fill out and submit the forms.
    • Additionally, the NCAA now requires Sickle cell test results for all new student-athletes. These can be results of a previously completed test or a new test.

    Immunizations 

    • DC law and University policy requires students under the age of 26 to provide documentation of immunity against certain preventable diseases. All students under the age of 26 must submit these records. For more detailed information including FAQs, please visit our Immunization Records page.

    Final High School Transcripts and Test Scores 

    • Your final high school transcript, with your graduation date, must be submitted to the Office of Undergraduate Admission prior to orientation by July 31. If you will be receiving federal financial assistance, the aid will not be disbursed until the University has received your final transcript. If you took the SAT or ACT, please send them to us as well. They will be used for statistical and placement purposes only and will not impact your admission or financial aid award. Test scores can be submitted directly from the testing agency or can be sent by your high school with your final transcript.

    Course Registration and Placement Exams

  • Information For Families (Fall Orientation Only)

    Your student is about to begin an exciting new journey, and we at The Catholic University of America understand that you play an important role in your student’s success.

    Through Orientation we encourage students to learn and understand the expectations and offerings of the Catholic University community. We hope that you and your student will talk about expectations, responsibility, transitional fears, and exciting opportunities both before and during Orientation and throughout their time here. In this light we have designed sessions specifically for families in conjunction with the student orientation program. All sessions marked for families will conclude by the evening of Friday, Aug. 23. To see the schedule, visit the Orientation website at https://orientation.catholic.edu or download the Catholic U app and select the Orientation 2024 guide.
    Schedule Available in July

    Separate Sessions for Students and Families

    Families and students often have different concerns about the transition to college. Typically students are concerned about their social adjustment, while parents and guardians have questions about academics, financial aid, housing, and health services. The sessions designed for families will address the changes and challenges that you will experience as your student joins our community. Your attendance at the family sessions will provide you with an understanding of the University’s expectations for your student, explain University policies, and give you time to speak with representatives from various University offices. The University would like students to assume primary responsibility for their academic and cocurricular decisions. Orientation is the beginning of this process, highlighting the relevant resources and reminding students that their decisions will have important consequences.

    Parents and Guardians Attending Orientation

    Studies show that input from parents and guardians is one of the most significant influences on the decisions students make while they are at a university. Informed parents can and do influence the success of their children. The more you know about the resources available to your child, the better prepared you will be to provide them direction as they navigate through their four years at Catholic University.

    Registering for Orientation

    Family members do not need to register separately from their student. Your student will be asked whether parents, guardians, or other guests will be attending Orientation later in the summer. There is a $60 fee for each individual accompanying a student to Orientation. It is important for your student to register the correct number of people so that the appropriate number of meals and materials are ordered.

  • First-Year Experience

    First-Year Experience (FYE) combines academics, campus engagement, and local involvement. As an incoming student you will be placed in a learning community (LC) of no more than 18 students, and take two classes as a group in the fall and the spring semesters — a total of four classes. You’ll get to know your classmates and instructors, talking to each other about assignments, readings, deadlines, and more.

    Classes include excursions into D.C. to places such as the Lincoln Memorial, the Supreme Court, the Capitol Building, the Holocaust Museum, and the war memorials. The program also incorporates service learning into each semester, combining community service with academics. We even give you a free dinner once a term with your LC!

    Your advisor in the Center for Academic and Career Success (CACS) will also play an important role during your first year (and beyond). Early on, they will help you transition to college, give you advice about course-planning and the options you have in front of you, and answer any questions you may have. Later on, they will help you get the most out of your academic experience by connecting you with events, internship and study abroad opportunities, career development advice, and information about professional placement and transitioning to a career or grad school.

    You also have an academic advisor, usually a faculty member in your academic department. This person helps you get connected with your major course of study and all that your department has to offer. Your advisor will assist you with course selection, inform you of double major or minor possibilities, and help make sure that you are getting the most out your studies. The CACS and academic advisors are part of a team that supports you.

