Moving into Residence

Students attending the Global Expo event

Before I arrive...

There's so much to know before coming! We hope this will help you to become a bit more familiar with life at Renison and what to expect...

COVID-19 Vaccination Requirements for Residence

As of May 1, 2022, the University of Waterloo and Renison University College will no longer require COVID-19 vaccinations to live in residence. This procedure follows the COVID-19 guidelines provided by the Government of Ontario.


Consult the University of Waterloo’s Important Dates Calendar to verify when your tuition and residence fees are due. All fees can be made payable to the University of Waterloo, online through your Quest account.  You can typically expect to see your residence fees being due in August, December, or April for the academic term ahead. You will pay your residence fees on a termly basis. 
Questions about paying your fees? Visit the Student Financial Services website and learn more about your student account, OSAP (Ontario Student Assistance Program), and the Student Awards and Financial Aid Office. If you have specific questions about the residence fees assigned to your Quest account, speak with a member of the Student Experience and Housing team, or send an email to

Your Room

Renison has 10 residence floors, which are either male only, female only or co-ed. If you request a single-gender floor, we do our best to approve your request (space permitting).

You will find out where you are living when you arrive. To protect the your privacy and the privacy of other residents we do not share residents’ contact information.

Our residence floors have funky names! As a Resident, you will live on one of the following floors:

  • Animal
  • Down Under
  • Euphoria
  • Fubar
  • Loft
  • Midway
  • Moose Crossing
  • Oasis
  • Timbuktu
  • Treetop

You will learn which floor you will be joining when you move in!

Residence Contract and Community Standards

The Residence Contract and Community Standards is an important document that all current residents agree to abide by. It outlines the terms and conditions of your contract with Renison and your rights and responsibilities as a resident.

Read the document: Residence Contract and Community Standards (PDF)

Bikes and Parking


Many students bring bicycles to get around campus although most buildings are within a 10 minute walk from Renison. Students who bring bicycles have the opportunity to store them indoors in our bike shed. You will need to provide your own lock.

Bikes are not permitted in rooms or hallways. All bikes must be removed at the end of contracted period.


A limited number of parking passes are available. Students who wish to secure a parking space for the year can do so by contacting

Short term parking is available in our parking lot. Parking is secured by a gate accepting card only. Overnight parking is available to permit holders only.

Residents hanging out in the hallway

Once I arrive...  

Sunday, September 3 is the official move-in day for the Fall 2023 term! Once you arrive at Renison University College, here's some helpful things to know...

Move-in Day

Renison University College will invite students to move-in the weekend prior to the beginning of classes.
Please see the move-in day checklist (PDF) for helpful reminders of items that are important to bring with you.

When should you arrive?

Renison Residence's official move-in day will take place on Sunday September 3.  More information will be shared in August about move-in day. You are also able to move in after these times or on a later day if you prefer. To help reduce congestion, we are asking students to move in during these specific times:

  • Students with Family Names Beginning with A-L: 
    Move in to Renison Residence between 9:00am to 12:00pm
  • Students with Family Names Beginning with M-Z: 
    Move in to Renison Residence between 12:00pm to 3:00pm

What if I want to move in early?

If you are an international student or a student who lives out-of-province, you may be eligible to move into Renison Residence early.

At present, we are allowing students to move in as early as Wednesday, August 30. 

Our residence building is full with students in August so we have very limited spaces available to move in earlier than September 3. Each request will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis to be approved by the Housing Manager and Assistant Director, Student Experience and Housing. To request to move in early, complete the early move-in form before August 11. 

Once you arrive

When you arrive at Renison, you will be greeted by our Residence Dons and Move-in Volunteers who will direct you to the appropriate parking area. 

Once you have parked

  1. You will directly enter the building from the parking lot area. If you are moving in on September 3, you will be greeted by our Student Experience and Housing team.
  2. You will receive your room assignment and keys at this time. You will be asked to sign any additional paperwork, and you will also receive your WatCard, your official University of Waterloo student card. 
  3. Our friendly helpers will assist in unloading your car and getting your belongings to your room.
  4. You may be asked to move to another parking lot once you have unloaded your belongings from the car depending on the flow of traffic.

Once moved in

  1. Once settled in, you’ll have the opportunity to meet your Don and explore Renison and the University of Waterloo.
  2. Join us for an outdoor BBQ (or indoor themed dinner in case of rain) on September 3 in the late afternoon.
  3. In the evening, you will get to know your floormates at your first floor meeting at a time stated by your Don.
  4. Kick start your social life by joining us for orientation events throughout the week.

Who am I going to meet?

We are excited for you to meet our Student Experience and Housing team!

  • Jen Burton, Housing Manager
  • Ryan Connell, Assistant Director, Student Experience & Housing
  • Scott McLeod, Chaplain
  • Stefany Kraft, Student Experience Coordinator
  • Allison Marlowe, Student Experience Coordinator
  • Laura Mutton, Administrative Assistant
  • Dons from all Renison residence floors

Orientation Week

Orientation Week is your chance to get acquainted with UWaterloo and Renison University College. The week is full of useful information sessions with your faculty as well as many of the services on campus. You can also participate in fun events to get to know your peers and build a social network. More details on the events are to come! 

Black and Gold Day

Once I Get Settled In... 

Once you have moved in and your settled in your residence room, here's helpful information you'll want to know next. 

Meal Plan

Renison's caf​eteria offers 19 meal times per week:

  • Breakfast, lunch and dinner Monday to Friday
  • Brunch and dinner on Saturday and Sunday
Meal hours are from 7:30 am to 7:00 pm with limited interruption of service. 
The extensive meal plan includes:
  • Two main entrees plus vegetarian and pasta options
  • Daily features on the grill and salad bar
  • Soup, dessert, and beverage stations
  • Pizza oven
  • Takeaway lunches and late dinners (available upon request)
  • Interactive and hands on cooking classes with our head chef and your peers
  • Themed meal nights such as a Hawaiian luau
  • Late night snacks during exam weeks
  • Food services are provided in-house by Renison staff

The all-inclusive meal plan ensures that you will have plenty to eat without worrying about money or a declining card balance.

The advantage of the Renison meal plan is that you never worry about going hungry and you never have to deprive yourself because you're on a tight budget. 

The meal plan at Renison University College is included in your residence fees. 

We welcome you to learn more on our Meal Plan webpage. You can also access the Weekly Menu online.

Sustainability at Renison