Resident and Community Assistants’ Interpersonal Relationships

Document Type

Student Presentation

Presentation Date



College of Arts and Sciences


English Department

Faculty Sponsor

Dr. Kathy Rose


After a pilot study of Resident Assistants (RAs) during Fall semester of 2018, I found the most interesting thing to be that what they most liked about their roles in the dormitory was their teammates. There has been little research done on personal relationships that RAs and Community Assistants (CAs) have with each other even though they spend most of their time together. The prime focus of this study was to explore changes they perceive in themselves and in how they do their jobs with the dorm residents. In the Spring semester of 2019, I conducted follow-up interviews with RAs and CAs and interviews with their supervisors, the Resident Directors (RDs) of two dorms in one building of a mid-sized university. The focus of this paper is the change undergone by the current team of RAs and CAs since the start of the academic year. I found that a sense of community gave people a sense of “what they were supposed to be” and a sense of belonging that was important to them. Other studies focus on relationships with residents or with RA and CA training, but not the Assistants themselves, and this study shows that their sense of community is important.

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