First Year Students
Why Orientation? As a new student at West Chester University, you are required to attend a mandatory two-part orientation program. Part 1 is a one-day orientation session in June. Part 2 is August Orientation held the weekend before the start of classes. At these programs you will meet other new students, become more familiar with campus, understand what it means to live in a residence hall or be a commuter, and learn the basic tools to be successful at WCU!
Part 1: June Orientation
WCU offers eight one-day orientation sessions in June, and you must attend one of these eight sessions. You can register for a June orientation based on what works best for your schedule--we can accommodate about 300 students in each session. For the structure of the June orientation day, see the example schedule below.
Part 2: August Orientation
August Orientation takes place move-in weekend: Friday, August 22nd through Sunday, August 24th. Students move in Friday according to the schedule they will receive over the summer. Orientation programs begin Friday evening and continue on Saturday and Sunday. Commuters are required to attend as well.
You do not need to register for August orientation. Instead, you will follow a schedule designed for your residence hall or for commuter students. Schedules will be posted online in mid to late August. Schedules will also be posted in each hall, Sykes Union and Lawrence Dining Hall the weekend of orientation.
Remember, both the June and the August orientation programs are mandatory for all new students.
What to Expect at June Orientation
When you check in for June Orientation you will receive a schedule for the day, and you will be placed into a peer group that is typically related to your major and living assignment. You will have an in-depth campus tour, receive information about living on campus or commuting, and meet with an academic advisor to review your academic schedule. You will learn about the resources available to help you be successful, network with other students, and learn how to get involved your first year.
Example June Orientation Schedule
June Orientation FAQs
- Is Orientation Mandatory?
Yes, all first-year students are required to attend Part 1 in June and Part 2 in August. Orientation is important for both your academic and student development and for your success at WCU.
- How do I register for Orientation Part 1 in June?
See the June Orientation Dates and Registration tab below.
- Why is there an Orientation Fee?
The $155 fee covers the cost of both the June and August orientation. These costs include staffing, materials, presenters, meals, social activities and student IDs. This fee will not appear on your tuition bill. If you need to arrange a payment plan for the orientation fee, please contact New Student Programs at 610-436-3305.
- How will I know which June Orientation I am attending?
We will send an e-mail with your assigned date to your WCU e-mail when your registration is complete. Your registration is complete after we receive both your online form and the orientation fee.
Remember: check your WCU e-mail frequently and visit the IT Help Desk site to link your WCU e-mail to your smartphone.
PLEASE NOTE: If you have not received a confirmation e-mail within 48 hours of paying your orientation fee by credit card online or within two weeks of paying by check or money order, please contact us at 610-436-3305 to inquire about your registration.
- Can my parents/family attend the June Orientation day with me?
Yes! Parents and family are welcome to participate in the optional parent/family orientation program that day. Parents and family members have a separate schedule they follow while you attend the student Orientation. Parents and families do not attend Orientation Part 2 in August.
- How long will the Orientation day be? Do I have to stay the entire day?
The orientation day is 7:30am to 2:30pm. You are required to stay the entire day, so when selecting an orientation session be sure that you are able to complete the entire day.
- Can I change my Orientation session?
Changes will only be made if space permits, so please choose your date carefully when registering. To request a change to your scheduled orientation session, call New Student Programs at 610-436-3305 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
- What if I miss the day I registered for?
If you miss your scheduled day, contact New Student Programs at 610-436-3305 as soon as possible to reschedule a later session. If you are unable to attend a later session in June, you will be required to make up the missed Orientation at a late session to be held in August.
- Does WCU offer overnight housing the day before our orientation program, or are there hotel accommodations in the area?
University Student Housing (USH) is offering overnight accommodations in Brandywine Hall for guests participating in the orientation program. Make your trip to campus less stressful and more convenient. Guest will have access to free overnight parking as well. To make your reservation, visit the University Student Housing website or email USH at email@example.com. A list of area hotels can be found by clicking the Visitors tab on the University’s home page.
- Where do I park for Orientation?
Orientation parking is located in the Sharpless Street Parking Garage at 15 Sharpless Street. Do not park on the street or in other University lots unless directed to do so by the Orientation staff as you will be ticketed. Street parking is controlled by the Borough of West Chester and is strictly enforced. View our Campus Map.
- Where does June Orientation take place?
Check in is in the lobby of Asplundh Concert Hall in Philips Memorial Building on the corner of South High Street and University Avenue (700 South High Street). View our Campus Map.
- I have been accepted to the Honors College. When do I attend Orientation?
New students entering the Honors College must attend orientation session 4 on Thursday, June 19, 2014.
- What do I do if I or a family member need special accommodations for the Orientation day?
Please contact New Student Programs at 610-436-3305 as soon as possible to inform us of any special needs and to allow us time to make any necessary arrangements. Arrangements should be made at least two weeks prior to your scheduled orientation date.
- What if I have additional questions?
Please feel free to contact us at 610-436-3305 or via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.
June Orientation Dates and Registration
June 2014 Orientation dates are:
- Session 1: June 12
- Session 2: June 13
- Session 3: June 18
- Session 4: June 19
- Session 5: June 20
- Session 6: June 25
- Session 7: June 26
- Session 8: June 27
Special Registration Notes
- Students entering the Honors College must attend Orientation session 4 on Thursday, June 19 to coincide with Honors orientation. This session is open to all students so Honors students should register as soon as possible to ensure their space.
- Athletic Training Majors should not register for Orientation sessions 6, 7, or 8 on June 25, 26 and 27 at the request of their department.
