When you first come to UGA orientation, you will probably be with your parents, wishing your dad wouldn’t embarrass you and realizing you won’t have your mom next year to hug when you have a bad day or to make you soup when you are sick. But something kind of magical will happen to you over the next two days. While all of those things will still be true, orientation will give you new friends, mentors, and it will show you how many opportunities you will have over the next four years. If you follow these tips, they will help you to prepare for orientation, and help you get the most out of these two days.
1. Make sure your holds are cleared.
Fill out emergency information on Athena, complete the health hold forms, and verify your lawful presence in the U.S. This can all be found on your MyStatus page.
2. Figure out your “perfect schedule”.
Go on the UGA bulletin, and you can look up your major class requirements, as well as classes that all students have to take. You can also find a list of languages offered, and P.E. classes you can choose. Also look at the list of Freshman Odyssey Classes, and pick about 10 that sound interesting to you (make sure to write down the CRN numbers). A typical first-year schedule is about 12-15 credit hours, mine is 14. Each class is usually 3 credit hours (FYOs are only 1), so plan out your schedule accordingly. I would recommend picking a few extra classes in case your top choices are full. You can use the website courseoff to plan out your ideal schedule. Once you have all of this, put it in a folder or notebook along with some extra paper to bring with you to orientation. When you go to your advising appointment, you will meet with an advisor who will help you iron out the details of your schedule before you go into registration.
3. What you need to pack.
In addition to the basics, toiletries, bedding, clothes (for warm weather!!) and comfy walking shoes, you will need the following things: shower shoes, an umbrella, and the folder you made with your registration information. I recommend carrying this in a small backpack, but really anything will work. Most importantly, don’t over pack. We aren’t moving in just yet.
4. Download the UGA welcome app!!!!
It has the schedule and some pretty useful information such as the schedule, a map, and information about the OLs. To download on the Apple app store click here. To download on Google Play click here.
5. Make friends with your OL.
Orientation Leaders are there specifically to help you understand UGA, and help you navigate your way through your first year. Also, they are super nice and can help you learn some great tricks to make friends and get involved on campus.
6. Talk to people.
Everyone is feeling kind of uncomfortable, and most people don’t know anyone around them, so everyone is in the same boat. Randomly talking to people might feel weird at first, but it really isn’t, and chances are, they probably wanted to talk to you but were too nervous. Talking to people is the best way to make friends, and who knows, that random person you sit with at lunch could be in one of your classes, or could end up in the same student organization as you!
7. Say yes to things.
Especially if this means participating in some of UGA’s many traditions. Ring the bell, get insomnia cookies, or jump in the fountain at Herty Field! Being spontaneous and taking (safe) risks will make you some amazing memories and friends.
8. Don’t worry, you’re home now!
This is the place where you will make friends, memories, and a degree that will last a lifetime. We are finally dawgs!! Sic ’em!