Orientation & New Student Programs
Hofstra University is planning our summer orientation for incoming first-year students as an on-campus, three-day, two-night program for the following sessions: Weeks 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 8 and 9. Attending orientation in-person supports students in learning campus, engaging with future classmates, and enjoying the fun activities that take place each orientation. Week 7 will be virtual and online, and is intended for incoming students who have considerations due to the current public health concerns. We ask that students check their Hofstra email address as we will be sending updates about both types of sessions as information becomes available including arrival times, COVID test results, possible vaccination requirements, and technology requirements for the virtual sessions.
Your Hofstra journey begins with New Student Orientation – an on-campus, three-day, two-night program where all incoming first-year students get their first glimpse of life at Hofstra. Note: Transfer students are offered a one-day orientation experience and should visit the Transfer Orientation webpage for more information about their specific program.
Experience suggests that students who actively participate in an orientation program excel academically and socially more often than those who do not take advantage of such programs. Our orientation program will prepare you for success at Hofstra by introducing you to Hofstra’s curriculum and campus resources; providing opportunities for you to engage with other new students, as well as Hofstra faculty, staff, and orientation leaders; and answering any questions you may have. First-year students also register for fall classes at New Student Orientation. Attendance at orientation is required.
Online registration for New Student Orientation will begin in mid-January through the Hofstra portal. You will need your Hofstra ID and password to sign up. Since dates fill quickly, you must choose three sessions that work for you. Once we receive your request, we will send an email confirmation to your Hofstra Pride email account; the confirmation email will include important information and instructions on taking your foreign language and mathematics assessments online prior to orientation.
We look forward to welcoming you to the Hofstra Pride!
Questions? If you don’t find the information you need in our FAQ, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org or 516-463-4874.
2021 Summer Orientation Dates
Note: Weeks 1-6 and 8 are in-person sessions. Week 7 and Transfer Orientation will be virtual.
|Week 1||June 8-10||All domestic undergraduates, Honors College, Music, NCAA Athletes, NOAH, Cheer & Dance Teams|
|Week 2||June 15-17||All domestic undergraduates, Honors College, Dance, Drama, Music, Music Business Students, NCAA Athletes, NOAH, ZARB School of Business, Cheer & Dance Teams|
|Week 3||June 22-24||All domestic undergraduates, Honors College, Dance, Drama, Music, NCAA Athletes, NOAH, ZARB School of Business, Cheer & Dance Teams|
|Week 4||June 29-July 1||All domestic undergraduates, Honors College, Dance, Drama, Music, Music Business Students, NOAH, ZARB School of Business..|
|Fourth of July Break – No NSO Session||July 6 - 8||NO ORIENTATION SESSION|
|Week 5||July 13-15||All domestic undergraduates, Honors College, Dance, Drama, Music, Music Business Students, ZARB School of Business|
|Week 6||July 20-22||All domestic undergraduates, Honors College, Nursing Majors, Music, Music Business Students|
|Week 7||July 27-29||All domestic undergraduates, Nursing Majors
NOTE: This session is a virtual online session. Please refer to your confirmation email sent to your Hofstra email address regarding specific times and technology requirements.
|Transfer Orientation||August 2||All domestic transfer undergraduates. This session is virtual.|
|Week 8||August 3-5||All domestic undergraduates|
|Week 9||August 23-25||International Orientation* and all domestic undergraduates (Preference will be given to undergraduate students who live over 200 miles from campus and will be living in the residence halls.)|
If your field of study / area of interest falls into one of the above categories, please select from the preferred dates. Note that selecting from one of the preferred dates is highly encouraged but not required.
International students. Please note that all new International Students (F-1 and J-1 students) are required to attend the mandatory international student orientation with dates to be announced shortly. For more information about international orientation, please visit: www.hofstra.edu/internationalorientation.
Check-in information along with technology requirements for your session will be sent to your Hofstra email. Please check your Hofstra email on a regular basis.
Prepare for Orientation
- Register for New Student Orientation and Family Orientation
Visit your Hofstra portal to indicate your date preferences and sign your family members up for Family Orientation. You will receive confirmation of your dates via email to your Hofstra email account.
