RA – Rule Enforcer or Community Builder?

One of the most outstanding attributes of Grove City College is the amazing community we have here. This community building begins on day one, move-in day.

Grove City College knows just how important community building is to have a successful and enjoyable four years at school. They understand that community is best fostered when people live with one another, which is why they place such a high value on residence life. This is especially important during students’ freshman year of college as they adjust to college life.

What is Residence Life?

Hannah Vaccaro, a junior Entrepreneurship major, explains that “The Residence Life team is great at creating environments where you can get to know people other than just your roommate(s) freshman year. They plan hall events that many students choose to participate in, which is how I met people that I’m still friends with today. After those events, I knew that there’s always somebody to do something with on my hall.”

Hannah Vaccaro

Resident Assistants or RAs (student employees of the College) plan and hold a certain number of events each semester for their residents, which is how many students meet people they haven’t already. These events are also designed specifically to help students grow spiritually, emotionally, intellectually and physically. Moreover, RAs often have their doors open so that students can come just hang out or come speak about more serious topics if need be.

What to expect freshman year

Emily Barker, an RA for freshman girls, became involved with Residence Life after her freshman year of college. She says, “Residence Life works so hard to create a safe environment for freshmen where they feel comfortable and supported through their freshman year, and I love being a freshman RA. It is an incredible opportunity to live alongside the freshman girls, connect them on campus and encourage them along as they figure out the ins and outs of college and living on Grove City Campus. Freshman (appropriately) bring such fresh perspective and energy to every moment and it’s a privilege to help them through the different experiences that college brings to their lives. Being an RA this year has been very taxing, but it has also been encouraging, challenging and fun. I have loved my experience so far and I’m excited for the rest of the year ahead with the incredible residents on my hall.”


So what about after freshman year?

While many have a great experience with residence life their freshman year, some students wonder how this will translate to the next three years. Without fail, Residence Life continues to pour into upperclassmen after their first year. An upperclassmen RA spoke about how RAs have individualized time every other week with his or her Resident Director (RD) to talk not just about how their residents are or what events they have planned for the hall, but also how he or she is doing spiritually, emotionally, mentally and physically. Through this intentional investment from RDs to RAs, residents themselves benefit from the wisdom and guidance of their RDs and assistants. Students know that when challenges or frustrations arise, they have people who are willing to walk through those trials with them while offering a listening ear and wise words.

The Residence Life team exists to be creators of intentional community, advocates for students as they face challenges and celebrate successes during their four years, and mentors who want to serve students in a variety of facets.

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