Resident Assistant

Resident Assistant Recruitment Information

Applications for 2023-2024 are no longer available.

If you have any questions about the application process, please review the below or email hsg-raselection@arizona.edu. The below information is intended for reference only.

The RA Job Expectations are updated each year.

Please note: specific responsibilities and requirements may change.

To be eligible for the Resident Assistant position, you must meet all the following requirements:

  • You must currently be in good conduct standing with Housing & Residential Life and the Dean of Students.
  • You must have a cumulative University of Arizona GPA of 2.5, and semester University of Arizona GPA of 2.5, at the time of application and appointment.
    • Candidates that have below a 2.0 cumulative GPA will be removed from the process. 
  • You must have spent at least one semester as a full-time college student at the University of Arizona to be eligible to apply.
  • You must maintain full-time student status (12 credits) while on staff.
  • You must be able to arrive on campus and attend, and fully participate, in Fall RA training (Early August), which is mandatory.
  • You must attend and fully participate in Spring RA Training (Mid-January), which is mandatory.
  • Resident Assistants are required to work through hall closing at the end of each semester.
  • Through the selection process, a successful candidate will demonstrate:
    • Positive attitude
    • Strong interpersonal skills
    • Commitment to helping others
    • High level of maturity and responsibility
    • Time management and organizational skills
    • Supports the Wildcat Curriculum – the foundation of how we serve our residents is reflected through the following 4 pillars:
      • Connection
      • Responsibility
      • Cultural Understanding
      • Personal Growth

Applying to be a Resident Assistant (RA) involves more than completing an application and interviewing; applying is a process. While the position comes with great rewards, it also can be demanding at times. Our application process is designed not only to ensure that we get the best candidates for the position but also to provide the opportunity to make sure the RA position is the best fit for you.

The selection process begins in November when the RA selection website is updated with the new information for the next year's staff. Information about the process will be distributed for promotion at the beginning of November with information sessions and applications going live on November 10, 2022. The process ends around spring break when candidates are notified of their selection status for the following academic year. More information is below:

1. Learning more about the position
In addition to reading the website, the best way to learn about what RAs do is to get out and meet the people who work in the dorms. Talk to an RA or Community Director about their experiences. Attend one of our information sessions where staff members will talk about the position and explain the application process. 

2. What you need to know about applying online
Between November 10th, 2022 at 12 pm and January 3rd, 2023 at 11:59 pm, complete the online application form located on this website. The essay questions that will be asked are listed below and all candidates are encouraged to answer these questions prior to starting an application, and then cut and paste their answers into the application in the appropriate space.

The Resident Assistant application is authenticated through UAccess. It is assumed that the individual completing this application is the student who is applying for the Resident Assistant position. Given this, the student applicant will be held responsible for the accuracy and truthfulness of the information submitted on and/or related to this application for housing. For this reason, some of these fields within the application will be pre-filled with student information on file.

The Resident Assistant application will ask the following:

Personal Information:
The personal and address information displayed comes from your official University records. Housing & Residential Life's systems are updated by central University systems daily. If any of the displayed information is incorrect, you may still complete the application and then make the changes to your official records with the University. Within 48 hours of a change to your University records, it will be updated in Housing & Residential Life's system, including in your Resident Assistant application.

Academic Information:
You must have a 2.50 cumulative semester of the University of Arizona GPA to be hired as an RA. Housing & Residential Life must have permission to check your GPA in order for you to be considered eligible for hire.

Interview Times:
Candidates will be contacted at the beginning of February with the status of their application. The status will be one of two statuses: 1) invitation to interview or 2) notice that your candidacy in the process is no longer active. Those invited to interview will need to go back to this RA Application to select a date and time to interview. Interviews will be taking place between February 10th through February 12th, 2023. Carefully check your class schedule and activities as rescheduling interviews are done on an emergency basis only. If asked to continue in the process, you will be invited to participate in the interview. The interview day will consist of a 30-minute interview on one of the interview days.

Residence Hall Community:
•    You will be asked to list any type of residence hall community you have lived in.
•    If you are a transfer student, you will be able to list your previous residence hall communities.
•    You will also be asked about your areas of interest with regard to our many Living Learning Communities. RAs selected for Living Learning Communities can expect responsibilities that may look different from other RAs. Although specific duties vary from community to community, Living Learning Community RAs typically are called upon to do more than an RA on a non-Living Learning Community wing. Here is a general list of additions and extras that one can anticipate: community-specific training, planning meetings, collaboration with living-learning partners, and more-focused programming. As an example, RAs in The Arts District Community are expected to know more about the arts than the average RA.
•    You will select from a list of the Living Learning Communities (visit this link for a list and description) any community you are interested in.

