Registration for New Student Orientation opens March 20 at Noon ET.
Registration for New Student Orientation opens March 20 at Noon ET for incoming freshmen and transfers. Please read below to find your specific program.
Determine Your Status
You will be required to attend one of several unique Orientation sessions. You can determine which one you need to go to by considering several factors.
If you are a high school student or graduate who has never attended a post-secondary institution, you are classified as a freshman student. If you are coming to South Carolina to complete your undergraduate education after attending another post-secondary institution, you are classified as a transfer student.
Whether freshman or transfer student, students can begin their first semester at South Carolina during different times in the academic year:
- You are a fall admit if you are beginning your first semester at USC-Columbia in August. You will attend Fall Term Orientation. If you are unable to attend a Fall Term session, you must attend a session in August.
- You are a spring admit if you are beginning your first semester at USC-Columbia in January. You will attend Spring Term Orientation.
- You are a summer admit if you are beginning your first semester at USC-Columbia in May or June. You will attend Summer Term Orientation.
- If you are a transfer student participating in early advisement, you will attend a Summer Term Orientation. This is regardless of your starting term.
Specialized academic populations, including the South Carolina Honors College, veterans' and dependents, Palmetto Pathway, Gamecock Gateway and CarolinaLIFE will have specific dates within each term to attend. Dates can be found on your starting terms' page.
The university offers a variety of specialized academic programs: the South Carolina Honors College, Capstone Scholars, CarolinaLIFE, Gamecock Gateway, the Opportunity Scholars Program, Palmetto Pathway and Gamecock Athletics, among others. Please check your admissions materials to verify if you are a part of any of these as they may influence which Orientation session you need to attend.
Things to Keep in Mind
Each Orientation session has limited spacing based on advising capacities within academic colleges, and will close for reservations once full. We recommend planning accordingly around graduations, vacations, work commitments and so forth if there is a specific date you would prefer to attend.
Freshman students admitted during the summer or fall semesters are required to pay a non-refundable $200 admissions deposit to confirm enrollment before gaining access to New Student Orientation dates and registration. This fee is separate from the Orientation registration fee.
Transfer students do not need to pay an admissions deposit. Please note that electronic check payments will be held for six (6) business days while the check clears.