The position of Resident Advisor is a lucrative opportunity to get indulged on campus, help your fellows and get hands-on leadership skills to upgrade your resume. Let’s learn something about this position and how to prepare for interview questions.
What are Resident Assistants?
Resident assistants are, basically, student interns who reside in residence halls in universities and colleges across the United States. In this position, individuals serve as leaders for their floor, hall, or wing. They play a vital role to build community among the residents and support individual students when they move from high school to college and live independently away from family. For this role, students should have great leadership qualities, sound communication skills, and an enthusiasm to help their fellow students.
To secure your position as a Resident Assistant at your university or college, talk to your existing RA or hall director and learn about the application process. Finish the process and prepare for an interview with existing RAs along with housing staff members. You may review sample questions to prepare for the interview and learn why these questions are asked.
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RA Interview Tips for Candidates
Existing Resident Assistants have recommended students to prepare with these tips. We hope the tips here will help you prepare for RA Interview process. You may ask your Area Director or current RA if you have any doubt about the position, and attend info session around you.
- Review the policies from Residential Life.
- Consider the type of community that would be perfect for you. Consider the class years, size of classroom, and other demographics which may be required and impact your position as Resident Assistant in your area.
- Reflect on your individual skills, personal traits, and knowledge.
- Find out how you can relate your past experience with this position.
- Know your job. Get in touch with the existing Residential Life staff and know about various things in this position.
- Find out why you should be the part of the team.
- Learn more about the position at Residential Life website.
- Answer your questions with information and examples. Let the interviewer know as much as possible about you.
- Always count on your body language. Be sure to maintain eye contact, avoid fidgeting and smile.
- Take some time to compose your answer before responding to queries.
- Ask few questions to yourself.
- Be yourself. Interviewer hopes to select a diverse group of candidates with different experiences, personalities and characteristics.
- Dress well. Wear relaxed clothing which can make you feel confident and leave good first impression.
Be sure to summarize your thoughts, interest level, and skills about opportunity. Also ask for the contact details of the interviewer for follow-up and thank you note.
Don’t forget to send a Thank You email or note to stand out of other candidates. Have some portions of note in template or standard format and customize it to add information which was unique to the discussion during the interview. It will convey that you have high level of knowledge and interest about the position.
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Resident Assistant Interview Questions and Answers
Tell Me about Yourself!
It seems a simple question and open-ended too. You may assume that you can talk about anything you like from personal life to relationship. You are wrong.
Actually, a hiring manager just wants to get a 2-minute and quick overview of who you are and why they should hire you. So, you should talk about your knowledge, experience and background. First of all, tell what you have done in the past with an example. Ask if they would want to know more. Give few more examples about your experience and background.
Where Would You See Yourself over the Next 5 Years?
Here, the interviewer wants to know what you have planned for the future and see how ambitious you are. You need to customize your answers according to the applied position and organization. For example, if you are a fresher, tell how you would want to progress, i.e. “I would like to progress myself and reach the position of Senior Resident Assistant” or “I want to become a team leader…”
If you are applying for a senior position, tell how you would like to move your company ahead. Before the interview, take a look at their corporate objectives or business strategy. Tell how would help the company to achieve those.
What is Your Biggest Weakness?
It is one of the widely asked questions in most interviews. It is also the most complex question of all. Emphasize your strengths and mitigate your weaknesses. Focus on professional traits and avoid personal qualities.
For example, “I am trying to better my communication skills and I want to become the best presenter.”
Tips on How to answer this question
- Show that you know your weaknesses very well and what you are doing to deal with it.
- Show that you can improve yourself and you are self aware.
- Never answer with sentences like “I’m a perfectionist” or any other cliché.
- Don’t tell your weakness on any quality which is most required for the position.
What are Your Strengths?
It’s high time to shine. Keep in mind that the interviewer wants to know about your strengths related to your field. Mention a few of your key strengths like being a problem solver, motivator, loyal, eager to learn, able to take initiative, pay attention to detail, and work under pressure. Always give example of whatever you say.
Why Did You Leave Your Last Job?
It’s time to pay proper attention to the possible answers you may give. Never talk negatively about your current or past employer to the hiring manager. They will never want someone to talk the same words about them after few years. You may want to say that you are in search for better opportunities for professional growth or you want to gain a chance to work abroad.
Hope these RA Interview Questions and Answers will help you out to clear the interview. All the best!
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