University Housing and Residence Life

Manuals

Section 2: Position Description / Contract / Confidentiality Policy / Staff Disciplinary Standards


In this section you will find information about the Resident Advisor position, hours worked, confidentiality and disciplinary standards.  

Section 2.1 Resident Advisor Position Description

The Resident Advisor (RA) works closely with all areas of University Housing & Residence Life (UH&RL), and is directly supervised by a building supervisor (Area Coordinator (AC), Assistant Director (AD) and/or Head Resident Advisor (HR)) and the Director of Residence Life.  The RA plays a key role in implementing the principles and procedures of the UH&RL Department in the interest of making residence hall living a positive experience.

The RA is paid on a biweekly basis and in accordance with student employment policies.

1.0. Qualifications:

  • 1.1. Effective interpersonal skills, (i.e. working cooperatively with others, effective communication, ability to remain calm during emergency situations, at ease working with the public, etc.) 
  • 1.2. Must be in good academic standing with the University and must have a minimum 2.20 GPA. 
  • 1.3. Must be in good conduct standing with the University. 
  • 1.4. Must be certified as eligible by the Student Employment Office. The student must be pre-registered (or registered) for the semester to be employed.

2.0. Terms of Employment: 

In accepting this position, the RA agrees to the following: 

  • 2.1. Maintain student status and live in the specific hall and room assigned while employed. 
  • 2.2. Attend and participate in pre-service training and stay until the day following the Residence Halls closing. 
  • 2.3. Fulfill the responsibilities of this position as outlined in this Job Description, the RA Manual, the RA Contract, and as communicated by the UH&RL Office. 
  • 2.4. Be present in the hall and available in accordance with the policies for floor duty, desk duty and overnight on-call duty as outlined.  Work scheduled hours and attend weekly staff meetings. 
  • 2.5. Be enrolled for the semesters employed. 
  • 2.6. RA’s who wish to have outside employment must get approval through the Director of Residence Life. 
  • 2.7. Complete hall programming requirements for the semester, and actively help with activities planned by House Council.  Assist with hall-wide programming events, and other major university programs (i.e. Family Day, Homecoming, Orientation, etc.) 
  • 2.8. Perform other duties as assigned by the staff (HR, AC, AD or Director or Executive Director of UH&RL)

3.0. Term of Appointment: 

  • 3.1. Appointment for the position shall be for one semester. 
  • 3.2. Reappointment to the same or alternate position (including summer positions) will be made by UH&RL on the basis of performance evaluations, specific hall needs, availability of funds, and the discretion of the Director of Residence Life. 
  • 3.3. If an RA’s job performance is consistently unsatisfactory or if they commit a major violation of policy, the RA will be terminated prior to the end of the semester. 
  • 3.4. The RA will be terminated if no longer eligible to continue working under student employment guidelines (i.e. not enrolled for classes, on enforced withdrawal, etc.)

 RA DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES

4.0. Advising and Helping: 

  • 4.1. The RA is expected to make themselves available to the residents of the floor for the purpose of assisting students with their personal concerns. 
  • 4.2. Demonstrate a caring and supportive attitude toward all residents regardless of difference in life styles and personal attitudes. 
  • 4.3. Make a sincere effort to meet and get to know each resident in their assigned wing, floor, and hall. 
  • 4.4. Act as a source of information about the University by being knowledgeable about the university and UH&RL policies and procedures. 
  • 4.5. Assist students with their concerns within the limits of their training.  Consult with their supervisor for the possible referral of those students in need of help from other University staff, UPD, academic advisors, Dean of Students Office or Student Health & Wellness. 
  • 4.6. Keep their supervisor continuously informed of individual student and wing progress. 
  • 4.7. Assist students in their transition to college life.  Be especially attuned to the problems, concerns, and needs of new students whether freshman, transfer, international or physically challenged.

5.0. Programming Responsibilities: 

  • 5.1. Encourage residents from their wing to participate in House Council, RHA and other hall  activities.  
  • 5.2. Increase student participation in campus, academic, and social functions through wing action plans. 
  • 5.3. Sponsor programs for the semester refer to the Programming Requirements page for each semester.  
  • 5.4.  Assist with hall activities, House Council, Residence Hall Association and UH&RL programs and other University functions (i.e. Orientation, Welcome Week, Family Day, Homecoming, etc.)

