Answering your questions
Whether you're a new VCU student or a family member or supporter of a new student, we’re here to answer your questions about the Orientation process. Orientation and Transition Programs seeks to create a seamless and successful transition for all students and their families and supporters to the VCU community, also known as the RAMily! If you have a question that’s not answered below, please reach out to our team at firstname.lastname@example.org or give us a call at 804.828.3700!
Orientation is your official welcome to VCU and will prepare you for your first semester. VCU offers a variety of Orientation programs based on your experience, so whether this is your first time at college, you are transferring from another school or you are returning after some time off, you can find the Orientation experience that works for you!
Orientation is required for all new first-year students, transfer students and adult learners, and students who have been readmitted to VCU after at least three consecutive semesters away from VCU.
Student fee information
For students, there is no upfront student cost to register for and attend Orientation. New students are assessed a New Student Transition Fee that you will see on your first semester student bill. The New Student Transition Fee varies by your student type. This fee covers your full Orientation experience including all online, virtual and in-person experiences, your Orientation materials, and transition programming that supports you and your family and supporters in your first year at VCU.
For more information on student fees, visit Student Financial Services.
Family member/supporter fee information
The fee for family members and supporters varies by program. There is no additional fee for families and supporters who participate in the virtual Transfer Orientation program.
The one-time, non-refundable fee covers the cost to attend the in-person program and includes a printed VCU Academic Calendar, materials, refreshments and meals during Orientation, access to Ram Ready Orientation Modules for families and supporters, staffing and rental fees.
Family/supporter fees for Orientation are non-refundable and are collected at the time of registration to secure your guest’s spot in the program. Students can add a guest to their reservation by logging back in to your Orientation account. Payments are made via a secure payment site and all major credit/debit cards are accepted. We do not accept cash or checks.
The Ram Ready Orientation Modules are designed to complement and supplement your Orientation session. The modules will be released before Orientation and are intended to help you prepare for your Orientation session and the course registration process.
More details on the Ram Ready Orientation Modules will be available soon, and information will be emailed to students who are registered for Orientation.
Yes, VCU requires all new students to participate in and complete all aspects of Orientation. Attendance at your Orientation session is tracked and so is your completion of the Ram Ready Orientation Modules. If you are a readmitted student, you must complete Orientation if you have been away from VCU for at least three consecutive semesters as many processes can change from year to year.
Research supports that if you complete Orientation, you are more likely to achieve success in college and graduate. This is true for both incoming first-year students and transfer students. VCU is committed to helping students succeed in and out of the classroom so we require your participation in Orientation. Over the past three years, 95% of students who completed Orientation have been retained to their second year of study at VCU.
More importantly, this is your time to connect with other new students, learn the specifics of your academic school/college, access academic support and resources, get familiar with campus resources and ask questions. Even if you already know people on campus, Orientation will give you a comprehensive overview of the resources and services available to you as a new student.
Once you have paid your tuition deposit and it has been processed (usually within 2-3 business days), you can register online via the Orientation registration system beginning on April 10, 2023. You will sign in using your VCU eID and password. To set up your eID, visit https://myeid.vcu.edu/ and click “Claim my eID.”
You may also need to complete placement tests and the VCU Registration Survey, please check the appropriate Accepted Student Checklist to ensure you have completed all the required steps prior to registering for Orientation.
To make changes to your Orientation registration or to add a family member or supporter, you can log back into your Orientation account up to one week prior to your scheduled orientation. If it is within one week of your Orientation session, please email email@example.com with your full name and V-number and we will assist you.
The math department recommends that students take a math course during their first semester at VCU because many programs at VCU require some level of math as a prerequisite and many courses outside of the math department have math as a prerequisite.
Only some first-year students will need to take math placement depending on your major, your incoming SAT or ACT scores and any applicable incoming credits for math from AP, IB or dual enrollment courses. If you are not satisfied with your math placement based on your incoming test scores or credits, then you can opt to take the math placement to try to place into a higher level course.
To determine if you need to complete Math Placement before registering for courses, visit the Math Placement page on the Department of Mathematics and Applied Mathematics website.
