Occidental offers a vibrant liberal arts college experience with a commitment to the holistic student experience.
There are numerous resources to support the physical and mental well-being of our students. The intimate residential community allows for students to explore interests in and out of the classroom.
- How does Oxy support the transition to College for first-year students? What resources are available?
- How do you support the health and wellness of students?
- What athletic opportunities are available to students?
- What religious and spiritual communities are available to students?
- What medical care is available to students on campus?
- What is Oxy's drug and alcohol policy?
- What accommodations do you offer to students with different learning styles and disabilities?
- What resources are available for first generation students and students with diverse backgrounds?
- I haven't been able to reach my student and am concerned. Can someone check on them?
- What is the role of Campus Safety at Oxy?
- How does the Title IX process work? Where can I find more information about this?
- My student is struggling academically. What help is available to them?
- My student is struggling emotionally. What help is available to them?
- My student is having roommate issues. What can I do?
- My student is going through the conduct process. Who can I talk to about my student's issue?
- My student is having trouble making friends. What can be done?
How does Oxy support the transition to College for first-year students? What resources are available?
In addition to a comprehensive Orientation program, Oxy provides a number of tools and resources to help first-year students and their families transition to College. We encourage you to watch a recently recorded webinar with Assistant Dean of Students Chad Myers and Professor Carolyn Brighouse, associate dean for student academic affairs, in which they shared information about student housing, residence life, academics, and student support services, and fielded questions from incoming first-year families.
Campus Dining offers healthy food options at every meal. The campus is committed to the Real Food Challenge, meeting nationwide goals of purchasing sustainable, humane and ecologically sound ingredients, and strives to obtain as much food as possible from local sources.
The Los Angeles climate is conducive to year-round sports and activities, and students are regularly seen with frisbees on the Quad or hiking up Mt. Fiji, the upper-campus hill that provides a 360-degree view of the L.A. basin. For a more structured workout, students choose from a variety of weekly classes including cardio tennis, yoga, hip hop, zumba, circuit training, boot camp and spin.
Oxy's Alumni Gymnasium offers a 1,600-square-foot, state-of-the-art fitness center open to the entire student body, along with access to the pool and track. In addition to the college's Division III varsity sports teams, Oxy has club and intramural teams open to all students.
The College is a member of the NCAA Division III Southern California Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (SCIAC). There are 21 varsity sports at Oxy, 11 for women and 10 for men.
- Women's sports: basketball, cross country, golf, lacrosse, soccer, softball, swimming and diving, tennis, track and field, volleyball and water polo.
- Men's sports: baseball, basketball, cross country, football, golf, soccer, swimming and diving, tennis, track and field and water polo.
Additionally, Oxy's club teams provide athletic opportunities to play men's and women's lacrosse, rugby, ultimate, and dance, and the intramural program invites students to compete in basketball, dodgeball, soccer and volleyball.
There are numerous student religious or spiritual groups on campus and participation in each organization is open to any student. Examples of these groups include: Bahai Student Group, Buddhist Meditation Group, Hillel, Interfaith Council, InterVarsity Christian Fellowship, Latter-Day Saints Students Association, Muslim Student Association, Newman Catholic Community, Progressive Christians Uniting, and Yoga. The Office of Religious and Spiritual Life provides support for each organization in addition to their own diverse programming, which includes retreats, study breaks, and other opportunities to engage in spiritual practice, such as the Interfaith Thanksgiving Lunch and the Interfaith Baccalaureate Service.
Emmons Wellness Center is committed to providing the students of Occidental with accessible, culturally sensitive and high-quality medical care, psychological counseling services and student-driven wellness education. Emmons staff utilize a comprehensive approach to wellness services that seeks to enhance the physical and emotional well-being of students so they may be fully engaged in all aspects of college life.
The center is open every weekday, year-round. Walk-in services include:
- Sick visits
- Emergency birth control
- STI testing for students experiencing symptoms
- Crisis counseling
Weekday appointments are also available with the medical and counseling staff, and after-hours resources are listed on the center website.
Occidental respects the rights of community members to exercise their legal options regarding alcohol consumption and recognizes that responsible alcohol use can be compatible with healthy adult behavior and successful social events. As such, Occidental College has identified expectations of behavior that support the safe and legal consumption of alcohol. Any student who consumes alcohol remains responsible for any violation of the College's Code of Student Conduct.
Additionally, students are expected to comply with federal, state and local laws, to follow the requirements of the College's drug policy and to respect the right to a drug-free environment shared by all members of the campus community. Federal and state laws subject persons involved in the use, sale or distribution of illegal drugs to criminal action including arrest, fine and imprisonment. Occidental fully supports these laws by prohibiting the possession, use, sale and/or distribution of illegal drugs on campus. Any violation of this policy shall result in disciplinary action.