6.0. Administrative Duties: 

  • 6.1. Become familiar with the physical layout of their assigned area/wing and residence hall. 
  • 6.2. Conduct a physical inventory (and room check) of their area/wing prior to the beginning of  each semester. This will be done through White Damage Cards. 
  • 6.3. Assist with the check-in and check-out of hall residents. 
  • 6.4. Determine responsibility of all damages within their assigned area/wing. 
  • 6.5. Perform clerical and occupancy verification tasks as deemed necessary by their supervisor. 
  • 6.6. Report maintenance issues promptly according to established procedures and follow-up on  the same issues. 
  • 6.7. Be familiar with housing emergency procedures and notify your AC, AD or Director of Residence Life concerning emergencies which may arise. 
  • 6.8. Conduct wing meetings for residents at the beginning of each semester and for preference forms during the semester as assigned by the HR/AC/AD. 
  • 6.9. Do a minimum of 1 bulletin board per semester.  RA’s are responsible for the upkeep of the board should it become damaged or vandalized. 
  • 6.10. Communicate effectively to residents procedures for hall operations, discipline, referrals, damages, maintenance repairs, etc. 
  • 6.11. Submit reports (Violations, Weekly Wing Status Report, Incident Reports, etc.).  All incident reports will be submitted in Maxient at https://publicdocs.maxient.com/incidentreport.php?TAMUKingsville. 
  • 6.12. Be responsible for the proper use of their assigned keys and other University keys and staff equipment.  Master keys CANNOT be taken outside of the building which they are intended for.  It is also recommended that staff members DO NOT take their office key outside of the building.

7.0. Staff Communication: 

  • 7.1. Communicate with the AC and AD to discuss the progress of individual students, wing management, problems, or staff issues. 
  • 7.2. Recognize the responsibility of maintaining confidentiality as related to matters discussed in staff meetings, when handling incidents, or in consultation with AC, AD or HR.  (Refer to department’s Confidentiality Policy.) 
  • 7.3. Work cooperatively with staff members. Be mutually supportive on staff projects and in the performance of assigned tasks. 
  • 7.4. Follow the chain of command when addressing concerns.  Support and implement staff  decisions/housing policies as part of their staff responsibilities.

8.0. Disciplinary Responsibilities: 

Resident Advisors should have a complete knowledge of University rules, housing policies, and University disciplinary procedures.  An RA is expected to: 

  • 8.1. Familiarize themselves with the Residence Life Guidebook which can be found at www.tamuk.edu/housing/ Click the Residence Life Guidebook tab on the right side and the guidebook will be opened. 
  • 8.2. Enforce residence hall rules and University policies in their residence hall and take appropriate disciplinary action when necessary. 
  • 8.3. Be consistent in handling similar situations fairly and without favoritism or bias. 
  • 8.4. Assist in conflict resolution between students by taking the role of mediator. 
  • 8.5. Actively seek to create a study environment by establishing standards and limits on student behavior on their wing in accordance with housing policies. 
  • 8.6. Keep accurate records regarding all policy violations and warnings issued.  All violations and written warnings should be entered into Maxient.           
  • 8.7. Report promptly violations of University rules and regulations following established procedures.  Discuss/keep AC and AD informed of ALL situations. 
  • 8.8. Personally follow all university and residence hall rules (Refer to UH&RL Staff Disciplinary Standards).

STAFF DUTY RESPONSIBILITIES

9.0. Duty Time: 

  • 9.1. Work a combination of scheduled desk duty, floor duty and overnight on-call hours (these hours are worked on a set schedule from Sunday-Saturday).  
  • 9.2. The RA will attend weekly staff meetings.  They will occur every Monday (unless otherwise noted).  The time of the staff meeting will be set at the beginning of each semester. 
  • 9.3. It is expected the RA will assist if there is a major building emergency. 
  • 9.4. It is expected for the RA to initiate and maintain positive interaction with their wing  residents. 
  • 9.5. Each RA will have an IP Phone in their designated room.  It is the RA’s responsibility to notify the AC or AD if the phone is not operating correctly.  The phone will be used to contact the RA while on floor duty and overnight on-call.  If you are not answering your phone when on floor duty or overnight on-call you WILL NOT be paid for those hours.

