Since their construction in the 1950s, CSU’s residence halls have seen many changes.
According to the 1990-1991 edition of the CSU Residence Hall Handbook, the conditions in the residence halls back then were much different than now.
Quiet hours started at 7 p.m. Sunday through Thursday, only two meal plans were available and students had the option of painting their rooms.
The Durrell Center, now a dining location and recreational facility, featured a sauna and weight room in the basement.
Colleen Meyer, Interim Executive Director for the CSU Alumni Association, graduated in 1994 and lived in Corbett Hall from 1990-1991.
Meyer, discovered hall resources and events like aerobics, blood drives and Frisbee games in Corbett’s courtyard after getting comfortable life in the residence halls during her second semester.
“Living in the halls is as big a learning experience as anything else freshman year,” Meyer said.
She said she remembers the laundry facilities were an ideal spot to meet new people and one occasion in which Ingersoll residents started a snowball fight with those living in Corbett.
Drawbacks to residence life have not evolved drastically her time in the Corbett, she said.
The distance between campus and grocery stores was a big inconvenience, as well as parking problems.
“You knew that once you left the parking lot, you would be faced with a parking dilemma when you returned,” she said.
Activities in halls may have changed, but the original residence halls themselves have changed little. Only a few buildings have been demolished or remodeled since their original construction.
However, the wear and tear on each building has become more apparent.
Ron Arndt lived in Ingersoll Hall for two and a half years in the mid-1970s.
“The older halls have memories, but for all the technology and other things that are in the newer ones, the upgrades are good.” Arndt said.
A Fort Collins native, Arndt remembers playing baseball where Durward and Westfall now stand. Both buildings were three years old when he first enrolled at CSU in 1971.
“I lived with a very unique group of individuals, and three-fourths of the people came back for sophomore year,” he said.
In 1977, many more students lived in residence halls beyond their freshman year. While freshmen now comprise the majority of residence hall members, 30 years ago, living on campus for more than one year was not uncommon.
According to a 1979 publication by the Residence Hall Association, alcohol was allowed on campus for students as young as eighteen years old.
The campus dining centers, too, were a bit different; an ID was only required for the first few days until the student could be recognized by cafeteria staff, but students were forced to adhere to strict meal times and could not dine in other dorms.
Arndt says the dorms taught him much about cooperation and sharing.
“You’ve got to adapt, find the person’s strengths and weaknesses,” Arndt said. “But there were some good friendships that were built, and the hall worked out really well for us.”
Today, ten buildings comprise CSU’s residence halls and house about 4,800 students, according to the CSU 2006-2007 Fact Book. Also, 908 apartment units exist for graduate students or for those with families.
Spruce Hall, the oldest building that was originally dubbed “The Dormitory,” still remains on the east side of campus, but has long since been converted to the Admissions Office.
Ellis Hall was recently demolished to make room for Academic Village, which houses honors and engineering students. And Aylesworth, constructed in 1956, currently functions as the headquarters for the Center for Advising and Student achievement.
Staff writer Elizabeth Fritzler can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org