Good answers to common resident assistant interview questions

1. Why do you want to become a RA?

Most students apply becasue they want to get free meals, accommodation and stipend. Or they like the RA role because it offers an easy way of blending into the community, and getting to know the other students. But you should rather say that you want the position to give something back to the community, that you feel like representing the students, and helping them. You can also say that you try to learn the working habits while studying, and that the RA position is perfect for building a sense of responsibility.

2. Why do you think you can be a good resident assistant?

Tell them that you have a good understanding for the ins and outs of life at the dormitory. You can also say that you believe to have the right personality for the position, and good communication skills, and an ability to work independently. Alternatively you can say that you have read the job description carefully, and believe to be a perfect match for the job.

3. How do you imagine your typical week, from the position of a resident assistant?

Try to show them that you plan to actively help with social, academic, and personal adjustment of students to the residence hall and University. The key is to simply show that you won’t just wait for a phone call, or a knock on the door. Tell them you will participate in the weekly staff meetings, ask students for feedback and ideas for improvement, design decorations, help with organizing events, be always available on the phone, etc.

4. What is the most difficult aspect of working as RA, from your point of view?

The job is not always easy. Sometimes you will answer phone calls late in the night, or you will have to report a friend who had a party in the room. In your answer, you should show the hiring committee that you see the complexity of the position, and that you know it won’t be always easy. Tell them that you are ready for all aspects of the job, and that you won’t let your emotions to interfere with the decisions you will make from the position of a resident assistant.


Screening and behavioral questions

Depending on the school, and the number of applicants, the interview may become more complex. They can ask you some of the following questions:

  • Why should we choose you, and not one of the other applicants?
  • Describe a conflict you had with another student in the past.
  • How do you imagine combining your student and RA duties?
  • What motivates you in job?
  • Tell us about a goal you achieved recently.
  • What can you improve about this building?

The more people apply, the more complex the interview will be. If you would like to learn how to answer the common screening and behavioral questions, and how to win the hearts of your interviewers, check out our Interview Success Package.

Alternatively you can continue your interview preparation with one of the following articles:

The team at InterviewPenguin.com wishes you good luck in your RA interview!