Image Image Image Image Image Image Image Image Image Image

The Blue & Gray Press | August 18, 2019

Scroll to top


Residents assigned to live with Resident Assistants as a result of housing shortage on campus

Residents assigned to live with Resident Assistants as a result of housing shortage on campus


Staff Writer

After Alvey and Arrington shut down for the semester, RAs, who typically have single rooms, were assigned roommates so that the campus dorms could accommodate as many students as possible. This has resulted in some unexpected changes for the residents reassigned to live with RAs.

RAs are sometimes on duty, which means they have a cell phone in their room that any residents can call if there is a problem. This could potentially wake the roommate from sleep or even keep them from getting any if the night is more eventful than usual.

Patsy Deaton, a junior majoring in international affairs and a roommate to an RA, said this has not been a problem. “She [my roommate] gives me a heads up when she’s on duty because she doesn’t want me to be surprised about the duty phone ringing,” Deaton said.

She also mentioned that the phone does not ring frequently. “If it does, I usually don’t wake up,” she added.

Miranda Turnbull, a sophomore majoring in biology who also lives with an RA, said, “Late rounds are after I’m asleep, so it doesn’t affect me in any way.”

UMW’s Resident Assistants

RAs also get a lot more visitors than some roommates may be used to. Wenzi Bobowiec, a sophomore majoring in computer science said, “the only difference [in having an RA as a roommate] is having to answer the room door more due to students visiting the room to talk to the RA.”

Deaton agreed.“It’s not much more disturbances than it would be with a really social roommate.”

Many students were surprised when they found out they were going to room with an RA.

“I thought RAs had single rooms to themselves and so I felt bad I had to take up that room that rightfully deserved to be [the RAs] own,” Bobowiec said. “But I understood due to the buildings being under construction that it made sense [and] there was limited space for students to be relocated to.”

Deaton said she and her RA laid down some ground rules when they first began communicating with each other. “She makes it a priority to be a roommate before an RA,” Deaton said.  “I usually know what’s going on within the hall, but I don’t talk about it.”

Bobowiec also mentioned that because her RA is accustomed to dealing with conflicts on her hall, she does a good job of resolving conflicts that arise between the two of them. In regard to other residents and their conflicts, “I think having that third person view on conflicts help[s] [resolve them easier],” saying that she can lend a hand when her RA is trying to figure out the best way to address an issue.

The Blue and Gray reached out to several RAs and the Office of Residence Life for this story. All declined to comment.