    First-Year Experience is for ALL students, including those students who may be choosing among multiple majors — exploratory students are also assigned undergraduate advisors. The undergraduate advisor will support you as you begin the process of deciding what major is the right fit for you.

    Visit catholic.edu/firstyear to learn more about how we support you in the first of your four years at Catholic University.

Student Services

  • Banking

    Engraving & Printing Federal Credit Union
    180 Leahy Hall
    202-526-4528
    epfcu.org

    The Engraving & Printing Federal Credit Union has a branch office and ATM on campus in Leahy Hall, room 180.

    SunTrust Bank
    2350 Washington Place, N.E.
    202-791-8737
    www.suntrust.com

    SunTrust Bank operates a branch close to campus and features the ATM Quest, Plus, AFFN, CIRRUS, VISA, Discover, AMEX, and MasterCard card systems. ATMs are available in the Pryzbyla Center, Leahy Hall, and the Columbus School of Law.

  • Barnes & Noble at Catholic University

    625 Monroe St., N.E.
    202-594-3300
    catholic.bncollege.com

    Location and Hours
    Barnes & Noble at The Catholic University of America is located at 625 Monroe St., N.E. In addition to textbooks, B&N at Catholic University has a general reading department, Barnes & Noble Café, EP Federal Bank ATM, and Cardinals merchandise! The store is open Monday – Friday from 10 AM to 6 PM and on Saturdays from 10 AM to 4 PM. 

    General Information
    From textbooks to Catholic University apparel and convenience items, we work hard to make sure students have access to all their needs. We carry a wide range of items, including school supplies, reference materials, electronics, bestselling novels, and a variety of spirit gear, gifts, and accessories. You can find the same great selection of products in our store and online at catholic.bncollege.com. We offer numerous cost-saving textbook options for students, such as used books, an extensive rental program, price matches, and textbook buyback.

    Payment Options
    BN at Catholic University accepts cash, Cardinal Cash, all major credit cards, and Barnes & Noble Gift Cards.

  • Campus Ministry

    Ground Floor, Caldwell Hall
    The Catholic University of America
    Washington, DC 20064

    Phone: 202-319-5575
    Email: cua-campus-ministry@cua.edu
    Website: ministry.catholic.edu

    Campus Ministry offers the Catholic University community opportunities to encounter Jesus Christ in the Catholic faith. We strive to set students up for lifelong faith during their time in college, inviting them to take advantage of the many outlets for prayer, sacraments, catechesis, community, and service, growing in deeper love and communion with Jesus Christ. 

    Live your faith at Catholic University in the following ways:

    • Believe: Attend retreats, pilgrimages, bible studies, men's/women's 

    groups, social events, formation talks, vocation fairs, and more.

    • Pray: Masses, Confessions, the Rosary and Eucharistic Adoration are 

    available daily on campus.

    • Serve: Attend  weekly service sites, large-scale service days, Spring break or 

    Summer immersion trips, and more.

    Get connected to Campus Ministry to learn more about the many opportunities we offer to support your spiritual life.

    • For students who are of different faiths, Campus Ministry is available to connect you to your respective faith communities in the DC metropolitan area. There is also an interfaith prayer space on campus available for the CatholicU community.

    • For students who are searching and need support in their spiritual lives, the Campus Ministry staff and Student Ministers are here for you, schedule a time to chat with us!

  • Center for Academic and Career Success (CACS)

    120 Garvey Hall
    202-319-6262
    success.catholic.edu

    At the Center for Academic and Career Success (CACS), we envision the college experience as a journey. The journey begins with a student’s first step onto campus and continues through participation in exciting learning opportunities that lead to a fulfilling personal and professional life after graduation.

    Throughout this journey, your CACS advisor will serve as a personal guide, tracking your academic and career progress, introducing you to new resources, and presenting you with extracurricular, internship, and networking opportunities in order to help you identify and achieve your personal, academic, and career goals.

    Shortly after you matriculate you will be assigned a CACS Advisor. Your advisor is here to make sure you are ready and on the right track, and to answer any registration questions or concerns that you may have.  If you do not know who your Advisor is, please contact CACS at 202-319-6262 or e-mail us at success@cua.edu.  If you would like to get a jump on things, more specific course registration advice can be found at success.catholic.edu under the Incoming Students tab.

