Fisk House is a cooperative residence for women graduate students enrolled at Boston University. Administered by the Office of Residential Life and supported and maintained by the Boston University Women’s Guild since February 2020, Fisk House provides a residence for 16 students at nominal cost. It is the only subsidized graduate student residence at Boston University.
History of Fisk House
In 1933, with a gift of $15,000, the Boston University Women’s Council helped Boston University buy a brown-stone to provide subsidized housing for women students.
Under the leadership of its first president, Louisa Holman Fisk, the Women’s Council undertook the responsibility of restoring and maintaining the house, establishing endowments and raising funds by sponsoring lectures, holding antique auctions, and hosting other events like a Symphony Hall recital that featured famed lyric tenor Roland Hayes.
In 1940, President Daniel Marsh, and Boston University presented to the Council a portrait of Mrs. Fisk. The University awarded Mrs. Fisk an honorary doctorate of Humane Letters at Commencement in 1941; and in 1949, the Board of Trustees unanimously voted to name the building the Louisa Holman Fisk House.
After World War II, as more and more women began coming to Boston University from around the country and abroad, the Women’s Council continued its support and also helped the University build more housing for women. In 1959, to honor a gift from the Women’s Council, the University named a lounge in the new Towers the Lucy Jenkins Franklin, in honor of the University’s first Dean of Women.
In February 2020, the Boston University Women’s Council merged with the Boston University Women’s Guild. The Boston University Women’s Guild continues the traditions of the visionary women who started the Boston University Women’s Council by maintaining Fisk House, keeping facilities and appliances up-to-date, making repairs, and upholding safety and security standards.