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New Student Orientation

Orientation volunteers at event

Virtual Orientation

Welcome to Cornell! We have an exciting and comprehensive virtual orientation program planned for you. While we'll be online, our mission, vision, and purpose have not changed. Orientation will help you meet new people, begin to explore campus, learn about amazing opportunities, and make discoveries that will become part of your Cornell experience. It’s a unique opportunity for you to develop your network and start the semester on a positive note. Orientation is an opportunity to try something new, talk to people you don’t know, learn about Cornell’s values and expectations, and ask any question you need answered. We hope you’ll continue to engage and cultivate curiosity throughout your time at Cornell.

Make the Most of Orientation

Your arrival in Fall or Winter begins your Cornell journey. Regardless of the season, the Orientation schedule is packed with programs, both required and optional, that are designed to welcome you to Cornell’s intellectual community, explore interests, make you aware of resources and opportunities, and introduce you to new people.

Utilize Your Resources

  • newstudents.cornell.edu contains everything you need to know about being a new student at Cornell. Think of it as the launching point for your Cornell experience. Check it often.
  • Use Cornell's official schedule to build your personal orientation program and to explore Cornell's resources and opportunities. The program will be a mix of asynchronous (on your own time) and synchronous (live) events.

Consider Your Course

Your time here at Cornell University is precious. Get to know the community, explore opportunities, and above all, don’t hesitate to ask questions. Consider what you want to be a part of while you are here. Will you be active in a club? Choose to explore the arts? How about community service? Do you want to be in an honors program? Are you looking for research opportunities? Does participation in student government interest you? Your exploration begins with Orientation and continues through your first year and beyond.

Connect with Students, Faculty, and Staff

Current students play a major role in planning your Orientation. The Orientation Steering Committee (OSC) plans and executes New Student Orientation. Hundreds of students serve as Orientation Leaders and Transfer Orientation Leaders in both August and January. You will be matched with an Orientation Leader (OL) from your college who will meet with you and other new students in a small group. Perhaps as you become involved as a student at Cornell you'll volunteer to be an Orientation Leader yourself.

In addition to your OL, make an effort to get to know these people to make the most of your Cornell experience—and to provide a support team—if you need help: