New Student Checklist: The Importance of Summer Orientation

Now that you are officially enrolled in college, your parents and fellow students might think summer orientation is just a formality. But you shouldn’t consider skipping the occasion. It’s actually an important opportunity to learn more about your school.

Summer orientation can help you start your college career off on the right foot. If you want to feel more confident on the first day of the fall semester, this is a can’t-miss event. Here’s what you can expect to do during your orientation session.

Complete Your Placement Assessments

The thought of taking a test during the summer months might have you rolling your eyes, but getting this type of basic testing out of the way means you’ll automatically be placed in the correct course level when classes begin. You may be taking these quick assessment tests for subjects like math, writing, computer skills, or language, depending on your personal situation and registration plans. By taking these assessments during orientation, you’ll be able to hit the ground running on the first day of college.

Learn More About Student Success Resources

When you attend your school’s summer orientation, you will be able to meet with faculty from your academic area, get a feel for the student community, and learn how to find the resources you need. Orientation will provide you the opportunity to meet other incoming students, current students, as well as faculty members and advisors.

This is time well-spent, and can help you feel more at ease when college starts in the fall. If possible, plan to attend with your parents, as you may come away with different information that you can all share with each other to help avoid feeling overwhelmed.

Get Help with Academic Planning

If you are still unsure of your specific class registration plans, academic advisers will be on-hand during summer orientation to help you finalize your class registration for the fall. This way, you can feel secure and confident in your schedule on your first day of classes.

Take this opportunity to connect with specific professors and other students who are involved and interested in your major (or majors) to learn more about the program, courses, internship, and career outlooks. Be sure to register online and submit your registration profile before attending orientation so you can take advantage of any academic counseling you may need during the summer.

Pick Up Your ID Card and Other College Gear

Summer orientation is a great time to get your college ID picture taken and pick up your official student ID card. Not only will this make it all feel real, but when you return home for the remaining weeks, it will keep you excited about attending college in the fall. Looking at your ID card can bring you a sense of pride in your accomplishments and help calm first-day jitters—it’s one less thing you’ll need to do when you arrive.

You may also have the opportunity to visit the college bookstore to pick up your books for your finalized registration. If so, don’t miss the chance to outfit yourself with some well-deserved garb, notebooks, and other fun college gear to get you excited.

Experience What Makes Your College Special

Orientation provides a wonderful opportunity to experience what makes your college unique. For example, at Azusa Pacific University, incoming students, families, staff, and faculty gather together at the end of the summer orientation event to commission students with a worship event. It’s APU’s way of celebrating your first step as a new college student and what’s to come in the year ahead!