Flavet Villages at the University of Florida

by Mike Miller
(Mount Dora, Florida)

Flavet Village, Mrs. Turner

Flavet Village, Mrs. Turner

Flavet Village, Mrs. Turner
Flavet Village, Mr. Turner
Flavet Village II (I think)
Flavet Village Small Family

I attended the University of Florida in Gainvesville, Florida from 1963 until graduation in 1966.

It probably would have been too expensive for me to go had it not been for the existence of married student housing known as Flavet Villages.

Rent was $28/month for me and my wife and daughter. We paid an extra $5/month for a refrigerator. There were no air conditioners in these apartments; the wiring wouldn't handle it.

The housing consisted of old army barracks that had been moved to the U.F. campus immediately after World War Two from Camp Blanding, an army base near Jacksonville. The housing was to be temporary to handle the anticipated crush of veterans going to school on the G.I. Bill. The crush certainly happened, but the housing hung on until 1974.

The name "Flavet" came from a combination of the words "Florida" and "Veterans".

The villages were placed at three separate locations on campus.

Flavet I was near the Reitz Union; Flavet II was at the corner of N.W. 13th and Radio Rd (today's Museum Rd) on the site of what is now Beaty Towers; Flavet III was located not far from "Fraternity Row" where the Keys Residential Complex is currently located.

All of us who lived in the villages had quite a few things in common: we were married, we had children, we were serious students and we were poor.

We also shared the common curse of cockroaches.

The cockroaches in the Flavet Villages were legendary. There was an urban legend among the village residents that a psychology student lived in the villages shortly after World War Two and was experimenting with cockroaches.

He trained the cockroaches to disappear instantly when lights came on and to appear instantly when the lights went off. He also trained them to hide quietly in the walls, and taught them how to reproduce even more prolifically than they normally do. He showed them how to sneak into a loaf of bread or a cardboard cereal box, and even taught them how to get a drink of coffee by crawling down the coffee pot spout.

The problem is that this student got attached to his roaches. When it was time to graduate, he couldn't bear to kill them so he released them into his apartment. The progeny of these roaches pestered subsequent Flavet residents for years.

As miserable as living conditions could be in these little places, the misery was worth bearing because it allowed us to graduate.

So thank you, University of Florida.


Credits for the photographs are as follows:

Mrs. Turner: State Archives of Florida, Florida Memory, http://floridamemory.com/items/show/66423

Small Family: State Archives of Florida, Florida Memory, http://floridamemory.com/items/show/66430

Flavet Village: State Archives of Florida, Florida Memory, http://floridamemory.com/items/show/66424

Mr. Turner: State Archives of Florida, Florida Memory, http://floridamemory.com/items/show/66422

Comments for Flavet Villages at the University of Florida

Click here to add your own comments

May 03, 2016
by: Joyce Lowe

We could not have afforded school without Flavet and the low rent. Thank you University of Florida!

Sep 01, 2015
by: Mike M

We lived in Flavet I before we had our first child and then we moved into Flavet III next to the fire station in 1964. We still have our old friends from those days and we all agree it was fun and allowed us to graduate. I finally retired in 2006.

I was on the work crew and we did repairs, moved furniture and responded to problems in the village. Great days and memories of late study hours, low rent and convenience to classes. The days of Larry Dupree and game days.

Thanks to U of F housing we made it even though tuition was only $113 a trimester.


Great story, Mike. I probably met you somewhere along the line in those days. Larry Dupree and Steve Spurrier are names that will live forever in Gator Legend. I had a good friend who worked on the Flavet work crew; I worked for the Gainesville Utility Commission. Most of us had to work; there were no government guaranteed student loans back in our day. THANK GOD!!

Jul 20, 2015
Flavet II record holder
by: Sandy

He was never rich. Three marriages tends to be costly! All he ever wanted to do was to be a doctor and he succeeded in that.

My brother and I attended the 50th anniversary of the first medical class of UF in G'ville recently in his place. None of the other medical students had children (while in medical school) so my brother and I were treated as novelties by his classmates.

