Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Giving Thanks...My Experience as a Freshman RA

A Few of the Halloween Air Fresheners

This year, I am a Resident Assistant in Loschert Hall, which is one of the five freshman Residence Halls. My floor is co-ed, but my hall is completely female. In total, I have 43 female residents in my hall. As an RA, I am responsible for being a resource to every resident, building a sense of community within my hall and the building, and ensuring that the residents adhere to Fordham policy.

A Flyer for a Program

My favorite part of being an RA is definitely programming. Each RA has a budget for programs, which means that we can do really fun things with our residents without them having to pay for anything. While I have a ton of program ideas, I really try to find out from my residents what kind of programs they want. Recently, I ran a program to make Halloween-themed air fresheners with oranges and cloves after hearing several residents complain about stinky roommates. This Friday, my hall is having a Girls' Night Movie Night. Next week, we will be having a floor dinner. I will be cooking, so hopefully everything comes out okay!

November Bulletin Board

I also love decorating our hall. We have a bulletin board, which I update each month. For November, I decorated our bulletin board with an autumn tree. I had each of my residents email me something they were thankful for, and I put each of their responses on a leaf on the tree. Tied to this idea of giving thanks, we are doing weekly Sunday Service Projects for the month of November so that residents have the opportunity to give thanks to various groups. Some of these projects will be writing letters to veterans, baking cookies for security, and making Thanksgiving cards for retired Jesuits. 

November Door Decorations
On the first of each month, I also replace the name tags on each door. For November, I made turkeys, which ended up being a much more time-consuming project than I originally anticipated, but it was worth it since my residents seem to really like them! I really try to decorate our hall as much as possible. I know that Fordham is not home for my residents, but it is a home away from home. Therefore, it is important to maintain a friendly and inviting hall at all times. 

Having 43 residents means that we have a pretty big family, but that is just part of the fun! I have a truly great hall, so I am thankful this month for my residents who have made my first semester as an RA absolutely amazing! Hopefully I have helped to make their first semester at Fordham just as amazing.

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