Village Community Assistant (VCA)

Job Description

Village Community Assistant positions are available through the Department of Residence Life & Housing. Village Community Assistants are student staff members who live in and help lead the residential community on our campus. The position is multi-faceted and inevitably exerts considerable influence on the lives of our students.

I. GOALS

Listed below are the major goals for the Village Community Assistant and all Residence Life staff:

A. To provide and help develop an atmosphere within The Village which fosters independent living and the development of a community based on consideration, respect and appreciation of all individuals.

B. To encourage an appreciation for the care and respect of the physical facilities.

C. To promote and develop an environment that is conducive to academic achievement and success.

D. To assist students in their personal development and self-awareness

E. Promote and support The Village mission.

II. ROLES AND FUNCTIONS

A. ADMINISTRATOR
Village Community Assistants must submit information and paperwork in a timely and accurate manner. A Village Community Assistant must perform administrative tasks related to the operation of The Village. These tasks include, but are not limited to: completing Village inspection and inventory forms, surveying residents, completing incident reports, opening and closing the complex, completing maintenance work orders, and other administrative responsibilities as outlined by the Village Community Director. In addition, Village Community Assistants must meet on-call responsibilities and fulfill meeting obligations.

B. RESOURCE PERSON
Village Community Assistants transmit information regarding Residence Life, The Village, campus activities, campus services, and academic services to residents. In addition to information sharing, Village Community Assistants also understand and can communicate college policies and procedures to their peers.

C. ROLE MODEL/STUDENT
Village Community Assistants are members of the college staff, who must abide by all rules and regulations of the college and those of the Department of Residence Life and Housing

D. TEACHER/PROGRAMMER
Village Community Assistants plan activities that support and promote The Village mission, focusing on: sustainability, Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) and personal development
Village Community Assistants must actively participate in The Village Tenant Association.

E. COUNSELOR/HELPER
A Village Community Assistant utilizes communication and listening skills. Village Community Assistants must have an appreciation for diversity among residents while understanding the value of individual differences among people.  The staff must know how and when to make referrals, respond appropriately to emergency and crisis situations, and possess basic knowledge of human behavior.  Village Community Assistants must have knowledge of specific student issues and problem areas (suicide, substance abuse, sexuality, conflict resolution, etc.).

F. POLICY ENFORCER
Village Community Assistants must promote a philosophy of self-responsibility, address self-defeating behaviors, and confront behaviors that are inconsiderate and detrimental to members of the community. Staff must communicate the rationale and philosophy of rules governing the Village. In addition, Village Community Assistants must maintain relationships with students while consistently addressing inappropriate behavior(s) and referring individuals with recurring instances of policy violations to the Village Community Director.

III. SPECIAL DUTIES

Village Community Assistants are required to:

A. Return to campus on posted training dates for fall and spring semesters. Village Community Assistants are expected to maintain a half staff during all university breaks for the academic year, and up to one week after semester closing.

B. Perform on-call responsibilities as outlined by the Village Community Director and notify the Village Community Director of plans to be away from campus prior to departure. Village Community Assistants are encouraged to spend one weekend per month away from campus.

C. Participate fully in fall and spring semester pre-service training programs, as well as any other Village training programs. All Village Community Assistants are required to attend, and participate in, ongoing Residence Life in-service training throughout their specified term of employment.

D. Attend weekly staff meetings and meet individually with Village Community Director upon request.

E. Participate in Village meetings and Village Association meetings.

F. Perform duties for Dining Services as outlined in "Staff Relationship to Dining Services."Village Community Assistants are subject to the review of Dining Services personnel in the performance of their Dining Center duties.

G. Work ten hours per week at The Village desk.

IV. SUPERVISION

A. Village Community Assistants are responsible for duties assigned by the Director of Residence Life and Housing, Associate Directors of Residence Life and Housing, Community Development Specialists, and Village Community Director.