10.1. Desk Duty Schedule: 

The Area Coordinator, Assistant Director and Head Resident Advisor shall arrange the staff’s working schedule according to hall needs and UH&RL guidelines.  The AC and AD have the authority to resolve all conflicts pertaining to the work schedule, and specify the hours to be worked by each staff member.  The AC and AD also have the authority to change the work schedule as needed. 

  • 10.1. The RA shall provide the AC/AD with a copy of their class schedule. 
  • 10.2. It shall be the RA’s responsibility to promptly inform the AC/AD of any changes in their class schedule and any work schedule discrepancies.  
  • 10.3. Staff is expected to work on a variety of hours including day time and night time hours. 
  • 10.4. Resident Advisors may trade or “exchange” hours using the following procedure:
    1. It shall be the responsibility of the person seeking to trade hours to find an “eligible” substitute to work on their behalf.
    2. The RA must fill out a trading hours form and submit it to the AC or AD for approval.
    3. All traded hours must be worked within the same pay week.

11.0. Desk Duty: 

  • 11.1. The RA should adhere to all desk operations and procedures as discussed during RA training. 
  • 11.2. The RA is expected to be prompt and reliable about reporting for duty.  Repeated tardiness or absences will be considered a serious breach of the RA’s responsibilities.

12.0. Floor Duty: 

  • 12.1. The RA is required to be in the building and reachable at all times. 
  • 12.2. The RA must keep the front desk personnel informed of any changes in their location in the building. 
  • 12.3. The RA will respond to the requests of the staff and needs of the student.  Specific tasks during this time will include:  locking up, making rounds, assisting with lockouts, escorting maintenance, handling disciplinary problems and any emergencies that may arise.

13.0. Overnight On Call: 

The purpose of overnight on call is to insure that there is someone available in the building during the hours of 12:00 a.m. (Midnight) to 6:00 a.m. 

  • 13.1. The RA scheduled to work overnight on call is required to be in their room between the hours of 12:00 a.m. (Midnight) to 6:00 a.m. 
  • 13.2. The RA will respond to the requests of the staff and needs of the students. 
  • 13.3. The RA will be responsible for insuring that the appropriate signs announcing who is on duty are posted prior to the start of their overnight on call shift.

14.0. Workday and Train Traq: 

  • 14.1 All RA’s are responsible for entering their hours worked each day into Workday.  The hours MUST BE submitted every two weeks for payroll or as directed by the Administrative Coordinator.  You WILL NOT be paid for the hours worked if your hours are not submitted. 
  • 14.2 All RA’s will be assigned mandatory trainings in Train Traq.  When you receive the assignment it will give you a deadline to complete the training.  You are required to finish your TRAINTRAQ Courses by the date they are due.  Be aware that if you allow a course(s) to go past due you will be SUSPENDED WITHOUT PAY until the course(s) are complete.  Please check the TRAINTRAQ area of your SSO regularly and make sure they are sending your assignment emails to the right email address.  If you need to change it, go into your HR Connect and update your personal information.  The department gets fined $100 for every course that is past due.
    1. A first infraction will result in a warning letter.
    2. A second infraction will result in your termination from your job.

15.0. Personal Conduct: 

  • 15.1. Staff must personally adhere to all student conduct guidelines (and inform their guests of same).           
  • 15.2. Adhere to all University and UH&RL policies and procedures as outlined in the TAMUK Student Handbook and the Residence Life Guidebook. http://www.tamuk.edu/housing/ResLifeGuidebook.pdf
  • 15.3. May not be on duty (desk, floor, overnight on-call, conducting programs, conducting health & safety inspections etc.) while under the influence of alcohol and/or an illegal substance. 
  • 15.4. Incidents where the RA’s personal conduct comes in question (i.e. breaking the code of student conduct, alcohol or substance abuse, abuse of authority, insubordination, etc.) shall be reviewed by the Director of Residence Life and a determination made as to whether the staff shall be disciplined and/or terminated.

16.0. Evaluations: 

All hall staff will be evaluated by their supervisor so as to assist with their individual staff development.  The AC and AD (along with the HR) will conduct a written evaluation/conference with each staff member at the end of the semester.