- Know how to log into the Hofstra portal (http://my.hofstra.edu)
Hofstra Portal: This is where you can access your Hofstra email and Blackboard, the learning management system used by faculty for classes during the academic year, and also for some portions of new student orientation.
- Have your Hofstra username and password handy
Both are needed to log into the portal, check your email, and access other online features. If you have misplaced or have forgotten your username and password, contact the ITS Help Desk at email@example.com or call 516-463-7777 and follow the prompts.
- Download and log into Zoom using your Hofstra account
You may have already used Zoom for other meetings in high school or elsewhere, but to access Hofstra’s online orientation, you will need to authenticate by going to http://hofstra.zoom.us then clicking the “Sign in” button. Here is a quick tutorial with step by step instructions.
- Take Required Placement Assessments
New students are required to take placement assessments in foreign language and math. These assessments help our advising team recommend courses that are suitable for you to register for at orientation. Information about your specific placement assessments will be sent to your Hofstra email account after you register for New Student Orientation from the Dean of Advising. Placement assessments will be available online mid to late April.
You should complete your assessments before the Friday before your orientation week. To take the placement assessment, log in to the Hofstra Portal, my.hofstra.edu, with your Hofstra username and password. You will be using your username and password to access your Hofstra email, through the Portal, and to log on Hofstra computers while you're on campus. If you have problems or need technical help, contact the ITS Service Desk at 516-463-7777 or email HELP@Hofstra.edu.
After you log in to my.hofstra.edu, you will see a few icons along the top right navigation bar. This is where you will find Blackboard. Hover over the icons at the top right and select the one that says 'My Apps'. (It is the one that looks like a 'waffle' or a 'keyboard'.) Click on the icon and select Blackboard. In the Blackboard window you will find the link to your placement assessment(s) under the column labeled 'My Courses'. Click the link to either your mathematics exam or your language assessment to begin. When you finish the first assessment, come back to this page to take the second.
You will find instructions for the assessment in the Blackboard course. If you have a question about the mathematics assessment please contact the Mathematics Department at 516-463-5570. If your question is about the language assessment itself, please contact the Language Learning Center at hcslang[at]hofstra.edu or call 516-463-5653 during business hours (Eastern Standard Time).
If you have a documented disability and require extended time on assessments, please call Student Access Services (SAS) on campus at 516-463-7075 or email at sas[at]hofstra.edu. We will be happy to arrange extended time for placement exams, but only for those students who notify the SAS office in advance. SAS will email students at their Hofstra pride email accounts with instructions on how to take the placement exams with extended time.
All students must take placement assessments online prior to attending Orientation sessions.
- Complete the Public Safety Presentation (Required)
All new students are required to complete the Public Safety module and the questions following the presentations. This workshop will introduce the services provided by the Department of Public Safety and engage students in conversations about doing their part to stay safe on and off the Hofstra campus. This presentation is available in Blackboard http://hofstra.blackboard.com and then to Courses on the left panel and select your orientation week.
- Complete the Community Standards / Title IX Presentation (Required)
All new students are required to complete the Community Standards and Title IX module and the questions following the presentations.
Hofstra prohibits all discriminatory harassment, relationship violence, and sexual misconduct. At this session – which is part of a series of programs you will attend during the on-boarding process at Hofstra – you will learn about Hofstra’s Title IX policies, including the definitions of sexual assault and affirmative consent, and what to do in the event of an incident. In addition, the Office of Community Standards will provide an overview of how you can personally uphold the standards of the Hofstra community and challenge other community members to do the same. This presentation is available in Blackboard http://hofstra.blackboard.com and then to Courses on the left panel and select your orientation week.
- Complete the Bystander Intervention Presentation (Required)
All new students are required to complete the Bystander Intervention module and the questions following the presentations.
Hofstra Step Up! is a bystander intervention program that raises awareness of helping behaviors, increases motivation to help, develops skills and confidence when responding to problems or concerns, and ensures the safety and well-being of all members of our community. Be a leader and make a difference as part of the Pride! This presentation is available in Blackboard http://hofstra.blackboard.com and then to Courses on the left panel and select your orientation week.
