job descriptions

Community Services Advisor

Title: Community Services Advisor (CSA)
Department: Residential Life, Administration and Finance
Position Offered: Student Assistant (Live-in from early-August to mid-May)
Compensation: Room and board, plus competitive stipend for approximately 20 hrs/week (actual number of hours may vary)

Position Summary:

Community Service Advisors (CSAs) are responsible for mentoring, advising, and setting boundaries with students who live in the Residential Community. They are trained to respond to emergencies, mediate resident conflicts, make referrals to appropriate campus resources, provide community building activities, uphold Residential Community standards and policies, and build communities of respect and caring within a diverse group of individuals. Job expectations include, but are not limited to: on-call weekend and weekday duty (varies by neighborhood), service desk coverage, weekly staff meetings, weekly in-service training, weekly supervision meetings, and being a campus leader and role model. The CSA position is an academic year, live on-campus commitment and all members of the staff must be available in early-August and early-January for training and available throughout the year (including weekends) for major activities.

Office of Residential Life Mission

Our mission is to provide a learning environment that promotes the academic and personal development of our students.

Office of Residential Life Values

  • Community: A physical space, human interaction, and/or shared experience that develops respect for and dignity of all members
  • Academic Success: A commitment to our students' intellectual academic achievements and their pursuits of life-long learning
  • Holistic Development: A consideration for the entirety of one's experience, encompassing their intellectual, physical, and spiritual and emotional well being
  • Human Awareness and Diversity: An exploration of self and an understanding of one's own diverse perspectives and identities, in relation to others and the global society
  • Responsibility: A choice that one makes to adhere to community standards while assuming accountability for their words and actions

The CSA participates in helping the department accomplish the above through her/his connections with residents and fellow staff. Job Responsibilities:

1. Provide Personal and Academic Support for the Individual Student

Establish a rapport with all residents for whom the CSA is responsible. Assist residents in getting to know one another. Serve as a resource, intervene in conflicts, make appropriate referrals, and be available and approachable. Provide information and referrals related to academic support programs as well as other campus resources.

2. Build Community

Create and build a community within the building that meets the variety of needs and interests of the residents. Ways this can be done is by providing opportunities for students to feel connected within their living environment through one-on-one meetings, intentional interactions, and planned events. As a part of this responsibility CSAs also assist the Residential Student Association's and Welcome Week's programming efforts.

3. Policy Enforcement and Limit Setting

Assist in maintaining an environment in which residents respect the rights of others. Work on-call and service desk shifts. Respond appropriately to crisis situations. A CSA is required to abide by federal and state laws, and university policies.

4. Selection and Recruitment

Assist in the recruitment and hiring process for new CSA candidates.
Keep in mind that individual job responsibilities may vary depending on building/village placement (e.g. living learning community)


1. Required:

Must be eligible to live on-campus during academic year. Minimum semester and cumulative GPA of 2.5 at time of application and must maintain 2.5 GPA throughout hiring and employment. Mature, self-motivated, quick-learner, able to work in teams. Excellent communication and interpersonal skills needed. Extensive knowledge of Sonoma State University campus and programs. Must be able to work with diverse populations. Satisfactory completion of University 238 (B or better). A similar course of parallel gateway leadership experience may be substituted for this requirement. Good judicial standing (at the time of application and hiring) with Residential Life and the University.

Must attend weekly in-services: Usually on Fridays from 1-4 pm, but is subject to change. Must be available to attend Spring Pre-Service on April 10, 2015: Location/Time TBA Training begins on Saturday, August 8, 2015.

Due to the demands of the CSA position, students who are involved in activities or academic programs that are time consuming (ie. theatre, varsity athletics, lab based majors) have experienced extreme difficulty fulfilling the requirements of the CSA position and maintaining positive involvement in the other commitments. If you still choose to apply, you may be asked to make a choice between the CSA job and these other commitments.

2. Preferred:

Demonstrated programming experience. One year residential community living experience. High level of involvement in SSU's Residential Experience. Work Schedule:

Event num. hours
On-call (Average) 10 hours
On-going training 2 hours
Meetings 3 hours
Resident interaction/programming 5 hours (average)
Total (average): 20 hours a week

How to Apply for this Position:

1. Go to to access all job descriptions. Beginning November 3rd 2014, go to the same website to access and submit your online application.

2. Attend an Information Session.
a) Residential Life Position Informational Sessions will be held on:

  1. October 27th at 7 pm in the Cooperage
  2. November 13th at 7 pm in the Alexander Valley Room located on the 2nd floor of the Student Center
  3. January 20th at 7 pm in the Alexander Valley Room located on the 2nd floor of the Student Center

3. Sign up for the Leadership Class, UNIV 238.
b) To receive priority access to UNIV 238 at the beginning of registration week beginning November 14th, you will need to complete the online application form and submit your essay. If these two requirements are completed by noon on Thursday, November 13th you will be guaranteed a priority seat in UNIV 238. If these two requirements are completed after noon on Thursday, November 13th, you will still be guaranteed a seat in UNIV 238, but you might have fewer choices in which section you will be able to take.

4. Submit all pieces of the online application no later than 4:30 pm on January 30, 2015. (This includes the letter of recommendation)

5. Sign up February 2nd-6th, 2015 on-line for individual interviews.

6. Sign up February 2nd-6th, 2015 for a four week workshop series that will begin the week of February 9th at the Residential Life Office. This is a requirement for all new candidates who have not held a CSA or Co-op Team Leader Position.


Direct questions about the Community Services Advisor position to:
Stacey Murray, Community Development Coordinator, Residential Life, 707-664-4192,

sonoma state university, 1801 e.cotati ave rohnert park, ca 94928