17.0. Reapplication Process: 

At the conclusion of each semester interested staff may reapply to work for the following semester.  The decision to rehire a staff member will be based upon individual performance, continued student work eligibility, hall staff needs, and the availability of funds.  It is important that the staff member also seriously evaluate their motivation/enthusiasm/job performance before applying for another semester.

18.0. Termination of Employment: 

A staff member may be terminated for cause, including, but not limited to one of the following reasons: 

  • 18.1. Ineligibility to work under Student Employment guidelines (not registered for classes, ineligible for Work Study employment, on enforced withdrawal, incomplete processing of employment paperwork, etc.)  
  • 18.2. Unsatisfactory job performance. 
  • 18.3. For a serious breach of duty which in the judgment of the supervisor has caused the staff member’s integrity or effectiveness to come into question. 
  • 18.4. Personal misconduct involving violation of state or federal laws, housing policies, hall rules, or University regulations as described in the TAMUK Student Handbook or the Residence Life Guidebook. http://www.tamuk.edu/housing/ResLifeGuidebook.pdf  
  • 18.5. Improper procedures, or not adhering to the policies and procedures specified in the staff manual or other written directives issued by the AC, AD or Director of Residence Life.  This includes, but is not limited to the misuse of staff keys or equipment, unauthorized room entry, etc. 
  • 18.6. Abuse of authority, or using the RA position as a means of coercion, harassment, or to obtain some personal or material gain. 
  • 18.7. Insubordination, or refusing to follow the oral or written instructions of the HR, AC or AD. 
  • 18.8. Failure to maintain a cumulative grade point average of 2.20 and/or being placed on scholastic probation or enforced withdrawal. 
  • 18.9. Violation of the UH&RL Staff Confidentiality Policy and/or Contract. (see below)

Section 2.2 Student Staff Contract

HEAD RESIDENT ADVISOR/RESIDENT ADVISOR/COMMUNITY ADVISOR CONTRACT

Texas A&M University-Kingsville

I,___________________________________ in accepting the Resident Advisor (RA)/ Community Advisor (CA) / Head Resident Advisor (HR) position agree to the following:

  1. Compensation for a full semester of employment as an RA is $8.00 19 hrs/wk for First year RAs, $8.75 19 hrs/wk for Second year RAs and $9.50 19 hrs/wk for Third year RAs (before taxes and other payroll deductions) / CA is $7.75 19 hrs/wk for First year CAs, $8.50 19 hrs/wk for Second year CAs and $9.25 19 hrs/wk for Third year CAs (before taxes and other payroll deductions). Compensation for an RA/CA who begins employment after the start of the semester will be prorated according to the number of weeks remaining in that semester. The RA/CA is paid on a bimonthly basis and in accordance with student employment policies.
  2. The hours worked per week may vary from week to week due to the unpredictable nature of their HR/RA/CA responsibilities. The hours worked in each hall may also vary according to staff size and hall needs.
  3. The HR/RA/CA must maintain student status and live in the specific hall and room assigned by Residence Life during the period of employment.
  4. The RA/CA duties include, but are not limited to, the following:
    1. Fulfilling administrative duties, which include assisting with check-in and check-out, generating hall reports, and maintaining other hall records. (Other duties include making signs, door tags, and bulletin boards, and attending weekly staff meetings.)
    2. Meeting disciplinary expectations, which include informing the residents of the hall rules, enforcing hall policies, and referring students to the supervisor for further discipline. (The HR/RA/CA also agrees to accept personal responsibility for observing the rules and model responsible and mature behavior expected of hall staff.)
    3. Completing hall programming requirements.
    4. Being available both to students and staff during peak times of the day or night so as to spend quality time interacting with their residents. (Availability is also important during registration at the beginning of the semester and during finals week prior to the closing of the hall.)
    5. Being present in the hall and available in accordance with the policies for floor duty, desk duty and overnight on-call duty, as outlined in the Staff Manual.
    6. Performing other duties as assigned by the Supervisor, Assistant Director, Area Coordinator, Associate Director of Residential Education & LLC’s, Director of Residence Life and Executive Director of University Housing & Residence Life.
  5. The HR/RA/CA agrees to attend and participate in pre-training and Continuing Education for Resident/Community Advisors activities planned by University Housing & Residence Life Department.
  6. The HR/RA/CA also agrees to be on duty prior to the opening of the hall and continue until finished the day after the closing of the halls.
  7. The HR/RA/CA must adhere to the Student Code of Conduct at all times.
  8. The HR/RA/CA understands that position is demanding; therefore, outside employment is not encouraged. Additional employment will be approved on a case-by-case basis by the Director of Residence Life. Responsibilities must be maintained at a sufficient level and you must be in good standing with the department.
  9. The HR/RA/CA understands that the use of social media by the staff is supported provided:
    • No offensive or inappropriate pictures or comments are posted.
    • Any information placed on social media does not violate their Agreement, the UH&RL guidebook standards or the Student Code of Conduct.
    • Photos and/or comments posted on social media do not depict negatively or inappropriately on the Department or University related activities.
  10. The HR/RA/CA understands that they may be terminated for cause, including but not limited to, one of the following reasons:
    1. Ineligible to work under Student Employment guidelines.
    2. Unsatisfactory job performance.
    3. For a serious breach of duty, which in the judgment of the supervisor has caused the HR/RA/CA’s integrity or effectiveness as a staff member to come into question.
    4. Personal misconduct involving violation of state or federal laws, Residence Life policies, hall rules, or University regulations as described in the TAMUK Student Handbook.
    5. Improper procedures, or not adhering to the policies and procedures specified in the Staff Manual, and other written directives issued by Residence Life. This includes, but is not limited to, the improper handling of University money, misuse of staff keys, unauthorized room entry, etc.
    6. Abuse of authority, or using the HR/RA/CA position as a means of coercion, harassment or to obtain some personal or material gain.
    7. Insubordination, or refusing to follow the oral or written instructions of the Supervisor, Assistant Director, Area Coordinator, Associate Director of Residential Education & LLC’s, Director of Residence Life and Executive Director of University Housing & Residence Life.
    8. Failure to maintain a cumulative grade point average of 2.20 and/or being placed on Scholastic Probation.
    9. Violation of the Residence Life Staff Confidentiality Policy (refer to policy).

