What it’s like to be an RA during a snowstorm

View from outside my apartment during the storm. Photo by Cameron Campbell.

The snowstorm of 2021 was not one of my favorite memories as an RA. It was cold, scary, and I had no idea what I was going to do if I ended up without power for a long time. I wasn’t the only one who didn’t know what to do, though. My coworkers and I were all confused and struggling to get info from our boss and to also pass info along to our residents.

The next scary thing was not having power during most of the day. From that Monday morning at around two or three in the morning to to late Tuesday night we were without power. From that night to the next night at around 10:30pm/11pm we experienced the power coming back every two and a half to three hours for only thirty to forty-five minutes. As soon as the power came on everyone ran to the nearest or free outlet to charge phones, laptops, and rechargeable batteries. Unfortunately, we had still had no cell phone service.

The other scary thing was not knowing if or when we’d get help. We had found out about the warming buses on campus and food there at the dining halls, and we had asked about those things coming over to my residence hall since we weren’t directly on campus. We knew our residents were cold because they had no power. Plus, one of my coworkers went to check on some of their residents and saw their breath.

We asked for help and were told no. The help we deserved only came once the issues we were facing became public knowledge and parents got mad. Once word got out about how we were not doing too well, help came in. I’ll spare the extra details about what happened and what came after (apparently RAs can’t tell the proper narrative about what happened).

At the end of the day, I’m thankful that I am still alive. I’m thankful that my coworkers and I were able to become closer by bonding through the trauma brought on from the store.

Next Up: What it’s like to be an RA during a pandemic

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