    Transfer students and students requesting credit for AP courses and test scores should visit https://undergraduate-studies.catholic.edu/academic-support/transfers/index.html and then email the University transfer coordinator at cua-transfercredit@cua.edu. All transfer documents should be submitted prior to the opening of course registration in mid-June.

  • Center for Cultural Engagement (CCE)

    300 Pryzbyla Center
    202-319-5001
    cultural.catholic.edu

    The Center for Cultural Engagement (CCE) advances The Catholic University of America’s commitment to a campus and a world that values every human being, and supports and celebrates their uniqueness, experiences, and contributions. Through the promotion of intercultural education and awareness, the CCE contributes to the personal and intercultural development of all students, fostering the development of a sense of self, belonging and commitment to the common good.

    One program that allows the CCE to advance its mission is Take Flight. Take Flight supports the transition of first generation students to life at Catholic University, capitalizing on the gifts and talents they possess. Take Flight is designed for students whose college application indicates that neither parent has obtained a college degree in the United States.

    Through their participation in Take Flight, first generation students will be able to navigate their first year at The Catholic University of America with confidence and ease. Take Flight will allow first generation students to:

    • easily access all the resources available on campus and beyond;
    • reach personal and academic goals;
    • develop healthy habits that ensure academic success;
    • and fully engage in campus life.

    Interested in being part of Take Flight? Contact Javier Bustamante — bustamantej@cua.edu.

    Other Services Provided

    • Individual student advising
    • Student organization advising
    • Weekly career counseling (courtesy of CACS) and writing consultations (courtesy of the Writing Center)
    • Cultural celebrations (Celebrating Diwali, Dia de los Muertos, Global Fest, Cultural Day, Taste of the Holidays, Lunar New Year)
    • Monthly Intercultural Dialogues featuring guest speakers
    • Weekly Coffee Hours featuring Faculty and Staff Guest Speakers
    • Monthly Adulting 101 programs
    • Monthly Breaking Bread programs for students to share their interests, passions, identity, and stories of belonging
  • Counseling Center

    Counseling Center
    127 O'Boyle Hall
    202-319-5765
    cua-counseling@cua.edu

    The Counseling Center serves as the primary mental health agency for CUA students.

    Our mission is to enhance the overall educational experience by assisting students with the opportunities, demands, and challenges of university life. As students grow and develop, they do so in a values-based institution that offers a unique learning and living environment to enable students to discover excellence and experience success. The Counseling Center assists students with defining and accomplishing personal and academic goals by serving as a multidisciplinary, campus-based mental health organization dedicated to addressing the diverse needs of CUA students. In pursuing an active and fulfilling college life, students can experience difficulties balancing and adjusting to new roles and responsibilities. The Counseling Center provides a broad range of direct services, including counseling, educational learning assistance, consultation, outreach, training, assessment, and emergency response programs.

    Where to Find Us

    The Counseling Center is located on the first floor of O'Boyle Hall. The waiting room is located in 127 O'Boyle. Make a right when you enter the building's front entrance, and Room 127 is the first door on the right.

    First Contact

    When you call or come to the Counseling Center to arrange an appointment, the receptionist will work to find the first available appointment that matches your schedule. If you are in need of immediate help for a crisis situation, please tell the receptionist, and you will be seen as soon as possible.

    First Appointment

    For your first appointment, called an intake appointment, you will check in with the receptionist and fill out several short forms. These forms ask questions such as your name, address, year at Catholic, and other demographic information. In addition, they ask what concerns brought you to the Counseling Center and ask you to review a list of symptoms and experiences you may or may not be having.

    After you fill out the forms, a counselor will come to the waiting room to greet you and take you to his or her office. This appointment is typically used to gather information about you and what brought you to the Counseling Center. The intake counselor is likely to ask you to describe what prompted you to come for counseling, as well as other questions that may help him or her better understand who you are and how the Counseling Center can best help you. The intake counselor's primary job is to get information from you to help him or her determine which counselors at the Center are best suited to work with you or whether your needs would be better met by a clinician or agency outside of the university. It is common to feel a little nervous and self-conscious during your intake appointment. In fact, it may be helpful to share these feelings with the intake counselor.

