Can Intentional Student Housing Design Lead to Better Learning and a Sense of Community on Campus?

Sherman Carter Barnhart Architects prides itself on developing architectural solutions for student housing that demonstrate an understanding of how building designs influence and enhance a student’s collegiate experience.

Living Learning Communities

Studies show that informal settings are better for college-level learning than the traditional academic setting alone. The live-and-learn community model fosters higher levels of academic engagement and success and enhances the undergraduate experience, aiding in recruitment and retention.

Sherman Carter Barnhart designed Lewis Hall at the University of Kentucky to be a living learning community with classrooms and residential units for both students and faculty. Home to the Lewis Honors College, the facility features academic and administrative spaces including smart classrooms, offices (including the dean’s office), study spaces, and a Cafe, providing spaces for living, learning and socializing in the building in which they live.


Fostering Privacy and Community

Privacy is becoming a highly sought after amenity, with the majority of freshmen coming to campus never having shared a bedroom. They want to choose how and when they socialize.

Sherman Carter Barnhart designed Morehead State University’s first new residence hall in decades, with both privacy as well as building a sense of community in mind. Wayne & Susan Andrews Hall, features a combination of two room or four room suites with a shared bath and living spaces, as well as shared multi-use space on each floor where students can come together as a community and build social bonds.

They’re not ‘dorms’ anymore.

They are walkable, amenity-filled communities that more closely resemble a mixed-use apartment complex versus what we once called a dormitory. Today’s college students embrace housing facilities that are lively, engaging, state-of-the-art, and sustainable.

Knowing today’s residence halls aren’t yesterday dorms, University Flats, designed by Sherman Carter Barnhart, offers two and four bedroom apartment style living on campus at the University of Kentucky. With on-campus amenities that look more like off-campus amenities to appeal to students, University Flats features indoor/outdoor recreation, in-suite laundry, and a two story Club Room, complete with a private kitchen, billiards, fireplace, and an outdoor covered patio that can be reserved for private functions, as well as a sand volleyball court. 


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