Staying in the dorm freshman year is generally a requirement for most universities. It’s a way to really incorporate students into campus life and provide them with opportunities to meet and interact with fellow students. When you stay in the dorm not only do you have other students in your grade, but you also have an automatic mentor in your resident advisor. This person stays in your dorm and serves in a leadership role for you and other students. Not only are they there as a mediator for any potential disagreements but also for advice on adjusting to campus life.
An RA has plenty of perks that go along with the position. They get to put a very important leadership role on their resume and learn how to handle a series of challenging life situations and, they also get free room and board, which can be fairly expensive on most campuses. This can be a great stress reliever if you are strapped for cash in college.
Most students jump at the chance to leave campus and move into an apartment with their new friends, but the benefits of serving as a resident advisor will last longer than the fun all-night adventures with your roommates. The position only lasts for two semesters, so you can definitely move off campus the following school year.
Serving as an RA is also a fun position to have. You get the opportunity to plan fun events with your residents and provide them with a great living experience. This is a great time for you to tap into your creative side and live out your inner “camp leader” from younger years. You can also take your personal experiences from your time as a resident in the dorms and provide an even better one for your students. As you probably know, freshman year can be extremely stressful for those having a hard time adjusting and just knowing that you can help change someone else’s experience is often satisfaction enough. Not to mention, the leadership experience you gain will be a greatly appreciated asset to your future employers.