Orientation is an activity (ranging from a few days to a week) that you’ll take part in before your first semester or quarter of college. While orientation can be a whole lot of fun, it can also be a time of mixed emotions as you adjust to life away from home, make new friends, and have new experiences.
Getting involved in activities. Orientation is a great way to get involved and settle into your new life as a college student. It’s a great way to meet new people, and learn more about your college.
Finding out about social groups. You will have plenty of time to learn about groups and clubs once the school year begins, but orientation can be a great time to start finding out what options exist.
Making friends. Though you might only be at orientation for a couple of days, you will meet a ton of new people. Everywhere you go you’ll find new students feeling excited or nervous about starting college, just like you.
Getting to know your school and campus. Throughout these few days, orientation leaders will show you how to get around campus, where the residence halls/dorms are located, and explain where to go for different classes, social activities, and other school events.
Keep an open mind. Though orientation is a good introduction to college, it may not fully represent exactly what your college experience is going to be like. It is important to have a social life once the year begins, but you will also find new responsibilities that you may not have had during orientation. Not everyone loves college orientation. This does not mean that you won’t love college.
Acknowledgement: This fact sheet was originally developed by youth and staff at ReachOut.com, a website that helps teens get through tough times.