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Gleason-Hairston Terrace, constructed in 2005, is named for Dr. Eliza Atkins Gleason, the daughter of WSSU founder, Dr. Simon Green Atkins, along with Rufus and Mary Hairston. Dr. Eliza Atkins Gleason was the first African-American to receive a doctorate degree in Library Science. After receiving her bachelor's degree from the University of Illinois in 1931 and serving as a head librarian, she received her master's degree from the University of California, Berkeley. In 1940, she earned her doctorate degree from the University of Chicago. Her dissertation, The Southern Negro and the Public Library: A Study of the Government and Administration of Public Library Service to Negroes in the South was the first complete history of library access in the South. The American Library Association awards the triennial Eliza Atkins Gleason Book Award in her honor for the best book written in English in the field of library history, including the history of libraries, librarianship, and book culture.

Rufus and Mary Hairston are proud alumni of WSSU and are counted as generous benefactors of the university. Rufus Hairston was a student at WSSU when it was known as the Slater Industrial Academy. He was the first African-American to serve on the Winston-Salem Teachers College Board of Trustees. Additionally, he received his Pharmacy degree from Shaw University and served as president of the National Pharmaceutical Association. Along with being a graduate of WSSU, his spouse, Mary Hairston, received a degree from Winston-Salem Teachers College. She served as a key factor in the construction of the first public library for African-Americans in Winston-Salem. Upon the death of her husband in 1971, she began to make financial contributions to the university on an anonymous basis. After her death in 1995 at age 100, these contributions became a matter of public record. From their estate, the Hairstons have donated approximately $1.3 million to Winston-Salem State University.

Room Configurations

Gleason-Hairston Terrace Hall has a variety of apartment styles. The residence hall is comprised of primarily double and quad apartments. However, there are also a small number of single bedroom suites.

Facility Overview

  • Number of floors: 6
  • Number of rooms? 240
  • Capacity: 403
  • Elevator? Yes
  • Air Conditioning? Yes

Campus Location

  • Study Room(s)? Yes
  • Exercise Room? No
  • Kitchen Access? In suites
  • Laundry Facilities? Yes
  • Furniture: Fully Furnished
  • North : MLK Drive
  • South: A. H. Ray Student Health Services
  • West – Wilson Hall