Skip to Content


When You Arrive

Learn more about travel, parking and what to bring to New Student Orientation. 

There isn’t much you need to bring with you your session, but there are still a few items that will help: 

  • VIP ID and USC system password. You will use this throughout your session, so please plan to memorize it or write it down in advance of your session. 
  • Transcripts and records. Including AP/IB scores, high school transcripts, immunization records, your advising worksheet and any other relative correspondence. 
  • Completed Pre-Orientation Advising Worksheet. You will need this to register for classes. 
  • Appropriate technology and headphones. If you are a nursing or social work major, you will need to bring a laptop with you to your session. 
  • Your parking pass. This will be sent to you via email. 
  • Donations for the Gamecock Pantry. Learn more about the Gamecock Pantry and what to bring here. 
  • A state issued ID and/or driver’s license. You will need this to pick up your CarolinaCard. 
  • Comfortable shoes for walking around campus.
  • Comfortable clothes for evening activities.
  • A light jacket and/or umbrella.  

Within Columbia, we have the Columbia Metropolitan Airport. 

The Charlotte Douglas International Airport is less than a two-hour drive from Columbia. For those arriving through Charlotte, Columbia Charlotte Shuttle is the leading provider of transportation between South Carolina and Charlotte Airport. Be sure to ask about their 10-Pack discount! 

All students are required to stay on-campus during New Student Orientation. This will not be the same residence hall you reside in during the academic year. 

When you arrive on-campus to check-in for your session, you will also check-in and drop off your belongings in your room. Be on the lookout for an email with informing regarding room amenities. We recommend packing the following items:

  • Sheets and blankets or a sleeping bag
  • Towels
  • Pillows
  • Toiletries
  • Comfortable shoes for frequent movement and migrations
  • A light jacket and/or rain coat
  • Any other items you may need for a two-day, one-night stay

While students are required to stay on-campus in our residence halls during their session, families and supporters have the option of staying on-campus or booking another accommodation of their choice. While overnight accommodations for your guests may not be needed, we wanted to share a few options that we recommend:

  • Stay steps from campus at Graduate Columbia, a boutique hotel tailored to South Carolina. Sleep well in their comfy, cheerful guestrooms.   
  • Stay at Hotel Trundle, Columbia’s award-winning boutique hotel. Save 15% on your stay with promo code BYEBYEKIDDO. Visit to book!
  • Stay at Home2Suites by Hilton Columbia Downtown, located just a few blocks from the USC campus.
  • Overnight accommodations for supporters will be available on-campus in a residence hall separate from students. This will accrue an additional charge that is not already included in the Orientation fee. Space is limited. Will we will share more information at a later date.

During your session, we will provide parking. This was included in your Orientation registration fee and you will not have to pay upon your arrival. We will share more information at a later date.

Check-in for your session will begin at 8 a.m. on day one. During this time, you will be greeted by your Orientation Leaders, grab schedules and have an opportunity to enjoy a continental breakfast to get you fueled for the day ahead! Will we will share more information at a later date.





Challenge the conventional. Create the exceptional. No Limits.