B. The Village Community Assistant Job Description is the basis for the Village Community Assistant performance review and evaluation. Failure to fulfill required job expectations in a satisfactory manner or a violation of college policy or rules governing residence halls or the Village will be grounds for the termination of a Village Community Assistant appointment.

V. PERIOD OF EMPLOYMENT & other pertinent information

Village Community Assistant appointments are for an entire academic year.

VI. QUALIFICATIONS

Village Community Assistants must be full-time students at SUNY Oswego during the period of employment, must have attained Village eligibility status by the time of appointment, have a cumulative G.P.A. of 2.40 or above, and the previous semester's G.P.A. must be a minimum of 2.00. (Neither summer school nor winter session will be an option to improve the cumulative G.P.A. for those who do not meet the minimum requirement.) These academic standards must be maintained during each semester of employment to be in good staff academic standing. However,  Village Community Assistants who, after at least one semester of employment, have a semester G.P.A. of 2.00 or greater AND a cumulative G.P.A. between 2.20 - 2.39 or a semester G.P.A. between 1.71 - 1.99 AND a cumulative G.P.A. of 2.40 or greater will be placed on "Staff Academic Probation." All Village Community Assistants placed on "Staff Academic Probation" must participate in the Residence Life and Housing H.E.L.P. (Helping Employees' Learning Performance) Program. If the Village Community Assistant does not wish to participate, or does not complete the H.E.L.P. Program, the Village Community Assistant will not be permitted to continue as a Village Community Assistant.  Village Community Assistants must have successfully completed 3 semesters as an RA/RM at SUNY Oswego prior to employment.

VII. COMPENSATION

Compensation is a single room waiver and a five meal plan for each academic year of service. The Department of Residence Life and Housing provides installation and monthly service fees for Village Community Assistant room telephones, voice mail, and Resnet. Consequently, Village Community Assistants are expected to have a working room telephone, with answering machine or college voice mail, as a condition of employment.

VIII. HALL ASSIGNMENT/RELOCATION

Residence Life and Housing reserves the right to assign or relocate Village Community Assistants based on departmental needs.
Important information you should know:

Pledging: Village Community Assistants wishing to join a Greek Honor Society must request approval to do so in writing to Renée Landers, Associate Director of Residence Life and Housing. If a Village Community Assistant wishes to join a Greek social/service organization, he/she will not be permitted to do so during the fall semester. If a Village Community Assistant wishes to join during the spring semester, they must have written approval from the Village Community Director and Renee Landers prior to the start of pledging.

Staff Expectations: Village Community Assistants are essential to the success of our residence life program and inappropriate staff behavior undermines the efforts of all staff to provide a quality and positive residence life experience.

Role modeling is a significant component of the Village Community Assistants position. Student staff is expected to comply with College policies, federal, state and local laws while on or off campus. This is particularly true when alcohol and drugs are involved. Also, student staff is expected to uphold the College policies on campus by confronting those who are violating these policies. It is very difficult for student staff to enforce rules that they, themselves do not observe. Village Community Assistants violating college policy will have their employment status reviewed.

Staff members who are of legal drinking age and under the influence of alcohol must be aware of the impact their behavior has on residents. Student staff members who are underage and decide to drink alcohol or violate other College policies, or violate federal, state and local laws jeopardize their staff positions. When an incident is brought to our attention, we will investigate the circumstances and the status of the staff member's employment will be reviewed. Our department assumes that staff is aware that their actions, especially violations related to alcohol or drugs, will likely result in termination from their position.

Involvement: Village Community Assistants are encouraged to be active in clubs or organizations, or hold significant leadership positions outside of the Village with the approval of the Village Community Director and appropriate management staff member. A Village Community Assistant may not hold employment other than the Village Community Assistant assignment or become involved in an outside activity for more than 10 hours per week. Village Community Assistants are expected to devote a considerable amount of time and energy to this position. It is expected that, with the exception of academic pursuits, Village Community Assistants will place their duties ahead of other personal and professional commitments.

Disciplinary Probation: Village Community Assistants will not be hired or begin employment if they are on disciplinary probation or have disciplinary charges pending.