Campus Winner
Month: March 2016


Resident Assistant of the Month

School: Appalachian State University Region: SAACURH
Nominee: Matthew Raynor Nominator: Kaitlan Morehouse

On-Campus Population: 5500 Chapter Size: 55

Please explain the outstanding contributions of the nominee during the month of nomination

Throughout the month of March, as a sophomore, a resident assistant in Mountaineer Hall, a LGBT Center desk shift volunteer, and a friend and ally to the corresponding communities, Matthew Raynor has greeted, recognized, and supported not only his residents, but all the residents in Mountaineer Hall.

Raynor demonstrates motivation to the Mountaineer Hall community by always greeting the residents. As Mr. Raynor is usually downstairs in the lobby of Mountaineer most nights, whenever anyone walks through the door, he says, “Hey, how are you doing” with a smile. If he happens to know them or if they are one of his residents, he will insert the person’s name into the familiar greeting.

Raynor demonstrates support by being a knowledgeable source of all things LGBTQIA+ and teaches the residents of Mountaineer Hall about the issues in a friendly way so that the individual leaves having full knowledge of the once misunderstood topic. For example, last week, this one guy was telling this other guy about his recent sexual history. After the guy says that someone is biromantic, the guy listening holds his hands up and says, “Wait. What is that.” The guy who is telling the story tries to explain, but the other guy is not really getting it. This is when Raynor comes in: Raynor has just came to the resident assistant desk and hears the conversation that is going on. After being prompted to come over and explain, he enthusiastically grabs his handy three-ring binder chocked full of LGBTQIA+ information and waltzes over to the confused guy. He turns to his trusty gender unicorn, which is the easiest and best way to explain sexuality, romance, gender, and the like to anyone who thinks it is all black and white. Raynor continues to calmly explain the information and asks him about the present situation that the guy is being told when he finishes doing so. This is not the first time Raynor has explained this difficult information to someone who does not know much. He has explained the information at least two other times in this month alone.

Mr. Raynor demonstrates recognition by using his resident assistant job and going above and beyond his duty to the hall and his fellow residents and creating a safe place to talk about important LGBTQIA+ issues. He not only explains the LGBTQIA+ information to any Mountaineer Hall resident who does not know, but he is an ally to those who are in the community and those who have friends that are in the community. Unrelated to the programs he is supposed to put on as a resident assistant – because those are plentiful in Mountaineer already – Raynor has organized a group in Mountaineer called “Friends for Underrepresented Individuals.” The group meets every other Tuesday in the second floor study room of Mountaineer.

You can imagine that being the largest residence hall on campus, Mountaineer Hall has a vast majority of students on the LGBTQIA+ spectrum or students who know of someone who does. What Raynor is doing by instilling this group is to create a safe space where those who fall onto the spectrum and those who know someone can openly have these conversations without any judgement.

By greeting all of the residents of Mountaineer Hall whenever possible, being an expert source of all things LGBTQIA+, and going above and beyond the call of resident assistant duty, Raynor is an outstanding contribution during the month of March as he addresses motivation, support, and recognition.

Word Count: 584

Date of entry into database: 2016-03-20 17:25:13