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2021-2022 Head Resident Position Description

*Updated April 28, 2021

The Head Resident (HR) is a senior Resident Adviser for the Office of Housing and Residential Experience. HRs assume responsibility for fostering an environment where all students feel supported in pursuing their academic and personal development.  HRs work closely with Area Coordinators, Graduate Area Coordinators, Residential Faculty, and Campus Partners to envision and create a premier residential experience where students can learn and grow.  HRs host educational and social events, provide peer leadership to RAs, and serve as a resource to students in their areas.  Peer leadership is a critical and trusted part of a team – it is necessary to executive various responsibilities to ensure staff teams function efficiently and effectively.  The position requires dedication, flexibility, commitment, and enthusiasm.


  • Must be a full-time, undergraduate, degree-seeking student with at least second-year student status at Vanderbilt University by the application deadline
  • Must have at least one semester of living in an on-campus, residential community at Vanderbilt University
  • Must have at least one semester of Resident Adviser service at Vanderbilt University
  • Must have a cumulative 2.5 Grade Point Average (GPA) by the end of Spring 2021
  • Must have a United States Bank Account for direct deposit enrollment to receive payment as required by Vanderbilt University.
  • Must be in good standing according to the Vanderbilt University Student Handbook
  • Maintain all qualifications throughout the appointment period
  • Compliance with all aspects of the Head Resident position description

Head Resident Recruitment Process Key Dates:

  • Application Opens:  Monday, February 1
  • Application Closes:  Sunday, February 7 at 11:59 PM CST
  • Video Individual Interview Submissions Period:  Monday, February 1 to Sunday, February 7 at 11:59 PM CST
  • Virtual HR Candidate Presentations:  Wednesday, February 17 to Friday, February 19
  • Notice of HR and Returning RA Status:  March 2021 at the earliest due to soon-to-be determined elements relating to the 2021-2022 academic year.  We will update this section and provide an update to candidates once the university announces forthcoming details for the upcoming academic year and a undergraduate housing plan is set.

*Mandatory Dates:

Spring 2021

  • Monday, April 26 at 7 PM:  2021-2022 Team Meet-Up 7 PM to 8 PM.  All incoming staff should attend the 2020-2021 OHARE Team Meet-Up via Zoom.

Fall 2021

  • Saturday, August 7 at 9 AM : OHARE Student Staff Earliest Possible Move-In Day. All OHARE Student Staff will be able to move in their assigned spaces.
  • Tuesday, August 10 at 5 PM: Fall Training and Move-In Operations. RAs must arrive to campus for OHARE Student Staff Training through Campus Move-In Operations ending August 24.
  • Thursday, October 14 – Friday, October 15: Fall Break. Staff members should make plans for Fall Break after establishing their area duty schedule as halls remain open.
  • Saturday, November 20 – Sunday, November 28:  Fall Health & Safety Checks/Thanksgiving Break Break begins after closing the residence halls. Flight arrangements should occur only after 3 PM on closing day.
  • Sunday, December 19:  Winter Break Closing Break begins after closing the residence halls. Flight arrangements should occur only after 3 PM on closing day.

***Prior permission must be obtained in advance from your supervisor to deviate from any of the above. Alternative Break Participants must receive permission from their supervisor prior to making trip commitment.

Spring 2022

  • 7 PM-9 PM time block on Tuesday evenings: All area staff meetings will occur within these times. This time block is also set aside to allow us to provide development opportunities throughout the Academic Year.
  • We will publish the required dates for the Spring 2022 semester after the Office of the University Registrar publishes details of the academic calendar.  If we learn of the Spring 2022 dates during the summer or the Fall 2021 semester, we will provide the team with the ability to withdraw from the role for the Spring 2022 semester.


  • Contact the Office of Financial Aid to determine how the role may affect you specifically.
  • Student staff members will receive a single-occupancy space within their assigned community. If you are assigned to a community with suites or apartments, this means a single-occupancy space within those community types.
  • The compensation rate is approximately $595 paid monthly at the end of each month worked for nine months, beginning in the middle of August through the middle of May. Note that both August and May will each be partial-month payments.


The Office of Housing & Residential Experience reserves the right to change required dates, employment responsibilities, and compensation based on departmental and university operation changes.  OHARE will provide notice to the 2021-2022 Student Staff Team of those changes and options available to them should they exist.

The Office of Housing & Residential Experience will work to make appropriate changes to the responsibilities below to align with the very guidelines provided by Vanderbilt University.

