Why did you apply to be an HR?
I was the Vice President of West House my freshmen year and absolutely loved organizing programs and getting people excited about the Commons. I truly respected the RA staff after working with them throughout the year and it seemed like the perfect opportunity to continue doing the kind of work I had been exposed to my freshmen year with more responsibilities and autonomy. I loved the Commons and I felt that I had a lot to give to make it even better.
How has being an RA changed your experience at Vanderbilt?
Being involved in Residential Education has truly shaped my entire experience at Vanderbilt. Probably the biggest factor is the wonderful people I have met and the kinds of bonds I have made with them. I truly believe that RAs are some of the best people on campus and working with them in a professional capacity to reach some really amazing goals is beyond rewarding, not to mention the amazing professionals I work under in the department. My Area Coordinators and the Faculty Heads I have worked with have been the best mentors I could have asked for. And most of my best friends are now RAs with whom I have worked and trained. The job experience itself has helped me to be the kind of leader I have wanted to be and prepared me for success in my other endeavors.
What are the best things about working in your area of campus?
My favorite thing about working on the Commons is being a mentor and creating a true community on my floor. I think there is something very special about the Commons programming model and the amount of interaction we have with our residents and foster between them. Working with a Faculty Head of House to develop a vision for an intellectual experience has been so far above and beyond what I could have hoped for in my experience as an RA.
Why do you think others should apply to be an RA?
It’s the best leadership opportunity on campus, plain and simple. You receive amazing training and build skills that will be essential to success in whatever you choose to do. You meet amazing people and learn how to work with them successfully. You learn how to be calm under pressure and handle serious life situations. It’s also a ton of fun!