Committee Chair: Monika Weber, Assistant Director of Paraprofessional Staff Training
Committee Co-Chair: Zach Stroth, Hall Director
Committee Member: Ellie Gathings, Hall Director
Committee Member: Sam Long, Coordinator for Graduate Student Experience
The Paraprofessional Staff Training Committee hosts two large-scale trainings each year for our 400+ student staff members; during the 2020-2021 academic year these trainings shifted to an innovative virtual format. We changed all sessions, typically full of in-person demonstrations, into a virtual format utilizing breakout spaces on Zoom, various online platforms, and a mixture of pre-recorded, live, and hybrid sessions. Holding training in this format allowed us to create robust onboarding tools and a streamlined process for training mid-year hires which supported efficiency, and gave us the ability to create more inclusive and accessible content by utilizing captioning for all sessions. The shift to a virtual format enhanced the student staff experience by providing some schedule flexibility and the ability to revisit training content to elevate their learning. We innovated support for our staff by creating a comprehensive training guide and implementing thorough assessment. Through innovation we were able to identify virtual processes and online systems that increase efficiency and learning that will be able to be applied to in-person training in the future.
Despite COVID-19 causing our campus to switch a majority of offices to remote, Residence Life remained fully operational in person due to housing residents on campus. The shift to a virtual training program for our staff was essential in ensuring safety for our team, and providing them with the necessary knowledge and resources to serve successfully in their role. By creating a comprehensive training guide and creative session content we hosted an engaging and informative virtual onboarding experience.
The paraprofessional staff training for the 2020-2021 academic year was implemented during August 2020 and January 2021. Both of these trainings were approximately 3-5 days in length, with 5-8 hours of training each day, in addition to subsequent trainings that occurred throughout the year as determined and created by the Paraprofessional Staff Training Committee.