Ruth Carman Hall, although officially completed on November 14, 1971, opened its doors to the first “Carmanites” on September 4, 1970. The ten-story North Tower housed 397 women while the top floor was still under construction. Strikes and lack of materials contributed to its incompletion in its first semester of operation. In a petition to President Quincy Doudna, Carmanites expressed their frustrations with “no food service, no laundry facilities, no recreation room, and no lighted walkways.” The women of Carman Hall collected 308 signatures that ultimately led to a $12.00 reduction of fees for the Fall semester and a $1.00 per week reduction for the Spring semester for the continuation of construction into the Spring. The Carman Hall food services were completed on January 13, 1971.
In the Fall of 1971, Carman Hall became one of the first coed buildings on Eastern’s campus when the nine-story South Tower opened for male occupants. The addition of the South Tower made Carman the largest residence hall complex on campus.
The dedication of Carman Hall took place on Sunday, November 14, 1971. Carman Capers, the hall’s newspaper, reported that residents of Carman served as entertainment and ceremony leaders for the dinner. The ceremony was attended by Ruth Carman and her closest family, University President Gilbert Fite, Vice President Glenn Williams, and Dean of Housing Donald Kluge.
Ruth Carman, an Eastern alumna, was the first former student to have a building dedicated in her honor. Construction costs for the two tower, 816 bed building neared five million dollars.