Clet Hall CA Catherine Trzaska
Catherine Trzaska is a sophomore and a first-year CA in Clet Hall.
Q: Why did you want to become a CA?
A: I wanted to become a CA for a few main reasons. First, I didn't have what I had perceived to be an ideal freshman experience in my residence hall, and wanted to give incoming freshmen – and all residents for that matter – the opportunity to experience something I feel I missed out on in a way. Also, my major is tourism with a concentration in event management, so the programming aspect of the job appealed to me as something I could use to develop my skills and ideas, as well as put to practice the things I learn in class.
Q: What has become your greatest challenge and reward during your experience as a CA?
A: The biggest challenges I have faced in my first year have been effectively instituting a time management plan – a challenge I luckily overcame early in my first semester – and learning that I don't have to do everything by myself. My staff is extremely supportive of everything I do, and we always are there to help each other get through anything. In this way, one of my biggest challenges turned into my greatest reward. I have grown closer to the five other people on my Clet staff faster and with a stronger connection than almost anyone else in my life. Beyond this, a great reward is the community experience I have been privileged to have with my floor, the entire building, and the whole Res-Life staff. I have developed many skills that will undoubtedly carry over throughout my whole life that I might not have gained otherwise.
Q: What advice would you give to future CAs?
A: For future CAs, I would advise them to not be discouraged at their placement if it is not their first choice, because the Res-Life staff knows exactly what they're doing when they place you and you just have to trust their judgment. Always ask questions, but never doubt yourself. Res-Life trains you for anything and everything you could possibly encounter, so just believe in yourself and you'll get extremely far. Have fun with it!
Q: What do you feel is an important quality of a CA?
A: To me, the most important quality a CA can possess is trustworthiness. Your residents should be able to trust you with anything; your staff should be able to trust your abilities and judgments; and you should be able to trust in yourself that you have the potential to be the best CA ever, and trust that you will be able to succeed in everything you do.