Author ORCID Identifier

Date Available


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Year of Publication


Document Type

Doctoral Dissertation




Educational Policy Studies and Eval

First Advisor

Dr. John Thelin


This dissertation explores how student housing impacted the college campus of the University of Kentucky in the Progressive Era. Student housing has long been part of the college ideal but lacked full engagement by many administrators. Through three examinations, housing will be shown to have directly influenced the administrative, social, and staffing elements of the college campus. The role student housing played in the interaction of political, rural, and sociological changes on the campus during the time period allows exploration in detail while addressing the changes within those areas of the state as well. While housing was an afterthought by the administration due to oversight and lack of funding throughout much of the examined history (1880-1945), its consideration was still an essential part of student life and part of the college ideal. Housing was a place wholly of the student – while administrators set policies and the government had a concern for it at various times, it was also a place where, originally, a “boys will be boys” mentality slid by, unapproved, but unthreatened. However, how did the politics of the state shape the college and its housing experience? How did the addition of women students, the first of many major additions that were foreign to the original student population of mostly rural males, change the campus and its structures? Originating in the “environment” of student-centered housing – be it boarding houses, Greek houses, or dormitories, the students who populated these facilities would cajole, alter, and sometimes force the campus through both intentional and unintentional engagements and interactions. This dissertation shall establish an understanding of how the administration, particularly the presidency, viewed student housing. Following the introduction, three sections shall detail instances of housing influencing the campus climate in ways previously understudied. First, an examination of the political climate of the state interacted with concerns about student housing as a key factor in ending the presidency of Barker. The second section will show how a judicial ruling created new forms of student services – granting in loco parentis control but also creating the need for the diversification of services beyond what had existed previously. The third section will denote, in detail, how housing women changed the college campus – expanding its borders and the need for services. Through such examinations, a previously unexplored role of student living quarters as affecting the growth and development of the University of Kentucky into the institution it is now shall become apparent.

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)