Students can apply for RA positions until Dec. 15

Yalona Blair and Yalona Blair

Being a resident adviser is a full-time job, but before jumping into the position, students must go through a concise process first.

That process is all too familiar to sophomore Darrico Harris, who just started his first year as an RA in Kreischer Ashley-Batchelder.

“I wanted to become an RA because of the opportunity I would have to have a major impact on first-year students,” Harris said. “I know how important RAs are, and from my personal experience as an incoming freshman, my RA was a huge part in my return to the University.”

The process is very competitive and being an RA is a commitment that will benefit both the University and their careers, said Sarah Waters, director of Residence Life.

The process has a series of steps, starting with attending one of the information sessions that provide students with details of the overall position and eligibility requirements, said Abby Priehs, assistant director of Residence Life. Students must carry a 2.5 GPA and must have lived on campus at an institution for at least a year.

The student then fills out an online application, which now has an extended deadline of 5 p.m. on Dec. 12, Priehs said. The application includes a cover letter explaining why they deserve the position as well as previous experience.

“Once they go through that process we will do grade and conduct checks,” Priehs said.

The student can’t be on probation with the University or have too low of a GPA in order to apply.

Once grades and qualifications are reviewed, the students are notified by email if they will proceed to the next step, called the carousel, where they rotate in the middle of the interview process, Priehs said.

The carousel process includes a group activity, an hour long two-on-one interview with a Residence Life staff member and current RA and another hour long two-to-one interview with a Residence Life staff member and hall director, she said.

The next step is being placed within the primary or alternate pool for the RA position, leaving the final step to be to take a one-credit RA class, Harris said.

Students going through the process should be themselves, Waters said.

“Telling us you’re a ‘people person’ is not the best answer when asked why you want to the an RA,” Waters said. “We are looking for diverse and energetic RAs who are willing to give back to BGSU and help our on-campus residents both get connected to and be retained at the University.”

Harris said to not worry about the chances to become an RA.

“Just keep in mind the greatness that you have within and have faith in yourself,” Harris said. “You will never be disappointed.”

Like other jobs there are things that students in the RA position can’t do. For instance, they cannot be on the resident student association executive board, be a SMART mentor or team leader or an opening weekend group leader, Priehs said.

Although an RA can’t hold similar positions, they are allowed to have other jobs.

“Our first year RAs can have an internship or a job up to 15 hours a week and our returning RAs can have an internship or a job up to 20 hours a week,” Priehs said.

RAs also have opportunities for compensation, she said.

“They qualify for a bronze meal plan as well as a $560 stipend over a course of a year, and they also have the opportunity to work our front desk if they so choose,” Priehs said.

Students can learn more about becoming an RA by visiting bgsu.edu/offices/sa/reslife/page22904.html.