Eastern Michigan University’s Residence Hall Association had a tent set up Sept. 11 to help students learn more about the organization, win prizes and have the chance to join RHA as a Community Representative.
Often, one may overlook the possibility of getting involved in RHA, as it is only associated with being a Resident Advisor for one of EMU’s many residence halls. However, this is not the case. There are many opportunities in the RHA program, including being a Community Representative.
Samantha Johnson, RHA’s executive vice president of public relations and marketing, explained the typical role of Community Representative.
“The typical role of an RHA community representative is to be a voice and leader figure for their hall or apartment complex,” Johnson said. “Each hall and apartment on campus has three designated roles: programming, marketing, and financing. Together, this team is given a budget that they can use for their community, whether it be funding programs, buying front desk supplies, or anything else that they feel will better their community.”
With only about 21% of students living on campus, many EMU students do not get the full dorm-life experience.
“Dorm-room life is important for students because it allows them to experience campus on a more personal level,” Johnson said. “You can experience things like living and making connections with fellow students, taking advantage of numerous housing resources and simply appreciating the communities within each hall.”
Erin Thomson, president of the residence housing association, believes that it is important for students to learn more about RHA.
“Over the past few years with my involvement with RHA, we have started to really push for student advocacy and made it our purpose,” Thomson said. “Our role in the community gives us a really unique opportunity. Students who become Community Reps go on and get involved with many prominent groups on campus. It’s our goal to represent the residence and people who live here and make our community a better place. We want residents to know that their voice matters.”
RHA’s main hope for their kick-off was that students became more aware of and engaged with their organization.
“I hope that after our kick-off event students know a little bit more about the Community Representative positions, but even more about RHA and how we are here on campus for them,” Thomson said. “I hope they want to get involved on campus and not just with our org, but they find their place in our larger community. This is all of our homes, and I hope everyone feels welcome and excited about the upcoming year.”
Students should be aware of all the resources that RHA has to offer, as there are many opportunities in the organization to make friends and get involved.
For more information, visit https://www.emich.edu/residencelife/leadership/rha.php.