Westmont RAs discuss the job
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As the semester goes on, we reach a very exciting time for many students; RA season. This year saw record-breaking amounts of RA applicants, each eager to get a chance at being a resident assistant next year. But what does it mean to be an RA? The Horizon interviewed some of our current resident assistants to get an idea of what the job means and what some of the highs and lows of the occupation include.
“As an RA”, Page 2A resident assistant Preston Green commented, “you have staff meetings to go to, meetings with your RD and other RA’s , and as a freshman RA you have section meetings. You have events to plan and host and take care of, and you’re on duty once or twice a week.”
Being on duty, it seems, includes both some of the greatest and hardest parts of the job. When asked what the most difficult part of being an RA was, Armington RA Matthew Arroyave replied, “It’s for sure having two nights of the week taken up entirely by your RA duties so you have to get ahead of your homework. Especially if you procrastinate a lot it can get really frustrating.” However, he went on to say, “it’s worth it because that’s when you get to meet not just people in your section but people from all around the school.”
Emerson 4th floor RA Trae Rutherford said the most difficult thing for him was confronting his residents. “We’re human, we make mistakes. But some of those mistakes need to be addressed which can be pretty tough. No RA likes to deal with confrontation.” Similarly, Green commented, “I don’t think anyone wants to be an RA because they want to get people in trouble. Sometimes we have to just uphold the rules and policies and that can be really hard.”
But it seems being an RA is unanimously well worth the effort. Green said the best part of being a resident assistant was, “Definitely building relationships with residents and staff members. Just getting to know people, and being a mentor and friend, helping people find their way through college, and growing to know people.”
“The best part of being an RA has got to be my residents”, said Rutherford, “My dudes freaking rock.”
Being an RA is a great opportunity to get to know all kinds of people. “I’d say I know most of my section members pretty well”, Preston added, “It varies, some of them I know really well because we click on certain things and we spend more time together, some I don’t see very often because they’re doing their own thing and that okay.” For Arroyave, his favorite RA experiences have been “multiple accounts where I stay up talking super late to different residents, having really good conversations with really controversial topics.”
Every RA interviewed seemed to have no regret after their time as an RA. As Arroyave claimed, “The best part of being an RA is the fact that your job is to get to know people.” This opportunity looks different from class to class and dorm to dorm, but all RA’s could agree that the experience was definitely something to be excited about.