OU Residence Assistants Soon To Be Limited To One Campus Job

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A recent policy clarification from Residential Housing regarding the maximum amount of hours a student can work each week may restrict resident assistants from having other jobs on campus.

Limiting students to a 20-hour work week has been a campus policy for several years. However, Ohio University's Human Resources department wanted a definite number from Residential Housing. After researching the average work hours for an RA, the department concluded that a 20-hour work week was appropriate for the job.

Peter Trentacoste, Executive Director of Residential Housing, said that he feels confident about that number.

"I feel that it's a job that requires a lot and it's a lot of dedication," he said. "RAs recieve a great compensation package. I would be challenged to find a better one on campus right now when you consider the cost of room and the stipend that we give them."

Currently, first year RAs receive a stipend of $1,070 per semester. That increases to $1,620 per semester their second year of work and to $1,770 per semester their third year. RAs also live in the residence halls at a 90 percent discount.

The RA compensation package is reviewed about every five years. The department will review the current package this summer to possibly increase the payment for the 2015-2016 school year.

Trentacoste said he is not opposed to RAs having other campus jobs and that it has never been an issue in the past.

"From my perspective, if students were able to work more than that we would certainly be open to that too, he said. "But it also happens to coincide with the maximum that campus allows students to currently work on campus."

Sophomore Kaorin Marshall has been an RA in the Martzolff House since the beginning of the school year, all while working another campus job at the Southside Cafe in Nelson dining hall. She plans to find an off campus job in order to keep her RA position.

She and other RAs with campus jobs are frustrated that they will have to choose which job to keep for the upcoming school year.

"Honestly from my perspective, I dont think a student should be told how much they can work," she said. "If they think they are able to put more on their plate then I think it's their responsibility as a student to balance work, job and RA."

During the summer, student workers are able to work 28 hours per week. The policy clarification will go into effect for RAs at the beginning of the next school year.