Desk Operations Graduate Assistant

The desk operations graduate assistant (DOGA) is a ten-and-a-half-month live-in graduate assistantship supervised by a complex coordinator. This position is responsible for the day-to-day operations and management of reception desk and its staff and supports night security services in a residential facility housing up to 2,000 students. A typical area staff team which a desk operations graduate assistant may supervise includes 12-15 undergraduate student management staff and 25-35 undergraduate direct service staff. The desk operations graduate assistant is responsible for fostering an environment of high-quality student service while enhancing the community utilizing the learning outcomes of the residential curriculum. The desk operations graduate assistant also works with the office support staff in each residential facility to track all administrative operations related to occupancy, mail and keys. This is a live-in position which involves a level of accessibility and accountability to all students and staff and includes management of situations and emergencies which may occur at any time of day or night.

Duties and Responsibilities


  • Promotes the development of a welcoming and inclusive student-centered service operation.
  • Supports the mission and all policies and procedures of the department and our university.
  • Implements effective practices of customer service within the context of Housing and Residential Services protocol.


  • Assists the office support staff in the administration of a comprehensive reception, service, and security operation for a residential area.
  • Actively participates as a member of the complex team, along with the complex coordinator, residence hall directors, graduate hall directors, office support staff, dining staff, community police officers, faculty coordinators and facilities staff.
  • Coordinates and supports the recruitment, selection, hiring recommendations and training of residence hall operations student staff.
  • Actively participates in staff training and professional staff development sessions.
  • Assists with summer conference operations.
  • Assists with the management of hall facilities.
  • Assists with SMS access.
  • Performs other duties as assigned.


  • Supervises and evaluates residence hall operations student staff.
  • Assist in the selection, training development and evaluation of student staff.

Develop and Present Training

  • Actively assists in the development and participates in scheduled staff development sessions and/or retreats.
  • Provides just-in-time training for improved quality service within desk operations.

Crisis Management and Adjudication

  • Participates in area on-call rotation including weeknights, weekends and break periods when our university may be closed.
  • Responds to emergency and crisis situations and communicates necessary information appropriately.
  • Adjudicates low-level violations of university and Housing and Residential Services policies.
  • Serves as a campus security authority and must report security issues to appropriate university officials.

Development and Present Training

  • Attends regularly scheduled service operations, complex and hall staff meetings.
  • Establishes and maintains regularly scheduled office hours during day and night services.

Position Requirements

  • Admitted to NIU graduate school and enrolled in a graduate course of study.
  • Preference will be given to graduate students pursuing a degree in counseling, adult and higher education, but those pursuing degrees in a closely related field or discipline at NIU will also be considered.
  • Successful background check clearance.


  • Experience working with students of diverse educational, racial, ethnic and cultural backgrounds.
  • Previous residence life experience or group living experience.


10-month, 20-hour-per-week position

  • Start Date: Mid-July.
  • Salary: $1,500 per month.
  • Housing in residence hall: furnished one-bedroom/one-bathroom apartment with local phone, cable services, and high-speed internet.
  • Meal plan when Campus Dining Services is in operation.
  • Other benefits: Tuition waiver, professional development funds and reserved parking at a reduced rate (taxable benefit and domestic partnership benefits available). Summer employment may also be available.

Contact Information

Search Committee Chair
Housing and Residential Services
Neptune East 145
Northern Illinois University
DeKalb, IL 60115
Office: 815-753-1526
Fax: 815-753-9226

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Housing and Residential Services
Neptune East 101
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