Wihast – more than just a roof above your head

Following the 1st World War most students – and especially those from working class families – lived in most difficult conditions. In this situation the WIHAST was founded in 1923 to economically support the working-class students of Austria.

In fall 1923 the first student dormitory was opened, offering affordable accommodation and food to 14 students.

Until 1934 the WIHAST was able to accommodate approximately 140 students from all federal states of Austria in single, twin or three-bed room.

In February 1934 however the WIHAST was dissolved by the austrofascist regime. In 1938 the former WIHAST-buildings were handed over to the German Student Union and primarily used for the accommodation of war wounded students during the last years of the World War.

In 1947 the WIHAST was finally able to reassume its work and to reactivate the two dormitories in Säulengasse 18 and Billrothstraße 9.

In order to celebrate the upcoming 70th birthday of the founding member and long-standing board member of WIHAST, Dr. Adolf Schärf, the year 1960 marked the founding year of the Adolf-Schärf Board for Dormitory Construction. By 1964 218 students were able to move into the first Adolf-Schärf dormitory constructed in the Lorenz-Müller-Gasse 1 in the 20th district of Vienna.

During the following years independent WIHAST associations were created in Upper Austria, Salzburg, Innsbruck and Graz.

Together with the Adolf Schärf Board for Dormitory Construction the WIHAST administers today 15 dormitories with approximately 3200 beds in the cities of Vienna, Wiener Neustadt and Sankt Pölten.

The democratic principle of student self-administration, which has its roots in the founding time of the WIHAST association, is realised in every one of our dormitories.

Only through the collective actions of the students and the WIHAST we are able to continuously improve our dormitories. The WIHAST holds true to its ultimate objective of offering young people a place to live with solid equipment and at fair prices. rudi@wihast.at