Residence Life at Reed

Division of Student Life

Area Coordinator Experience

In addition to these responses, you can learn more about our staff by visiting our staff page.

What do you enjoy most about working at Reed?

tim

Jess: As someone who had worked in Residence Life for several years before coming to Reed, I was worried about getting into a rut. However, from the start of the semester, my colleagues have pushed and challenged me to produce my best work. Every small project can turn into a new passion area that we are encouraged to explore, practice, and share. As a department, we are constantly trying to grow and adapt, providing a work space for new and seasoned professionals to cultivate new skills every day.

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Miranda: I'm really impressed by the relationships I've been able to build among colleagues in the division and beyond the Student Life division. There is definitely a sense of community among staff here and that's something I appreciate deeply. I was surprised by the focus on personal time and mental health in the department. That was a breath of fresh air for sure (esepcially in student affairs!). Also, almost everyone introduces themselves with their name and pronouns and that was highly impressive to me.

 

What is the most unique thing about working at Reed?

Nick

Logan: The most unique thing about Reed is the Honor Principle. Students get to decide what it means to them on a personal level and then challenge and be challenged by their peers as they learn to navigate the campus individually and as a greater community. The most rewarding conversations among students and staff for me have been guided by and interpreting together what the Honor Principle means to us in our day-to-day actions.

Lindsay

DéjaI would definitely say the students are the most unique thing about working at Reed. The students are very unique in how the view and operate within the world. They are incredibly bright and open to learning, yet just as willing to challenge the educators around them. Reedies truly are a tight-knit community and have a unique way of interacting with others in the community; and they are certainly not afraid of sharing their perspectives with others.

In what ways are you challenged or able to grow professionally at Reed?

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Miranda: I've worked with my supervisor to find ways to turn my passions and areas of growth into tangible plans of action. I've been able to grow professionally in terms of my own leadership skills (I co-designed and lead our covid move-in process) and by way of DEI practices. Currently, I'm working on some department-wide initiatives that will educate the department on culturally responsive supervision. Not only is that experience meaningful in terms of making our department better, but these experiences also make me a better professional. 

Lindsay

Tyler: As a more seasoned professional who has been in the field for a few years it was very refreshing to have supervisors that challenge me to look for opportunities to grow in the context of Reed and beyond. From day one each of the members of our department are presented with a myriad of opportunities that they can choose from regarding their development from conferences, to webinars, and even departmental presentations on materials you found useful. I’m challenged daily in the best way possible.

What's so great about Portland?

sydney

Tyler: Southeast Portland has all of the comforts of city living without the hustle and bustle of city streets (if you crave the hustle and bustle just head downtown). You are a ten minute walk from delectable restaurants and grocery stores, yet if you’re feeling adventurous you can see breathtaking views from Dog Mountain by taking a short hour long ride along the gorge. Antiques are within arms reach, craft cocktails and beers are ever flowing, and most importantly, food carts are beckoning for you to stop on nearly every street corner.

tim Jess: I can’t underplay how fantastic the food scene is in Portland! There are endless delicacies at the dozens of food carts around the city, a brewery on nearly every block, and a menu to meet every person’s dietary restrictions. Then, when you want to get out of the city, just travel 10 miles north to Sauvie Island, a farmland and wildlife refuge along the Columbia River. You can pick your own produce and enjoy the sheer beauty of living in the Pacific Northwest.

Lindsay

Déja: I am a big fan of the local, indie hip-hop music scene in Portland. There really is an eclectic vibe, where so many different styles impact the local music scene here. Mainstream pop is not the main element in a large bit of the local music here, which fosters an incredible collaborative spirit between artists of different genres. In addition to the music, I really enjoy exploring the restaurant and craft bar scene here. There are many distinct flavor profiles across the city, each filling their own niches in the market.

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Miranda: Which do you prefer? Mountains or ocean? It doesn't matter becuase you have access to both! There are several beaches and water-access areas all within 30 minutes (though a 2 hour drive to the coast really is nothing!). If you'd rather go on a hike, there are countless trailes and sights to see. I love adventuring around Portland with my dog, Jester. Also, the food scene is really fun. I think everyone's said something about food already, and I couldn't agree more! So many different cuisines, dietary restrictions taken into consideration, and new and exciting tastes to explore. 

What do you enjoy about working for this Residence Life department?

tim

Tyler: Our roles are Area Coordinators at Reed are ever evolving and unique in many ways compared to other small private institutions. You are encouraged to bring about change in the department and our voices are heard when we feel that a process or procedure can be improved. This is the first time in my professional career that I have had an environment that celebrates both autonomy and a collaborative spirit in unicen and it is phenomenal.

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Miranda: I really enjoy the conversations we have with each other. We all come from extremely different backgrounds and experiences, and it's nice learning from others on work related topics, but also life related topics. Also, I really appreciate the harm-reduction approach we take to addressing problematic behavior. One of my needs when job searching was for a department that was using harm reduction and restorative practices throughout. Our department does a pretty good job weaving restorative practices into daily use. I think that's pretty unique.

sydney

JessThere are many Residence Life departments in the world, but there is something different about the team at Reed. Beyond being colleagues who push each other to our maximum potential, we care so deeply for one another. I’ve never been at an institution where we celebrate each other’s successes and help each other navigate the low points in such an authentic way. Residence Life’s leadership team has fostered an environment built on honesty and compassion, which provides a space to be challenged. I feel deeply fortunate to work with such intelligent, kind, and hilarious people – who make the tough days feel fewer and far between.

Julia

Déja: As a new professional, Reed has welcomed me into the community with welcome arms. I have been invited to learn more about the field from various student services departments across the campus, and my perspective has been welcomed throughout my journey here thus far. The Residence Life department, however, is unique because it is truly built off of a community of care and authenticity. My colleagues and I have built tremendous relationships with one another that allow for collaboration, teamwork, and authentic relationship building. Our differing perspectives are welcomed and valued, which is great.