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Copy of What You Need to Know as a New RA

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on 27 March 2013

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Transcript of Copy of What You Need to Know as a New RA

What You Need to Know
& Expect as a New RA CHANGE Meet Your Presenters... Let's talk about... How else can you navigate this transition? 4. It's OKAY to Make Mistakes 1. Build Relationships with Staff 7. Socializing with Residents 10. Be Yourself, Be a Role Model The process or a period of changing from one state or condition to another.
Undergo a process or period of transition BE PROACTIVE ABOUT IT! "Don’t be afraid to reach out to your fellow staff members. You will hear it many times, but we are here to support you always!" "You’ll feel like crying at least once this semester...do it, move on, and become a better RA. Talk with your staff and learn about each other, hopefully they will turn into some of your best friends in the building." "Residents will see you out and incessantly say “Oh my God, you’re my RA” or “Am I going to get in trouble?” Be prepared to deal with this almost every time you’re out." "You are not going to be the RAs you knew and loved. You are going to be you, and you may need to adapt your leadership style to your situations." #championofchange Rachel Pierce
RD, Niagara Hall Stephanie Haynes
RD, Monroe Hall Both hired as RAs mid-year
Both transitioning to a new building, staff, and hall mid-year The act or instance of making or becoming different. *DON'T FEEL PRESSURED TO BE THE PERSON YOU ARE REPLACING. Be comfortable being YOU. Establish yourself in your role---how will you do that? Rachel's Story Stephanie's Story As new RAs in January... Good job--you've already made a move in the right direction by attending this session :) But really...take advice from the "experts" 22% of Current RAs Responded to a Survey I asked for the top 3 things they wish they had known when starting the RA position. 12 themes emerged Be honest with your supervisor Make memories during training 2. Ask for Help "Just because you are now an RA, it doesn’t mean you need to know all the answers! Don’t be afraid to reach out for help!" Don't ever hesitate to ask for back-up It's better to be overly cautious & cover your bases 3. How to Approach a Situation "Expect the unexpected. You will deal with situations that you never thought you would ever have to experience and are not in the RA manual. Be flexible
and clam. For me it included veterinary skills. You will deal with odd stuff." Trust your instincts "Ambiguity is part of the job. You just have to understand that you will not know everything that goes on in a particular situation and move on with it." You were hired for a reason 5. Get to KNOW Your Residents Meet them when you go on rounds-it's a great opportunity to get to know names and faces (and you'll be known too!). "Learn ALL of your resident’s names in the first TWO months! It makes a difference when they know that you recognize and care about them."

"Addressing a resident by name is a huge step in forming a positive relationship right off the bat. Spend time in the common areas, make your face recognizable." 6. Boundaries "You are ALWAYS an RA, literally. There are no days off, very little time for yourself, and it’s very overwhelming at first. Learn to love it because I promise it gets so much better." Establish boundaries with your residents based on your comfort level & theirs.

Be mindful of your Supervisor's expectations (i.e. relationships with residents). Treat all residents the same Maintain friendships outside of the building! Think about how you want to approach speaking to your residents in a social setting. 8. Stay Balanced--Make Time for YOU "Don’t over-extend yourself. Take your first semester lightly with extracurriculars so you can understand what kind of balance you need." Maintain Other Friendships Don't let the position take over your life Make lists, use a calendar, STAY ORGANIZED! 9. Time Commitment "Being an RA will consume more time than you expect. It is more than manageable, but budget more time for things like bulletin boards, resident conversations, meetings, events and Res Life projects." "Don’t change yourself for your residents. Your residents will come to love and respect you for YOU!" Don't compare yourself to other RAs 11. Programming "When doing programs or community builders, plan ahead and collaborate with staff members. It will be more fun,
it will be less stressful and you’ll have quality time with someone on your staff." Talk with RAs in other buildings to get ideas ASK if you don't understand Residential Education Program to the interests of your residents 12. Other Tips & Advice... Know the needs of your student demographic "Never let anything make you lose your love for your job." Know the difference between an RD & AC-know who is who in the dept. Call the RDOD or UP if you have any doubts or hesitation HAVE FUN! The Most Important Tips & Advice for New RAs Find the floor “leaders” and learn about the social scene on the floor. Be real with them. Really examine your resident’s personalities. See how your community is forming, and encourage its growth by playing into those. Let them know you’re a different person than the previous RA, but your job is the same. Don’t be shy building a healthy rapport with them. It’s fine to not have that “community” that you may have envisioned from the get-go. Your job is to help meet the needs of the community around you whatever that is. Show enthusiasm and care to you residents--They will notice. Focus on trust. When the residents trust you, they are willing to approach you with problems they may be facing and will respect you when you have to intervene in a situation. Questions? Thoughts? Biggest Fears Most Excited About What do YOU want to talk about?
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