Transfer students who are not transferring in a college-level math or statistics course must also complete math placement. It enables the math department to have a general idea of how many sections of each type of math to open for class registration and helps your academic advisor have a good idea of which math courses to consider when helping you build your schedule.
A first-year student is any student attending college for the first time (not including dual-enrollment taken in high school), typically straight from high school or after a short time away from school.
A transfer student is any student who has attended at least one semester at another college or university and is transferring credits to VCU.
A readmitted student is any student who was previously enrolled at VCU and has not been enrolled in classes at VCU for at least three consecutive semesters.
All new students will have the opportunity to meet with an academic advisor and will complete course registration before the start of the semester.
First-year students can begin the course registration process in May and will be able to schedule their advising appointments in mid-May through Navigate. Advising appointments will begin at the end of May and run throughout the summer. We encourage you to schedule your advising appointment before your Orientation session, if possible.
Transfer students can begin registering for classes before meeting with their advisor and attending Orientation. Transfer students admitted for the fall semester can typically begin registering for courses and scheduling advising appointments in mid-May. At this time, students can see their assigned advisor and schedule appointments through Navigate.
If you would like to change your major prior to the start of Orientation, you can request a change of major by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org at least two weeks in advance of your Orientation date to ensure you are in the correct session.
If changing your major results in a change of your college/school, you may need to select a new Orientation session. If your new major is within the same college or school (e.g. within the College of Humanities and Sciences, etc.) then this will not impact your orientation session. Students wishing to change into a new college (e.g., from College of Humanities and Sciences into College of Business) will need to wait to hear from Admissions to ensure that you meet the requirements for the requested major.
If your major change is approved or you have recently changed your major, your Orientation account will update with your new major and you will be notified via email if you need to change your session. To check which college or school a major falls in, you can search for your program under VCU Academics.
If you need special accommodations during Orientation, please indicate this when filling out your registration questionnaire. A staff member from our team will reach out to you if we need additional information about your request. You may also email us at email@example.com - please be sure to include your full name and V number.
For more information on accommodations during the academic year, please reach out to the Student Accessibility and Educational Opportunity (SAEO) office.
VCU Orientation offers tailored content for veterans and current service members in the Ram Ready Orientation Modules. This content is designed to give you more information about how to utilize your military benefits and will help you learn how to connect to other service members and their families.
There will also be virtual and in-person opportunities to connect with Military Student Services and learn about your military benefits as part of Orientation.
If you are unsure whether or not you are eligible for Military Benefits, please review the information on the Military Benefits Orientation page.
Parents, family members and supporters are encouraged to register and attend Orientation with their students. You can register a family member or supporter when you complete your own registration.
Learn more about what’s included in the family and supporter Orientation program.
You can fill out the application online beginning in April (for Fall admits). To start your application and learn more, visit the VCU Housing website.
Students have the option to request roommates when submitting their application. Roommate requests must be mutual – both students must request and accept one another in order to be assigned. To find a roommate, you can fill out a special form as part of the Housing application under the Roommate page.
For more details and FAQs on all things on-campus Housing, visit the bottom of the Housing application website.
In order to receive an on-campus housing assignment, students must be registered for Orientation. For more details on when housing assignments begin and how applications are processed, visit the Housing application website.
VCU’s Off-Campus Housing office is a one-stop shop for searching local area listings, finding roommates and starting the leasing process. You can begin your search online and if you would like more assistance, you can schedule an appointment with the Off-Campus Housing staff.
Students can submit their photo online for their VCUCard. Students will receive information on how to submit their photo online before attending Orientation.
You can visit the VCUCard website to learn more about photo requirements. More details on receiving your VCUCard will be available before Orientation.
You should complete all of the items on the accepted student checklist before the start of classes. Throughout the Orientation process, additional items will be added to your VCU Task List that you see when logging in to your Orientation account. Keep an eye out for new task list items as it gets closer to your Orientation session and the start of classes.
You can defer your application by submitting a reactivation application to the requested deferred term along with speaking with your Application Processor.
You should complete the VCU Enrollment Cancellation Request Form.