Graduate Program

College Student Affairs

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Semester of Degree Completion

Spring 2021

Thesis Director

Jon K. Coleman

Thesis Committee Member

Kelly P. Miller

Thesis Committee Member

Jody E. Stone


There has been substantial research done on sense of belonging for college students. This study explored the on-campus experience of upperclassman on-campus residents at a mid-sized Midwestern university. This research was a qualitative study that examined the impact on-campus housing had on a student’s sense of belonging and their intentions to reenroll in their institution. The findings of this study supported many of the previous findings in relation to on-campus housing and a sense of belonging, as well it presented new findings. Many different themes emerged such as the importance of faculty and staff relationships, institutional size, and personal and professional development. This research also saw the importance of connecting with others, convenience, and finding the right ‘fit’.