Frequently Asked Questions for Orientation

  1. What is orientation? Isn't that just a tour of campus?

    Orientation is far more than a tour of campus or an overview of your course schedule. Orientation is a process that actually takes place the months prior to a student's first semester and continues throughout their first semester in a number of ways. Some of the components of the orientation process are the orientation sessions (required for all first-year students), the on-line digital orientation program (some components may be required), New Owl Welcome which occurs in the days immediately prior to the fall semester (which all first-year students are required to attend), and other activities and programs in which students will be encouraged to participate. Southern goes to great lengths to ensure that students are prepared for success in their first semester and beyond through their comprehensive and robust orientation programming.

  2. Is orientation mandatory?

    Yes, it is mandatory for all first-year students who will be attending Southern full-time to attend an orientation session. The SCSU orientation program is designed to help you feel comfortable and confident on our campus when you begin classes. Orientation is a vital part of transitioning into college life, and those who do not attend are at a great disadvantage when the academic year begins. First year students should visit First-Year Student Orientation for specific information regarding their requirements. Students who are not able to participate in June Virtual programs should contact Orientation, Transition and Family Engagement via email at TRANSFERmation (official orientation for transfer students)is not required. However, transfer students are strongly encouraged to participate. Transfer students should visit Transfer Student Orientation for more information.

  3. How will I register for my courses?

    In their first semester at Southern, new first-year students will register for their courses at orientation. For more information on the advising and registration process for first-year students please visit First-Year Student Orientation.

    Transfer students will schedule an appointment with an academic advisor. For more information, visit Transfer Student Orientation.

  4. How will I receive my course schedule?

    First-Year Students will register for their first semester courses when they attend orientation. Transfer students will be able to access their schedules once they have registered.

  5. Why is orientation important?

    Data shows that students who participate in a comprehensive orientation program develop a strong sense of belonging and connection to their institution. Students become familiar with the resources, support and campus environment which leads to success academically, personally and socially.

  6. Is there a special orientation for student-athletes?

    No, student athletes may place a reservation for any one of the six two-day orientation sessions that take place over the summer.

  7. What do I do if I need accommodations for my disability during orientation?

    If you have a disability and require accommodations for orientation or your classes in the fall, contact the Center for Academic Success and Accessibility Services.

  8. If I am a non-traditional/adult student do I still have to attend orientation?

    We welcome all first-time full-time non-traditional/adult students to join us for all summer orientation activities. All summer orientation activities will be adapted to support our non-traditional/adult learners.

  9. Can I be in the same group as my friend during orientation?

    Students are welcome to register for the same day and time but they will be assigned to groups at random. We do not allow students to request group changes.

  10. When do classes begin?

    Visit Academic Calendars for the most up-to-date information including the first day of classes.

  11. Where do I get my Hoot Loot card?

    New students will receive an email from the University Card Office to upload their picture. First-year students will receive their Hoot Loot during orientation. Transfer students can pick up their Hoot Loot from the Card Office or request it to be mailed to them.

  12. How do I get a parking decal?

    Students  who will be commuting can apply and receive a parking decal during their orientation session. Please bring the make and model of your car as well as a valid driver's license. Students living on campus will apply and receive their parking decals after they move- in.

  13. What is New Owl Welcome?

    Just days prior to the fall semester, Southern welcomes first-year and transfer students to prepare for an exciting new semester. Through critical conversations, engaging programs and spirited social events students will be ready to launch into their first semester at Southern. Please note that all first-year students are expected to attend New Owl Welcome. Transfer students are not required but are encouraged to participate. Visit New Owl Welcome for more information.

  14. How do I apply for Housing?

    Visit How to Apply for Housing for instructions on how to complete the housing application. See what it's like to live on campus or contact Residence Life.

    Note: All incoming First-Year and Transfer students cannot submit a housing deposit until they have submitted a $200 admissions deposit.

  15. What kind of computer do you recommend?

    Generally, students are welcome to select the type of computer they wish to use while attending Southern (i.e. Mac or Windows PC). Laptops are recommended because they provide more flexibility than desktop computers and will allow students to use their computer in class if required or desired.  The computer should include a camera that allows for participation in video conferencing. Computers should have minimum specifications of 16GB of RAM, i5 CPU and 512 GB hard drive. The university provides the Microsoft Office suite and allows students to download and install the full suite on their personal computer.  Students will also have access to considerable cloud storage through their Microsoft One Drive account from SCSU. If a student is studying in an area that utilizes specialized software (example: Graphic design, Data Science), there may be specific computer hardware specifications required. In these cases, it is best to check with the Department Chairperson for the student’s major.