    If your intake counselor recommends off-campus therapy services, you will be offered one to two follow-up appointments to assist you with the referral. This is an opportunity to discuss how to contact off-campus providers and how to use insurance, as well as address any questions you have about the referral process.

    If your intake counselor has recommended individual therapy within the Counseling Center, an administrative support staff member will then contact you to schedule your first counseling appointment with your assigned counselor. You will meet with your individual therapist for a 50-minute session each week. Your appointment will be at the same time each week and will begin 10 minutes after the hour and end on the hour.

    If you are recommended to participate in group therapy, your intake counselor will help you schedule a pre-screen session to learn more about the therapy group. Once the therapy group starts for the semester, you will meet with your group for weekly sessions.

    Getting Started in Counseling at the Counseling Center

    Early in counseling, you will work on establishing goals for counseling. Students may choose to engage in a limited number of individual sessions each school year, based on their concerns or goals. The counseling needs of students vary; you and your counselor will collaborate in making the best plan to meet your needs or to reach your goals.

    The time you spend in counseling will consist of talking about your concerns. There is likely to be some balance between talking about your present-day experiences and adjustments and discussing the past experiences or situations in your life that may have contributed to the problems you currently face. The exact focus and balance of your counseling experience will depend on the issues you bring into therapy, your counselor's perspective, and the preferences you voice over the course of counseling.

    Successful counseling can be expected to have ups and downs. Sometimes you may feel you are making rapid progress; at other times you may feel stuck. You can make important contributions to ensure the success of your counseling. Counseling is most helpful when you are willing to change and willing to be open and honest about your feelings. In counseling, the more you share your thoughts and feelings about yourself, your problems, and the counseling process itself, the more you are likely to benefit. It is also important to attend all scheduled sessions, give some forethought as to what you want to discuss during each session and apply things you've spoken about in counseling to your life throughout the week. Coming to the Counseling Center often marks a student's first experience in counseling. As a result, your counselor will expect you to have questions about the counseling process and will be happy to answer them.

    Counseling Center Therapists

    Counseling Center therapists will help provide a safe place for you to express your thoughts and feelings and for you to work toward resolving your problems. It will be mostly your responsibility to determine the content that is discussed during your sessions. Your counselor will listen as you discuss your concerns and experiences, and will try to understand things from your point of view. While counselors are unlikely to give you direct advice, your counselor will help you explore alternative points of view and choices you have to make. Your counselor may also clarify the connections between your immediate concerns and the complexities of your personality and personal history.

  • Dean of Students Office

    Dean of Students Office
    Pryzbyla Center 353
    202-319-5619
    https://deanofstudents.catholic.edu 

    The Office of the Dean of Student (DOS) provides several services to students. DOS services include:

    • Assisting students in adjusting to university life and providing support with academic, personal, or social issues and concerns.
    • Providing support in the event of a personal, medical, or family emergency (including temporary injuries).
    • Discussing and answering questions about university policies, procedures, and services and directing students to appropriate campus resources. Click here for Policies and Procedures.
    • Processing permanent withdrawals and temporary academic leaves from the University; whether planned or emergency. Click here for Academic Leave and/or Permanent Withdrawals.

    Student Conduct and Ethical Development

    Responsibly. Civility. Integrity.

    The Office of Student Conduct & Ethical Development (SCED) supports the development of character and ethics by providing educational programming and resources to members of the Catholic University community. These proactive efforts are balanced by SCED's management of the University's student conduct system. By way of this system, SCED staff coordinates with professionals in the Office of Residence Life and the Office of the Dean of Students to provide intentional interactions for students with the aim of challenging inappropriate conduct and behavior. Guided by the Code of Student Conduct ("Code") and other University policies and procedures, SCED provides a forum for a fair and balanced response to allegations of inappropriate behavior. Our office provides leadership in coordinating the resolution of these matters and maintains records documenting these incidents.

