Campus Dorm Resident Assistants Adjust to a New Role: COVID Cop

Breaking up parties, confiscating booze and answering noise complaints — being a resident adviser has always required a willingness to be the “bad guy” and uphold university policy despite the protests of friends and peers.

Now there’s a new element to the job description: COVID cop.

The worst part of his job as a resident adviser and dormitory hall security manager is verifying residents’ ID cards in the evening and dealing with the mask policy, said Marco Maldonado. But the positions help him afford his annual $20,000 tuition at the University of Massachusetts-Amherst.

Almost every night, he said, at least one person tries to enter the building without a mask. While most will take advantage of the box of disposable masks at the security desk, “every once in a while, you’ll meet someone who’s like, ‘Oh, it’s all bulls—. Stop — I don’t want to hear it,’” said Maldonado, 20,

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