Campus Life

The SMU-in-Taos campus serves as a complement to the Dallas campus. In Taos, students can benefit from learning in a different environment beyond the traditional classroom. This unique campus and its Northern New Mexico resources provides an excellent environment for cultivating creativity and authentic experiences.

Housing and Dining

SMU-in-Taos is a residential program, which is enhanced by the living-learning environment. Every aspect of our campus environment is intended to facilitate and foster personal and academic growth. Students are required to stay on the SMU-in-Taos campus, pay full room and board for that term and abide by all campus policies. All students will pay flat rates for both room and board each term. This amount is based on the length of the term.

Students will be assigned to housing based on their enrollment date, with Semi-Private Casitas assigned first unless the student specifically requests to be placed in a Group Casita. All students should expect to share a room with other students. Students attending Taos during summer terms should bring their own bedding and towels or else plan to buy them in town upon arrival. Linens are provided only during January Term. Off campus housing will only be considered under extenuating circumstances and must be approved by the Executive Director.

Students are not allowed to have any drugs or alcohol on campus (including in personal vehicles). Violation of this policy may result in a student conduct violation.

Housing Styles

There are three styles of student housing available on campus. Most students will stay in a casita (“little house” in Spanish). All student casitas have shared bathrooms and common living/study areas with a fireplace. Every student will have either a closet of drawers and space to study. Most casitas house a maximum of 9 students and are single-sex only. The only exception is Casita Clements. Clements can house up to 19 students and can be co-ed since there are separate male and female bathroom facilities. Bedrooms will never be co-ed. Linens will be provided during all terms.

  • Entire casita is shared with up to nine students of the same sex
  • Common living/study areas with fireplace
  • Semi-private bathroom
  • Communal bedroom with four sets of bunk beds and one twin bed
  • Drawers with ability to lock for personal items (please bring lock)
  • Individual bedrooms are shared with up to three students of the same sex
  • Common living/study areas with fireplace
  • Semi-private bathroom
  • Three Semi-private bedrooms with one set of bunk beds and one twin in each
  • Closet and drawers in each room

If the option is available, students participating in the field school experience can choose to stay in a tent. Tents will be provided.

Abundant Amenities


  • Miller Campus Center
  • Library with a computer lab and free printing
  • Laundry Facility
  • Wi-Fi
  • Fitness options: indoor gym, as well as basketball/volleyball/tennis courts
  • Nature trails
  • Chapel
  • Vans for Transportation for Walmart runs, field trips, and organized off-site events

What our alumni have to say

SMU-in-Taos students gather under a winter sky

“The campus was tremendous, and I especially liked the housing arrangements of living in a small casita of 2-3 rooms with 1-2 roommates along with the dining hall filled with snacks and a lot of yummy food.”

Romil Mathur attended January 2023, class of '24

Three SMU-in-Taos students in skiing gear

"The experience is unlike anything you can get on campus and classes are honestly more fun. The mountain views are gorgeous and there is so much to explore."

Tryg Aanenson attended January 2023, class of '24 

SMU-in-Taos students gather at the base of a frozen waterfall in Taos, NM.

“The campus at Fort Burgwin has all of the resources you need to be successful, including incredibly nice staff that help you make the most of your time there.”

Marion Dunlap, attended May 2023

SMU-in-Taos Students on campus

“Living out in Taos was so fun! My casita celebrated three birthdays while out there, so we had an amazing time both in and around the SMU campus.”

Cece Coon, May 2022

SMU-in-Taos alumnus Carson Yeager

“All the comforts of life in Dallas combined with the beautiful views and mountain air make living in Taos very enjoyable.”

Carson Yeager, 2017-2020

Students gather for a meal inside the SMU-in-Taos dining hall.


Students enrolled in courses at SMU-in-Taos are required to pay board for the term. The board fees cover all meals throughout the term beginning with dinner on arrival day and ending with breakfast on departure day. Throughout the term, three hot meals will be served daily and students will have unlimited access to snacks and beverages. Our kitchen staff works very hard to accommodate allergies and dietary restrictions when possible. If you have any allergies or dietary restrictions, please make sure to indicate this prior to your arrival in Taos.

