Life as an OA

Have you ever wandered what it is OAs exactly do? Lucky for you, we asked sophomore Yash Nalla what being an OA actually means, and why you should be one too!

 OA SPOTLIGHT

(Unfortunately we don’t have a banner for OAs yet…)

What’s it like being an OA? It’s really chill. It’s a job where I feel i can utilize my people skills, and really exercise my love of talking to people and helping people. It’s also [a job] where I have the freedom to create my own schedule and not have to suffer under strict rule and regulations.

Why did you decide to apply to be an OA? I decided to apply to be an OA after being a part of Community Government in my first-year dorm. From there, I learned that one of the best ways to get further involved in Housing is to apply to be either an OA or RA.
What kind of duties do you do as an RA? It’s a lot of administrative, secretarial-type stuff. You have to mann the desk, answer phone calls, and sort mail. If there’s any type of enhancement that residents want to check out or utilize, you have to keep track of those.
Do you talk to other people who work in Housing? I’d actually say that a lot of the other OAs and even some RAs are some of the closest friends I’ve formed relationships with during my entire time at Carolina. It’s honestly one big family.
What did you least expect when you became an OA? I think it’s really how close I ended up growing with a lot of the OAs and some of the RAs.
What are the typical shifts like? I clock in at some point, I clock out at some point, and in-between there can be anywhere from 4 hours to one.A large part of the job is to have a friendly, smiling presence at the front desk. I’ve also worked shifts that were eight hours long. It’s just dependent on what the needs of the desk are at that particular day and time. The schedule is so flexible; most OAs work between six and ten hours in a week.
What should someone applying to be an OA know? When you go into your interview, emphasize how much of a people-person you are, how you can connect with people very easily, and how you can keep your calm under stressful situations.
What is the best part about being an OA? Just being able to meet a lot of people in my community. I know that residents sometimes have a hard time meeting other people. As an OA, that’s one of the positions where you have a pretty high surety of being able to meet new friends.

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