2021-2022 RPL Recruitment

Residential Education, Office of Residential Life | Brown University


The Office of Residential Life is re-launching our new and returning Residential Peer Leader (RPL) application process, and would like to share helpful information with you. All content and related links for the 2021-2022 Residential Peer Leader recruitment and selection cycle are available on this Google site.

Please email res-ed@brown.edu with any questions.

A Note about Summer 2021 (Updated)

We have received many questions about summer employment. The 2021-2022 RPL application includes a question for applicants to indicate whether or not they'd be interested in working in the summer. We would like to share a point of clarification: we are not accepting new RPL applications for summer employment alone.

If we do not have enough staff for summer from our current RPLs, we will make offers to 2021-2022 RPL applicants that have also expressed interest in working this summer.

Information Session Recordings

RPL Info Session 1

Area Coordinators Isaac Albanese, Mitchell Foster, and Sandra Johnson share insight on the RPL role during the February 1, 2021, 9 am EST session.

RPL Info Session 2

Area Coordinators Isaac Albanese, Mitchell Foster, and Sandra Johnson answer students' questions about the RPL role during the February 1, 2021, 3 pm EST session.

Creating, connecting, and serving community with compassion

Brown University believes that students’ residential experiences are integral to their academic, social, intellectual, and personal growth and success. These experiences are not separate from the academic mission of the University, but rather supportive of students’ holistic development. As the Office of Residential Life, we strive to provide a residential experience in which students feel a sense of belonging to their community where student safety, wellbeing, and inclusion are at the core.

Quick Links

Who are Residential Peer Leaders (RPLs)?

Residential Peer Leaders (RPLs) are the paraprofessional undergraduate student staff who actively cultivate the conditions that support the safety, wellbeing, and sense of belonging for their residents. RPLs do this under the supervision of and in partnership with the Office of Residential Life and in support of Brown University’s mission, values, and initiatives. RPLs work under the direct supervision of the Area Coordinators and other professional staff to create engaging and respectful residential environments that enhance the student experience. RPLs help maintain and foster a positive community living experience, and serve as leaders throughout the campus community.

Picture Yourself as a Residential Peer Leader...

Residential Peer Leader (RPL) is an umbrella term that encompasses four positions:

  1. Minority Peer Counselor (MPC)

  2. Residential Peer Counselor (RPC)

  3. Women Peer Counselor (WPC)

  4. Community Assistant (CA)

All four positions share the same core residential responsibilities; the MPC and WPC roles have additional, specialized responsibilities. All RPLs work together as regional teams to provide a support network and to promote a comprehensive residential experience for their students.

RPLs In First-Year Communities

RPLs in the first-year communities work closely with fellow staff to support the transition of new first-year students to the Brown community and help advance their personal growth, sense of social responsibility, and intellectual development through community-based interactions in a first-year residential environment.

Minority Peer Counselors (MPCs)

MPCs have a special emphasis on mentoring and supporting first-year students of color. In addition to the core residential responsibilities, MPCs facilitate campus-wide workshops on race and its intersections with class, gender, sexuality, and other social identities. MPCs’ additional, specialized responsibilities are supervised by the Brown Center for Students of Color (BCSC).

Residential Peer Counselors (RPCs)

RPCs work to foster a sense of community and engagement among students in the first-year residential communities. This position is supervised by Residential Life.

Women Peer Counselors (WPCs)

WPCs work within a cohort model, and in collaboration with the Sarah Doyle Center for Women and Gender, to gain foundational knowledge around issues of gender, particularly as it intersects with other markers of identity. In addition to their core residential responsibilities, WPCs host community gatherings at the Sarah Doyle Center, help direct residents to events on campus pertaining to gender, facilitate conversations on topical issues, and collectively program one signature WPC event during spring semester. WPCs’ additional, specialized responsibilities are supervised by the Sarah Doyle Center for Women and Gender.

RPLs In Upper-Division Communities

"Upper division" refers to students who are sophomores, juniors or seniors.

Community Assistants (CAs)

CAs work closely with fellow staff to support Brown’s philosophy by promoting personal growth, social responsibility, and intellectual development through community-based interactions for their residents. CAs work to foster a sense of community and engagement among students in our sophomore, junior, senior residential communities.

RPL Engagement Goals

The work of a Residential Peer Leader centers six engagement goals.

