VCU Orientation Handbook

download VCU Orientation Handbook

of 19

  • date post

  • Category


  • view

  • download


Embed Size (px)

Transcript of VCU Orientation Handbook


New Student Orientation Handbook

University College

Fall 2012 New Student Orientation


New Student Orientation Handbook

Congratulations!New Student Orientation is the first step in beginning your career at Virginia Commonwealth University. Orientation is your formal introduction to all that VCU has to offer. You will receive an email confirming the orientation date you have reserved for you and your guests. It is important that you attend orientation on the date specified in the email to ensure individualized attention for advising and course registration. While attending orientation, we encourage you to ask questions as you actively participate in discussions, become acquainted with faculty, staff and other new students and learn what will be expected of you as a member of the VCU academic community. During orientation, you will meet with an academic advisor and register for your fall semester classes. While you are meeting with other new students and attending sessions specific to your academic and social transition to VCU, your parents and family members will participate in separate sessions that are designed to address their unique needs. Sessions for parents and family members include information on resources and services, parent and family involvement in the VCU experience, academic opportunities and expectations and changing relationships. Check out our web site at for answers to frequently asked questions, but please do not hesitate to contact us if you have any further questions. We look forward to meeting you this summer! Are You Ready? New Student Orientation Email: Phone: (804) 828-3700

ContentsCheck-In & Arrival............................ 3 Change of Orientation Date............ 3 Advising & Registration.................. 4 Why do I have to take this course? 5 Change of Major............................... 5 Did you know VCU has.................... 5 Placement Tests............................... 6 Housing & Dining.............................. 7 On-Campus Student Parking.......... 7 First-Year Student Checklist........... 8 What to Bring to Orientation.......... 9 Transfer Student Checklist............. 10 Parents and Guests......................... 11 What should I expect at Orientation? 12 High School to College.................... 13 Summer Reading Program............. 13 Welcome Week................................ 13 Emergency Communications......... 14 Disability Support Services............ 14 Directions to VCU............................. 15 Parking at Orientation..................... 16 Overnight Accommodations........... 16 Campus Map..................................... 17


New Student Orientation Handbook

Check-In & Arrival InformationFirst-Year Students: Check-in on Day One of your orientation program starts at 12:30 p.m. at Brandt Residence Hall. Orientation begins the afternoon of Day One and concludes at approximately 2:00 p.m. on Day Two of your visit to campus. The first day includes a variety of exciting and informative activities and sessions for you to become acclimated with campus and learn about some of the transitions you may experience both in and out of the classroom. These sessions include a formal introduction to VCUs academic and community expectations, information on campus resources and services, specific content based on your major, small group activities with an upperclass Orientation Assistant and opportunities to meet other new students. Dinner, late-night snacks, and breakfast will be provided to students. The Day Two program begins at 8:00 a.m. following breakfast in Shafer Court Dining Center. Additional information sessions, academic overviews, advising, a trip to the VCU Card Office, campus tours and time to visit campus offices as necessary will also occur. Transfer Students: Check-in starts at 8:00 a.m. at the University Student Commons on the date you have reserved. Transfer orientation includes a formal introduction to VCUs academic and community expectations, information on how to complete necessary university business, and advising, which includes a review of your transfer credits, course registration and a variety of sessions to learn about VCU resources and services. Grab and go breakfast snacks and lunch will be provided for students.

Change of Orientation DateIt is essential that you attend the Orientation session for which you are registered. If you must change your orientation date, visit and select a new date. Orientation dates fill up quickly, so you are strongly encouraged to keep your original date if possible. The orientation fee paid upon reservation is non-refundable.


New Student Orientation Handbook

Advising, Registration & eServices/e-mailThe advising and course registration process will be explained in detail during your orientation session. All students will have time to meet with an academic advisor who will evaluate any placement test scores and/or transcripts and recommend appropriate courses for the fall semester. Orientation Assistants are available to assist with course scheduling, which will take place through eServices, an online course registration system. You will leave orientation with your fall schedule in hand!

eServices Account Activation REQUIRED:An active eServices account and strong password are necessary to register for your class schedule during orientation. You must set up and activate your eServices account prior to attending orientation or your course registration process will be delayed. You will need your student ID that was included in your acceptance letter (include the V at the beginning) and your date of birth, along with access to a computer with an Internet connection. If you do not have Internet access at home, access is available at most schools and public libraries. Go to When you activate your eID, you will also be asked to create a password. This must be a strong password. Follow instructions regarding criteria for an appropriate password. Now that you have your eID, you have your e-mail address. Simply add to your eID and use the same password for e-mail access. There are several ways to access your VCU e-mail. The simplest method is to log on to the myVCU Portal (using your eID and password) at Then click VCU Gmail (myVCUmail) under the heading Resources. Students are expected to check their official VCU e-mail on a frequent and consistent basis in order to remain informed of university-related communications. Additional orientation updates and critical information prior to your scheduled orientation session will be communicated to you via VCU e-mail. The university recommends checking e-mail daily.


New Student Orientation Handbook

Why do I have to take this course?VCU students are required to take a variety of courses that may or may not be part of a students major. The VCU Core Curriculum creates a University-wide shared experience for all undergraduates that focuses on the skills, knowledge and attitudes necessary to enable and ensure lifelong learning. As a VCU student, you will receive a liberal arts education that enhances and supports your major. This will help develop your skills, knowledge, and attitudes in the following seven competencies: Writing Proficiency, Critical Thinking, Information Fluency, Oral Communication, Collaborative Learning, Ethical and Civic Responsibilities and Quantitative Literacy. Visit for more information about the VCU Core Curriculum.

Change of MajorIf you wish to change your major, notify the Office of Undergraduate Admissions via e-mail at If you have already registered for an orientation session, you must go to the website to select a proper orientation session for your new major. You may select your new session only after your change of major has been processed by the Office of Undergraduate Admissions. Transfer students: If you decide to change your major, you will need to do so at your orientation session. During orientation, please inform the advisor of your intended major change.

Did you know VCU has...A pre-law program Pre-law advisors assist prospective law students with questions about curriculum, the application procedure and the law school admission test (LSAT). If you plan to pursue a career in law visit for more information. A Secondary Education program Students interested in teaching in secondary education settings should visit to learn more about the VCU Extended Teacher Preparation Program. An Honors College Are you interested in becoming an honors student? It is not too late. Admissions opportunities are still available following your first college year. Visit www.honors. to learn more about the VCU Honors program.


New Student Orientation Handbook

Placement TestsWrite down the math, chemistry and foreign language courses that you completed in high school and/or a previous college along with the grades you earned, and bring them with you to orientation. Carefully read the placement test requirements below. Your academic advisor will discuss your placement during your advising session at orientation. Mathematics Placement Test All majors have a math requirement. All students are REQUIRED to take the online math placement test prior to attending orientation in order to meet with an academic advisor to register for classes. To complete the online Math Placement Test, visit The test matches your abilities with the level of content in the courses at VCU. With these test scores, your high school grades and SAT/ACT score, your advisor will help you determine which course