Returning Resident Adviser (RA)/Community Adviser (CA)

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Returning Resident Advisers and Community Advisers play an integral, elevated role in which it is expected that they serve as a peer mentor and leader amongst their staff. Their experiences and abilities will be utilized to role model positive and ethical behavior within the position. Returning RAs and CAs are held to higher standards of accountability, productivity, autonomy, and independence.

In addition, the Returning RA and CA plays an important role in community development, developing relationships, providing general support, and in helping to achieve the mission of University Residences. The RA and CA position requires ongoing communication with the Assistant Resident Director and Resident Director, departmental staff and students, as well as participation in ongoing training and development. It is the expectation of University Residences that RAs and CAs adhere to the highest standards of ethical and role-modeling behaviors throughout all of their functions and areas of responsibilities. The RA and CA position is a significant time commitment, requiring an average of 19 hours a week, with time spent during evenings and weekends. This is a live-on position.

There are a few distinct differences between the RA and CA role, outlined below:

Resident Adviser Community Adviser
Communities Served All residential communities, except Birnam Wood Birnam Wood
Tentative Agreement Dates September 2019-June 2020 June 2019-June 2020

Birnam Wood is open for the full calendar year and our CAs are contracted for all 12 months of the year so they can be present to support their community the entire time it is active.
Meal Plan

We strive to have our RAs and CAs living experience match that of the other residents living in their communities.
Since residence hall students are required to have a meal plan, RAs are required to have a meal plan and it is included as part of compensation. Since Birnam Wood residents are not required to have a meal plan, we don't require it of our Community Advisers either.
Intersession & Break Coverage RAs help to cover Thanksgiving, winter, and spring break on-call CAs help to cover Thanksgiving, winter, spring, and summer break on-call
Enrollment in courses Full-time enrollment required for F/W/S quarters Full-time enrollment required for F/W/S quarters. Enrollment in courses during summer quarter is not required to hold the position.

Note: To be eligible to apply for the 2019-2020 Senior Resident Adviser position, candidates must apply and be rehired as a returning RA or CA.

Our goal is to develop each RA and CA and give valuable opportunities to receive key experiences that will enhance a resume and build character. Returning RAs and CAs learn a variety of skills that can make them more marketable to future employers:

  • Academic role modeling for peers
  • Analytical thinking
  • Building relationships with different people and community development
  • Communication and self-awareness
  • Cultural competencies and social-perspective taking
  • Leadership development
  • Personal development
  • Public speaking
  • Teamwork experiences and collaborations
  • Time management

Community and Leadership Development

  • Serve as a peer adviser and educator to an assigned community of 30–120 students within your residence hall or apartment community.
  • Establish and maintain open relationships with diverse individuals in the hall community, regardless of race, color, religion, national origin, sex, age, disability, veteran status, creed, marital status, and sexual orientation.
  • Create and maintain an atmosphere that stimulates residents' academic, social, personal growth and development.
  • Empower student leadership and participation in Hall/Community Council, programming opportunities and campus activities.
  • Develop a healthy and inclusive community by making connections with residents.

General Support

  • Demonstrates initiative in supporting staff onboarding, training, and development
  • Serve as a positive role model and educate students regarding University policies and procedures.
  • Intervene with individuals or groups allegedly involved in policy violations.
  • Provide referrals to academic and personal support services available to students.
  • Participate in rotating on-call shifts with other staff members.
  • Assist with hall opening and closing procedures as directed by the Assistant Resident Director and Resident Director.
  • Attend weekly staff and individual meetings with supervisor and participate in ongoing training sessions.

Residential Curriculum

  • Facilitate individual and group conversations around a variety of pre-determined topics.
  • Promote a sense of community through social programs planned individually and as a whole staff.
  • Encourage involvement on campus (hall/community council, AS club, intramurals, etc.).
  • Provide educational material via bulletin boards.
  • Implement lesson plans, supplemental materials and system-wide activities developed as a part of the residential curriculum.
  • Coordinate community specific special assignments assigned by Assistant Resident Director and Resident Director.

On-Call and Crisis Response

  • Participate in a rotating on-call system serving as the emergency responder, trouble-shooter, and problem solver for the community. This requires communicating to and following up with appropriate students and staff regarding needs, problems, and concerns in a timely manner under the supervision and direction of your assistant resident director and resident director or (A)RD on-call.
  • The RA/CA-on-call submits incident reports and maintenance requests as necessary (within 24 hours at the latest) under the direction given by (A)RD or (A)RD on-call.
  • RAs and CAs are expected to participate in the on-call rotation during holidays, three-day weekends and all break periods, as listed in the position summary. RAs and CAs must obtain supervisory approval before making any travel plans for holidays or break periods.

Role-Modeling and Ethical Behavior

  • Serve as a role model and act in congruence with WWU standards and code of conduct.
  • Represent Western and University Residences accurately.
  • Exhibit ethical behavior in fulfilling one's role.
  • Maintain confidentiality and use appropriate discretion.
  • Recognize that all other staff members (Residence Life, University Residences, Division of Enrollment and Student Services, WWU staff) are part of the same team, and treat them with respect.
  • Exercise good judgment in upholding established policies of the University (such as sexual harassment policy) and the University Residences system; support and obey all federal, state, and local laws and ordinances; and obey all University regulations.
  • Serve as an academic role model and support students in academic needs.
  • Maintain fairness and act respectfully.

