Constructed in 2005 by Uniplace LLC, Stadium Place apartments provide an alternative to dormitory-style housing for students at Fort Hays State University. Two-bedroom and four-bedroom apartments are available and provide comfortable accommodations for 118 students. Two 2-story and two 3-story buildings encompass a total of 54,570 gross square feet of living space.
The apartments are located near Lewis Field Stadium where McGrath Hall once stood. The Residence Hall, as McGrath Hall was first known, started as a National Youth Administration project and was completed in 1942. Its first occupants were cadets. The south wing of Residence Hall was started in 1952, and the center section that joined the new South Wing with the original structure (North Wing) was built in 1955. Renamed McGrath Hall in 1963, it had a full capacity of 174 students. The building provided dormitory-style living for men for nearly half a century before being razed in 2000. McGrath Hall honored the memory of Dr. Robert T. McGrath who served the university from 1930-1954.
Each of the four Stadium Place apartment buildings honors someone who figured prominently in FHSU history and had a great impact in the lives of students. The northernmost apartment honors Billy D. Jellison who dedicated 28 years of his career to providing guidance and support for students at Fort Hays State University. He was hired in 1960 as Dean of Men by President Morton C. Cunningham. The role of Associate Professor and later, Professor, was added. In 1966, he became Dean of Students and was named Vice President for Student Affairs in 1977. Dr. Jellison demonstrated true concern for the well-being of students. He received a national award for exemplary work as an academic advisor. He was instrumental in the reorganization of the Student Affairs division, helped create new student services and organizations, and continually searched for new ways to better serve students' needs. In addition to his professional commitment, Dr. Jellison believed in the value of community involvement. He participated in civic groups and served as a city commissioner and mayor of Hays. The campus and community benefited from his tireless efforts. He retired in 1988. Two years later, the Alumni Association bestowed upon him the Alumni Achievement Award in honor of his many accomplishments. He passed away on April 30, 2009.
The next apartment building honors William D. Moreland who served Fort Hays Kansas State College in several capacities from 1953 until his retirement in 1969. He joined the faculty as an Assistant Professor of Political Science and later held positions as Chairman of the Department of Political Science, Dean of Men, Director of Housing, and Chairman of the Division of Social Science. Dr. Moreland was known on campus as someone who could make things happen. In the 1930's, he worked with President Clarence E. Rarick to develop the Lewis Field Project, which allowed 100 male students to live in barracks buildings on the evacuated Civilian Conservation Corps and fairgrounds land. These students worked to help pay for their room and board and eventually became known as the Lewis Field Pioneers. They considered Dr. Moreland a role model because like them, he was able to overcome his own impoverished conditions as a youth to earn a college education. Through the years, Dr. Moreland was involved with numerous projects that benefited students. He continued to help those in need find jobs in order to finance their education. In the 1950's, he was instrumental in the building of the Memorial Union. He was the second person ever to receive the Distinguished Service Award from the Alumni Association in recognition of his efforts on behalf of the college and its students. Dr. Moreland passed away in 1991 at the age of 92.
The next apartment building honors Nita M. Landrum. During her 30-year tenure at Fort Hays Kansas State College, Nita Landrum provided inspiration to thousands of students. From finding them jobs to writing letters of support to those in service during World War II, Mrs. Landrum showed true compassion for the needs and concerns of students. She came to Hays in 1924 with her husband, a history professor at the college. Eight years later, she was a widow with two young daughters to support. After completing a master's degree at FHKSC, Mrs. Landrum began working as head of the National Youth Administration project on campus, arranging loans and jobs for students. This led to other responsibilities, including directing student employment, organizing a scholarship and loan program, directing the correspondence study division and serving as the founder and Executive Secretary of the Alumni Association. In 1960, Mrs. Landrum received the college's Alumni Achievement Award for her accomplishments and dedication. She retired in 1964 and many alumni whom she had helped as students remained in contact with her until she died in 1989.
The southernmost apartment building honors Robert T. McGrath. In 1930, Dr. McGrath was hired as head of the Department of Education at Kansas State Teachers College at Hays by President William A. Lewis. In this role, Dr. McGrath taught students how to teach crippled children and also served as Director of Teacher Training. The college needed someone with significant public school experience to lead the teacher preparation program, and his background as a teacher and administrator made him well qualified for the position. Dr. McGrath was respected for his work to strengthen the teacher education program for which the college was known. In addition, he helped find employment for students who otherwise could not afford a college education during the 1930's. He retired in 1954 and passed away in 1968.