As a former resident assistant, or RA, in college, I learned some valuable lessons: working very closely with others in a team-like setting and working under pressure, for example. But I was also a glorified baby sitter for 18-year-olds off their parents' leash for the first time in their lives. Let me tell you, eager beavers who are heading to college in the fall, you can have a fun, safe, and seamlessly drama-free party in your dorm without getting caught by those pesky RAs.
First of all, it's important to understand where your RA is coming from. Most of them are doing this because they get free room and board (aka a free unlimited meal plan and free rent). Plus, RAs are your peers, so they don't really want to get you in trouble — they just want to do their rounds of the building and then go to bed and pray that the walkie-talkie doesn't go off informing them that someone puked in the elevator and it needs to be cleaned up. They are not trying to get you in trouble, but when shit gets out of hand and there is loud music and words being screamed like "SHOTS," then the party becomes noticeable. Keep things calm, cool, and collected.
Another great tip is to keep said party in the dorm room to only a few people. Of course you want to be friends with everyone that lives on your floor, but the more people involved in the party means more loud noises and more chances of getting caught. Oh, and make sure you keep the door closed too. I am not kidding when I tell you that I walked by two kids on my floor one night with their door open, eight people inside, and a rousing game of beer pong happening. It's like they were trying to get caught.
On the weekends, keep the party to just a pregame and get out of the building while you can. RAs are on alert the most during the weekends. Just have your beer, rip a shot or two, and trot out to where all the upperclassmen live and crash their house parties. The RAs don't care if you come back to the dorm hammered — they just care when you're obnoxious in your room.
Don't smoke weed in your dorm room. Just don't. Sure, you can go in your bathroom, stuff a towel under the door, and turn the shower on so the steam gets rid of the smoke somehow, but it's so not worth it if you get caught. When an RA is gonna bust you for smoking pot, they have to call the cops because, as much as a younger generation doesn't even think in their heads that marijuana is illegal, it is in fact illegal. Yes, underage drinking is illegal too but unfortunately our society doesn't see that as a big of deal compared to smoking pot. Just go outside and do it.
And lastly, don't argue with your RA. They don't want to bust you, but when you're being an annoying douchebag and argue with them about the situation that is happening inside your dorm room, then the RA is going to turn on you. If you're making their life miserable, I can guarantee that they will make yours miserable too.
Go forth, future freshmen, and enjoy your first year of college and all the obstacles that follow. Just remember to be nice to your RA and don't be an idiot. If only everything were that easy.
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