Patterson Repurposed: House will no longer be residence for students

In August, junior Casey Whitehead arrived on Truman State’s campus for Residence Life training and found herself in the first actual house she’d ever lived in — a house that no longer will be an on-campus option for students after this academic year.

Situated on the south side of Patterson Street between Grim Hall and the General Services building, Patterson House offers women who are Truman Leadership and Pershing Scholars a distinct on-campus living space. But this two-story home — which currently houses seven residents — will no longer offer student housing because of decreased interest in the location and ample space elsewhere on campus. Instead, the house will be repurposed to welcome Truman’s traveling admissions counselors.

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Junior Casey Whitehead spends time with the other residents of the Patterson House on a typical Tuesday hangout night. Photo by Lindsay St. John/TMN.

Whitehead, the Patterson House apartment manager, said the house is at about half capacity, as it can accommodate up to 11 women. She said because it currently houses only seven, all but two residents have their own rooms this semester.

Before July, Whitehead said she had never heard of Patterson House. She said Residence Life offered her the position, and she arrived several weeks later to an empty house. Having grown up living in her family’s trailer and then an apartment, she said this is the first time she has ever lived in a house. She said what she enjoys most about it is the space. She said Patterson House has plenty of seating and room to host sleepovers and other social gatherings.

Whitehead said Tuesdays are the typical hangout nights for residents, when she makes hot cocoa for everyone and invites them to the main floor kitchen and common area to chat, paint and sometimes break out the ice cream. Whitehead said she thinks living in Patterson House allows people to get to know each other on a deeper level.

After having her own room this year, Whitehead said she will miss Patterson House, and it will be an adjustment to get used to a new living space after her experiences with the exclusive and spacious house this year.

“I hope the people living here next year truly appreciate this living space,” Whitehead said.

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