Introduction

Orientation Penn State has been designed to introduce you to the Penn State University Park campus and to help you prepare for your arrival. Its scope is not limited to arrival day. Many new students have important concerns that extend far beyond the first day of classes. Therefore, this document also discusses some of the challenges typically faced by University Park Campus students and provides information about the University's many support services. We hope you will keep Orientation Penn State as a helpful reference guide throughout your first year.

Each year, thousands of new students like you become a part of the University Park campus community. Collectively, you bring with you an array of talents, interests, and questions, but you all have one thing in common—a strong desire to learn. As a Penn State student, you will be presented with opportunities that will help you grow in many ways. Nevertheless, your academic and personal growth will not occur without challenge. Students who have been successful in their first year often talk about the many surprises they faced as new students. Their conversations are full of references to instructors, advisers, and the vast amount of course material they were expected to handle. Also, they frequently talk about their changing relationships with other students, faculty, and their parents.

Continuing your success as a student requires that you take the initiative, particularly at a large campus like University Park campus. It is up to you to take control of your educational destiny. Faculty, staff, and fellow students cannot help you unless you let them. It is up to you to seek out and develop relationships with professors, ask pertinent questions in class, and have meaningful conversations with your fellow students. Allow your scholarly interests to become a part of your everyday life. The way you use your leisure time will be an indication of your progress as a student.

Penn State is dedicated to teaching, research, and public service. It is a place where you can gain skills and learning habits to use throughout your life. University Park campus provides opportunities for you to learn something about almost anything. In addition, the University Park campus educational experience is enhanced by the presence of a multicultural, multi-ethnic faculty and student population. You can become an active participant in the diverse cultural, intellectual, and recreational activities that abound at the University Park campus. You have the choice of accepting or rejecting the demands and opportunities of academic life. That is not a decision to be made lightly, and the consequences of that choice can determine your success as a scholar and, in the long run, in many areas of your life.