The Resident Assistant position is a leadership role and applications require a minimum GPA of 2.8, people skills and readiness to uphold responsibility.

Still, a variety of opposing opinions continue to revolve around the RA position.

“I don’t really want to be in charge of overgrown children,” said Alexander LaCroce ’16.  “RAs are just like babysitters for the floor and I don’t want that.”

Sophomore Nick Frega said he views the position with higher regard.  “I want to be an RA because I love building community,” he said. “My current RA runs all these awesome programs and all these people from different corners of the building get together; it’s great.”  When asked about his expectations from the job, should he claim it, Frega said, “I expect a lot of work and less sleep.  I also expect to learn how to react to and help people, address conflict and to get experience in budgeting for programming.”

Some might find it harder to adjust to the erratic sleeping schedule.  “I have a set schedule and I feel like that’d be really difficult for me to adjust to,” said Karl Deavers ’16.  “That, and I don’t want to deal with anyone in the middle of the night.”

Adding to that, RAs must have their phone and radio on while on duty in case of an emergency.  “You get curveballs thrown at you and you don’t know what to expect,” said Andrea Bushee ’15, an RA in Loyola Hall.  “You have to deal with it calmly and figure it out as you go.”

For those worried, Residence Life does not discriminate against anyone with a “record.” Past transgressions such as being caught with alcohol in the room or any other sort of conflict can be justified through a written statement saying what happened, what was learned and that it will never happen again.  This also applies for the GPA if it barely misses the mark.

“We look for variety in our RAs,” said Assistant Director of Residence Life Nathan Lubich.  “Sometimes it’s good to have an RA who’s an extrovert, sometimes an introvert.  It’s good to have RAs who are this major or that major and we try to make a well-rounded staff for that.  We do prioritize people who have on-campus experience, but we have hired commuters before.”

“[Being an RA] is very self-fulfilling,” said Mike LeBoeuf ’15.  “I love meeting the new people.  I love that there’s 200 new faces waving at you when you go into Barone and being somebody they can go to with questions.”

ResLife said the RA position has plenty of perks: free room and board, having a single room, developing great leadership skills and getting to meet and make connections with higher-ups such as Dean Karen Donoghue or public safety officers.

While it is important for RAs to foster connections with the students in their building, they also must remain impartial when writing people up on duty. “[The worst] is when you actually write [students] up when they’re not following policy,” said Javier Rivilla ’16, an RA in Jogues Hall.  “Sometimes you become so close to them and it’s just awkward when you’re in that situation.”

Being an RA is a lot more than just upholding the rules.  At the end of the day, their number one priority is to make sure their residents are happy and safe. “Enforcing a policy is not their major role,” said Lubich.  “That’s the thing that maybe gets the most face-time with students.”

 

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