    Please note that matters involving alleged academic integrity violations (i.e. - plagiarism, cheating, fabrication, etc.) are handled by officials in Catholic University's academic schools, and coordinated through the Office of the Provost. For more information, please review the University's academic dishonesty policy.
    PEERS
    PEERS is Catholic University's only peer education group that educates students on alcohol and other drug use and abuse, mental health awareness, sexual assault and violence education, healthy relationships, and bystander intervention. PEERS, through the support of the Office of the Dean of Students, engages with students to create a safe and open dialogue about how we can raise awareness for these issues and shift the culture on our campus.
  • Department of Public Safety (DPS)

    Department of Public Safety (DPS)
    121 Leahy Hall
    202-319-5111
    office-of-dps@cua.edu

    The Department of Public Safety provides comprehensive programs, including security patrol, escort, and access services, to maintain a safe and secure campus environment that is conducive to learning, working, living and visiting.

    A staff of trained professionals, including commissioned special police officers, focuses on crime prevention and investigation, safety education, emergency preparedness, response and recovery.

    Services are coordinated closely with federal and local law enforcement agencies. Safety education and awareness programs are conducted for students throughout the academic year. The department works closely with other student life services to implement initiatives to support healthy individual and community living and learning. The department seeks opportunities to partner with students, staff and faculty to achieve the goal of a safe and secure campus.

    Public Safety has the primary responsibility for the personal and property safety program for the campus, but may extend services to Theological College, investment properties and leased facilities as determined and approved by executive management.

  • Disability Support Services (DSS)

    202 Pryzbyla Center
    202-319-5211
    cua-dss@cua.edu
    dss.catholic.edu


    The Office of Disability Support Services (DSS) provides accommodations to students with diagnosed and documented disabilities and conditions. DSS supports students with disabilities including but not limited to: ADHD/ADD, learning disabilities, psychological/emotional disabilities (such as anxiety and depression), mobility impairments, chronic health/ medical issues, traumatic brain injury, Autism Spectrum Disorders, and sensory impairments (such as low vision, blindness, deafness, and hearing loss). 

    DSS is proud to work with other Catholic University community members to promote accessibility and inclusivity, in order to mitigate barriers that students with disabilities face while at college. Part of this includes working with students on a case-by-case basis to address their individual needs, in order to discuss diagnoses and assign academic accommodations.  Academic accommodations cannot be utilized retroactively, so students are encouraged to have their accommodations in place prior to the first week of the semester. New students should begin this process over the summer in order to be prepared for a strong start in the fall. Please visit the DSS website to review the registration process and to get started by submitting a registration form: https://dss.catholic.edu/prospective-students/how-to-register.html

    DSS would also like to highlight to incoming students who will or intend to register with DSS, our Smart Start Program. Smart Start is a pre-orientation program hosted by DSS for incoming students with a documented disability or condition. The purpose of the program is to prepare students and their families for the transition to university life by introducing various academic, social, and other campus resources and personnel. DSS will offer Smart Start as both an in-person and as a virtual program, over two half-days of programming:  the morning of Tuesday, August 20, 2024 and the afternoon of Wednesday, August 21, 2024.  If living on campus, students will be able to move into their residence halls early on Monday, August 19, 2024. There is no cost to attend or participate. However, students are strongly encouraged to complete the Participation Form for the Smart Start Program by the priority deadline of Wednesday, July 24, 2024. More information about the Smart Start Program can be found at: https://dss.catholic.edu/prospective-students/smart-start.

    DSS can help you make a successful transition to Catholic University with our supportive and knowledgeable staff. Please visit our website at dss.catholic.edu to learn more about the office and different services we offer. We look forward to working with you!

  • Financial Aid

    Office of Student Financial Assistance
    M300 Fr. O’Connell Hall
    202-319-5307
    financial-aid.catholic.edu

    Accepting Financial Aid
    Financial aid should be accepted/declined before the semester starts. Aid will not disburse to account until at least 10 days prior to start of term.  Financial aid is required to be accepted every academic year. Review the guide on accepting financial aid to learn more.