- ADP students should not register for Orientation session 8 on June 27 as this conflicts with the ADP program.
- Incoming Student Athletes should register for orientation Sessions 3, 5, 6 or 7 per the information you received from the Department of Athletics. These sessions are open to all students, so student athletes should register as soon as possible to ensure their space.
Orientation sessions fill up quickly. Please select your June Orientation date carefully as requests to change sessions will only be accommodated if space permits.
How to Register
Orientation registration opens in mid-April and closes in early June. Once registration opens, to register for a June date you must do the following:
- Log into your myWCU account, click on the Schedule an Orientation Session link and complete the registration form.
- Pay the $155 orientation fee by credit card using the online payment option or follow the instructions for paying by mail with a check or money order. (Please note this fee will not appear on your University bill.)
- Once your form is complete and your fee has been paid you will receive an e-mail with your assigned date via your WCU e-mail account. Your registration is not complete and your space has not been reserved until your fee is paid and you receive this confirmation.
- If you have not received an email confirming your registration within 48 hours of making an online payment or within two weeks of mailing a check or money order, please call 610-436-3305 to inquire about your registration.
The deadline for online registrations is Friday, June 6, 2014.
What to Expect at August Orientation
On Friday evening we will have educational programs as well as a picnic with University leadership, including the President, and social activities to help you meet other first-year students. Saturday and Sunday are filled with important information about academics, student life, and transitioning to college to help you be successful your first year at WCU!
August Orientation FAQs
- What time does August Orientation start? When does it end?
August orientation starts on Friday evening of move-in weekend. Programs are scheduled throughout the day on Saturday and on Sunday until the afternoon.
- Am I required to attend August Orientation?
Yes! Attendance at the August Orientation program is mandatory. By attending the programs and receiving this additional information, you will be more successful in your first year at WCU. Attendance is taken at all sessions.
- Can my parents attend August Orientation with me?
No, August Orientation programs are only for new first-year students.
- I'm a commuter student. Do I have to attend August Orientation?
Yes! You will have a separate schedule that will outline what you have to attend for the August program.
- What if I miss August Orientation?
As stated earlier, attendance is mandatory. If you cannot attend the August program due to extenuating circumstances, you must contact the Office of New Student Programs at 610-436-3305 to make arrangements to meet with the Director of New Student Programs. Only the Director can authorize an excused absence.
- When will I get my student ID?
Resident students will receive their ID at move-in. Commuter students will receive their ID at a special program for commuters on Friday of move-in weekend.
- When Is January Orientation?
- January Orientation is Friday, January 9, 2015.
- Check-in will be held from 8:45am to 9:25am in the lobby of Sykes Student Union, 110 W. Rosedale Avenue. Light refreshments will be served.
- The program runs from 9:30am to 1:30pm, with optional programs from 1:30 to 2:00pm.
- University offices are open until 4:30pm so you can handle other University business after Orientation.
- The snow date for Orientation is Friday, January 16th.
- Information about inclement weather changes will be placed on our website and on our voicemail at 610-436-3305.
- What Can I Expect at Orientation?
- We will provide you with information about academics and student life, answer your questions, help you become familiar with WCU, and introduce you to other new students through small group discussions and activities.
- You will receive your WCU student ID (Ram e-Card).
- How Do I Register and Pay for Orientation?
- To register for January orientation, log onto your MyWCU account and choose the Schedule Your Orientation Session link located in the Alerts section. Instructions for setting up your MyWCU account were included in your Admissions acceptance packet.
- Read and follow the online instructions to complete the form and pay the $68.00 orientation fee.
- You will be able to pay online with a credit card or you may pay by check or money order.
- If you need a payment plan for the Orientation fee, please contact New Student Programs at 610-436-3305.
- Why Is There an Orientation Fee?
- The orientation fee covers all costs associated with the Orientation program including materials and staffing as well as students' meals and ID cards.
- Orientation registrations are not complete until the Orientation fee has been received.
- When Does Registration Begin and What is the Registration Deadline?
- Online orientation registration will begin on November 1, 2014. Your online registration form and orientation fee should be received no later than Tuesday, January 6, 2015.
- Does January Orientation Include Academic Advising and Scheduling?
- January Orientation DOES NOT include academic advising or scheduling.
- To schedule, contact your major department as soon as possible to make an appointment and finalize your course schedule (undeclared students must schedule an appointment with Pre-Major advising). A list of departments and phone numbers was included in your Admissions acceptance packet.
- Please note that University offices will be closed from Thursday, December 25, 2014, through Thursday, January 1, 2015, with some offices having limited staff and/or hours on Wednesday, December 31.
- Can Parents, Family Members or Other Guests Attend Orientation?
- Yes, a special program for parents, family members and guests is scheduled during January Orientation.
- There is no charge for this program, although lunch is not provided.
- Parents, family members and guests can purchase a lunch ticket at check-in. Lunch tickets will be $8.00 per person. Students' lunches are included in their orientation fee.
- To assist us in planning, please complete the parent section of the online registration form. In addition, please complete a Parent/Guardian Information Sheet.
- Where Do I Park?
- Please park in any student space behind Sykes Student Union.
- Do not park in faculty/staff spaces as you may be ticketed.
- Alternate parking can be found in M lot near the Swope Music Building.
- Street parking is controlled by the Borough of West Chester and is strictly enforced.
- Some metered parking is available on Rosedale Avenue. Meters have a 3-hour time limit.
- Click on the parking icon on the New Student Programs home page for a campus map and driving directions.
Student Success Opportunities and Helpful Links