In order to apply for this position, candidates must meet the following criteria:

  1. Candidates must be currently enrolled at WWU, or be officially admitted by winter 2019.
  2. Candidates must have a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.5. If a Fairhaven College student, the candidate must be in good academic standing with the Fairhaven College administration. New transfer students for winter 2019 must provide a transcript from their previous institution which demonstrates a cumulative 2.5 GPA. Please contact Residence Life for more information at 360-650-2960.
  3. Candidates must not be on disciplinary probation or in deferred-eviction/eviction status.
  4. Candidates must have served as an RA or CA for at least one quarter at WWU
  • Demonstrated enthusiasm for learning and ability to be open and resilient to new experiences
  • Build and maintain relationships that support an inclusive and diverse community
  • Promote and sustain authentic leadership by maintaining positive peer leader relationships and supporting the goals of assigned residents and new student staff
  • An ability to role model ethical decision making that upholds the values of the university
  • Serve as a first responder, problem solver, and peer educator for the community
  • Demonstrates ability to work autonomously and take appropriate initiative in supporting staff and community development
  1. Be able to serve in the role during the tentative agreement dates listed in table under position summary
  2. Average weekly workload is 19 hours
  3. Must be willing to work evenings, weekends, holidays and breaks
  4. Compensation package includes housing, monthly stipend, meal plan (or increased stipend for CAs), and paid training. Candidates must live on campus for the 2019-2020 academic year. Accommodations consist of your own room in a residence hall/apartment complex; it is possible for RAs and CAs to host a roommate for overflow purposes during the year. RAs and CAs are compensated appropriately while they host.
  5. Move into your assigned residence hall/apartment at the beginning contract date to begin mandatory training
  6. Be available on Tuesdays 6:30pm-8:30pm for scheduled weekly staff meetings and additional trainings (entire academic year)
  7. Maintain a minimum GPA of 2.5 while enrolled in 12–18 credits per quarter; obtain supervisory approval to enroll in less than 12 credits or more than 18 credits
  8. RAs and CAs are contracted for an average of 19 hours per week, the maximum allowed for student employees during the academic year. According to University guidelines, no other paid on-campus employment is permitted.
  9. Any off-campus employment or extra-curricular activities should be discussed with your supervisor.
  10. Fulfill position requirements as described in this document, the position agreement, and as assigned while in the position

The compensation package for Resident Advisers and Community Advisers is equal in value but is packaged differently due to several components. The following is a breakdown of how 2018-2019 RAs/CAs were paid:

Resident Adviser Community Adviser
Housing/Dining ~$13,000 in value ~$9,900 in value
Meal Plan Choice of 125, 100, 75* meals/quarter No meal plans
Semi-Monthly Stipend ~78.00/pay period (with 125 meal plan)
~$102.00/pay period (with 100 meal plan)
~$127.00/pay period (with 75 meal plan - WQ & SQ only)
$270.00/pay period
Training Hours
(not to exceed $1320 for the year)
$11.50/hour in 2018
$12.00/hour in 2019
$11.50/hour in 2018
$12.00/hour in 2019

Please note that the exact makeup of the compensation package can vary from year to year. The exact payment for our staff is established in their staff agreements. The above information is only to serve as a general template.

Applications will be initially reviewed to ensure that all required qualifications are met. Depending on the outcome of the review you may be offered an interview. Those who are offered an interview will be notified by email to sign up for an interview on one of the days indicated below. Interviews will consist of two parts. The Career Services Center has resources to help you prepare for your on-campus interview.

Applications open for returning candidates

Dec. 6, 2018

Application closes for returning candidates at 11:59pm

Jan. 13, 2019

Interviews offered to returning candidates

Jan. 22, 2019

Interviews held for returning candidates

Jan. 31 - Feb. 1, 2019

Job offers sent to returning finalists

Feb. 8, 2019

Offer decisions from finalists due by noon

Feb. 15, 2019

University Residences engages students in diverse and inclusive, healthy, safe and sustainable communities that foster academic success and personal growth. Through 16 residence halls and one apartment community, University Residences provides on-campus housing for over 4,000 of Western’s 16,000 students. More than 165 students are employed by University Residences in part-time positions ranging from entry level to paraprofessional. Questions about this job posting can be directed to Residence Life (EH 113), ResLife@wwu.edu or 360-650-2960.

Western Washington University (WWU) is an equal opportunity and affirmative action employer committed to assembling a diverse, broadly trained faculty and staff. Women, minorities, people with disabilities and veterans are strongly encouraged to apply. In compliance with applicable laws and in furtherance of its commitment to fostering an environment that welcomes and embraces diversity, WWU does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, creed, religion, national origin, sex (including pregnancy and parenting status), disability, age, veteran status, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, marital status or genetic information in its programs or activities, including employment, admissions, and educational programs. Inquiries may be directed to the Vice Provost for Equal Opportunity & Employment Diversity, Title IX and ADA Coordinator, Equal Opportunity Office, Western Washington University, Old Main 345 (MS 9021), 516 High Street, Bellingham, WA 98225; 360.650.3307 (voice) or 711 (Washington Relay); eoo@wwu.edu.

WWU is committed to providing reasonable accomodations to qualified individuals with disabilities upon request. To request this document in an alternate format or to request an accommodation, please contact Human Resources Disability Services, 360.650.3774 or 711 (Washington Relay).