By Jaci Schneider, Staff Writer
As most students are finishing up their first rounds of tests this semester, the Housing Department is already preparing for next fall. Residence directors interviewed resident assistant applicants this week.
About 49 positions need to be filled, said Dr. Mimi Barnard, director of Residence Life Education and Housing, in an e-mail.
“We’re looking for people who are interested in being leaders to their peer group, people who have a passion for others and who have the ability to be the first responder to student needs,” Barnard said.
Todd Ormsby, director of Smith and Adams halls, said with over 150 students on a hall, an R.A. does more than just enforce the rules.
“R.A.’s build the culture of the dorm,” he said. “They can change the community of the dorm; they represent the community of ACU.”
R.A.s genuinely care for the residents, Ormsby said. He said he looks for applicants who are good with people and who want to make a difference in someone’s life.
Ormsby also said students do not always have positive attitudes toward R.A.’s. He said they are often seen as nerds who are always either worried about rules or just ignore residents. He said there has to be a balance between assertiveness and friendship.
Barnard said R.A.’s have one of the most critical leadership positions on campus. They must be willing to live a “fish-bowl” existence, where everything they do is visible. As student leaders, they are held to a higher standard, she said.
Amy Stoll, freshman music education major from Tucson, Ariz., and R.A. applicant, said if she gets a job it would be a great opportunity.
“I’ll be able to help freshman girls and be a role model, like a big sister to them on campus,” she said.
Applicants will be told in about two weeks whether they got the position, Ormsby said.