People tend not to publicize positions which they did not attend for the entirety of its term, but I think that a premature ending has a story of itself.
I was excited to be an RA, I really was. There are new experiences for everyone, and freshman year is a huge growing curve with tons of following and breaking the rules. Being able to mentor incoming high schoolers through the do's, don'ts and definitely don'ts of college was a perfect fit for me. And on a personal level, I thought it would be a nice throwback to my own first year, maybe I would be able to enjoy parts of it again!
My biggest goal was to create a safe space for my floor mates to come back to; be open to talking about the exhilarating experiences they were having so that they could make healthy choices. My floor was quite great, not too much trouble and they always closed their doors before opening a beer.
The administration and my personal adjustment to the commitments of being an RA, not so much. I discovered that I was not able to pursue anything outside of my classroom and my RA job. Having had seats on various on-campus organisations and involvement in my own projects, I had not built a schedule which could allow that. Slowly I started getting overwhelmed with the way my job was structured; meetings, desk shifts, floor boards and write-ups were too much to juggle along with an involved academic and extra-curricular schedule.
Our building had just gone through a change of scalar chain as well. A pilot structure to manage big dorms with 2 community leaders and grad students. There were meetings with the staff, sessions to talk about their negligence in RA affairs. Due to the poor communication between the heads of dorm towers and stringent micromanaging, pressures were high in the first couple months.
I realised that the job was not what I thought it would be. I simply had too much on my plate and if I were to maintain my academic performance, I had to choose between being an RA and everything else. 3 of our staff resigned in the first 3 months. I was one of them. I gave in my 2 week notice explaining what was happening and met with my grad advisors for a sit down. In the next two weeks, I found a new place to move into and said byes to some of the most wonderful and dedicated people I had met as an RA. I still stay in touch with some of my staff and leaving them was perhaps the most difficult part of this decision.
There were times when I was challenging myself to persevere; through the weird regulations and conflict of instruction, the scorn you feel sometimes from students as a figure of authority, the lack of my presence in everything else college. I took the step because of the disconnect I realised I had about what the job was supposed to represent, and what it actually was. I do not regret my decision, but in some other life, I hope I had a more fulfilling time as a Resident Assistant.2