As an RA it is important that you work to build a positive environment for your residents. Some things to keep in mind as you work to achieve a positive community are:

Before Students Arrive

  • Introduce yourself to any early arrivals on your floor.

  • Hang door decorations on the resident’s room doors.

  • Post calendars of events and lists of facilities and equipment.

  • Decorate bulletin boards to be representative of a diverse community.

  • Post signs about floor and hall meetings.

  • Check for any maintenance concerns that should be taken care of  before students arrive.

  • Review all College policies to make sure you are ready for any shenanigans opening weekend.

After Move-In and Before Classes Start

  • Visit residents in their rooms and invite them to the weekend campus events that you will be attending.

  • Introduce residents to each other who share interests.
  • Encourage residents to read The Compass and Residence Hall policies so they don't unwittingly violate policies.
  • Encourage residents to report anyone that is damaging, removing, or abusing furniture or facilities in the building. We don't want lobby amenities to disappear before the year even starts.
  • Don't ignore policy violations even if it's minor or their first time. Come off strong now, you can soften over the next few months.
  • Conduct your first floor meeting. Be organized and make sure residents understand your position on policy enforcement, your planned programming schedule, and review the entire provided agenda.
  • Create a survey to gather ideas for you to plan floor activities and programs around.

During the First Two Weeks of School

  • Continue to visit people at their rooms and ask for program ideas and interest areas.

  • Refer students to clubs they may want to join.
  • Use bulletin boards to put up lists of people’s names, hometowns, majors, birthdays, etc.

  • Encourage floor members to eat meals together whenever possible. Take groups over during meal time to help facilitate an open-invitation community.

By Mid-Semester

  • Try co-planning an activity or program with another floor.

  • Continue to have floor meetings either weekly or Blockly, whatever has a positive effect on your floor. These meetings can be short like a touch-base or longer like teambuilders. Both are acceptable.

  • Invite faculty/staff to eat with you and your residents in dining hall. Try inviting one of their professors.

  • Invite faculty/staff to conduct a program for your floor/building.

Continuously During the Semester

  • Listen to your residents. Ask for feedback on what is good and not so good on the floor.

  • Keep your door open and encourage others to do so at appropriate times.

  • Invite residents to meals.

  • Set up informal study breaks in your room, lobby, or at a volunteering resident's room where people can stop in and socialize with other residents.
  • Take the floor to sporting events, concerts, and other events on campus.
  • Use bulletin boards and mirrors to post information about your residents and upcoming floor events and campus activities.
  • When appropriate, encourage residents to approach each other with minor complaints, rather than always going to the RA.
  • Encourage residents with special skills, interests, or knowledge to plan and present a program.

By the End of the Semester

  • Provide clear and accurate closing and check-out information.

  • Plan a final meeting/event to thank and recognize floor leaders, intramural teams, etc.