By: Payton Trivett
Social Media Manager
When living on campus at any college, students have opposing views on the resident advisors that monitor the different dormitories. Some are viewed as friends, mentors and a person to lean on, while others are not favored by the students. Luckily, at Rochester College the students living in the dorms are friends and have close connections with almost everyone on their floors. In an interview with senior Johnathon Hogan, Hogan explained what being an RA truly means: the benefits, hardships and some unique stories that he has experienced.
I asked Hogan to describe his favorite moments and stories. Hogan said, “There are so many that it is hard to pick between a few.” After a few hours of conversation and multiple stories that made an impact on everyone, I knew which stories would make make an impact or give a good laugh to the students, staff and faculty at Rochester. The first story at the time was seen as one of the grossest moments in the third floor of AG; however, as Hogan was explaining what happened that night, our group got a kick out of it.
“One of the grossest times occurred with the boys in the AG dorms, that thought it was funny to poop in a bag and leave it in the hallway. I received a text from one of my fellow RA’s saying they needed to see me on the third floor of AG. Keep in mind, I was dressed to the nines because it was Sunday and I had church. I finally got up there and the smell was just unbearable. I went downstairs and grabbed a leather glove to hopefully mask the smell. Well, the smell just seeped through the glove and no matter what I did I couldn’t get past the smell. The RA on that floor moved the bag into the room it was outside of to keep the smell from lingering even more. I thought the hallway smelled bad but the room was ten times worse. We opened the bag up and we confirmed that the smell was really what we thought it was. We just thought, ‘who poops in a bag?’ We then went to the trash can in the room and it smelled terrible. We smelled ammonia so we were even more confused. We then found out there was urine in the trashcan and then they took the bag and put it on top of the urine. I then grabbed every scent and sprayed whatever I could find to cover up this smell in the hallway. I had to get rid of the source of the smell before we covered up the smell more. I grabbed this trashcan and threw the entire trash can in the dumpster. I thought once I handled it was done for. Nope! One time wasn’t enough, so they decided to do it twice.”
Hogan explains that no matter how gross, stupid or upsetting his job is, he loves doing it and wouldn’t trade it for anything. “If I tell you stories and you think you can handle it, this isn’t the job for you,” said Hogan. “It’s the worst stories where you don’t think you could do the job that makes you perfect for the position.” Hogan also explains one of his favorite stories was in RA training that made him realize why he does the job and how it impacts him.
“We were told in our RA training to pick our favorite picture out of a group of photos. There were flowers, lighthouses, sunsets and so much more. The photo that attracted me was a group of trees, and I made the connection of the group of trees to the students at RC. As a room advisor, I am able to see some students come in as freshman and mature to the people they are today in the higher classes. I liked the trees because as freshman, we are like a sapling and by the time we leave RC, we are this great oak that has gained so much experience, knowledge and friendships. That’s the great thing but also the hardest thing about this job. I get to make connections and close friendships with so many people and watch them grow and mature, and once their schooling here is over, they have to move on with their lives. I love to watch them grow as a person, with knowledge and with their faith but it’s also hard to say goodbye to the ones you love.”
Hogan explained that because he is a Christian ministry major, he is able to implement his love for ministry into his love for being a Room Advisor. “You get to help and impact people that just need a shoulder to lean on during the school year.” Hogan says that the greatest gift is being able to say you helped someone, as much as possible, in a time of need. Seeing the love Hogan has for the people at Rochester allowed the listeners of his conversation to understand the importance of the job that they do and realize they aren’t there to get people in trouble, but to help and guide the students.