Skip to content
Contact USI

vintage housing pictureAbout Housing and Residence Life


The first student housing known as Mid-America Student Housing, Inc. (MASH) opened in 1984. These apartments are now the O'Daniel South apartments. In 1986, USI accepted a property gift from MASH, for the apartments adjacent to campus, what is known today as McDonald East apartments. SIHE transferred ownership of the student apartments to USI in 1994. Apartment areas were renamed to Joseph E. O'Daniel Apartment Complex and Frank F. McDonald Apartment Complex. USI opened its first suite-style residence hall in 1999, Newman Hall, and now has four residence halls.

As student preferences for housing and amenities evolve, USI adapts its housing functional capacity to meet their needs. For 2023-2024, Housing and Residence Life can accommodate approximately 2300 residents.


Shaping our living learning experience into an exceptional community.


It is the mission of Housing and Residence Life to provide a high quality, affordable, convenient, and safe living environment for members of the USI community that is culturally enriching, conducive to academic success, and creates opportunities for personal growth.

We engage all members of Housing and Residence Life with the USI community by promoting a positive culture with opportunities to work together, to problem solve and to build strong working connections as team members.

We value civility and diversity in all forms. By challenging ourselves to continue to grow in our understanding of self and others, we celebrate the diversity of our community through inclusion. We respect each other's differences by providing a safe living environment regardless of ability, age, background, ethnicity, experience, gender, gender identity, lifestyle, nationality, religious affiliation, sexual orientation, socio-economic status, talent, or veteran status.

We are innovative thinkers who welcome change through continual improvement. We are resilient, embracing challenges and overcoming adversity.

We are ethical professionals who embrace honesty, trust, and mutual respect; through these principles we create a strong community.

We shape the residential environment to influence and impact the growth and development of our community and its members.

Organizational Structure

Desk Assistant
A desk assistant (DA) provides customer service at the Housing and Residence Life front desk.

Graphic Design Assistant/Photographer
The graphic design assistant creates digital and print communication promoting housing programs and events. 

Programming Assistant
Programming assistants work with the assistant director of Resident Engagement to coordinate and implement events and activities for residents.

Summer Services Assistant
A summer services assistant (SSA) works with summer camps and conferences as well as students who live on campus during the summer.

Resident Assistant (RA)Resident Assistants (RAs) are student staff who live in housing facilities and have primary responsibility of working directly with students in Housing.  RAs help facilitate opportunities and activities for residents, and provide assistance and support for personal, facility and other issues to residents living on campus. Your RA is your first point of contact with Housing and Residence Life, so get to know this outstanding resource!

Graduate Assistant
Graduate assistants (GAs) are student staff pursuing a master's degree that work in specialty areas of Housing and Residence Life. 

Administrative Assistant
Administrative Assistants serve as administrative support to the Business Operations or Residence Life areas of Housing and Residence Life. 

Administrative Associate
The Administrative Associate provides administrative support to the Director, particularly with budget management and departmental communication.

Area Coordinator (AC)
Area Coordinators (ACs) are professional staff members that live in a specific area of Housing and Residence Life facilities.  ACs act as supervisors for a staff of RAs, plan and implement programs, manage the area facilities and conduct meetings with students regarding policy violations.

Manager of Housing and Residence Life Facilities Operations
The Manager of Housing and Residence Life Facilities Operations provides leadership and direction in the administration and operation of the Housing facility and grounds areas including overseeing contracted services and supervision of housing facilities staff.

Coordinator for Business Operations
The Coordinator for Business Operations is responsible for the day-to-day aspects of housing assignments, supervises the front desk operations and manages the mail and package system.

Assistant Director of Resident Engagement
The Assistant Director of Resident Engagement directs and enhances the programming efforts within Housing and Residence Life.  In addition, the Assistant Director advises student organizations in Housing and collaborates with other University departments on campus-wide programming.

Assistant Director of Business Operations
The Assistant Director of Business Operations is responsible for assignments, serves as the primary liaison with the Business Office and works closely with the Physical Plant regarding housing facilities.

Associate Director of Housing and Residence Life
The Associate Director of Housing and Residence Life is responsible for all Housing and Residence Life staffing (area coordinators, resident assistants), programming, activities and student organizations in USI Housing and Residence Life. The Associate Director helps ensure that residents have exposure to a wide variety of different events and programs at USI, and helps Housing and Residence Life partner with other offices on campus to bring activities and events to our residents.

Director of Housing and Residence Life
The Director of Housing and Residence Life is responsible for the overall operation of USI Housing and Residence Life.  Contracts, budgets, services and long-term planning are all overseen by the Director on a continual basis in order to bring a high quality of service to all USI students.