For Parents & Guardians

Housing & Student Life Answers

The PCA&D student experience is partly self-molded to meet the interests and passions of our students and intentionally co-curricular so that out-of-classroom experiences complement in-class learning.

Where in Lancaster is PCA&D?

Located in the heart of Gallery Row, the College is centered in a bustling and vibrant community that boasts more than 125 arts venues including galleries, museums, theaters, concert stages, poetry sites, and public art installations.

Renowned for our farm-to-table food scene, feast in the city’s more than 90 restaurants and cafes. And we’re home to the oldest farmers market in the country. Lancaster County’s Central Market is a 5-minute walk from campus. On Tuesdays and Saturdays, students benefit from the free food that is given away at the end of the day.

Lancaster County Central Market

The creative life at PCA&D extends beyond our buildings into our historic Lancaster City, where the art and music scene spills into the streets on the 1st and 3rd Friday nights of every month, with downtown art shows and great outdoor music.

Planning a campus visit? Consider your visit around “First Friday” to get a feel for the downtown scene, shop, enjoy the music and even purchase student art from the PCA&D Art Market on occasion.

Where will my student live?

If your student chooses to live in PCA&D-Sponsored Housing, they will live in one of our six unique communities. These communities are spread throughout the downtown Lancaster area within a walkable distance from campus. Each community has a live-in Community Assistant who acts as a resource and emergency response for student needs. Foundation students have priority placement in the Lancaster Seminary Community and The Roost Community. Once the housing application opens in April for the upcoming year, we encourage students to complete the form as soon as possible as placements are announced in June. 

Our housing agreements are not a lease and we are not their landlord. Students residing in student housing do not have the same rights as renters under the Fair Housing Act and are subject to the housing agreement and the Residential Life Regulations.

student housing

Will my student have their own room?

In almost all of our housing communities students should expect between 1 and 3 roommates as well as communally shared areas like bathrooms, kitchens, and living rooms. The Roost is the only exception where students have a small chance of having an individual bedroom.

How are utilities paid in student housing?

All utilities are budgeted into the cost of the space and billed with tuition – if an apartment exceeds that budget, all residents within that room are billed the divided additional cost.

Must my student move out each Summer?

All of our student housing is active during the academic year, from August to May, with move-outs scheduled shortly after classes end. Students have an opportunity to apply for the Summer Housing Program, which runs from mid-May to the end of July, at the Lancaster Seminary Community for an additional cost. In the in-between of regular student housing and the Summer Housing Program, students will need to vacate their assigned housing spaces.

PCA&D Students

What’s the student experience like at PCA&D?

PCA&D students describe the campus community like a small, close-knit family. All across campus you will find groups of students socializing and hanging out during lunch or talking about their class projects, next adventure, or their latest game experience. Every student has access to a wealth of support, a network of resources and information, and a community of makers who serve as mentors, critics, and inspiration alike.

Most of our students are traditional 18- to 22-year-old learners with a mix of design backgrounds and artistic skills. The student body includes a variety of races, genders, and socio-economic backgrounds. PCA&D students represent the future of creatives and leaders in the design industry.

What type of clubs and organizations are offered?

Through the Office of Student Life, students can find co-curricular and extracurricular engagement opportunities that include student leadership, student-run clubs and organizations, and participation on Student Council. There are more than 15 active clubs and organizations with themes in social life, academic programs, hobbies and interests, community service, and personal identities. Also, starting a new club is super easy and encouraged!

Both Student Life and the student-run clubs host exciting events and activities throughout the semester including an all-college picnic, Halloween dance, 12-hour Designathon, professional critiques, pop-up exhibits, and open dialogues. Among the student groups, students are able to join a variety of national and international professional organizations and chapters.

Clubs & Organizations

What measures are taken for student safety on campus and in their housing? 

The College takes an active role in ensuring the safety of its students, faculty, and staff. Students are taught to take basic cautionary steps and use common sense, just as they would in any other urban environment. 

Block scheduling of classes will overlap with a lot of the students, so they’re aware when classmates will get out of classes and can accompany them on their way home.

The College’s entrance is secured at all times and all external visitors to the College are required to check in with the guard. In addition, PCA&D has day and evening security to monitor our facilities while students are in the classroom and using studio space. 

The College is an active member of downtown safety organizations, which employ additional police coverage in our area in the evening hours. In addition, the City’s police headquarters is located across the street from the College.

Each housing community has an on-duty Community Assistant for low-level emergencies and student needs. An on-duty professional staff member is also available for high-level emergencies.

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Parents and guardians, we have answers to your frequent questions