How I occupied my time

(This was written lo these many years ago, while I was still working at the University, but still applies -- except, of course, for the tenses, which I haven't bothered changing....)

I'm currently Hall Coordinator of Davidson Hall, at the University of California at Berkeley. (The res halls are fun, really they are!) No, that doesn't mean I'm a House Mother, or even a mommy (though i *do* bake lots of cookies); it does, however, mean that I directly supervise a staff of four Resident Assistants and am indirectly yet ultimately responsible for the health and safety of around 230 students.

What does that mean? Basically, when something goes wrong, I need to know how to get it fixed, and to really do my job right I need to try to keep things from going wrong. So, if there's a suicide attempt in the middle of the night, I'm the one who gets called. (I then get to wake up all sorts of people, who really appreciate it!) If the elevator breaks, I get called (and I tell whoever called me to call Physical Plant, but that's beside the point). If a resident breaks policy and needs to discuss the rationale behind it, it's me again. Basically, then, my job involves a lot of paperwork, a lot of troubleshooting, interpersonal communication, and really caring about other students. It's listed as a 19.5 hour/week job, but tends to run much more toward full-time; luckily the working hours tend to be evening and night, when I'm most productive anyway. In return, though, I get room and board (a *nice* apartment in the hall, not a puny room), and a stipend; I also get to feel like I really *am* making a difference in what I do, because I can see the effects of my work all around me. And that's reward enough.

...Or so I tell myself.

Tara R. Bloyd