    FAFSA
    There are major changes and improvements coming to the 2024–25 Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA®) form. As a result, the new form will be available in LATE December 2023, not October 1. It must be completed each year to apply for federal student aid and renew university need-based aid, Federal student aid includes Federal Pell Grants, federal student loans, and work-study opportunities. 

    Loans
    If accepting the Federal Direct Loans, a Loan Agreement(MPN) and Entrance Counseling is required at https://studentaid.gov/h/complete-aid-process. Federal Direct Parent PLUS Loan applications are available at https://financial-aid.catholic.edu/undergraduate/aid-programs/federal-direct-parent-plus-loan.html. Use commercial student loans to supplement federal and university financial aid, as many have a variable interest rates which increases their costs over the life of the loan.  Research the lender, the student loan requirements, and repayment plans carefully.  

    Satisfactory Academic Progress
    Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) is the term used to define successful completion of coursework to maintain eligibility for financial aid. SAP evaluation for undergraduate students, will occur once a year at the conclusion of the spring semester. SAP must be met each year to continue receiving scholarships and grants. Review our Polices page to learn more about SAP requirements.

    Study Abroad
    Applying for financial aid for education abroad programs is easy and much like applying for financial aid if you were here on campus. If the education abroad program is Catholic University affiliated, the process is identical. If the program is not Catholic University affiliated, you will not be eligible for your Catholic University scholarships and grants. You may be eligible to receive federal aid for a non-affiliated program, but this is subject to completing a consortium agreement and receiving approval form the CUAbroad Office. Be sure to connect with our office when planning your Study Abroad program.

    Work Study

    If offered Federal Work Study, you will receive information about the Student Employment Fair which takes place during the first week of classes. Job listings are available in August at https://success.catholic.edu/index.html.  Students receive a paycheck based on hours worked.  Earnings are not applied to student’s bill.  Non-work study positions may also be available. 

  • Housing Services

    207 Pryzbyla Center
    202-319-5615
    housing.catholic.edu

    Housing Services believes in the positive impact an on-campus residential community can have on a student’s overall experience, especially during the first year at college.  As such, students are required to live on-campus for the first six semesters of enrollment unless living with a parent/guardian within 20 miles of campus.  The housing application can be submitted by logging onto Cardinal Students using your username and password and navigating to the “My Housing & Dining” tile. If you have misplaced your username and/or password, please call the Computer Help Desk at 202-319-4357.

    Typically, assignments for new fall semester students who have applied for housing by the May 15 deadline will be available online in MyHousing by July 1. For applications received after May 15, assignments will be made on a rolling basis, with a confirmation emailed to the student in addition to being available online in MyHousing. If you have not received your housing assignment by mid-August, email Housing Services at cua-housing@cua.edu to inquire about your housing status. Specific information on the opening of the residence halls will be available on the Housing Services website by late July.

    Typically, assignments for new spring semester students who have applied for housing by December 1 will be available online in MyHousing by December 15. For applications received after December 1, assignments will be made on a rolling basis, with a confirmation emailed to the student in addition to being available online in MyHousing. If you have not received your housing assignment by January 4, email Housing Services at cua-housing@cua.edu to inquire about your housing status. Specific information on the opening of the residence halls will be available on the Housing Services website by mid-December. 

    Housing Services also offers move-in services, such as linen packages for purchase and the CollegeBoxes Program, to support your transition to residential college life. Information about move-in services can be found on the Housing Services website.

  • Residence Life

    Office of Residence Life
    Pryzbyla Center 353
    202-319-5619
    https://residencelife.catholic.edu/ 

    When living in the residence halls at The Catholic University of America, you will consistently find a focus on faith, civility, values, and personal development throughout the residential experience.

    Residence Life's primary goal in the residential communities is to assist you in building connections to the larger university community in hopes that you will become an active participant in University life and gain a greater appreciation for community values and service. Residence Life is committed to creating residential communities that support the University's mission, values, and Catholic identity, and that offer a variety of intellectual, physical, spiritual, social, and academic experiences and opportunities.

