Rice University logo

Resident Associates

The Resident Associate (RA) is crucial to the Rice University college system, assisting magisters in supporting the intellectual, social, and cultural activities within the college.  Living among the students, he or she is in a unique position to be a positive community facilitator, role model, and to provide guidance and leadership to college members. The RA, therefore, must be a visible participant in college life, accessible to students, and willing to stand in for the magisters, when appropriate.

The primary goal of every RA should be to support the magisters in the smooth and effective running of the college.  Although the specific role that any particular RA plays may vary with each individual and college, a successful RA will make continual effort to know the members of his/her college, be accessible to and serve as a point of contact for all students within the college, and help them understand and access university resources.  S/he will encourage and contribute actively to the intellectual, cultural, and social life of the college, develop a clear understanding of university policies and procedures, including emergency response protocols, and assist the college magisters and other university officials in responding to students in need.   

Resident associates are appointed by the Dean of Undergraduates for an initial year in the college.  At the end of the first year, resident associates are evaluated by their college magisters, who may then recommend a three-year appointment, subject to final approval by the Dean of Undergraduates.  The three-year appointment may be repeated once for a maximum total of seven years.  However, all resident associates will be evaluated each year, and the magisters or the dean may exercise the option of not renewing an appointment at any time.  Service is conditioned on satisfactory performance.

For additional information, please view the role of a resident associate description

Minimal qualifications for RA candidates:


  • Full-time employees or full-time graduate students
  • Employed or studied at Rice for at least a year before start of RA term 
  • Recent Rice undergraduate alumni, who fulfill all other requirements, must have graduated at least four years prior to appointment 
  • All RAs must be in good standing in their employment or student status 
  • All RAs (including non-Rice RAs) need to satisfactorily complete a background check 
  • RAs are appointed by the DOU 

The search process:

Resident Associate openings are announced by the college and the Office of the Dean of Undergraduates.  The colleges connect with the dean's office about the format of the search process and coordinate opportunities to meet candidates at programs and events at the colleges.  Competitive candidates are selected to interview with the college.  The masters select the finalists and the dean's office appoints RAs to their position.