People love our food

“The food is amazing, and the dining hall quickly became my favorite place on campus.”

Joshua Lauer, January 2016

“Another plus is the food, it is so good (the kitchen staff is super accomodating and so incredibly nice – I miss them).”

Natalia Albores, attended Taos for Jan term 2019

“I enjoyed having the meal times so I could sit with fellow SMU students.”

student from May 2023

“The catered food was SO good— we had gourmet deserts everyday and a cookout at the end! In fact, it was the best food I’ve ever had at SMU.”

Ella Collard, attended May 2023



All campus visitors must be accompanied by a current student at all times. Day visitors must check in at fort office and register vehicles so that security knows they are allowed to be on campus. Only enrolled students are allowed to stay on campus, therefore no overnight visitors are allowed in student casitas.

From the SMU Student Handbook: “Guests are defined as any non-resident of a resident’s room. Guests who are not residents of that hall must be escorted at all times by the hall resident whom the guest is visiting. Residents are responsible for the actions of their guests, including any Community Standards violations or vandalism. At all times, the right of residents to study, sleep or privacy takes precedence over the privilege of visitation.”

Animals on Campus

No pets are allowed on the SMU-in-Taos campus. Any students wishing to bring a service animal or emotional support animal (ESA) must receive permission from the SMU-in-Taos Executive Director prior to any animal arriving on campus. The SMU-in-Taos Office will work with SMU DASS to determine whether or not a service animal or ESA meets the requirements necessary to be in University housing. Should a service animal or ESA be approved, the student will need to sign an agreement and follow all University policies regarding animals on campus. For more information, please visit the DASS website.

Miller Campus Center

Designed to embrace its natural setting, the Miller Campus Center includes the William P. Clements, Jr. Great Hall, with outdoor views from large windows on three sides and a stone fireplace for chilly Taos evenings.

Students study on the steps of the Miller Center at SMU-in-Taos.
Students work out on treadmills at the the Miller Center at SMU-in-Taos gym.
Students roast marshmallows over a campfire in the snow at SMU-in-Taos.
Great room inside the Miller Center at SMU-in-Taos
Students watch football in a common room inside the Miller Center at SMU-in-Taos
Students study on the Miller Center deck at SMU-in-Taos.

Seminar rooms, a fitness center, media room and a large gathering space are included in the Center, which is surrounded on three sides by a covered wrap-around porch. In addition to interior spaces, the Miller Campus Center includes plazas, portals and deep porches, which provide outdoor areas for lectures, discussion and reflection.

An outdoor plaza connects the facility to the campus dining hall, auditorium, chapel and classroom space.

Students talk and work in the SMU-in-Taos Library


There is an on-staff librarian to help students with research questions and any other librarian needs.


There is an on-staff chaplain staff member who provides services on-campus and organized engaging student programming.

SMU-in-Taos chapel exterior
 SMU-in-Taos chapel interior
Faculty and students worship at the SMU-in-Taos chapel

Police Department

There is an on-site staff member from the SMU Police Department who is available for emergencies, conduct, issues, etc.

SMU-in-Taos residents enjoy outdoor cooking.
The SMU-in-Taos campus offers several clearly marked hiking trails.

A group of SMU-in-Taos students take a break during a field trip into town.

Student Affairs Coordinator

The coordinator is on the SMU-in-Taos campus for the entire duration to supervise Resident Assistants, handles conduct issues and/or emergencies, and create a welcoming atmosphere on campus.

Things to do around campus

There are numerous things to do around campus!

SMU-in-Taos students create art under the New Mexico sunset.

Community Building

There will be fun scheduled evening events ranging from movie nights, arts and crafts activities, karaoke nights, to board game nights.

Students enjoy the volleyball court at SMU-in-Taos.


There are sports facilities available to use including an indoor gym, tennis courts, volleyball courts, basketball courts, and bikes to rent.

SMU-in-Taos student Ella Collard reaches overhead with one arm in front of a mountain lake in Taos, New Mexico.

“We had movie and game nights (almost every night), s’more nights with stargazing, crafting, and trips into town. Everyone bonds really well at SMU in Taos and the environment is very relaxed.”

Ella Collard, Attended May 2023