    Residence Life works with the students that live on campus at Catholic University to create a strong residential experience. The department provides staffing in the residence halls with 50 Resident Assistants and 5 professional live-in staff members. In addition, other student and professional staff work to create a welcoming and supportive community that supports the university's mission and provides opportunities for residents to broaden their horizons.

    As a student living in this community setting, it is as much your responsibility to become involved as it is Residence Life's responsibility to provide involvement opportunities. Residence Life encourages students to explore the variety of ways to get involved on campus and tailor their experience to their personal interests. While living on campus has many freedoms, when living in the residence halls students also accept responsibility for maintaining community standards and civility in the residence halls.

  • Student Accounts and Billing

    Office of Enrollment Services
    W200 Father O’Connell Hall
    202-319-5300
    enrollment-services.catholic.edu

    Authorized Users
    The University is unable to discuss student account information with any person other than the student unless they have been granted Authorized User access by the student. Students can establish Authorized Payers by following the instructions at enrollment-services.catholic.edu/newstudents/.

    Billing
    Tuition and fees are billed on a term-by-term basis and are due in full at the start of the term. Fall semester charges will begin to appear on accounts in mid-June and spring semester charges will appear in mid-November.

    Statements
    Account information can be viewed electronically in the Cardinal Pay website. Catholic University does not mail paper account statements but students and their Authorized Users can generate on-demand pdf statements in Cardinal Pay.
    Students should access Cardinal Pay via the Student Account tile in Cardinal Students and Authorized Users can access Cardinal Pay via the link at cardinalpay.catholic.edu.

    Payment Plan
    An interest-free monthly payment plan option is available in Cardinal Pay. This option allows students to pay their balance in automated monthly payments instead of in full at the start of each semester. For more information on this option, visit paymentplan.catholic.edu.

    Tuition Refunds
    Refunds of charges for students who withdraw from courses are processed according to the University’s Refund of Student Charges Policy. Refunds are based on total charges billed, not on payments made. Students withdrawing from courses may be required to repay a portion of any federal financial aid received for the term. Visit financialaid.catholic.edu/policies for additional information.

    Tuition Refund Plan
    The Tuition Refund Plan (TRP) is a private insurance program of A.W.G. Dewar, Inc. that supplements the refund policy of The Catholic University of America. Those enrolled in the plan are eligible for a 75% refund of their insured costs, even if the University's own refund policy has expired at the time of withdrawal. Costs covered by the Tuition Refund Plan include tuition, room, board and mandatory fees for the spring and fall terms. Participation in the Tuition Refund Plan is optional and the University's refund policy is applicable whether or not you enroll in the plan. However, if you do not participate in the Tuition Refund Plan, any refund is limited to the amounts allowed by the University's policy.
    Undergraduate students will be auto-enrolled in the Tuition Refund Plan unless they opt-out by the add/drop deadline for the semester, as listed in the Academic Calendar. The opt-out website will open on June 1st at https://www.tuitionprotection.com/catholicu.
  • Student Health Services: Immunizations and Medical Consent

    Eugene I. Kane Student Health and Fitness Center
    202-319-5744
    healthservices.catholic.edu

    Washington, D.C., requires all students under the age of 26 to submit documentation of their immunizations. The Catholic University of America is in compliance with this law. Your information must be submitted through the student health portal. Please do not email or fax records directly to our office as they will not be entered. The student health portal utilizes the credentials (username and password) that you use to access Cardinal Station or your CatholicU email.

    Students who will be under the age of 18 when the semester starts must have their parent/guardian sign a medical consent form and upload that to the patient portal. The form can be found here.
    Immunization records are due July 1 for students who begin in the Fall Semester.

    After registering for the portal, follow the instructions to submit your records.

