Student finds a sense of belonging in postgraduate job

A former resident assistant has found a position as an Eau Claire landlord

More stories from Erica Jones

DIY diaries
May 9, 2018

It is a generally accepted idea that people go to college with the intent of figuring out what they want out of their lives. In the process, some people settle, and others find their dreams.

One UW-Eau Claire alum achieved the latter when he landed his ideal job shortly after graduating. In an economy where finding a job after college is relatively difficult, Charlie Room considers this a serious success for himself.

“I never thought I’d be one of the people who got lucky enough to have a job right out of school,” Room said. “I came to Eau Claire without a clue of what I wanted to do and now I get to do what I love for the rest of my life.”

This dream job is that of a landlord, and Room discovered his passion for managing people in their living situations through three consecutive years as a resident assistant (RA) on campus.

He said although times were sometimes hard, this experience made him realize a love and dream of his — something he later decided he could make a career out of.

“Even though I had to deal with a lot of tough situations, like people trying to house pets or throw underage drinking parties in their dorm rooms, I felt like I was doing what I needed to be doing,” Room said.

The opportunity arose when Room’s uncle decided to leave his business, he said. He jumped on the chance to take his place, with the condition that his uncle would train him as an apprentice for one year before handing over the company.

Towers South Hall Director, Ryan Banaszak worked over Room for two years, as he served as an RA in Towers South for his last two years on campus. Banaszak said he could always see the passion in Room’s eyes whenever he took care of his RA responsibilities.

From cleaning up bodily fluids in the bathrooms to keeping his residents “in check,” Banaszak said Room took his job seriously from day one.

“I could tell from the beginning that he really enjoyed his job, and his dedication to the work always made my job easier, which is obviously a bonus for me,” Banaszak said.

Banaszak said he couldn’t imagine a better career for Room, especially after learning about his first dorm experience.

During his freshman year, Room said he was stuck in a bad roommate situation; the student he lived with smoked marijuana recreationally in their room, even though the two of them had formerly agreed this would not happen. The real problem, Room had, however, was that his RA. at the time did nothing to assist with the conflict or terminate the illegal activity.

“It was at that point I knew I wanted to be an RA,” Room said. “I just had this feeling that I could be so good at it, and I needed to prove that to myself to make up for the terrible experience I had living in the dorms my first year of college.”

As an RA, Room oversaw a wing of men and women for three years in a row. His first year on the job, he was tasked with monitoring freshman.

One of these residents, Ivana Move, said she wasn’t surprised he was going to be a landlord because of the serious attitude he put into being an RA.

“He took his job very seriously, but I wish he had been more laid-back,” Move said. “I remember walking down the hallway one Friday night, and he stopped to ask if he could smell what was in my water bottle, even though I just filled it up at the drinking fountain.”

Move said despite incidents like these, she really respects Room and hope he finds happiness and success as a landlord in Eau Claire. Room said he believes he will.

“I’m excited to take this next step,” he said. “I feel like I’ve been well prepared for this path, and I know I’m going to thrive as a landlord because I’m all business.”

Room will begin his apprenticeship during the 2017-18 school year, managing student renters throughout the city.

This is a satirical article and is not meant to be taken seriously. It does not reflect the opinions of The Spectator or UW-Eau Claire.