Employment Responsibilities: 

General Administration

HRs will: (1) Submit timely and completed paperwork (programming reports, duty logs, incident reports, AnchorLink event submissions, etc.); (2) Attend staff meetings, in-services, and other departmental engagements as appropriate; (3) Maintain open communication with Area Coordinator (AC) and Graduate Area Coordinator (GAC); (4) Assist with the opening and closing of the residence halls at the beginning and end of each semester and break periods including Health and Safety inspections; (5) Follow P-Card policies and procedures as outlined by the Office of Housing and Residential Experience (OHARE); (6) Ethically use departmental funds, programming spaces, and programming supplies to support the mission of OHARE; (7) Ensure ethical and timely usage of OHARE and Vanderbilt technologies, systems, and processes including, but not limited to, Maxient, Building Duty Report, RoomPact, and The Housing Director (THD); (8) Appropriately manages the usage of access cards and keys as outlined by the Area Coordinator, Graduate Area Coordinator, and other Professionals on Duty.

Community Development

HRs will: (1) Develop a sense of community among residents through involvement and developing relationships on their floor/section; (2) Create a friendly, respectful, and inclusive environment with residents on the floor/section; (3) Establish relationships with all residents on their floor/section and demonstrate availability and approachability to residents; (4) Maintain awareness of community needs including resident’s challenges, connections and behavioral patterns; (5) Assess the interests and needs of residents through Meaningful Conversations and community development initiatives; (6) Ensure resources and opportunities from campus partners are accessible to residents; (7) Complete all requirements for their Community Development Plan; (8) Establish positive relationships and actively engages non-residential and residential faculty in the community.

Accountability and Student Care

HRs will (1) Provide support to residents who experience challenges which include, but not limited to, roommate conflicts, self-discovery, and personal awareness; (2) Refer students to the appropriate campus resources for assistance; (3) Confront inappropriate behavior in an objective, consistent, and respectful manner while providing rationale for policies; (4) Appropriately document policy violations in Maxient within the appropriate timeframe; (5) Conduct student follow-up in a timely manner and provide thorough notes to supervisor team.

Event Management

HRs will (1) Assess the interests and needs of residents to plan and implement community events; (2) Responsible for making resources and opportunities from other offices on campus accessible to students; (3) Encourage students to get involved on campus; (4) Complete all requirements of the Community Development Plan for the residential area; (5) Input accurate programming information to AnchorLink and other area-specific systems appropriately. (6) Submits P-Card requests promptly and returns P-Card to the Program Manager within the specified timeframe.

Duty Responsibilities

HRs will (1) Pick up the duty phone and texts the Area Coordinator on Call (ACOD) or Graduate Area Coordinator (GACOD) by 5 PM on duty days; (2) Complete duty rounds of the building to promote the safety and security of the community as assigned; (3) Address behaviors and manages/refers issues; (4) Cover weeknight and weekend duty according to arrangements set by area; (5) Complete duty rounds of the community and submit duty logs on time; (6) Participate in Holiday Duty Rotations which includes: Thanksgiving Break, Winter Break, and Spring Break; (7) Coordinate holiday travel plans after speaking with their Area Coordinator regarding holiday duty coverage.

Staff Development

HRs will (1) Participate in staff meetings, training workshops, in-services, etc.; (2) Establish effective working relationships and collaborate with fellow staff members, faculty members, supervisors, and others within and beyond OHARE; (3) Serve as a team player by compromising for the good of the staff and developing positive working relationships; (4) Give and receive constructive feedback regarding job performance; (5) Take initiative to further one’s own personal and professional development.

Time Commitment

HRs must not regularly exceed working 19 hours as an HR.  This estimation can depend on what is happening on your floor during a given week.  HRs cannot work any additional hours on campus with prior approval from their supervisor. Student staff members should properly balance the responsibilities of this position as well as their academics.  Extra-curricular or off-campus activities should not interfere with a student staff member’s ability to complete job responsibilities. Student staff members should communicate with their supervisor if situations arise that would conflict with the completion of these duties.

Head Resident Responsibilities

HRs will (1) Exhibit a willingness to work harmoniously with others; (2) Advocate on behalf of teammates and appropriately address peer concerns; (3) Communicate team triumphs and concerns to the Area Coordinator and Graduate Area Coordinator; (4) Provide timely updates on the completion of tasks as outlined by the supervisor; (5) Provide appropriate and exceptional peer leadership by sharing skills and knowledge; and (6) Value the opinions and ideas of team members by fostering a collaborative environment.

Other Duties as Assigned

All student staff members are expected to adhere to other duties in line with the requirements and responsibilities of their position. This also includes the OHARE Student Staff Member Expectations Agreement in addition to area-specific expectations of the Area Coordinator and Graduate Area Coordinator Supervisory Team.


Email Assistant Director for Selection and Training, Michael Jones, at  Please allow for 48 business hours for a response.

The application period is now closed.  Please check back October 2021 for the application process for the 2022-2023 Academic Year.