It’s no secret that the housing crisis is affecting students, no matter if they have housing or not. For Resident Assistants in particular, the situation might’ve just gotten a little harder.
A lengthy email sent to the Quad RA candidates, contained the changes and workload additions that are going to affect RA’s in the upcoming academic year was sent.
First, with the doubling of beds, RAs will no longer have the luxury of having their own room, which was a selling point in previous years for being a Resident Assistant. USH housing and WCU owned housing will be doubled, while Resident Assistants on the south campus will be placed in single rooms with shared living spaces.
Fortunately, Resident Assistants will be getting compensated for this missed benefit. Resident Assistants will also have to do community desk hours. For north campus RAs, they will have to do six community hours per designated area, while south campus RAs will have to do 10 hours per week. This is an effort to increase residential engagement.
With all these new duties and commitments, RAs will be having compensation adjustments. North campus resident assistants will have a stipend of $3,620 a year, while south campus resident assistants will get a stipend of $3,120.
The email also detailed the creation of the new role of Head Resident Assistant, which, after reviewing its job description, almost felt like a career. The email specifies that “to create additional leadership opportunities and support for each area, Residence Life and Housing has developed a Head Resident Assistant (HRA) position. To be eligible for a HRA you must be a current applicant who will have completed two (2) or more semesters as an RA by the start of the August RA training. The HRA position is compensated with an additional $500.00 stipend. Additional office hours are required to assist the Head Director in planning and coordination of staff and assist with administrative, programmatic and engagement tasks.’’
There are various duties listed for the HRA position. Some include working in the office eight hours a week, contributing to the residence hall’s social media accounts, help with the organization of training events for RAs and desk assistants, and help to carry out inspections of the building for health and safety.
Head Resident Assistant is a position that full time students are supposed to want to have, but two resident assistants shared they didn’t even think twice about the position because of the commitment it takes to do this role.
As we unpack this housing crisis and all that’s affected, it’s important to look around and ask questions. Resident Assistants are one of the resources you have as a regular student to get a closer look at what’s happening with this housing crisis and what’s to come. So don’t be afraid to talk to them and inquire about things that are’ on your mind because they might be affected by this crisis as much as you are.
Isaiah Ireland is a second-year Media and Culture major with a minor in Digital Marketing. II978280@wcupa.edu.