7 Things to Expect at Fall Semester Orientation

SOUL leader in a red polo carrying a beach ball.

You might feel a bit overwhelmed as you gear up to attend orientation in just a couple of weeks. So we reached out to our student orientation coordinators for a glimpse of what to expect. Emily and Elle are taking over the blog today to give you some insight!

1. Engage with your peers.

During your orientation session, you will have the opportunity to meet a lot of new people, including many other new students who will be joining you at Miami in the fall! For example, you will attend a student social at night where you can have fun and make connections! 

Remember, there are 18 orientation sessions. You are only meeting a fraction of the Class of 2026, so if you do not meet your new best friend at orientation, don’t worry!  There are still many more ways you can meet people throughout Miami Bound programs, Welcome Weekend, and First 50 Days.

2. Meet SOULs!

Student Orientation Undergraduate Leaders (SOULs) are Miami students who will facilitate small groups and present information pertaining to student life at Miami during orientation. Remember that SOULs are students too–they were in your position just a year or two ago! SOULs can answer questions about student life, resources on campus, and their personal transitions to college. The SOUL team is excited to welcome you to Miami and can serve as an excellent resource for you throughout your orientation and transition experience. 

3. Attend small groups.

Small group of students; about 15 students sitting in a circle around the seal in academic quad.

As mentioned above, SOULs facilitate small groups. Throughout orientation, you will attend three small groups with your SOUL and your peers who are in your small group. During these small groups, you’ll learn about campus resources, discuss your hopes and fears regarding coming to Miami, and you’ll be able to meet and interact with other new students.

4. Attend an academic advising workshop and register for classes.

An academic advisor helping a student register for classes at orientation.

During fall semester orientation, you will meet with an advisor along with 3-4 other students who have similar majors within your academic college. This is an opportunity for you to explore course options, ask questions, and plan for course registration the next day. Ultimately, you will leave orientation with a class schedule that puts you on track to a timely graduation! 

Be sure to review Module 5: Academic Preparation and Module 6: Academic Curriculum and Resources in the orientation Canvas course so that you are prepared for these important pieces of your orientation experience.

5. Expect to be in some sessions with your parents/family members and to be in some sessions on your own.

If you are coming to orientation with a family member(s), you can expect to attend some sessions together and also to attend some sessions separately. For example, your family members are invited to attend your academic advising workshop with you, but you will register for classes on your own. We encourage you to view this as an opportunity for you to practice having independence and to share with each other the things that you found interesting or important from the sessions you attend separately. 

6. Learn about campus resources and services that will support you as a Miami student.

At orientation, you will be able to learn about many of the resources and services Miami has to offer students. On day 1 of orientation, you’ll attend a resource fair , where you will explore a variety of resources for new students. It may be helpful to take note of the resources you feel will be helpful to you throughout your college experience. 

7. Continue your orientation and transition process beyond orientation. 

Large group of students in red shirts standing around at a Miami Bound program.
Miami Bound Programs start in August!

Orientation is a process, not just a one-and-a-half day program. Fall semester orientation is really just a portion of this process! Welcome Weekend and First 50 Days are a series of events and programs that are designed to welcome new students to Miami; events extend through the first 50 days of the semester!

Emily Brace and Elle Boyle | Student Orientation Coordinators