January Orientation

Epic journeys begin at Rensselaer; to the innovators, scientists, artists and creators: welcome.

Student Orientation (SO) marks the beginning of your new membership into the RPI community. The purpose of SO is to provide new students with the tools to transition smoothly into Rensselaer. Our hope is that you come to Orientation with a lot of questions about your new life and leave having them all answered. Get excited, your Rensselaer experience is about to begin!

SO is set up as a series of highly structured programs that cover numerous topics of concern to new students. During SO you will attend academic information sessions, meet with your academic adviser, plan your academic program for the spring semester, and register for classes. You will have the opportunity to meet new classmates, interact with faculty and student leaders, and become familiar with campus facilities. Also, your photo will be taken for your student ID.

Important Orientation Dates

  • Thursday, January 11 | Move in day; You will be able to pick up your keys at the Residence Life office from 10 a.m. – 3 p.m. 
  • Friday, January 12 | Student Orientation (SO) 
  • January 12- Monday, January 15 | Navigating Rensselaer & Beyond (NRB) begins the evening of the 12th.   Participation is mandatory.
  • Tuesday, January 16 | Classes will begin.

Registration materials for January Orientation have been sent to you from the First-Year Experience Office If you have not received them, please contact the First-Year Experience Office at (518) 276-6864 or fye@rpi.edu

Parents & Families

Parents and family members are welcome to join their students throughout the orientation program. Parents check-in with their student and may opt to purchase a meal pass for a fee. Parents must register to attend the program by completing the guest information on their student’s reservation form.  Although all family members are welcome, we ask that you please consider carefully your choice to bring very young siblings as a separate sibling program is not offered.

What will I be doing during Orientation?

Your program will cover the following:

  • welcome sessions
  • transitioning to Rensselaer successfully
  • academic overview and course selection
  • course registration
  • health services
  • Rensselaer IDs
  • parking
  • tours of campus
  • resource center
  • meet with a Class Dean

A detailed schedule will be distributed at check-in when you arrive on campus.  Please plan to be with the Orientation program all day (9:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.)

Important to-do items

Student Health Center
Please return the Report of Medical History Form, which you received with your admission material, directly to the Student Health Center. This information needs to be completed and returned to Rensselaer prior to registering for classes. If you have questions regarding this form, or if you did not receive the Report of Medical History form in a prior mailing, you may contact the Student Health Center at (518) 276-6287.
On-campus housing
Please plan to move into your residence hall and pick up your keys in the Residence Life office from 10 a.m. - 3 p.m on Thursday, January 11.  If you have not already received materials from the Office of Residence Life or you have any questions regarding on-campus living, please feel free to call (518) 276-6284, or e-mail res_life@rpi.edu.
Disability services for students
Please notify Disability Services for Students at (518) 276-8197 and the Student Orientation Office at (518) 276-8632 of any special needs you may have, if you have not already done so. This will ensure that we are prepared to assist you to have a productive and enjoyable stay on campus.
Tuition and financial aid
Questions regarding Rensselaer billing and payments may be directed to the Bursar’s Office at (518) 276-6610. Questions regarding financial aid may be directed to the Financial Aid Office at (518) 276-6813.
Student orientation fee
The charge for Student Orientation is $175. This fee will appear on your student account bill – please do not send money now.