Graduation Year


Document Type




Degree Granting Department

Architecture and Community Design

Major Professor

Stanley Russell, M.arch

Committee Member

Alexander Bothos, M.arch

Committee Member

Darren Azdell, M.arch


Architecture, Nature, Poverty, Child development, Gardens


On the possibilities of a child the Center for Disease Control says, “Every Child

should have the opportunity to reach their full potential”. (CDC) Children who grow up

in low-income families are at risk of falling behind in education before they even enter

kindergarten. Single parents that struggle to provide food and shelter often lack the time

and the resources to provide the early education that their children need. A college

education could provide these parents and their children with a better quality of life.

University student housing could include built in childcare services, educational

assistance and peer support, for single parents working toward their degree. The

development of a child is as important as the education of the parent. The home should

provide its inhabitants with safety and promote learning and growth.

A focus will be place on the shared common spaces. Emphasis will be given to

the shared living rooms in order to promote an interaction between the individual

families. These shared spaces would be a medium for children from the different

families to play together along side spaces for their parents to study. The private family

spaces can be minimized to sleeping quarters, a kitchen and a small living space,

providing a place for intimate family interaction. The project will also include an inhouse

childcare center, for the children living in the facility. The childcare center

provides a safe learning environment for the children, while their parents are at school.

Garden’s and play spaces throughout the building should stimulate a child’s imagination

and encourage their curiosity.

Combining a safe learning and living environment, with access to nature will

provide both a sense of security of home and school, and the freedom of exploration.

“For healthy development, undistorted by fears and worries children need to feel valued

and protected. They need both challenge and an ambience of security”(Day, 34).

Investing in a child by showing them what they are capable of achieving with education

is not a gamble. A child’s potential is a thing that cannot be left to fall, unachieved. A

healthy society benefits from the education of all.