Name: Romany Paige Kemp
Hometown: Nuneaton (a little town that’s about an hour away from Birmingham)
Course and year of study: BA (Joint Hons.) in Drama and Creative Writing | just finished 2nd year
Accommodation: Booth Halls of Residence, Crewe
I wanted to become an RA because of the experience I had with my RA in first year. He was great and was really friendly and welcoming. He quickly became a familiar face around campus, which was much needed during the first few awkward weeks where nobody knows each other. We had a few issues in our flat during the year, and he was so helpful and useful when it came to solving them. He listened to both, or multiple, perspectives and suggested solutions to the issues, with a calm and collected attitude. His presence in my first year, and the impression he made on me, made me want to become an RA. I realised that I wanted to be all the things he was for me to other students at MMU. I really wanted the opportunity to be a familiar face, a useful person, and sometimes a calming present for other students in Booth, and I was luckily enough to be able to do just that.
My favourite thing about being an RA is my students, without a doubt. I was assigned such a great bunch, filled with individuality and enthusiasm. My job is made so much better by them, and I actually love doing my visits and going round to have a chat and a catch-up with all of them.
From being an RA, I have gained confidence, impartiality and friends. I can tell within myself that this job has given me a massive confidence boost – I used to hate knocking on anyone’s door, regardless of the reason. This job has forced me to talk to people, which is something I normally shy away from, so it’s definitely made a change. I’ve also gained impartiality, which is an important skill when trying solve issues and dissolve arguments within flats. I’m normally one of those people who finds something to identify with and sticks with it, but this job has made me look at things from a different perspective, meaning I can use my insight to help solve the problems instead. As corny as it sounds, I’ve also gained friends doing this job. Some of the friendships I’ve made within the team have really made a difference in my life, and I know now that there is no way I could ever get rid of them – like I’d even try. I feel quite lucky really, to have had these opportunities and made the friends that I have – without this job, it would never have happened.
Your favourite place in Crewe is probably Big Apple Café. It’s a little American style restaurant, full of vintage posters and models everywhere you look. The food is amazing, and it’s a really good price. Perfect for a student’s budget. Plus, it’s only a short walk into town so it’s not even that far away. I’d definitely recommend any student at the Cheshire campus to go at least once, you might fall in love with it like I did.
Your top tips for students in MMU accommodation are to…
- buy colour catchers (seriously, if you want your clothes to come out of the wash the same colour that you put them in)
- pay attention to the rules of halls (you don’t want any nasty fines because you didn’t read something properly/didn’t realise you couldn’t have it)
- make friends with the people in your flat AND on your course – they’re the friendships that last forever
- oh, and be nice to your Residential Advisor – we don’t bite, and we’re really lovely, just give us a chance!