  • For each Living Learning Community, you are interested in, you will answer the following essay question: Please explain your interest in the Living Learning Community you selected. Specifically, address ideas you have for that community, how you would work with related campus partners, and any related unique skills/experiences you possess.
  • During the interview process, you may be asked questions regarding the Living Learning Communities you indicated an interest.

Involvement:
•    You must confirm that you have read and understand the RA job description.
•    RA appointments are for the academic year. You will be asked if you are able to commit to the entire 2023-2024 academic year.
•    You will be asked to list any campus and/or community organizations you have participated in, as well as anticipated commitments for the 2023-2024 academic year.

Application Essay Questions: All the application essay questions should connect back to you serving as an RA.

  • Tell us about a positive and productive community that you have been a part of. What made that a positive and productive experience? How would you apply those components to building community in the dorms as an RA? 
  • Tell us about a time where you had to take responsibility for a task/project. How did you prepare to take on this task/project and what did you learn from it?  
  • What skills or abilities do you bring to a team? How do you think the RA role will support you in continuing to develop your existing skills and abilities? 
  • Tell us about a time where you learned more about your own identities or the identities of someone else. How did you approach this situation and how did this experience impact you? 

3. Interviewing
As part of the selection process, after applications are reviewed, the chosen candidates will have to attend a 30-minute interview with current Housing & Residential Life staff members. You will be notified via email if you are invited for an interview and be given instructions. You must be available for the date and time you select to interview for the position. 

  • All interviews will occur February 10th through February 12th, 2023.
  • Please plan on arriving 15 minutes early to interview.

November 10

Applications Available, 12PM 

January 3

Applications Close, 11:59PM 

February 10-13

Interview Weekend

Early March

Offer Letters Sent

Applying

Should I go through the 2023-2024 return housing application process if I’m applying to be a Resident Assistant?
You should plan for fall housing without considering the Resident Assistant position in your plans. If you would like to live on campus next year even if you are not selected for an RA position, please go through the 2023-2024 return housing application process. If you are offered and accept an RA position, any payments you made in conjunction with your fall housing application (e.g., Application Fee and/or Confirmation Rent Payment) will be refunded to you. If you plan to live on campus only if you're a Resident Assistant, it is not necessary to complete the 2023-2024 return housing application process. If you are not selected for an RA position, and you did not go through and complete the return housing application process, you will be ineligible to return to campus housing next year. Resident Assistant selection will be completed in late March, giving candidates time to plan for fall housing accordingly.

If I’m accepted, can I get an extension on my decision timeline or defer my acceptance to another semester/year?
No. Due to our staffing needs and out of respect to other candidates also in the process, we do not allow candidates to receive an extension on their decision timeline or to defer their acceptance to another semester/year. If you choose to decline your position, we encourage you to consider applying again next year.

If I’m not accepted, can I apply again?
Absolutely! We encourage you to continue to stay active and involved at the University and consider applying again next year.


Eligibility

Can I hold another position on/off-campus if I am a Resident Assistant?
The Resident Assistant position is designed to be a 15-20-hour per week, live-in leadership position and is expected to be your number one priority after academics. We understand that our RAs are student leaders who are already very involved within the community, and it is possible for you to hold additional commitments while being an RA. However, if selected, it is important for you to speak with your Community Director about any other responsibilities you have beyond the RA position as soon as possible. RAs cannot work, under any circumstance, over 15 hours a week at any other combination of on-campus jobs per university policy. Overall, you are not allowed to hold additional positions that require more than 20 hours of your time per week, whether it's one job or a combination of leadership positions.

Will my profile in an online community or social networking site affect whether or not I will be hired?
If you are hired for the RA position, you are expected to be a positive role model for all communities that you’re involved in. It is up to you to look at your profile pictures, comments, groups, etc. and decide if that is the best reflection of yourself. Understand that these images and associations may influence your Community Director and your future resident’s opinions of you before they even meet you in person.

