Tuesday, February 7, 2012

I Don’t Believe In Student Empowerment

I have a dirty professional secret, I don't believe in RHA or Student Government. The U.S. was founded by the elite; the elite had the wisdom to set-up checks and balances and give the illusion of representation by the people. In the end, rights would never move forward if we sat with what the majority always wanted to do. Sometimes the majority is wrong. I feel this way about RHA. They get this sense that they can accomplish something, maybe even whispering to a HD "just you wait, I'm taking this to general assembly." I'm sorry, your plan to make quiet hours start at 2 a.m. is stupid. It is hard for you to believe, but some elements that are put in place by the administration are done so with a purpose. The purpose typically revolves around us liking our sleep, but still, there is a purpose.

There is also that element of the RHA "type". I love some of my RHA people, I really do. It's just that the majority are either socially awkward and /or gay. I'm sorry, my quota of college age gay male drama maxed out my first year of my graduate program. Ten years later it is non-existent. I don't give a shit if the RBD isn't responding back to you because you rebuffed his efforts. …or that you crazily stalked him during the chat messages and afterwards. Stop it. All of you. The only blessing I find in it is that sometimes I can guilt free throw one of my males into a female room without having to pay extra for a male in a room. There, I said it, I let my student's sometimes co-habitat at conferences. Sure, it's wrong, sure I'm violating a secret RHA rule of the world somewhere, but it's about money.

Continuing with the "type". I don't know there are the twenty year professionals who find their most rewarding moments at that conference where socially they fit in too. They recall their time twenty years ago where they fell in love with the profession, made their choice to go into Student Affairs, and now are clinging on with a death grip that is tragic. Please, move on, you/it were awkward then and it continues to this day. It is even more awkward when you're involved in the drama that unfolds in the board room. It's not necessary to coach your kids that they were not voted in because "so and so has something against you" or "it's not fair, you're right, it's not fair!". The reality is they weren't chosen, it is fair, there is a process. Sometimes qualified people get chosen, sometimes they do not. It's part of the cycle of RHA life. I find it particularly amusing when the unqualified, but must more entertaining get chosen. In the end their social qualifications probably far exceed the person they were selected above, but that's my two cents.

With that being said, I move away from RHA this year. It has been a happy and rewarding transition. No more late nights buying things I asked them for months before, or mediating a stupid conflict over whose t-shirt proposal is better. No my friends, I bid adieu to RHA for now.