RAs pick up slack for hall directors

With the absence of four hall directors on Main Campus, head residential assistants have taken on additional responsibilities in their halls, said the director of Residential Services. When the hall directors of Waits, Jarvis and Foster halls and the Tom Brown-Pete Wright Residential Community left, Residential Services needed to quickly fill those positions, said Craig Allen, director of Residential Services.

Some of the dorms have been without hall directors since the beginning of last semester, Allen said.

“We decided that since we had veteran RAs in those halls, they could handle the additional responsibility as assistant hall director,” Allen said.

The four assistant hall directors are receiving help from hall directors on campus with maintenance requests, discipline reports, safety inspections, fire drills and other issues, Allen said.

“The biggest concern we had about having RAs take on this responsibility was that they’d get overwhelmed,” Allen said. “The Residential Services staff is making sure this position isn’t a burden for them.”

Jacob Ross, assistant hall director in the Tom Brown-Pete Wright Residential Community, describes the combination of his social life, academics and being assistant hall director as a three-ring circus. But as the semester moves on, Ross said he’s fitting into a routine and understanding his role better.

“My staff and supervisors have been very helpful in assisting me with whatever I need,” Ross said. “I have people to turn to when I have difficulties with my job.”

Sofia Rios, assistant hall director in Waits Hall, said she sees her new position as a great opportunity.

“I’m a people person,” Rios said. “I now have the opportunity to meet more Waits residents and build relationships with them.”

Allen said this situation is a chance to give a test run for the four new dormitories being built on campus.

“We will have one hall director for every two dorms,” Allen said. “And in the dorms without a hall director, we’ll have a student assistant hall director.”

During the academic year, Allen said, professionals aren’t searching for hall director positions.

“The type of people we want as hall directors are in school working on their master’s degrees right now,” Allen said. “They won’t be looking for jobs until May. Until then, we are confident that these students can handle their responsibilities.”

Allen said Residential Services will be doing a national search for hall directors this spring.

“We have to be patient while we search for the best people to fill these spots,” Allen said.