The Horrors Of Being A College Dorm Resident Assistant

Photo: Greg Ceo (Getty Images)

Corralling co-eds and enforcing guidelines as a resident assistant is a challenge. While many of the students within a college dorm will be mild tempered, well-behaved individuals, you’re just as likely to get stuck with rambunctious drunks and other raving fiends.

Ask any resident assistant about their experiences, scroll through the Reddit forum r/ResidentAssistant, or read the Tumblr blog Stories From The RA and you’ll hear plenty of horror stories. Students have been known to holler drunk while being dragged onto an elevator by campus police, to fall asleep in the shower and flood the entire floor, to graffiti Nazi insignia on a Jewish student’s door, climb vending machines, piss or run naked in the hallway, break windows with rocks, leave condoms in absurd places, jack off into dryers, set the floor on fire, and drill a broken television to their wall. These stories stack up and are as common as resident assistant’s boards being defaced. No wonder the Reddit forum is nicknamed “No Quiet Hours.”

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However, even among all the insanity, there is one story in particular that stands out: that of a student who used an oven as a storage unit. Maybe there are certain desperate situations where an unplugged appliance could be used for storing stuff,  but a functional oven in a communal space is not it, especially not for video game gear like controllers, game discs, and consoles. As you might’ve guessed, dorm residents accidentally turned the oven on and set the goods ablaze. The fire alarm went off, forcing the entire residence hall to evacuate. Fire crews were called in. Luckily, no one was harmed.

This whole situation could have been avoided with a little common sense. Did no one smell the plastic burning? Or know how to turn the oven off? Or think to use a fire extinguisher? The sheer stupidity of the students in this situation is astounding.

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If you’ve ever pondered becoming a resident assistant yourself, just remember that people can be idiotically destructive, and if you’re their resident assistant, you’re partially responsible for the safety of both the lunatics and the students who simply want to get their degrees. Good luck to all the resident assistants out there…except for those looking for students’ weed or alcohol stashes.


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