- Complete Required Health Forms
You will need to supply documentation of your vaccinations for measles, mumps and rubella. In addition, New York state law requires that you acknowledge receipt of the meningitis information.
If you have not already done so, please complete your medical records through our online Student Health Services Platform at Hofstra.medicatconnect.com
- Click the IMMUNIZATIONS tab to enter information related to the required immunizations.
- Click the FORMS tab and then MENINGITIS RESPONSE to respond online.
- Click the UPLOAD tab to upload all of your supporting documentation.
- Once you have completed these steps your records will be updated. Please allow 24 hours for this change to be reflected in your academic record.
- Submit your AP and College Credits
Send official transcripts for Advanced Placement credit, college credits, or credits from any other special programs to the Office of Undergraduate Admission. Having your most up-to-day credits on file will help our advising team recommend the best courses for you. Note that completing your placement exams in language and mathematics are still required regardless of AP scores and prior college credits.
- Consider Your First-Year Connections Options
Hofstra's first-year seminars and clusters are designed to get your college experience off to a great start. At the heart of the program are small classes taught by distinguished faculty in areas of interest ranging from art to writing. Not only will these courses introduce you to the intellectual and social life of the University, but — even if you are undecided about a major — nearly all of them will also help you satisfy the general education requirements for all majors. These are regular undergraduate courses, but they are reserved for first-year students only, so once you've looked over this brochure, please log in to the Hofstra portal (my.hofstra.edu) and give us your preferences.
- Download the FlipGrid app
from the iOS app store. The Orientation staff will be using this to connect with other members of your incoming class for many activities. You will also be sent ‘codes’ to access certain FlipGrid content and will need to log into FlipGrid using your Hofstra email address and password. When asked to do so, select the “connect using the Google option.”
- Download the ZeeMee app
from the iOS app store or Google Play stores. Some of you may already have this app and have been using it to engage with other incoming students. Our orientation staff and pride guides will be on ZeeMee to give you updates and answer questions.
- Get Excited & Connect With Us!
Become a fan of “Hofstra Orientation” on Facebook and follow @hofstraorientation on Instagram to connect with classmates and have your questions answered. Use #HofWelcome to showcase your photos and posts! Learn about your orientation leaders – they’ll be a great resource for you when you come for orientation and beyond!
Preferred Name Policy Available
Hofstra University is excited to announce that our Preferred Name Policy is now available to all students.
The Preferred Name Policy allows students to use a preferred name on select University communications and platforms, and to be referred to by university employees. All are encouraged to review a copy of the Preferred Name Policy. Completed forms should be submitted to the Office of the Registrar (206 Memorial Hall). If you have any questions please contact Gillian Atkinson, Associate Director Intercultural Engagement and Inclusion (IEI[at]hofstra.edu) or Allison Vernace, Title IX Officer for Student Issues (StudentTitleIX[at]hofstra.edu).
Here are some highlights:
Day 1 - Tuesday
- Arrival and check-in
- Meet your orientation leader and connect with students in your group.
- University welcome
- Learn about academic requirements and expectations.
- Attend workshops about campus life and available resources.
- Participate in (fun) evening activities
Day 2 - Wednesday
- Learn about major and degree requirements
- Meet with your advising deans
- Meet with faculty from your academic department
- Select your fall classes with your orientation leader's help
- Participate in (fun) evening activities
Day 3 - Thursday
- Meet with an advising dean / faculty adviser and register for fall classes
- Attend sessions on commuting, living on campus, working after college, diversity and inclusion and academic resources
- Order your textbooks at the Hofstra Bookstore
- Take your photo for your HofstraCard
- Participate in the Class of 2025 picnic
- Check out of residence halls and depart
After you attend orientation, the countdown until your return to campus begins! Check out information below as you look forward to returning to campus.
Residence Life and the Office of Commuting Student Services and Community Outreach
Whether you're living on campus or commuting, Hofstra is your home! Make sure you have all the information you need to settle in by familiarizing yourself with the Office of Residence Life and the Office of Commuting Student Services and Community Outreach.
