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First-Year Themed Housing Communities

In the fall, each first-year student resident will join a Themed Housing Community. Themed Housing Communities provide students a way to explore the campus and the greater Bay Area through topics that most interest them. Students will create lasting friendships and have new experiences that expand what they are learning in the classroom.

When completing the online housing application process (details available here) please indicate your interest and rank your preference among the choices offered. Mills College makes an effort to place every student in the community of their choice, but please note that only a limited number of students can be accommodated in each Themed Housing Community.

Themed Housing Communities


This community brings together students interested in art and art history. If you enjoy working in the studio, visiting museums and galleries, or studying the history of art, the Art Themed Housing Community will appeal to you. Activities may include Oakland’s monthly “Art Murmur” street party and art festival, museum visits, special exhibitions, local gallery walks, films, and other exciting events that will enhance your understanding of both the history of art and the contemporary art scene in the San Francisco Bay Area.

Social Justice 

In this Themed Housing Community, we'll learn together how we can each make the world a better place. We will investigate issues of gender identity, disability rights, racial justice, queer inclusion and more. Students will learn together by participating in the many events on campus and in the Bay Area that are designed to challenge power, make a statement, and pursue a just society. Learn about social protest, policy advocacy, and education as tools for social justice work. We'll learn how to make our OWN change and inspire hope for a better world.


This community is an excellent starting point for students considering majoring in any of the scientific disciplines. It will provide an opportunity to live and work with a cohort of students who are enthusiastic about science and intend to major in the biological, chemical, or environmental sciences or students on the nursing track at Mills College. It provides an opportunity for students to support one another academically and connect with others who have similar academic and career interests.  

Bay Area Exploration

Why did the New York Times list Oakland as one of the most fun cities to visit? Find out about all the exciting activities in Oakland by joining this community. Did you come to Mills because it was in a city?  Are you not from a city but would love to learn about Oakland and the greater Bay Area?  In this themed community, students will explore Oakland, San Francisco, and the Bay Area utilizing their AC Transit bus cards.  Students will learn about the history of the area as they explore thriving and diverse areas like, Chinatown,  Lake Merritt in Oakland, the Redwood parks of the Oakland hills, Dolores Park in San Francisco, the Oakland Museum of Art, and other hidden gems of the Bay Area.

Performing Arts

Mills has launched a wonderful new partnership with the American Conservatory Theater (ACT) of San Francisco and we continue to build on our highly acclaimed dance and music programs. Do you want to share your interests in dance, music, and theater with other Mills students and get an insider’s view into the performing arts at Mills and in the Bay Area? Join this community and make your first year at Mills filled with exciting performances that will inspire you for years to come.

Creative Writing and English

Do you love to write? Can you name more favorite books than TV shows? Join the Creative Writing and English Themed Community to meet like-minded writers and creative souls. This themed community will explore the vibrant writers’ scene at Mills College and in the Bay Area. Participate in the Contemporary Writers Series to meet world-renowned writers in our own Mills Hall. Students in this community will work together to publish poems or essays in the many Mills student publications. Write on!



Living at Mills

Residential Options

Themed Housing Communities


Application Fees and Refunds

Occupancy Periods

ID Validation and Move In

Room Draw

Move Out

Residential Life



Contact Information

Housing Management & Dining Services (HMDS)
Sage Hall, Room 138

P: 510.430.2127
F: 510.430.2155
Last Updated: 8/12/15