SA's Sam Mariscal and Madi Kiser hosting an event in voting and giving out goodie bags to residents on Oct. 16 | Photo by Seth Finnegan
SA's Sam Mariscal and Madi Kiser hosting an event in voting and giving out goodie bags to residents on Oct. 16 | Photo by Seth Finnegan

Resident Advisors struggle to keep dorm life normal

Due to the transition to online, campus life is lonelier than ever this semester
Translate

Share This Post

Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on email
Share on reddit

Due to the transition to online, campus life is lonelier than ever this semester

Social distancing policies forces Resident Advisors to rely on tools like social media and video-chatting to stay in touch with students. To make up for the lack of in-person events, housing is putting on several Grab-N-Go programs this semester, where students pick up supplies and participate in door decorating competitions from the safety of their dorms.

Generally speaking, RA responsibilities include daily room and floor rounds, enforce housing policies and provide connections to resources for students in their building.

Stephen St. Onge is the associate vice president for student success at HSU. According to Onge, the RA job responsibilities have not changed, besides the move to online.

The most notable impact of the pandemic on RAs has been on the ability to encourage students to engage with the campus community.

“They are still doing outreach to their residents virtually,” Onge said. “They are still doing duty rounds, the programming, they are just doing it a little bit differently.”

Victor Garcia Balderas is a second year RA. Balderas feels the blackouts of last fall and the transition to online in the spring has prepared him as an RA.

“Because it is my second year as an RA, I feel I have a grasp of how things work,” Balderas said. “I’m flexible and have been hit with so many random events like last year when we had the blackouts.”

Last semester, Balderas worked with new students. In contrast, this semester he works with returning and transfer students. Balderas says these students tend to already have established their own communities, making engagement much more challenging.

Director of Residence Life Donyet King believes engaging with students during a pandemic just requires some outside of the box thinking.

“We have to get really creative about it,” King said. “Initially when programs were held online, people were still adjusting to the pandemic.”

Despite the efforts of housing to fabricate a sense of normality, the single occupancy policy, while necessary, generates an unavoidable sense of isolation for dorm students.

“I’ve gotten lonely and a little bit sad,” Balderas said. “I feel like I am alone.”

More Stories

Friendship is integral to mental health

If there’s one concept children have a stronger grasp on than adults, it’s friendship. Before puberty, when the biggest problems in our lives were a dead Gameboy and the brussels sprouts we’d have to eat for dinner that night, friendship

Slick Vic and the Basketball Chronicles

Humboldt State University’s men’s basketball guard Victor Mijas, who some may know as Slick Vic, took on his senior year facing the challenges of COVID-19. The pandemic swept the nation by storm in 2019, leaving athletes across the world questioning

Be First to Comment

Leave a Reply