While students are getting ready to enter college dorms for a new school year, colleges are preparing for their arrival. YNN's Rose Eiklor spoke with some residence assistants about the training they receive in preparation for the new students.
BATAVIA, N.Y. — "I am an RA wherever I go," said resident assistant Aimee Davidson.
With classes beginning next week and students moving into dorms, Genesee Community College resident assistants are busy preparing and training for the year ahead.
"You're basically always there for people. You want to help people as much as you can," said resident assistant Lacey Krager.
Each dorm at the college is staffed with one resident assistant. This person is there to help students throughout the year.
"Roommate conflicts, if they are on the first floor and people on the second floor walk too loudly, if they are having trouble in their classes and they don't know who to get help from," said Krager.
These assistants go through training for a week prior to students arriving to help them with any situation they may encounter.
"They go through rape crisis training so they know who to contact. They also have the RAP hotline training and then Planned Parenthood," said graduate assistant Tiffany Ralston.
"Last semester, I had a resident who was suicidal and I wasn't exactly sure how to handle it. I handled it the best I could. I remembered some things we talked about and learned about in our training and I used those," said Krager.
The assistants say they always get the question:
"Why should I come to you? You're just like me. You're just a student," said Krager.
They say they assure students that with their training they can help.
Davidson said she learned one important thing through her college career and that is to get involved; a lesson she hopes to pass on to students through her role at the college.
"When I was a freshman in my first year, I lived in my dorm room. I did not venture out I barely attended programs and as soon as I got hired last semester for the RA position, I felt a sense of acceptance on the campus, it was such a great feeling. That's what I hope to spread to other residents," said Davidson.
Most importantly, they want students to know their doors are always open.
"We are an RA 24 hours a day 7 days a week," said Krager.