Welcome Week is a five-day schedule of events designed to introduce you to the Hofstra campus, the rigor of academic life, our rich culture and traditions, on-campus resources, and the exciting diversity of Hofstra and the community around us. You will have the opportunity to participate in academic, social, athletic and community events as well as partake in trips to New York City and the surrounding Long Island community. Get ready to become a member of the
Visit hofstra.edu/welcomeweek for complete information about Welcome Week activities
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
- How do I sign up for New Student Orientation?
All accepted undergraduate students must first pay the Enrollment-Orientation Deposit (see second question below). About 72 hours after the deposits have been received, you can sign up for new student orientation on the Hofstra portal at my.hofstra.edu. You will need your Hofstra username (h7xxxxxxx) and password to access your account. Having issues accessing your account? Contact the ITS Service Desk at 516-463-7777 or email HELP@Hofstra.edu.
- How much does New Student Orientation cost?
The fee is $300. The Orientation fee goes towards this program, Welcome Week and programming for incoming students that takes place during the fall semester.
- How do I get confirmation about my orientation session?
Confirmations are sent to your Hofstra email address within three business days. Please make sure that you read your confirmation email carefully as the date you are assigned may be different that one that you originally requested. You can access your Hofstra email address through the portal (my.hofstra.edu) by clicking on the icon marked 'Gmail'.
- What are the health requirements to participate in New Student Orientation? - Updated 5/6/21
Please note that there are COVID-19 requirements for each in-person orientation session. All students must do one of the following things to check in on orientation days:
- Provide proof of completion of the COVID-19 vaccination series at least 14 days prior to the date of orientation , OR
- Provide proof of a prior positive test result or completed order of isolation within the last 90 days, OR
- Take a rapid COVID-19 test on-campus when you arrive at Student Health Services
If you decide to be tested upon arrival, you don’t need to take any action now. If you plan to upload proof of vaccination or a past-positive test, please enter your information and upload documents into Medicat on the Hofstra Portal. Instructions can be found here.
- What are the COVID-19 regulations for students flying to attend orientation?
Note to travelers: If you are flying to New York for orientation, you are strongly encouraged to have a COVID-19 test taken before you leave your home state. If a student tests positive upon arrival, they will be asked to quarantine at home. If not possible, we will provide isolation housing on campus.
If you have questions about this process, please email the Safe Start Testing Team at SafeStartTesting@hofstra.edu.
- What do I need to bring with me to New Student Orientation?
New Student Orientation is a three-day, two-night program where all students stay overnight on campus and get their first glimpse of life at Hofstra.
Please refer to this checklist as you prepare for New Student Orientation. The list will help ensure that you don’t forget anything you might need during the program!
- A laptop and compatible laptop charger (You will use this to look up classes for which to register prior to meeting with your advisor.)
- Pillow, sheets (twin XL), blankets, and towel
- Your cell phone and charger
- Watch or alarm clock to keep yourself on schedule
- Your Hofstra ID number (it starts with a 70X-XX-XXXX) and portal password
- Any medications or daily prescriptions you may need
- Hygienic needs, i.e., body wash, hand soap, shampoo, toothbrush, toothpaste, personal care products
- Comfortable clothing and shoes (We walk a lot!)
- Sweatshirt or jacket (It can be chilly inside due to AC.)
- Workout clothes (if you want to participate in an optional trip to the Hofstra Fitness Center)
- Umbrella or rain gear (just in case)
- Spending money for the bookstore and/or vending machines on campus
- Water bottle and snacks (We provide three meals a day, but feel free to bring snacks and beverages for throughout the day/evening.)
- Dance majors must bring dance shoes and clothes (You will meet with representatives from Hofstra’s Dance Department during Orientation.)
- A government-issued ID, i.e., driver license or passport (You will need this in order to take your HofstraCard photo.)
- Where do I check in for New Student Orientation?
