Have you ever wondered what an RA does when they’re not throwing pizza parties or making rounds around the floors of their hall? I sure did.

So, I set out to follow my RA Mary around the Quad, and it was definitely an adventure.

I got a behind-the-scenes look at what an RA does in a typical day that I never knew about. From hall council and staff meetings, to open door hours and onion rings in the dining hall, Mary and I hit it all. 

Here’s what I learned:

1. RAs hold open door hours every week.

Open door hours are a great time to get to know and hang out with your RA. They love to not only connect with residents during open door hours, but also get a lot of homework done–which you’re also welcome to do with them!

2. A lot goes in to making door decorations and bulletin boards.

RAs make residents feel at-home and educate them about new things.

One of the ways they do this is through bulletin boards, which have lots on info to help residents hear the latest on clubs and resources on campus, and it’s a lot of work.

Kudos to our RAs for taking the time to make us feel welcome and make the halls look inviting!

3. Community kitchens and lounges are the perfect spots to relax and even get a little studying done.

RAs will often hang out in the lounges to do homework or they will hold floor and hall events there.

The community kitchens and lounges are great spaces to catch up with your friends (or favorite staff member!) and grab some natural light and people-watch from the big windows… which offers a cool chance to say hello and make new friends.

4. Your RA loves getting to know you.

After being an RA for two years, Mary had lots of stories of how she connected with her residents.

Every RA will agree that getting to know their residents is the best part of their job!

I had so much fun following Mary around for the day and gained some insight into the life of an RA.

Hopefully you now have a better idea of what your RA does in a typical day!


– Megan Peine ’22

(Updated by Hailey Seipel on 07/14/2021)