My summer ended about a week earlier than most. I’m back at Marywood right now, and looking at friends’ vacation photos on Facebook is getting a little depressing. But trust me when I say that giving up a last minute vacation this week was actually quite worth it.
This past week I have been at Marywood completing my training to be a Resident Assistant. I applied earlier in the year, and I received an alternate position in Madonna Hall for the upcoming school year. What this means is that I am not a full-time RA, but if a current RA drops out of their role for whatever reason, I take that position. In the meantime, I help the RAs out, cover duty shifts if needed, and play a supporting role in the residence hall.
Training has been tiring, but I’ve also had a blast working with some great veteran RAs. I feel like I am a part of a new community because the returning RAs have done a great job welcoming newcomers. Not all the training has been formal, some of it comes in team builders and fun group activities. Art and creativity play a huge role in creating a friendly space for residents, and I found myself utilizing my graphic design and art skills. This year’s Madonna staff has proven to be quite crafty, and our boards/décor/door tags communicate a welcoming and friendly environment for the residents. They show the residents that we care, and if they believe that we care, the atmosphere will most likely be a respectful one. To be honest, I probably went through more paint and glue this week than I did in a month’s worth of Foundation Year classes. It was worth it, of course.
So, residents: take a minute to appreciate and look at the art we create for you. It is much more than pieces of construction paper and acrylic paint; it shows how much the RAs care about making the dorm a comfortable living community.