I was introduced to so many unique personalities in that 1st class and have kept up with them as best as I can. If you are interested, I have a YOU TUBE video called 'The Japanese Colony of Eau Gallie' that is about the first class (a particular member that was one of my fathers best friends.)


Jul 17, 2015
SAE fraternity (house)
by: Sandy/Flavet record holder

In all my years in Flavet II the 'fraternity row' was along the east side of 13th St(441)from Museum Rd (then Radio rd.) to University Ave.

The SAE fraternity was nearest to University Ave. The same lion was at the corner of 13th St and Univ. Ave. in front of the SAE house. Other fraternity members would splatter the lion with paint to hassle the SAE members.

Sorority row was down near the 441 (13th st) train overpass on the east side. The pond by the current day art gallery on the west side of 13th st. was used to 'punish' any frat member that gave his fraternity ring to a female admirer. They (a gang of guys) would carry him on their shoulders to the pond where he was thrown. The victim always put up a great fight.

We could hear the roar of the guys trying to haul a 'lover' to the pond all the way to Flavet II.



Sandy, I remember all of that fraternity noise as well. Thanks for the memories. Most of us who were married students were pretty serious about studying and getting graduated and getting out of there. There was a bit of resentment toward the rich frat boys having fun and partying all the time....at least it seemed so to some of us old drudges studying away in our Flavet unit.

Was your dad able to make a good living with all his degrees? BS, MS, PhD, MD?

Jul 15, 2015
by: Kimberly

Our family lived in Flavet from 1966-1971 while my dad was in architecture school. The students now are amazed when I say I grew up in Flavet and they say, "on the field?" My daughter will be in Keyes in the fall facing Flavet field.

Our apartment faced SAE house. I loved playing down at the "circle" and going to the village store, and the book mobile.

The previous comments about the roaches is funny. We had bees in our walls.


Thanks for sharing your story, Kimberly. We lived there shortly before your family: 1963-1966. No way I could have made it through UF without those low rents. It made living with cockroaches somewhat tolerable. I do remember some units had bees, but we lucked out on that score at least.

Apr 09, 2015
Flavet II "Boomer" Record Holder
by: Mike

Sandy's post brings back many memories of my years at Flavet II. We didn't live there nearly as long as Sandy and her parents, but I do remember that among our village residents were the first University of Florida medical students. It's hard to believe that back then the medical school was still a baby in diapers and has now grown up to be a world renowned research and education institution.

Go Gators!

Apr 08, 2015
Flavet II 'Boomer' record holder
by: Sandy

When I was born in 1951 we lived in Flavet II and did not move out until 1964. I lived mostly in unit 372A nearest Radio Rd. There was a par 3 golf course on the north side of Radio Rd. My father may qualify as the most 'graduated' man in UF history! BS, MS, PhD, MD (first class). It was an experience to say the least.

Jan 07, 2015
by: Tracy

We lived in Flavet III in the early and mid 60's while my dad was in school at UF. Mom says their washer made the entire building shake. It was a necessity as my brother was an infant in cloth diapers!

Click here to add your own comments

Join in and write your own page! It's easy to do. How? Simply click here to return to Florida Tales.

Most of the information in our website has been published in a series of Amazon Kindle books for each of Florida's eight geographical regions.

Florida Backroads Travel, a separate Kindle book, covers all of the regions of the state in one volume.

All books can be read on a computer, tablet, Kindle and most smart phones.

Click on the book cover for free previews of these books at Amazon.com.


First Name

Enjoy our free monthly ezine with news of day trips, towns, inns, festivals, food, history and more.

Recent Articles

  1. Plant City, Florida: America's Winter Strawberry Capital

    Oct 21, 16 12:16 PM

    Plant City, Florida has one of the top fairs in America: the Florida Strawberry Festival

    Read More

  2. Florida Towns: From Pioneer Villages To Large Modern Cities

    Oct 21, 16 11:51 AM

    Florida towns come in many shapes, sizes and flavors. There is a town for you whether you are looking for fun, Florida history, culture, shopping, dining or a place to settle down.

    Read More

  3. Florida Backroads Travel Site Map

    Oct 21, 16 11:49 AM

    The Florida Backroads Travel site map shows all of the website pages so you can find your way around.

    Read More