Forget the RA, meet the RCC

In an era when everyone has a computer, the residential computer consultant is in high demand, especially the night before papers are due.
Written by ZDNET Editors, Contributor

When your computer freezes, the printer stops working or you can't access the Internet, who you gonna call? If it's been a while since you've been in college you may remember the RA (resident assistant) but these days the hot guy is the RCC (residential computing consultant), reports the The Mercury News.

The residential computing consultant lives in the dorm and is on the front-line in tackling computer problems. They are part crisis counselor and part computer geek, and they are in high demand.

"Students panic. And they're not very patient,'' said Brandon Smith, 23, a residential computing consultant, or RCC, at Stanford University, one of 101 students who serve as computer crisis managers for $170 to $190 a week, about the cost of a dorm room. "They need the file - now. The computer - now.''

Students are squeezing more and more computer gizmos into tiny dorm rooms. One survey at Stanford found that 99 percent of students have at least one computer; nine percent have two or more. More than half of Stanford's undergraduates use a computer more than four hours a day.

"Most students don't understand how unreliable these things are,'' said Ethan Rikleen, Stanford's network and systems administrator for student computing.

What are the qualities that make up the ideal RCC? It isn't necessarily a uber-geek, said Jennifer Ly, manager of Stanford's Residential Computing.

We look for attitude,'' said Ly. "We seek someone with an appetite for problem-solving who can provide excellent customer service, and who is willing to learn.''
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