college orientation

College orientation can be overwhelming for incoming freshmen. We went to Kelci Lynn Lucier, about.com college life expert, for tips on how to get the most out of the official intro to campus life. Here’s her 411 on making orientation count.

Orientation is overwhelming for everyone – even the administrators! It’s intense because there’s a lot of information crammed into a short period of time, and it all happens during a major life transition. My top tips are:

1) Go to everything. Even if you think it’s lame, go. You’ll meet people, learn something and start connecting with your new community.

2) Do not miss your placement exams! These are incredibly important. If you think it’s hard to find the energy to go to your placement exam Friday afternoon at 2:00, try finding the energy to deal with what happens if you miss it.

3) Similarly, don’t miss your appointment with your adviser or to register. Your adviser is your best resource for helping you figure out classes and a schedule. And if you miss your registration time, you’ll likely have to go to the end of the line (figuratively speaking). Have your ideal schedule ready to go with a few back-up options for each class. That way, if something is full, you can go straight to your back-ups instead of panicking and spending your time searching for anything that looks interesting.

4) Challenge yourself to step outside of your comfort zone. There will be a lot of new people, new situations, new conversations and new information – much of which might make you uncomfortable. But, ideally, you are going to college to learn and grow and challenge yourself. Take a deep breath and make the most of everything that orientation has to offer. It’s perhaps the best time to meet people, make friends and start to find your niche.

For more from Kelci Lynn on prepping for college during your last weeks of high school, pick up a copy of the April/May issue of Justine.