Main Desk Assistant

Student Living offers students the opportunity to serve as Main Desk Assistants (MDA) throughout the academic year and the summer. In order to be eligible for an academic year MDA position, students must have a Federal Work Study grant, and have completed the I-9 Employment Verification through the Student Employment Office. Summer MDAs are not required to have a Federal Work Study grant, but must have completed the I-9 Employment Verification.

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Main Desk Assistant Job Description

The residence hall main desk serves as a business and information center for residents, guests, and staff. It is also a necessary and important link between students, the residence hall, and the University. This link is established when residents check-in at the beginning of the academic year. It continues throughout the year with information, messages, keys, mail, packages, and a variety of other helpful services and information. The main desk may be the first impression of Syracuse University for many students and visitors.

The Main Desk Assistants (MDA) must therefore be presentable, courteous, helpful, and alert. The Main Desk Assistant is required to comply with all conditions of employment. These conditions include being a full-time student of Syracuse University, with a federal work-study grant (summer MDA position is non-federal work study), maintaining good standing with the University, and abiding by all policies endorsed by Syracuse University and Student Living. The Main Desk Assistant is expected to attend all training and meetings as required by supervisors.

Main Desk Mission Statement

The residence hall main desk, a function within Student Living, is a service-centered environment where students, staff, faculty, parents, and guests benefit from operational procedures, staff support, and quality customer service.

General Duties

  • Assist in the opening and closing of the residence hall – this may require early arrival and late departure
  • Support the mission of Student Living and the Division of Enrollment and Student Experience

Team Member/Role Model

  • Work with other staff to meet the needs of residents, faculty, staff, guests and the general student body
  • Treat all students, staff, and faculty consistently, fairly and with dignity
  • Represent Student Living in a positive manner
  • Maintain confidentiality at all times

Customer Service

  • Greet all guests at the desk in a welcoming and friendly manner
  • Verify, accept, sort, post and distribute mail, packages and newspapers
  • Answer the telephone in a courteous manner

Administration/Crisis Management

  • Attend regular MDA staff meetings and training sessions
  • Give and receive positive and constructive feedback
  • Assist in responding to crisis
  • Monitor the established security systems and report problems
  • Receive and convey all information appropriately
  • Check out equipment, always monitoring its condition upon return
  • Perform administrative responsibilities effectively and efficiently
  • Maintain appropriate records as needed
  • Maintain accurate refund bank
  • Follow all policies and procedures as outlined in the main desk manual
  • Other duties as assigned by senior staff


  • Academic year main desk assistants are paid $15.00/hr.
  • Summer main desk assistants are paid $15.00/hr.