    The required immunizations are:

    • 2 MMR vaccines with the first vaccine on or after the first birthday (or a blood test documenting immunity to measles, mumps, and rubella)
    • 3 Hepatitis B vaccines (or a blood test documenting immunity)
    • 2 Varicella vaccines (first one on or after the first birthday) or history of the illness or blood test documenting immunity
    • Tdap vaccine within the past 10 years. Please check your Tdap date. If it was given more than 10 years ago it will not be accepted and your records will be incomplete.
    • First year Undergraduate Students are additionally required to have received the Meningococcal conjugate vaccine, Menveo or Menactra (MCV or MPSV4) on or after the 16th birthday. If you choose to decline it, you must submit a signed waiver declining it. The waiver is on our website.

    Please make sure you have received all required immunizations and submit them correctly.

    If your record is incomplete or not submitted by the due date, you will be charged a $100 late fee. The due dates are noted on the Student Health Services web site.

  • Student Medical Insurance

    benefisupport@alliant.com 
    800-489-1390 (phone)
    203-568-8396 (fax)
    https://humanresources.catholic.edu/studentinsurance/index.html

    For all students, good health is essential to achieving educational goals. Without adequate
    coverage, unexpected medical expenses could alter your future dramatically. For this reason,
    Catholic University requires all students to have quality health insurance.

    All domestic students enrolled in 12 or more billed credits, as well as all international students,
    are enrolled in the student medical plan for a full year of coverage. This means that a charge
    will be applied to your University tuition bill. The student medical policy is underwritten by
    Aetna and runs from Aug. 14, 2023, through Aug. 13, 2024. The annual cost of the insurance is
    about $3,800 for the 2023–2024 academic year. Domestic students who are enrolled for fewer
    than 12 billed credits must proactively enroll in the plan by September 8, 2023, using the same links
    — if they want the coverage. Students who are only taking online courses are not eligible for
    the plan.

    If you are covered by another medical insurance plan that meets certain criteria, you may
    qualify for a waiver. To apply for a waiver, you must successfully complete the online waiver
    application process before the defined deadline. If the waiver is approved, the charge will be
    removed from your bill. Both waiver and enrollments must be completed by going
    to https://humanresources.catholic.edu/studentinsurance/index.html on or before the last day to drop/add courses for the fall 2023 semester. Visit the website to find out more about the insurance provided and keep up with waiver/enrollment deadlines and information. You may also contact the student health insurance call center at 800-489-1390.

    You will receive additional information in July with further instructions for verifying existing
    coverage or purchasing new coverage.

  • Technology Services

    117 Leahy Hall
    202-319-HELP (-4357)
    technology.catholic.edu

    Technology Services has a wide range of technology resources available for students.

    As a member of the Catholic University community, you have a Cardinal username that serves as your key to accessing many campus resources. When combined with your password, your Cardinal username makes up your Cardinal Credentials. These credentials are used to log into a variety of campus services, including Cardinal Students, Cardinal Mail (powered by Google Workspace), Cardinal Learn (Blackboard), the campus Wi-Fi network, campus computers, and more.

    If you have recently made a deposit or transitioned from applicant to student, it is important to change your password within 48 hours in order to gain access to these resources. This can be done by visiting password.catholic.edu.

    Cardinal Mail, which is powered by Google Workspace, is the University's email and collaboration system. It offers storage for emails and files and features the popular Google Gmail web mail interface. Additionally, Google Docs, calendaring, and contacts are available through Cardinal Mail. To log into Cardinal Mail, use your Cardinal email address and password. It is required that you turn on Google 2-Step Verification to make your account more secure. Failure to do this will cause you to be locked out and miss important information.

    Cardinal Students is the University's student information system, which enables students to perform tasks such as adding or dropping classes, viewing their class schedules, checking grades, accepting financial aid, updating personal information, and using CardinalPay. You can access Cardinal Students using your Cardinal Credentials.

    Cardinal Learn (Blackboard) is the University's learning management system. All students and faculty are automatically enrolled in their respective courses through Cardinal Students.

    Technology Services is available to assist with a variety of technological needs, including connecting to the campus Wi-Fi, setting up cable TV in your residence hall, keeping your data secure, and purchasing hardware and software at academic pricing. Please visit our website at technology.catholic.eduand explore our Resources page. If you have any questions, feel free to contact us – we're always happy to help!