I further understand that this contract is for the Fall/Spring/Summer semesters.  I may reapply to be considered for rehire. Subsequent employment will be based on my work performance, hall needs, and the availability of funds. 

Signature:___________________________________  

Date:________________________________________                            

Semester:____________________________________

Section 2.3: Confidentiality Policy

UNIVERSITY HOUSING & RESIDENCE LIFE

CONFIDENTIALITY POLICY

Texas A&M University-Kingsville

As a Residence Life staff member, you will have access to a variety of housing records containing personal information about hall residents, staff, and others.  In addition, there will be times when they will discuss or share with you sensitive information about themselves. 

Federal laws such as the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) protect the individual's right to privacy and regulate the disclosing of information to others. Where these laws do not apply, the principle of professional ethics and common sense should prevail. 

Therefore, all Residence Life staff shall embrace as a primary obligation, the duty of protecting the privacy of all persons to whom services are provided.  Any personal or sensitive information that is obtained while in the workplace shall be viewed as privileged and kept confidential. 

Privileged information includes, but is not limited to, the following: 

  1. Admissions information, student grades, financial aid information, payment information, and other academic data about individual students available through the Student Information System and other University records;

  2. The social security numbers or K numbers of individuals;

  3. Home and local addresses and phone numbers of individuals;

  4. Information about an individual's medical history, illnesses, disabilities and medications they are prescribed;

  5. Personal problems discussed with staff;

  6. Interpersonal relationships and other lifestyle issues (who is dating whom; where a particular individual went for the weekend and with whom; roommate conflicts, etc.);

  7. Specific events related to the student (disciplinary incidents, medical emergencies,problems with the staff and others, conversations held with students and other staff while in the course of following up on an incident or student concern, etc.);

  8. Other personal information about individual students and staff (who corresponds with the student, what personal property the student has in their room, what the student does in their free time, etc.);

Staff is to adhere to the following guidelines pertaining to the Confidentiality Policy: 

  1. Do not discuss a student's personal problems or share other personal information as part of your casual conversations with others. Confidential information should only be discussed with individuals that your supervisor determines have a professional need to know.