If I have been documented for an incident, can I still be a Resident Assistant?
That depends. Students must be in good conduct standing with the Dean of Students Office and Housing & Residential Life in order to become a Resident Assistant. Good conduct standing means: you are not currently on deferred eviction status or evicted from Housing & Residential Life or currently suspended, expelled, on interim suspension, or on university probation from the University. In addition, you must not have any incomplete sanctions with the Dean of Students office.

I’ve never lived in a residence hall. Can I still apply?
Housing & Residential Life values a wide range of experiences in our student leaders and that includes students who have only lived off campus. So yes, please still apply!

What if I don’t have the required GPA?
You must have at least a 2.5 cumulative GPA, and d 2.5 semester GPA in order to qualify for the RA position. This GPA requirement exists because the Resident Assistant position is a time-intensive position and time management is essential to maintaining good grades. Another reason is that a Resident Assistant serves as an academic role model for their students, peers, and the department of Housing & Residential Life, therefore maintaining good grades is essential.

Do I already need to know how to confront people or deal with emergencies?
No, prior experience is not a requirement to be a Resident Assistant. All staff members receive comprehensive training prior to the academic year on many situations that might arise. Furthermore, throughout the academic year, Resident Assistants are provided ongoing training and support by their Community Director and the department.

I am an international student, can I still apply?
Any full-time student who is permitted to work in the United States is eligible to apply. If you are unsure of your work eligibility, please check with the Office of International Student Programs.

I am a graduate student, can I still apply?
Yes. While the RA position is staffed in undergraduate residence halls, full-time graduate students are still eligible to apply. Please note, if you are interested in the Graduate Resident Assistant position for La Aldea Graduate Housing that the position is hired through another process, please contact La Aldea staff at laaldea@arizona.edu.

What qualities do strong candidates possess?
We look for well-rounded candidates to become RAs. While we look for no specific qualities, we encourage you to be authentic and bring your true self to the process. 


Interview Process and Timeline

What does the interview process entail?
The interview is 30 minutes. This process that will allow you to demonstrate your strengths in a variety of contexts. The individual interview will allow you to talk one-on-one with a Residential Education Staff and a Resident Assistant. In addition, you’ll have the chance to learn more about the Resident Assistant experience, with time set aside for questions you may have for us.

If I will not be available during the stated interview times should I apply?
If you will not be available to interview during the defined interview time frame, you will not be considered for a position and, therefore, should not apply. Given the size and nature of the process, we do not have the ability to make accommodations for individuals who will not be able to attend the interview during the defined interview time frame. If you are studying abroad during the spring semester, please select a time on the application and email hsg-raselection@arizona.edu as soon as possible to determine if we are able to setup an interview.

What should I wear to the interview?
The first impression you make on a potential employer is the most important one. The first judgment an interviewer makes is going to be based on how you present yourself – which includes your attire and how you carry yourself. That’s why it’s always important to dress appropriately for a job interview even if the work environment is casual. We encourage you to wear something that will allow you to be comfortable, look professional and presentable, and give you confidence as you demonstrate your skills to the interviewers.


Benefits and Compensation

Will being an RA affect my financial aid?
The Resident Assistant position can affect your financial aid or scholarship award. To determine how that will affect your situation specifically, please contact the Office of Scholarships and Financial Aid at (520) 621-1858.

What is the compensation for being an RA?

You will be provided a single room in your assigned residence hall (valued at $9,990).

  • RAs in double rooms may have roommates at the time of Fall Opening as space is needed. 
  • The department assigns RAs to a residence hall based on departmental needs. In rare cases, reassignment may be necessary.  

You receive a partial meal plan as another part of your compensation.

  • You receive a total of $1,500 for meals, the distribution of the funds is a combination of Meal Plan and/or CatCa$h at the beginning of the Fall and Spring semesters. For Honors Village RAs, this distribution is a combination of Meal Plan, CatCa$h, and/or Meal Swipes. If selected for the RA role distribution of this compensation will be determined prior to each semester.
  • Additionally, $100 CatCa$h is given for use during Fall Training. 
  • The RA role is a 10-month commitment from August 1, 2023 – May 14, 2024. Staff who are hired, leave or are removed from the position at any time during a semester will receive prorated compensation packages for the time worked. Prorated means that the total amount of the meal plan compensation is divided by the number of working days a semester to calculate a daily rate. The daily rate is multiplied by the number of days worked to identify the amount of meal plan money that should have been spent by that time. You must pay back to Housing any amount of your meal plan that you have spent beyond this amount.
  • If you do not spend all your Meal Plan/CatCa$h prior to ending your RA role that amount left will rollover into the next academic year. If there’s any Meal Plan/CatCa$h left at the time you are no longer a student at UA that meal plan money will be lost.
  • Meal Plan/CatCa$h cannot be reimbursed as a monetary value.