The Office of Disability Services is committed to enhancing students' academic development and independence by providing appropriate accommodations, assisting students with self-advocacy, providing academic support and counseling and ensuring adherence to disability laws. By working closely with faculty, staff and administrators, our goal is to create a supportive community that promotes awareness, sensitivity and understanding of students with disabilities.
Oxy has several resources available on campus to support students. The Intercultural Community Center (ICC) supports several student cultural clubs, organizes cultural graduations and conducts diversity and leadership trainings. For example, the First Gen Club hosts meetings and workshops where attendees can connect with one another and learn how to navigate Oxy and take advantage of resources available to them. The Office of Intercultural Affairs works with the Oxy community to promote cultural competency, gender equity and an inclusive campus climate. The Center for Gender Equity (CGE) addresses the needs of women, men, non-binary, agender and transgender members on campus. Oxy also offers inclusive housing options and frequent opportunities for students to engage in conversations about diversity and equity.
The mission of Oxy's Department of Campus Safety is to protect our community, prevent crime, and preserve peace. Campus safety officers patrol campus 24 hours a day to respond to incidents, provide safety escorts, and enforce college policies. Card access systems secure buildings after hours and blue-light emergency phones are in strategic locations on campus. Campus Safety maintains a cooperative relationship with the Northeast Division of the Los Angeles Police Department and calls upon them for support when the needed.
You can find information about the Title IX process, Oxy's policies on sexual misconduct, frequently asked questions, and many additional support resources on our Sexual Respect and Title IX webpage.
Please encourage your student to connect with their academic adviser or the Advising Center (if they don't have an adviser assigned yet). If your student needs additional support or resources, encourage them to contact the Dean of Students Office.
If your student has a GPA that is below a 2.0, they will be placed on academic probation, and at the end of the semester they will be required to attend a meeting with Dean of Students Office personnel. The focus of the meeting is to discuss the factors that have impacted the student's academic performance, including adjustment to college, time management and stress management. This discussion also includes identifying effective learning strategies consistent with the student's learning style. A hold is placed on a student's enrollment for the following semester to ensure compliance with this requirement. Students may be referred to the appropriate campus resources, such as Emmons Student Wellness Center, Financial Aid and Disability Services.
The professional staff in the Dean of Students Office follows up with the student during the subsequent semester regarding their academic progress.
Emmons Wellness Center has a staff of licensed clinical psychologists and supervised graduate trainees who provide assessment and short-term individual and small group counseling to help students be fully engaged in their academic and social activities. Professional counseling staff are on call 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and all students are invited to utilize these free, confidential, professional psychological services. No problem or concern should be considered insignificant, or “too big." Additionally, Emmons provides a list of local facilities for mental health care on their website.
The Dean of Students Office at (323) 259-2661 is also available to offer support to students struggling with a variety of issues. If your student should seek emergency care, the Campus Safety Department should be contacted at (323) 259-2599.
Many disagreements between roommates can be worked out with an open mind and a willingness to talk with each other. If conflicts persist, encourage your student to speak with their Resident Adviser (RA) as a first step. The RA has received training on how to mediate roommate conflicts and help students learn how to have dialogue around disagreements. The RA is also the person who will inform them of how to work through the room-change process that happens during the third and fourth weeks of school. This information will also be published on the REHS Facebook page. Should students still need assistance, they can schedule a meeting with the professional staff member overseeing the building, the Graduate Hall Coordinator, who will be able to assist with the situation.
The Family Education Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) protects the privacy of your student's record. In order to speak with someone, your student must grant you access via their FERPA waiver, which can be found online in your student's gateway (my.oxy.edu).
Once your student completes their FERPA waiver, you may contact the Office of Student Conduct, a unit of the Dean of Students Office that enforces the Code of Student Conduct and manages the process related to administering the code. This includes arranging conduct conferences and documenting alleged violations of College policies, whether they occur on- or off-campus and involve both individual students or student organizations.
Students are encouraged to join clubs and participate in other extracurricular activities as a way to connect with like-minded classmates. More than 100 student organizations are registered each year within a variety of themes, including academics, arts, athletics, cultures, politics, recreation and service.
Additionally, the office of Student Leadership, Involvement & Community Engagement can offer ideas on how to get socially connected at Oxy. Encourage your student to stop by the office, which is located on the ground floor of Johnson Student Center.
Student Leadership, Involvement & Community Engagement
Phone: (323) 259-2918