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Cornell University

Graduate Community Advisor Position Description

A Graduate Community Advisor (GCA) is an 8-hour/week, live-in student leader position. GCAs work collaboratively with professional staff to provide resources and facilitate interactions that contribute to a positive living environment for all members of the community, students, families, faculty, staff, and visitors. This position is a full-year term including summer, Fall, Thanksgiving, Winter and Spring Breaks. Over the course of the appointment period, GCA responsibilities include:

Serving as a community educator

  • Develop and maintain ongoing relationships with residents; Be visible and available to the community; Communicate with and support all members of the community to foster a sense of community, ownership, and respect; Serve as a liaison and advocate for resident needs and concerns to appropriate people; Develop and implement a combination of social and educational programs based on the needs of the community; Help students adjust to a new living situation; Assess and address individual and group concerns among residents and staff; Take initiative to solve problems that may arise within the community; Actively build and encourage relationships between persons of different identities and backgrounds; Incorporate the Housing & Residential Life values and goals into the community’s functioning

Assisting in crisis support

  • Provide on-call coverage for the complex, as a staff team, to respond to resident incidents and concerns; Be available to listen, advise and support residents with difficult situations while recognizing personal and positional limitations; Be aware of signs of potential problems and work with co-GCAs and supervisor to institute preventive and intervention measures; Act as an initial contact, referral agent, and follow up for students in crisis; Understand basic levels of counseling skills in order to help students; Maintain an appropriate level of confidentiality

Upholding community standards

  • Educate residents on policies and encourage them to hold each other accountable to these; Enforce policies on behalf of the University and Housing & Residential Life; Confront and report abuse of property and inappropriate behavior as defined by the complex community standards, Graduate and Professional Student Programs community guidelines, University Code of Conduct, and housing contract terms and conditions; Document policy violations and initiate disciplinary process when appropriate; Report and respond to bias incidents; Maintain the respect for the physical environment of the complex; Mediate conversations to resolve conflict between individuals or groups of residents

Completing administrative tasks

  • Complete necessary paperwork: program planning and tracking, incident reports, community reports, weekly reports, maintenance requests, etc.; Report appropriate information to supervisor; Respond to all communication in a timely manner; Conduct check-in and pre-vacate appointments; Provide office and staff support as assigned; Follow up with resident concerns and needs as necessary

Fostering personal, positional, and group development

  • Participate in new experiences, challenge your personal values and attitudes and accept feedback; Assist others to learn and grow through challenge and support; Fully participate in all required training, in-services, and staff meetings (as outlined in GCA contract); Maintain and continue to develop strong verbal and written communication; Engage in constructive working relationships, participate in group meetings and activities, and contribute positively to the staff as a whole; Contribute and support the GCA team goals, departmental and supervisor expectations, and overall operation of the complex; Actively participate in departmental evaluation processes

Eligibility Requirements

  • Full-time enrollment in a graduate, professional, or doctoral program for the 2019-2020 year
  • Availability to work for the full contract period (August 1, 2020 – July 31, 2021)
  • Ability to live on campus

Preferred Qualifications:

  • Prior residence hall leadership experience
  • Ability to work independently, take initiative, and exercise good judgment
  • Ability to work effectively with a diverse student and staff population
  • Availability to work nights/weekends
  • Strong time management and administrative skills
  • Strong verbal and written skills
  • One year as a graduate student at Cornell

Remuneration (may not be substituted for other compensation):

  • On-campus furnished living space with internet and all utilities included during contract dates
  • Stipend of $2,400 (2nd year: $2550; 3rd year: $2700; 4th year: $2850; 5th year: $3000)
  • Big Red Bucks for Campus Dining – (value $200/year)
  • Gym membership (approximate value $145/year)