Five tips for a successful college orientation

After you’ve applied, been accepted and paid your deposit, next on the list to prepare for fall is to attend orientation. More than just another campus tour, at a successful college orientation you will make new friends, register for classes, laugh, learn and become acclimated to your campus community.

A successful college orientation begins at home

Your university will provide a list of items to complete before orientation. Requirements might include submitting a health form, housing questionnaire and financial payment plan; activating your college email account or completing course placement tests. Review the orientation information packet to find out what your college requires. Do not wait till the last moment to begin.

Bring a parent with you

You will receive a lot of information. A Lot. Bring a parent with you. It’s good to have somebody else there when you reflect on the day, to help remember all the little details.

Plus, there will be separate sessions for your parents. They will learn about FERPA (the student privacy act), billing, how best to support you in your transition to life in college, and meet your classmates’ parents.

Attend an early orientation event

By attending an early orientation, you will have the first pick of classes and housing.

Many colleges have mandatory courses for all first-year students, but you will also have some choices into what classes you take in the fall. Classes can fill up fast so you will want to register while there are still openings.

Be open to meeting people

The most exciting part of orientation is getting to know your college, its traditions, history, cheers and your future classmates. Between meetings and while you are waiting for sessions to start, visit with the people around you. Participate in the “get-to-know-you” sessions, you might just meet your future roommate. Connect with the people you meet on social media, and stay connected to them all summer. You can build friendships before you even arrive on campus!

Think about how you will pay your bill

You’ll have the opportunity to finalize many details so on your first day on campus as a student, you will be ready to hit the ground running. Meet with the folks from the business office to set up a payment plan for tuition, room and board. Stop at the bookstore to pick up textbooks or at least a new sweatshirt. Additional informational sessions will explain academic expectations, school policies, the honor code, all those norms necessary to live in community.

This is your day!

Ask questions. Learn things. Find your place. And Get Excited!