So you’re committed to CSU and signed up for a Ram Orientation session. Wondering what this two-day program covers?
All new undergraduates, including transfer and international, are required to attend an orientation session. And this is for good reason — orientation serves as your transition point from admittance to attendance at CSU. It allows you to meet with an academic advisor, choose and register for classes, explore campus life, and get ready for the new world you’ll be immersed in soon.
We’ve outlined some of the experiences first-year students will have during this important program. For a full rundown of the daily schedule, visit the Student Orientation website.
#1: Stay in a residence hall
One of the goals of Ram Orientation is to prepare you for campus life. You’ll take in-depth tours, get to know fellow incoming students, talk with RAs, and — if you’re an incoming freshman — stay overnight in one of our residence halls.
Staying on-campus will benefit you in a few ways. It will give you a better understanding of what daily life will be like living on campus. It will also give you the opportunity to look closely at your future living space and plan accordingly.
TIP: During your stay, create a list of ‘must-have’ items you’ll need to help you live and sleep most comfortably in the halls.
#2: Register for classes with an advisor by your side
One of the most important things you’ll do at orientation will be to register for your first semester of courses. You will also have opportunities to talk with an academic advisor. If you’re an incoming international student, plan to register online as part of Pre-Orientation.
Our advisors will be on hand to help you navigate prerequisite and major requirements, discuss any placement exam results that you’ve received and what that means for course choices, and talk over any other class-related concerns you may have.
TIP: Take all placement exams at least one week prior to orientation. This guarantees that your advisor will have those results on hand during your registration session.
#3: Get your Student ID (RamCard)
When you arrive for orientation, you’ll sign up for a time to visit the RamCard office in the Lory Student Center. During this time, expect to have your photo taken and receive your Student ID, or RamCard.
Your RamCard will be one of the most important things to have on hand as a current student — it will hold your meal plan, allow you to use the Rec Center, give you access to the laundry facilities in your residence hall, and will provide admittance to locked areas in academic buildings, such as labs.
TIP: Use a lanyard or phone case pocket to keep your RamCard on hand at all times.
#4: Dig into involvement options
CSU is proud to offer 500+ campus involvement opportunities. No matter your interest or passion, you’ll very likely find a matching club or organization on campus.
Ram Orientation will serve as a gateway to learning more and becoming part of these groups. Fraternity and Sorority Life, Diversity Offices, SLiCE, and the Rec Center will be available to discuss opportunities. It’s up to you to do the leg work and decide which ones will suit you best.
TIP: Browse through involvement options before you get to campus and narrow down your top picks. Look through the Ram Orientation schedule to find out when any related offices will be open/available during your session.
#5: Experience the Rec Center
If you’ve toured campus at any point, you’ve probably walked through our impressive Rec Center. Orientation will give you an opportunity to experience it for yourself — use your orientation name tag to access the Rec at any point during your session. Climb the rock wall, relax in our wet/dry saunas, lazy river, or 70-person hot tub, or play a game of racquetball.
TIP: Don’t think you’ll have time to check the Rec out? Pack workout clothes or a swimsuit just in case.