Carnegie Mellon University

Resident Assistant Selection

Becoming a Resident Assistant (RA) is a great way to get involved in your residence hall community. RAs are key student leaders who help their peers to develop artistic and intellectual curiosity, personal well-being, professional competency, and leadership skills. They do this by providing opportunities for community members to engage with each other while finding ways for each resident to contribute to the larger community.

To help you prepare for the RA Selection Process, below are a variety of resources that may be helpful for you to complete the application.

Overview and Timeline

The selection process has been designed to help you learn as much as possible about the RA position so that you can make an informed decision about becoming an RA in the event that you are offered a position. Although next year's position description is not yet available, you can explore the current year's RA Position Description (2022-2023) for more information. The process itself consists of several phases:

While not mandatory, a 45-minute information session provides an excellent orientation to the RA position and the selection process. This is a chance to meet a current Housefellow, RAs and ask any questions about applying to be an RA. All interested students are encouraged to attend. Please register for an Information Session. The first 15 minutes of each session will be spent enjoying refreshments and mingling with current Residential Education staff.

Information dates and locations are: 

  • Wednesday, November 30, from 7 - 8pm, Hammerschlag Lounge
  • Tuesday, December 6, from 12:30 - 1:30 pm, Cohon Center Dowd

For all candidates, submission of an online RA application is the first step. 

New RA candidates will need to submit an online RA application which includes biographical information and a response to a short answer question. An uploaded document to the short answer question should include a thorough response. The application is due by January 17, 2023, at 5 pm.

Returning RA candidates (info TBD)

New RA Candidates

After submitting your RA application, it will be evaluated by members of the Office of Residential Education. If you are invited to participate in an individual interview,  interviews will occur in person between Monday, January 23, through Thursday, February 2. The 30-40 minute interview will consist of a meeting with a current Housefellow and Community Advisor. 

While you may be meeting with representatives from one specific house, they will share their thoughts from the interview with all Housefellows and you will be considered as an applicant for all residential house communities. You will be contacted by the Office of Residential Education to schedule a time to interview. Please note that we hope to extend initial offers on or by Friday, February 10.

Returning RA Candidates

Info TBD

A Note for Both New and Returning Candidates

By submitting this application, you acknowledge that the information that you have provided within this application and any materials submitted in support of this application are true, accurate, and complete. You authorize the Residential Education staff to obtain information relating to your student record. You understand that university officials are collecting this data to determine your eligibility and suitability for the Resident Assistant position. Information collected will only be shared with relevant university officials. Students with below a 2.25 for either Fall 2022 or cumulative QPA are not eligible to be hired as an RA. Applicants with Fall 2022 or cumulative QPAs below 2.25 are welcome to participate in the interview process and may be identified as alternates as a result of their performance in the selection process. Applicants who have an academic or student conduct history that could have some negative impact on their candidacy may be contacted by a Housefellow to discuss the situation.

Community Advisor Selection

Each house community is served by one Community Advisor. In concert with professional staff members, CAs provide the leadership for the vision, direction, and daily activity in each of our residential house communities. They are upperclass or graduate students who develop a strong sense of community in each house by getting residents involved and fostering an environment that contributes to the personal and academic success of all who live there.

Overview and Timeline

The Selection process is designed to help you learn as much as possible about the CA position so that you can make an informed decision about becoming a CA in the event that you are offered a position. Details about the position are available in the CA Position Description.  The process itself consists of several phases:

The CA application is now open and will close on Tuesday, January 3, 2023, at noon. Students who have questions about the role should contact their housefellow or Kristine Kengor.

Candidates will deliver an 8-10 minute presentation to the Housefellows based on a prompt. The presentation gives Housefellows the opportunity to learn more about the candidates, and for candidates to demonstrate their skills for public speaking and sharing information with a group of people.

The prompt for the presentation will be announced in December. Presentations will take place virtually in early January 2023.

Candidates will complete a 45-minute interview with two to three Housefellows virtually in early January 2023.

The interview consists of behavioral interview questions that align with the CA position description and responsibilities in these areas:

  • Motivation and General Knowledge
  • Community Development
  • Supervision and Staff Support
  • Administration, Planning, and Management