Friday, January 30, 2015

One Thing I Learned Being a Resident Assistant...

…Is that you can find relevant skills and experience just about anywhere!

A lot of students have been dropping into the Career Center lately to get their resumes critiqued because they are hoping to become Resident Assistants. Now, I may be biased; As a former RA, I think being an RA is wonderful and has a lot of great opportunities for learning and advancement. It was actually partially due to my role as an RA that I am writing to you now as the Graduate Assistant in the Career Center!

One thing I’ve heard from students hesitant to apply is that they think they have no relevant experience: they do not have past participation in their residence hall, they’re only first-year students, or none of their jobs or activities seem related to the job of being an RA. In my experience of applying to be an RA years ago and even working with the new applicants here at Hofstra, I’ve found this to be untrue!

When you sit down and think about what skills you’ve utilized in your previous experiences, even if they seem unrelated, try thinking about the skills you’ve developed and how they can be relevant:
  • Did you work in the food industry? That sounds like a lot assessing customer needs and communication skills to me!
  • Did you work in retail? Seems like a lot of conflict resolution skills and patience!
  • Are you a member of a campus club? You’ll need the creativity and different ideas for programs in your residence hall!

So, before you get yourself down and discouraged about applying for the RA position or that dream career/internship opportunity, I encourage you to take a moment to sit down and think about what you’ve done in the past: what skills you had to utilize, and in what ways is it relevant to your current goal.

And as always, we at the Career Center are available to brainstorm with you and to help you look at your experiences with a fresh set of eyes! Stop by Quick Questions (Monday-Friday 10-11AM & 2-4PM) or give us a call at (516) 463-6060 to make an appointment! 

Anne Monique Concepcion,
Graduate Assistant

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