Incoming first year students

New Student Orientation

Welcome to Virginia Commonwealth University!

We look forward to meeting you at New Student Orientation, where you’ll learn about all the resources and services available to new students. Think of it as your formal introduction to VCU.

During this action-packed program:

  • Orientation Leaders will provide the inside scoop on academics, involvement and social life at VCU.
  • Academic advisors will inform you about your area of study and register you for classes.
  • Faculty and staff will introduce you to campus resources and answer your burning questions.
  • The time spent with your orientation team will help you make friends (and maybe find a roommate).
  • You’ll participate in your first VCU tradition and become an official Ram!

NSO is required for first-year students, transfer students, international students and students who are returning to VCU after being away for more than three years. Parents and family members are welcome and encouraged to attend.

A schedule for summer orientation will be posted in April. Learn more about what to expect.


New Student Orientation is twice a year. You’ll attend based on the semester you plan to start:  

Fall semester: Orientation is a two-day summer program with an overnight stay for first-year students. Transfer students attend for one day.

Spring semester: Orientation is a one-day event during winter break.

NSO sessions are based on academic major. Space is limited and seats fill up fast, so register as soon as possible. View available dates.


Before registering for NSO, you must:

Visit the orientation registration website to register for NSO. If you don’t see a date you’re able to attend, call us at (804) 828-3700. If you recently paid your tuition deposit and the site won’t allow you to register, try again after 48 hours.

Successful registration is followed by a confirmation email with details including arrival time, parking and what to pack. Make sure you receive the confirmation before making travel plans.

In addition to NSO, international students are required to attend an orientation hosted by the Global Education Office. For more information, contact or (804) 828-8471.


A nonrefundable program fee is required for all students and guests attending NSO and charged during online registration as follows:

  • Summer orientation, first-year students: $150 students/$50 per guest
  • Summer orientation for transfer students: $75 students/$25 per guest
  • Winter orientation: $75 students/$25 per guest

Student fees cover meals, parking, facility fees, orientation staffing, orientation materials and overnight accommodations (for summer orientation first-year students).

Guest fees cover program materials, lunch (on both days for guests of first-year students). Overnight accommodations are not included. For options, check with Richmond area hotels.

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