  1. Health and Wellness: Providing resources and opportunities for students to enhance their health and well-being.

  2. Relationship and Community Building: Creating a living environment that promotes social engagement, individual agency, and mutual respect.

  3. Identity and Values: Empowering students to explore their own social identities, practice self-reflection, identify their core values, and achieve a sense of belonging.

  4. Diversity and Inclusion: Developing residents' awareness, understanding, and appreciation of people whose life experiences are different from their own.

  5. Academic and Professional: Providing students with opportunities to cultivate academic interests and prepare for post-graduate life.

  6. Service and Leadership: Preparing students to serve the community, nation, and world as engaged global citizens.

Special Interest Housing

The Office of Residential Life offers a variety of housing options to meet the needs of students with specific interests, lifestyles, and identities. All RPL applicants will have the opportunity to indicate Special Interest Housing they may or may not prefer. This information gives us a sense of the communities applicants are interested in serving. Please note that we may not be able to place applicants according to preferences due to limited staffing opportunities per various communities.

Gender-Inclusive Housing (First-Year Community)

Gender-inclusive housing is for first-year residents who are committed to cultivating a supportive community for queer and transgender students. It involves the intentional pairing of roommates on the basis of gender identity, as opposed to arbitrarily assigning roommates on the basis of sex. The RPL positions eligible for Gender-Inclusive Housing are Minority Peer Counselors (MPCs), Residential Peer Counselors (RPCs), and Women Peer Counselors (WPCs).

Greek and Program Houses (Upper Division Community)

Greek and Program Houses are for sophomores, juniors, and seniors accepted via respective Greek and Program House recruitment and selection processes. Greek organizations include fraternities and sororities recognized at Brown, while Program Houses are centered around a shared interest or identity (e.g. Harambee House, St. Anthony Literary Society, Tech House, etc.). Members must fulfill duties and obligations to remain active in their organization. The Community Assistant is the only RPL position eligible for Greek and Program Houses.

Quiet Hall

Quiet Hall is an environment conducive to sleeping or studying 24 hours a day, seven days a week. No excessive noise is permitted. Those who wish to listen to music or televisions do so with their doors closed and at low volumes. Guests are expected to maintain the same standards of quiet as residents.

Same-Sex Housing

Same-Sex Housing is for students that wish to live in rooms or suites assigned all-female or all-male residents.

Substance-Free Housing

Substance-Free Housing is for students that wish to live in a sober environment. A contract is required, in which residents and by extension their guests agree not to consume or to be under the influence of alcohol or other substances while in the residence hall. In addition they agree to abide by the University's: non-smoking policy, prohibition against illegal drug use, and policy which requires only medically prescribed use of prescription drugs.

450 Brook St. (Wellness Residence)

The Wellness Residence is for students committed to developing and sustaining healthy lifestyles, studying holistic global approaches to wellness, and a developing a greater sense of wellbeing in the Brown community. It will include wellness education and programming, and comprehensive health and wellness services on-site. Per News from Brown this residence hall, included in the new integrated health and wellness center, will house students as early as Summer 2021.

Opening Convocation 2019

RPL Position Description

You must be signed into your Brown Gmail account in order to access the RPL Position Description.


Applicant Eligibility

The following pertains to employment for Fall 2021 and Spring 2022.

  • Must be a full-time undergraduate student.

  • Must be in good academic standing during the entire period of appointment.

  • Must have no prior history of serious misconduct prior to or during the entire period of appointment.

  • Must be a sophomore, junior, or senior when assuming responsibilities.

  • Must reside in an assigned single-occupancy room, if appointed.

  • Must read and sign RPL Contract and Accountability outline upon acceptance of position, if appointed.

  • MPCs: Must have experience or strong interest in activities related to social justice. This may include participating in the Third World Transition Program (TWTP), working with the BCSC in some capacity, or involvement in a social justice based group at Brown.

  • WPCs: Must have past experience or strong interest in activities related to social justice, specifically knowledge of sexual and gender identity.

Ready to apply?

Help Spread The Word!

  1. Download our promotional images

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  3. Share both with your communities!

Picture yourself as a RESIDENTIAL PEER LEADER (RPL):
Creating, connecting, and serving community with compassion!

Visit TINYURL.COM/RPLAPP21-22 for the 2021-2022 RPL app, info and process.


  • Friday, May 21, 2021

Contact res-ed@brown.edu with questions.

-Office of Residential Life at Brown University

Last updated 4/16/21