Orientation is your formal introduction to all that Virginia Commonwealth University has to offer. An orientation assistant will guide you through your campus visit to share insights about everything from academics to campus involvement. You will attend programs and sessions that address academic requirements for your major as well as some of the out-of-class transitions you may experience as a new student. At the end of your stay, you will return home registered for a full schedule of classes for the upcoming semester and will feel better prepared for a successful start to the VCU collegiate experience.
A first year student is someone who has not attended classes on another college campus. For orientation purposes, high school students who have dual enrollment credit are considered first-year students and should attend a New Student Orientation based on their majors.
A transfer student has attended another four-year or community college prior to coming to VCU.
Research supports that if you attend orientation, you are more likely to achieve success in college and graduate. VCU is committed to helping students succeed both in and out of the classroom. This is also the time when you will meet with an academic advisor to register for your classes.
While it is great that you know people on campus already, orientation will give you a more comprehensive overview of the resources and services available to you as a new VCU student. In addition, it is important that you learn the specifics of your academic major and meet personally with an advisor regarding the expectations of your degree program. You will receive extensive guidance through the process of registering for classes from currently enrolled VCU students who will give you individualized attention.
Yes, parents and family members are welcome and encouraged to attend orientation. While you are meeting with other new students and attending sessions specific to your academic and social transition to VCU, your parents and guests will participate in events that are designed to address their unique needs. Sessions for parents and family members include information on campus resources and services, parent and family involvement in the VCU experience, academic opportunities, and expectations and changing relationships.
There is a required fee for New Student Orientation.
- For Summer Orientation, the fee for first-year students is $95 and covers overnight accommodations, meals, and all orientation materials for the student. The fee for transfer students is $45 and covers meals and all orientation materials for the student. The cost for guests is $45 per person, which covers a guest guide, orientation programs and materials; and for guests of transfer students attending the one day session, lunch in Shafer Court Dining Center is included.
- The Winter Orientation fee for first-year and transfer students is $45. All Winter Orientation sessions are one-day programs. Overnight accomodations are not provided. The fee for each guest is $25.
- Summer Orientation is a two-day program for first-year students and a one-day programs for transfer students.
- Winter Orientation is a one-day program for all students.
You will meet your academic advisor during your advising session at New Student Orientation. You will be escorted to meet your assigned advisor at the appropriate time during orientation.
Please visit www.vcu.edu/maps and click on “directions.” Additional check-in information and parking directions will be provided in your orientation confirmation mailing once you have completed an online reservation to attend orientation.
The VCUCard office will be available during orientation. Orientation staff will direct you to the VCU Card office during a scheduled time.
Students are notified at their official VCU email address when their bills are available on the billing and payment site. No paper bills are sent to enrolled students. Tuition and fees for pre-registered students, along with charges for housing and dining plans where applicable, are due by the official start of each semester. Please visit the Student Accounting web site at www.enrollment.vcu.edu/accounting for questions regarding billing and payment.. If you are receiving financial aid, your tuition, fees, room and board charges may be covered by your financial aid. Be sure to bring your award letters and other correspondence informing you that you will be receiving financial aid in case you need to speak with someone in the Financial Aid Office during your campus visit.