Frequently asked questions about orientation

Here are answers to the questions we are asked most frequently about Orientation at Seattle Pacific. If you don’t see the answer to your question, you can email orientation@spu.edu.


General Information

What is Orientation?
Orientation is a five-day event jam-packed with opportunities for you to meet and engage with your peers; learn all about SPU; meet key faculty, staff, and administrators; and simply acclimate to this new season at SPU.

When is Orientation?

  • Orientation is a five-day event that starts the Wednesday before classes start and continues through to Sunday.
  • This year’s dates: September 25–29
  • Parent and Guest Orientation takes place on Thursday, September 26.

What do my parents and/or guests do while I’m at Orientation?
Check out our Parent and Guest Orientation program

How do I register for Orientation?
Students register for Orientation here.

Is Orientation mandatory? Do I need to attend the whole time?
Attending Orientation is mandatory for all first-year and transfer students.

When do parents and/or guests typically leave their students?
Parents and guests are encouraged to say goodbye to their students at the conclusion of New Student Convocation on Thursday evening.

Is there a make-up Orientation?
We do not offer a make-up Orientation. If you have further questions or concerns about this please send an email to orientation@spu.edu

Can we arrive late/leave early?
Students living on campus must show up at their assigned move-in. We will not be able to accommodate early or late arrivals.

What if I need accommodations at Orientation?

  • If you need any accommodations other than move-in times (students, parents, and guests) please email orientation@spu.edu.
  • Examples of prior accommodations include: wheelchair accessibility, interpretation services, reserved seating, etc.
  • Please note: We cannot accommodate a new or changed move-in time.

What are Orientation Leaders?
Orientation Leaders are students who volunteer their time to lead new groups of students through the five-day Orientation program. They have been trained during the summer to ensure you will have a successful transition into college life.

When do classes start?
Autumn Quarter classes start on Monday, September 30.

What if I have more questions?
If you have any questions, please email orientation@spu.edu or contact the Office of Student Involvement and Leadership at 206-281-2481.


Cost

What is the cost and what does it pay for?

  • All students (first year and transfer) pay a mandatory $125 Orientation fee that will be charged directly to their student account regardless of what program they attend.
  • This fee covers Orientation meals, supplies, t-shirt, activities, and all other costs associated with Orientation.
  • There is no additional fee for parents or guests. A portion of the fee covers the costs of the Parent and Guest Orientation program.

What if I am not attending every event? Do I still have to pay?
All students (first year and transfer) will be charged a mandatory $125 orientation fee — charged directly to their student account — even if they do not attend the program in its entirety.

Is there an adjusted cost for parents and siblings?
There is no additional fee for parents or guests. A portion of the fee covers the costs of the Parent and Guest Orientation program.

Where do I pay to attend Orientation? Is this attached to my registration?
The Orientation fee is charged directly to a student’s account.


Move-In Day

When can I move in? What happens on move-in day?

  • Students living on campus may move into their living space and check in for Orientation according to the times listed below on Wednesday, September 25:
    • Arnett, Ashton, Emerson, Hill, and Moyer Halls: Check in starting at the times below by last name in the main lobby of your residence hall.
      • A–G: Starting at 1 p.m.
      • H–P: Starting at 1:45 p.m. 
      • Q–Z: Starting at 2:30 p.m. 
    • Campus Apartments: Check in at Orientation Central (located on the first floor of the Student Union Building, building 24 on the campus map).
  • When you arrive, you will be directed to your respective living area and greeted by a student volunteer who will give you a 45-minute parking pass. You will then be directed to park in a designated parking space near the living area.
  • After parking, student volunteers will help you unload your belongings and assist you with moving into your living space.
  • Students must check in to Orientation in their residence hall lobby before they can move personal items into their room.
  • After you move your belongings into your living space, you will be asked to move your car to designated parking lots — Dravus and Ross lots (#45 and #51 on campus map) — to provide more space for the next wave of new students.

Families and Guests

Is there a program for families and guests? When do things officially end for parents?

  • Yes! Our Parent and Guest Orientation is a one-day program that runs concurrent with the student program on Thursday. Parent and Guest Orientation starts at 10 a.m. on Thursday morning with “Opening Welcome” and concludes after “New Student Convocation” at 5 p.m. Here is the schedule for Parent and Guest Orientation.
  • Parent Orientation is not required but encouraged, especially if this is your first student attending SPU.

Where should we stay?

  • The SPU website has a list of suggested hotels and businesses in the area. Please visit this page for more information.

How do we register for Orientation?

  • Family and guests are registered on the student's registration form. If updates need to be made, students can access their form registration via the link provided in their confirmation email to change guest information accordingly.

Are meals provided for families and guests?

  • Yes. Dinner is provided on Wednesday, September 25 (move-in day) and lunch is provided on Thursday, September 26 (the day of Parent Orientation).

Travel/Transportation

How do I get to campus?

Where do I park when I arrive on campus?

  • You can park in the Dravus and Ross lots (#45 and #51 on campus map)

Where do I get my parking permit?

Where can family and friends eat and stay?


Meals

When do meal plans start for students? Are meals covered during Orientation?

  • Lunch and dinner are on your own on Wednesday.
  • Meals for parents and guests are included with the cost of attending Orientation. Parents and guests will receive dinner on Wednesday and lunch on Thursday.
  • Orientation will cover all meals for new and transfer students from Thursday through Sunday.
  • Orientation will provide meal tickets for students who are not on a meal plan for the dates of Orientation.
  • Meal plans for all students who have them will be in effect on Friday morning.

Special Population

What if I am an athlete and I move in before Orientation?

  • Our athletes move in at different points. Please work with your coach on your specific move-in day and time.
  • Student athletes will still need to check in for Orientation either on Wednesday if you are living on campus, or Thursday if you are a commuter. Orientation check-in will provide you with important group information you will need to know for the duration of our program.

What if I am a Dining Services employee and I move in before Orientation?

  • Work with your supervisor for your specific move-in day and time.
  • Students will still need to check in for Orientation either on Wednesday if you are living on campus or Thursday if you are a commuter. Orientation check-in will provide you with important group information you will need to know for the duration of our program.

What if I am attending Early Connections?

  • Please wait to hear from our Multi-Ethnic Programs office for your specific move-in day and time. Please also note that Early Connections is an invitation-only program.
  • Students will still need to check in for Orientation either on Wednesday if you are living on campus or Thursday if you are a commuter. Orientation check-in will provide you with important group information you will need to know for the duration of our program.

I am an international student. Do I need to attend two Orientations?

  • Yes. Attendance at both programs is mandatory. International Orientation is a tailored program to meet the needs of international students and provides opportunities to meet other international students.
  • Orientation is a five-day event jam-packed with opportunities for you to meet and engage with your peers; learn all about SPU; meet key faculty, staff, and administrators; and simply acclimate to this new season at SPU.
  • International students can check in at Orientation Central on Wednesday if they are living on campus or on Thursday if they are commuters.