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Larget residential Complex Remains Understaffed

By Claudia Balthazar

As students applying to be resident assistants undergo the application process this month, the staff for Colonial Square, the largest residential complex at the University, remains condensed.

According to a definition from 2010 on Residential Programs' blog, an RA is an upperclassman leader who is a representative of the Office of Residential Programs that has gone through an extensive selection process and trained to be resources in the residence halls. The blog also states there is one RA on every floor.

However, this is not the case in Colonial Square, where most houses have only one RA. The Colonial Square Facebook page details this complex has 14 two-story buildings that could hold 55 - 65 residents that are undergraduates and graduate students. If the complex were fully occupied, one RA would be responsible for nearly 60 people. This number used to be 30. The only building that has two RAs is the freshmen only resident hall, New York House.

"Personally, I could handle the work but being a RA in C-Square is the hardest because the workload is twice as much as [the other building I worked in last year]," said a former Colonial Square RA who requested anonymity. "RAs in C-Square do more than other RAs around campus because it's the largest complex that's filled with [a wide variety of people]."

The former RA moved to the complex a year after the staff cut, and heard from staff members that there cut was made because most students in the complex are usually 21 years old or older who don't normally need help. RAs who still had time left to work were placed in other buildings instead of losing their jobs.

Older residents may not be the only reason for the staff cut. Sophomore Ariel Bretous is a resident of Colonial Square and claimed that there are a lot of vacancies her building.

"Since C-Square is located so far away from the academic buildings, not a lot of students like to live there," said Bretous. Despite the small staff, some students that are applying to be RAs remain optimistic about the job. Sophomore Luke Pelton, who applied to be an RA, said that he didn't think it would be much of a problem to deal with over 30 residents.

"Being an RA is a lot of responsibility," said Pelton. "I know there's a lot of RA's throughout the entire complex so there shouldn't be a problem for them to have moral support."

The official reason for the condensed staff remains unknown. The Resident Director of Colonial Square was not able to speak on the matter and the Director of Residential Programs was unavailable to comment for this article.

 

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