At VCU, we recognize that families are an important partner in your student’s success. We also know that families can look different for each student. So whether you are a parent, a family member or other supporter - you’re invited to join your student at Orientation. We have designed Orientation programs just for you that will happen in tandem with the student Orientation experience.

We know that by equipping you with knowledge about VCU resources, you will be well-positioned to support your student’s academic journey and ultimate success.

VCU mother taking selfie with Rodney
What families told us they enjoyed most about their Orientation in Summer 2023:

“There was plenty of information to help with the transition and the faculty and staff were very supportive and approachable when I had questions.”

“It was full of a lot of information and enough free time to get questions answered that were important to us. Our child also connected well with her peers.”

“[I] underestimated how much there was to learn! So grateful for the experience.”

What is Family Orientation?

Families and supporters are invited to join their students for their Orientation sessions. Select the appropriate program below to learn more about Orientation for new VCU families and supporters. We are thrilled to welcome you to the VCU Ramily!

Learn more about: 

Family Orientation for first-year students

We encourage families of first-year students to attend this two-day experience on campus with your student. Your student can add you to their reservation when they register for Orientation. 

The Family Orientation program will happen concurrently with your student’s Orientation and will offer sessions curated for you to learn all about VCU and how to best support and advocate for your student. We'll also connect you with VCU staff who can answer all of your questions. The program will feature time for you and your student to visit campus offices and take care of any important business while you are here.

Overnight accommodations 

Your student’s Orientation includes an overnight stay on campus in Gladding Residence Center (covered by their New Student Transition Fee). On-campus accommodations are not included for family members. 

Below are some overnight options for those traveling from further away:

  • Stay on-campus during Orientation: This option is available at an additional cost in one of VCU’s apartment-style residence halls. Rates typically begin around $80.00 per person for one night.  You can stay the night before and the night of your Orientation. Check back soon to book your on-campus stay.

Find a nearby hotel and utilize special discounts and rates for families attending Orientation. More details will be available soon!

Family Orientation for transfer students and adult learners

We invite families and supporters of transfer students to join us for your student’s in-person or virtual Orientation. You will attend portions of the Orientation program with your student, and there will be parts of the program dedicated just for families and supporters.

Spring Orientation for families

Families and supporters of students accepted for Spring

We invite families and supporters of all new spring students to join us for your student’s in-person or virtual (transfer students only) Orientation. You will attend portions of the Orientation program with your student, and there will be parts of the program dedicated just for families and supporters.

Ram Ready Modules for families and supporters

Ram Ready Orientation Modules for families and supporters will share information about academic programs, student life, safety and wellness, and opportunities for your involvement in the VCU community. You will have access to the same content your students will see in their program, and you will see bonus content tailored just for families and supporters.

To complete Ram Ready, select "Guest" then create an account under "First Time Here." Select the "Parent/Family" option under Account Type. You will see the same content your student sees plus bonus content for families.

Ram Ready Orientation modules open:

  • For students accepted for Fall: Jun. 7, 2024
  • For students accepted for Spring: Dec. 2, 2024

Resources for families and the Ram Family Mailing list

Upon registering for Orientation, your student can add your contact information to be included on the Ram Family Update mailing list. Emails begin going out in August to families and supporters on this list. You’ll receive important monthly updates about what's going on at VCU and any relevant announcements that are communicated to your student. Additionally, you will receive invitations to both virtual and in-person events sponsored by VCU Families and VCU Family Council, a group of families selected to serve families and connect them to VCU.

You do not need to be registered for Orientation to be added to the Ram Family Listserv. You can opt out of this mailing list at any time.

Connect with VCU Family Programs

Check out the VCU Families website to get connected with the VCU Family Programs office. You can join the VCU Families Facebook page, learn about joining the VCU Family Council, find out more about the fall Family Weekend and other events for families that occur year-round to answer your questions and keep you in the know.

The VCU Families page also includes a comprehensive list of resources that you can reference whenever you need assistance.