Assignments and Placement

Can I choose the building I want to be a Resident Assistant in?

If you are hired for the Resident Assistant position you are hired for the department, not for a specific building. While it is possible for you to voice your areas of interest in the application, those preferences are not guaranteed to be met. Resident Assistants are placed in buildings due to qualities that would make them successful in that environment

As a Resident Assistant, will I have a roommate, and if so, for how long?
The University attempts to provide housing for as many students as possible, requiring the use of all available spaces. Resident Assistants in single occupancy rooms will not have a roommate. Resident Assistants assigned to established double occupancy rooms will, most likely, have a temporary roommate. Half of the Resident Assistant’s double room will be used to house students until permanent accommodations become available for the temporary roommate. The Resident Assistant will be provided single occupancy of that room only after all other students have been accommodated. The length of time this process takes varies from year to year, but all steps are taken to minimize the overall impact of the temporary housing process on our Resident Assistants.

What is the process to be a Resident Assistant in La Aldea, the 12-month graduate housing hall?
La Aldea has seven Graduate Resident Assistants (CRAs), who work 12 months of the year, primarily with graduate students. The selection process to be a GRA in La Aldea is completely separate from the RA selection process. If you are interested in applying for a GRA position, please look for postings or contact the La Aldea office: laaldea@arizona.edu

What is the alternate pool and how will I know when I’ve been selected from the alternate pool?
The alternate pool is for those candidates who we feel are qualified for the RA position, but, due to the number of applicants, are not placed in a building. Candidates in the alternate pool will be notified via e-mail if they are offered a position and building placement as an RA.

When will I know my actual building placement?
When you are offered a position, your offer letter will include what building you will be placed in. You are unable to change what building you will be placed into. If you choose to decline the placement, you will be removed from this year's process.


Training and Support

When do I need to be back at the UA for Resident Assistant training?
Resident Assistant training for the academic school year begins August 1, 2023, with a move date starting July 30. Please know that more details on RA training will be going out in June. Dates are listed in the job description; any changes will be sent out as they are made. You are expected to be present on campus, and fully participate in the entirety of training, opening, and Community Day. The RA position will require a great deal of time from August 1, 2023, through the first week of classes. Please hsg-raselection@arizona.edu if you have more specific questions.

If I have a conflict, can I miss training or be late for it?
No. Resident Assistant training is an essential component of your being a successful RA. During training, all RAs and individual staff will be talking about crisis management, emergency protocols, hall operations, etc. RA training is also an essential time to bond with your staff and start to build strong working relationships that will aid you throughout the year. Please keep in mind that Summer Session II typically conflicts with the first portion of Fall RA Training and class conflict is not an excusable reason to miss Fall RA Training.

Do I have to stay until the residence hall closes for break or return before the residence halls open from break?
As stated in our sample Resident Assistant Expectations, staff members are required to stay until the halls close for the break and return before the halls open from break. Details of dates and times, which are specific to each school year, are listed on that year’s current Resident Assistant Expectations. It is necessary for some Resident Assistants to be on duty for Thanksgiving recess and Spring break.

What are the basic components of training? 
There are two basic components of training: RA Training and Hall Opening/Move-In. As a new RA, you are not allowed to miss any part of training or opening.

  • Stop by an RA Information session: 
    • Tuesday, Nov. 22, 2022 – 5 pm, El Portal Building, Saguaro Room
    • Wednesday, Nov. 30, 2022 – 7 pm, Honors Village Dorm, Room 1067/1068
  • Each community will host an information session. Please ask your RA and/or your CD when your dorm will be hosting an information session.

Applications: Candidates interested in being hired for Spring 2023, should have applied to be an RA through the RA application 22-23 which closed on October 30th, 2022. On the RA application, candidates will be able to select if they are interested in being hired during the Spring 2023 semester. Starting in November, the RA Selection Committee will review applications to create a mid-year candidate pool.