  1. Any request for confidentiality by a resident should be agreed to only with the stipulation that you reserve the right to share the information with your supervisor. Your supervisor may consult with the Assistant Director, Area Coordinator, Associate Director of Residential Education & LLC’s, Director of Residence Life and/or Executive Director of University Housing & Residence Life who in turn may involve the Dean of Students, the Counseling Center, University Police Department, the Vice-President for Student Affairs, and other key housing staff or appropriate university offices in assisting with the resolution of the problem.

  1. Housing staff is not authorized to discuss information relating to a specific hall incident, problem, or individual student with other hall residents, faculty, staff, parents, relatives, or the media. Your supervisor will give you instructions about specific situations.

  1. If contacted directly by a resident's friend, significant other, parent or other family member requesting privileged information, refer the person to your supervisor or the University Housing & Residence Life Office if your supervisor is not readily available.

  1. Personally identifiable information cannot be automatically released to a parent unless the person is under 18 years of age, the student has given written permission, or the parent can demonstrate that the student is a dependent.

  1. Authorization to discuss a situation with a parent must first be obtained from the Assistant Director, Area Coordinator, Associate Director of Residential Education and LLC’s, Director of Residence Life and/or Executive Director of University Housing & Residence Life. They will decide if it is permissible to discuss the matter with the parent(s) and who will talk to the parent.

  1. In an emergency, information from the Student Health Form (which is completed by the resident at check-in) may be released to the University Police Department, Department of Student Health & Wellness, and medical emergency staff. The decision to release the information should be authorized by a professional staff member.

  1. Requests for information or comments about a specific situation by the media should be referred to the University Housing & Residence Life Office for the proper channeling of the request.

  1. All staff should take precautions to safeguard housing records that contain privileged information (i.e., hall rosters, computer printouts, incident reports, the happenings log maintained at each hall, Student Health Form, and other records maintained by staff). Office records should only be handled by authorized staff, not left carelessly about so that unauthorized persons can view them, and should be stored in such a manner so as to minimize the possibility that the records could be misplaced, lost, or stolen.

  1. Sensitive or privileged information discussed at the staff meetings is also considered confidential. If in doubt - ask.

I have read, understand, and agree to adhere to the University Housing & Residence Life Confidentiality Policy contained herein.  I understand that violation of this policy is considered a serious breach of duty that will result in corrective action including possible termination of my employment.

Print Name:________________________________________

Signature of Employee:_______________________________          

Date:______________

Semester:__________

Section 2.4:  Masters and Office Keys

Each Academic Year all UH&RL staff will be asked to read and sign the form below for master keys, office keys and other building keys.

LOST MASTER KEYS, OFFICE KEYS OR BUILDING KEYS

In the event that a master key or another building key is lost and you are found to be one of the responsible parties, you will be financially responsible for the charge of changing the lock(s), labor to have the locks replaced or rekeyed and the cutting of any new keys for the areas of the master key or building key.

If you lose or misplace your office key, you are financially responsible for the charge of changing the lock(s), labor to have the locks replaced or rekeyed and the cutting of any new keys for the office.

Should you lose a master key, building key or office key disciplinary sanctions will be issues which may include termination.

Print Name:________________________________

Signature:_________________________________

Date:_______________

Section 2.5:  Workday and TrainTraq

Each Academic Year all UH&RL staff will be asked to read and sign the forms below for entering your hours into Workday and for completing your TrainTraq assignments by the deadline.

Workday Reminder

TO: ALL STUDENT EMPLOYEES

FROM: SERENA REOPELLE-Munoz

RE: TRAINTRAQ COURSES NEED TO BE COMPLETED BY THEIR DEADLINE

You are required to finish your TRAINTRAQ Courses by the date they are due.

Please remember that if you allow a course(s) to go past due you will be SUSPENDED WITHOUT PAY until the course(s) are complete.  Please check the TRAINTRAQ area of your SSO regularly and make sure they are sending your assignment emails to the right email address.  If you need to change it, go into your HR Connect and update your personal information. 

FYI: The department gets fined $100 for every course that is past due so it is imperative that this past due trend ends today.

  1. A first infraction will result in a warning letter.

  2. A second infraction will result in your termination from your job.

I agree to stay up to date with my TrainTraqs and understand the penalty for not complying.

 

_______________________________                      _________________________

Print Name                                                                                         UIN#

_______________________________                      _________________________

Signature                                                                                            Date

Section 2.6:  Staff Disciplinary Standards