In 1938, the first three sections of Kronshage were built. These sections, now called the Mack, Turner, and Gilman houses, were originally called A, B, and C. The remaining five sections were built the following year, bringing the campus’s total residence hall occupancy to 1,200.
Around this time, in-state tuition was just $65 for the academic year. Out-of-state tuition was $265. (Contrast that with the 2014—15 academic year, when tuition was $10,410 for in-state undergraduates and $26,660 for nonresidents.)
The Office of Student Financial Aid currently suggests a budget of around $8,600 for in-state room and board — approximately 82 percent of the cost of annual tuition. With 1940 tuition at $65 per year, one could estimate that dorm living in 1940 would cost approximately $53.69 per year. However, this was not the case.
Each of the original three Kronshage buildings operated differently, and the cost of living varied. Building A was the most luxurious, costing $341 per year — a steep fee that included the room, food service, and maid service. Students looking for a mid-range housing option could live in Dorm B for $320 per year, but they had to sacrifice the maid service.
The most affordable option was building C, which operated like a co-op, costing about $70 annually (exclusive of board costs). All Kronshage residents had access to in-building amenities such as a library, music room, nonprofit store, and even a barbershop.
Though reports vary about when campus residence halls became coed, the then-female-only Elizabeth Waters opened on Observatory Drive — just two years after Kronshage was completed.