You will get it figured out.
If two nights and two days can make your head spin, these might be the two. It’s not a bad thing, of course; it is just the amount of information can get a bit overwhelming. They need to orient themselves to their new life. I believe my first orientation I spent taking pages of notes, marking things I wanted to talk with my daughter about later and highlighting things I wanted to keep close in case situations came up that may make those notes useful (ie: tutoring, healthcare, safety on campus…. honestly they touch on everything you can imagine and many things you haven’t yet.) Later I learned that parents took pictures of the slides – much easier. Besides, you will get to keep the packets and brochures they hand out.
At the University of Miami, incoming freshman typically stays in their dorms during orientation. This is a time when the students are getting acquainted with living away and meeting their roommates and floor-mates. Every evening there are organized games, concerts, social events, floor meetings and gatherings to help foster the transition to college life. It is strongly encouraged for the students to remain in the dorms that week.
Time of Their Own
Just so you know, you will not be spending most of those days with your student regardless of where they stay; they have their own sessions. You will, however, be reunited when it is time for them to register for classes. Try to discuss what classes your student may want to take before orientation by reviewing the Online Course Catalog and Undergraduate Catalog prior to attending. There is very little time to chat when an advisor actually sits down to enroll them. Remind them that whatever they end up with does not necessarily have to determine what they study for the next four years. This seemed to leave some students in a panic, which, if you are anything like me, becomes the parents’ worry as well.
Click here for the full orientation schedule of events for incoming undergraduate, transfer and international students.
To keep up to date on everything UM, download the UM Mobile app.
A great deal of what the students cover will require they have access to their student portal. Have your student bring everything – forms that you will have filled out in advance (check your list), ACT/SAT/AP/Dual enrollment scores in case any overrides are needed at registration. Make sure they are aware of their passwords, etc. Bring any medical forms, copies of insurance cards, etc. you may need.
The Bank of America ATM located at the Student Center right on campus makes it easy to check balances and withdraw cash. I chose to stick with our Bank of America account as opposed to other banks because it is just easier for both of us to access at all times. It is several clicks right on the BOA app on my phone to check balances and transfer money. Other major bank chains have locations very close to campus such as Chase and Wells Fargo.
Ready to Go?
Have you made hotel reservations yet? For information about hotels in the area check out our blog. There a blog on restaurants too. They are chock-full of good information.
And, of course, head over to the campus bookstore or an area retail store and start stocking up on Hurricane apparel- You are about to spend your student’s next four years growing to love the University of Miami. Or check out some great Hurricane gear at Life is Good, Champions on Display; Fansedge, Fanatics , Life Is Good or their local Target or Walmart for any of these. Even Etsy and Overstock carry college logoed items. Just type in your University and search away. For those with fancier taste, check out the Dooney & Bourke collegiate collection. And, check out customized skins for your Hurricane’s laptop, cell phone, gaming devices and even their amazon echo with a customized UM skin from Skinit. Use code huh25 and you will get 25% off your order (excludes gift cards, e-cards and shipping)
There is a Starbucks and Einstein’s and the Rathskellar right on campus should you need a pick me up at some point in the day. This is not to imply that orientation is boring, but it is long. Don’t fret if you don’t make it to every single break out session.