Going from RA to a Student Conduct Administrator

By Dylan Ruffra

    When you are an RA the most you deal with a situation is confronting the student and documenting situation. You never really hear of the follow up that happens after that. The main conduct process that happens is with the hall director in that building.  It has been weird going from the experience of actually having conduct meeting with students. Dealing with situations as an RA was not my favorite thing, so now having conduct meetings has given me a new experience.
    At my institution they make sure that you are well prepared before going into any conduct meeting by yourself. First they try to make sure that you are understanding, the policies that you are enforcing. It would not be a good sign if you were having a conduct meeting and you had no idea why a policy was in place. You need to know why you are enforcing the policies that your university has. Then we went through a week long training about how to handle a conduct meeting. This included how to do the paperwork and the actual conduct meeting itself. I found this very beneficial, since we also heard from other Student Conduct administrators about how they would handle situations. During this training, they gave us a full rundown of every step of the process and gave us time to practice meetings with each other. Once school started, we then got to observe two or three people as they did their own hearing with a student.  This was good experience, since we got to see the different styles that different Student Conduct Administrators had. This gave us a basis of how we should be running our conduct meetings. Then it came time for the big deal, when we were finally leading our own conduct cases. We were all given two or three conduct cases where we observed by a Student Conduct Administrator who has previous experienced working on a case. As we were all being observed we wanted to do well , since someone was watching us. When it came time, all the nerves went away and I was able to connect with the students.
    As you are able to meet with the student and make a connection, you want to make sure that they are getting the most out of the process. The student should know that the whole conduct process is educationally base. It is important that while having the meeting that students are able to learn from what they did. You want them to reflect on their actions and know how they can do better next time. As they are reflecting it is important  for them to understand  how their  decisions can make an impact on themselves and the campus as a whole. While they are in the meeting and completing possible sanctions, you want them to learn from their decisions. It is important that the students do not see the conduct process as a way for them to get in trouble, but a way them to learn from what they did
    As I have become a Hall Director  and have had conduct cases it has given me a new perspective. This gives me a way to interact with students and truly make a difference in their lives. I have started to gain the perspective of  how students can learn from what they have done. As I am meeting with students students, I try to make the most of our time together. I want the students to feel like our meeting was beneficial and that they can always come and talk to me.

Student Affairs - the First Years

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