by Zoey

Keys to a Successful Orientation

Orientation is your first true peek into what your college life will be like, so make the most of it! There are a variety of sessions available to you, and even if you’re not sure they’ll be helpful to you, I encourage you to check out as many as you can. There are so many opportunities on campus that you might be unaware of, so here are some suggestions for important sessions to look out for:

Residence Hall Tours

Going on a residence hall tour is a great way to get a feel for the place you’ll be calling home for the next year. It’s also possible that you’ll meet a future floor-mate on the tour, so don’t be afraid to strike up a conversation!

Dorm (1)

Parks Library Tour

You’ve probably been to your school or local library before, but getting to know Parks is important for your educational future here at Iowa State. You’ll learn about the many services the library offers, see the beautiful rooms for studying, and learn how to find the books you need. Parks is a great resource to have as a student, so make sure you figure out the benefits of it early on.


What You Need to Know Session

This session will help you learn about life as a Cyclone, and transitioning into that lifestyle. The move from high school to college isn’t always easy, so learning about how students have dealt with the transition before can be helpful for both you and your parents.


Lunch on Your Own

When lunch is on your own, I encourage you, if able, to explore some of the restaurants in Ames. Checkout the variety in Campustown and take a stroll down Main Street before you leave Ames. Learning about all of the areas surrounding campus is important and will help you feel more at home in Ames.


Campus Walking Tour

You probably got a tour of campus during your initial Iowa State visit, but now that you’re definitely going to be a student here, a tour might give you a fresh perspective. If you’ve already selected a major, you can see the building you’ll be taking many classes in, and understand where it is in relation to your dorm/the gym/etc. You’ll also learn some of the great services available to you in each building.


Recreation Services Self-Guided Tour

If you plan to spend time at the gym during your years, be sure to explore either Lied or State Gym. There are so many great features in these facilities, so explore them early and tackle your exercise plan once you get to school. Be sure to learn about group fitness classes, personal trainers, and where the equipment you prefer is located. These gyms are chock-full of ways to stay fit while you’re at Iowa State.


Orientation is an exciting part of the start to your college years! You never know what you’ll learn and who you’ll meet, so enjoy!

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