Resident Assistant Job Summary
A Resident Assistant (RA) is a student who lives on campus and acts as a resource for the students on their floor, wing, or unit within their residence hall. These individuals are student leaders chosen to assist the residents, serving as a resource, mentor, friend, role model, and community leader. The RA is more than just a friendly presence; he/she is the crucial link in creating an environment in which students develop independence and learn to live cooperatively with others.
The Resident Assistant position focuses on enhancing the quality of life in the residence halls, including fostering community, providing academic support, and being attentive to safety and security of residents. RAs play a key role in creating an environment for students that is conducive to academic, personal, and social growth. RAs develop social, educational, and cultural activities for their residents. They also enforce and educate students on University policies and regulations within the residence halls.
WTAMU has 64 Resident Assistants hired by the Department of Residential Living. The average RA is responsible for a living area housing approximately 25 residents. RAs participate in job training and orientation throughout the year, developing strong leadership and interpersonal skills which build them into excellent leaders and give them skills they can use for the rest of their lives. As compensation for their service, each RA receives a room and meal plan, as well as a monthly stipend.
Position Qualifications Residential Living seeks candidates who enjoy working in a community setting and fostering a living/learning community. Priority will be given to applicants who can work August through May. Applicants must:
- Be enrolled full time while employed – at least 12 credit hours per semester for undergraduates, and 9 credit hours for graduate students.
- Possess a 2.5 grade point average (GPA) the long semester (fall or spring) prior to applying, as well as the semester prior to being employed.
- Receive a minimum of 2.5 GPA each semester while employed.
- Attend mandatory RA Orientation each semester (typically 2 weeks prior to the start of each semester); missing any portion of orientation is not permitted, unless it conflicts with academic courses.
- Preferably be a resident at least one semester prior to being employed.
Additional employment is only permitted if it is on-campus, no more than twenty hours per week, and approved (with appropriate documentation) by the Area Coordinator. See an Area Coordinator for more details.
*Applications will not be accepted or interviews scheduled for anyone not meeting the above criteria.
Position Responsibilities Below is a summary of the RA responsibilities; click here for a full job description.
RAs are responsible for the following key areas:
- Administrative Tasks: RAs are required to complete departmental paperwork, administer surveys, assist with check-ins and check-outs of residents, and perform other administrative tasks as assigned by their supervisor.
- Community Development: RAs create programs and activities designed to meet the needs of residents on the floor. As a community developer, RAs also host floor or building meetings, as well as have meaningful interactions with community residents and encourage community involvement.
- Emergency Response: RAs are the primary responder to emergencies within their hall. While each RA will have designated duty nights, staff are expected to assist whenever they are in the building.
- Facility Management: RAs work with other hall staff to ensure that there are no facility issues on their floor or in/around their building. RAs perform room inventory checks and safety checks on a regular basis, as required.
- Policy Enforcement/Safety: RAs are attentive to resident safety and hall security, as well as ensure residents follow University and housing policies to maintain a respectful environment. RAs educate residents on their actions and decisions while informing them about how their actions impact an entire community.
- Resource and Education: As a peer helper, RAs connect residents to other campus opportunities to promote a positive WTAMU experience. RAs also serve as a referral agent to other campus resources such as Counseling Services, Educational Services, Tutoring, Career Services, Academic Advising, etc.
Time Commitment The nature of the RA position is such that its responsibilities are determined not so much by a time clock or a calendar, but by the needs of residents. Some periods, such as training, opening and closing will require more time than average, but other responsibilities will arise that cannot always be anticipated and scheduled. Key time commitments include:
- Desk Shifts: All RAs have weekly office hours at the residence hall’s main desk.
- Duty: RAs rotate on-call coverage each weeknight and weekend with other hall staff. Duty entails staying in the residence hall to be accessible to residents, walking the building to do security checks, and responding to any issue, incident, or need. In addition, staff shares duty responsibilities (as needed) over break periods when the halls remain open (Thanksgiving, Christmas Break, Spring Break, etc.).
- Opening/Closing and Breaks: RAs serve a facility role in getting the halls ready to open and closing them down for breaks and the end of the school year. As such, RAs arrive early and depart late at Thanksgiving, Christmas, and Spring breaks, as well as stay after the halls close in May.
- RA Orientation: Prior to the beginning of the Fall and Spring semesters, staff arrive early before new students move in. RA Orientation consists of a full schedule (morning to night) to prepare RAs in their position, as well as the residence halls for move-in.
- Staff Meetings: Staff participate in weekly staff meetings.
For more details on the RA position, including job responsibilities and compensation, click here.