Wednesday, March 2, 2011

RA or DJ? Sinn does both

By Lauren Rothering
Editor in Chief

Strobe lights, dancing boys in boxers and Hannah Montana posters are probably not common sights in most all-male, freshman dorms. But for Benilde resident assistant (RA) Riley Sinn, they mean just another day on the job.

This is Sinn’s first year as an RA, having been in Benidle since August 2010. As an RA, Sinn encounters many different situations on a daily basis, many times unexpected and unusual.

“I think the weirdest thing that has happened to me is opening my door to two of my residents dancing in their boxers holding a heart in front of them then asking if I would be their Valentine,” said Sinn.

The unexpected does not stop in the hallway, though. First-time visitors to Sinn’s room are often taken aback by his decorations.

“The first thing most people notice when they come in is my Hannah Montana Rock Sensation banner,” said Sinn. “I have 8 different club lights in my room, strobe lights, lasers, color wheels, a siren and more. A lot of the lights go to the beat of the music, and are all hooked up to a control panel on my desk. My room also has surround-sound speakers, and plenty of fans to keep it nice and cool during dance parties. If I can, I would love the chance to throw a dance at this school.”

However, being an RA is not all about dancing and DJ’s. As an RA in Benilde, Sinn is part of the larger Benilde, Gilmore Creek and St. Yon’s staff. Sinn, along with his seven other staff members, does programming and duty rounds in all three buildings. Each building holds different genders and grade levels and has their own unique character, said Sinn.

“Benilde is, well, interesting and you never know what will happen. Gilmore always has someone in the lounge watching a movie or playing games. Then there is Yon’s which is a ghost town, and you normally see only about two or three people while you’re there,” said Sinn.

Though there are many parts of the job that Sinn enjoys, he also acknowledges a certain amount of sacrifice that comes with the position.

“My least favorite part of the job has to be that I lose my identity a lot, and people see me as an RA, not as Riley. No one really knows you, they just know you as an RA,” said Sinn.

Despite all the unusual, weird and challenging parts of being an RA, Sinn, like many RA’s, does find a sense of personal fulfillment in his work.

“I became an RA because I wanted to meet more people and get experience with working with college kids. Also it is a really rewarding job; I like helping people a lot,” said Sinn.

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