Check-in for New Student Orientation is a multi-step process. Please arrive at 8:30 a.m. but before 10 a.m. on Tuesdays. All students and parents must proceed to the health tent for verification of health records. Those students who cannot provide required documentation for upload must take an on-site rapid test for COVID and may only proceed to NSO check in at the Netherlands Residence Halls Complex once cleared by the health staff. Students who are not cleared by the health staff may not participate in the program. We will provide update information about this process in a email sent to your Hofstra email address.
- What are placement assessments?
Each new student is required to take an online language placement assessment and a math assessment prior to orientation. You will take a mathematics assessment in either basic algebra or calculus readiness, depending on your prior course work. You are also required to take a foreign language placement assessment that corresponds to the language you studied in high school. The results are used to determine your placement level for these two areas. These assessments must be taken online at least one week prior to attending orientation. You will receive instructions on how to take the assessments to your Hofstra Pride e-mail account.
- Do I need to take the placement assessments if I have Advanced Placement (AP) credits or college level credits?
Students should take both the Math and Foreign Language placement assessments. Scores from these exams will give your advising dean the best understanding of your proficiency in both subjects. You should also bring all scores and other information from AP or college level courses to your academic advising appointment during New Student Orientation. This will allow your advising dean to assess your proficiency and suggest courses for the next semester.
- What is this Common Reading book I keep hearing about?
We use our summer orientation program to give you a taste of the kind of excitement you will experience this fall in a Hofstra classroom. Each year the Common Reading Book Selection Committee selects a text that is the basis of the discussion that takes place during New Student Orientation. Deposited students will be receiving a link to the reading after May 15. We expect you to read it in advance of your orientation session, so that you will be able to participate in the faculty-led panel discussion.
Visit the Common Reading website for more information.
- When do I plan my schedule?
All students attend a curriculum overview to learn about degree requirements on Tuesday and Wednesday. In addition, students receive information about the registration process, academic expectations and deadlines. New students register for classes on Thursday.
You may have registered a preference in advance for a first-year seminar and/or cluster for your specific first-semester academic program. At orientation you will meet with an advisement dean or faculty adviser to discuss your curriculum options. It is at this point that you will complete your schedule by adding courses. If you have not selected a preference for a specific first-semester seminar and/or cluster, these may be available to you during orientation. Your advisement dean or faculty adviser will review your curriculum options and placement in math and foreign language classes based on your assessment scores.
- Can my parents come to orientation?
Yes. The Office of Parent and Family Programs has designed a program for the parents/family members, separate from the new student orientation. For Family Orientation schedule and details, please visit hofstra.edu/fo. The Parent and Family Orientation sessions occur in the same week as the student’s confirmed date of their new student orientation. When students sign up for New Student Orientation, they will have an opportunity to sign up family members for Family Orientation. Please note that during week 7, Family Orientation will be streamed online. Family Orientation will take place in person during weeks 1-6 and 8.
Please note that, because of the CDC and NYS COVID-19 guidelines, only one parent or family member per student is allowed to participate in an in-person Family Orientation and there are limited first-come, first-served spaces available. Two screens are allowed for the virtual Family Orientation, July 27-29, 2021.
- What if I need to cancel or reschedule my orientation date?
To reschedule your orientation session, log into the Hofstra portal (my.hofstra.edu) and send an email from your Hofstra email address to firstname.lastname@example.org and indicate your full name, your Hofstra ID number (70xxxxxxx) and your new date choices. We will make every attempt to accommodate your request.
- Will I have a full range of course options if I attend a later New Student Orientation session?
Courses are available throughout the summer, and the University reviews the course offerings to ensure that we meet the needs of our students. Students are strongly encouraged to pre-register a preference for the First-Year Connections program. This program serves as a cornerstone for your academic schedule.
For more information regarding First-Year Connections, visit hofstra.edu/connections or contact the Center for University Advisement at (516) 463-7222 or (516) 463-6770.
- When does New Student Orientation end?
Orientation is completed on Thursday afternoon after each student registers for classes and completes several online components before and after their advisement appointments.
- What medical records does the University require?
Students should upload immunization records to Hofstra.Medicatconnect.com before the first day of classes. Students should make sure to both upload a complete record and enter the dates accurately. In addition, you should make sure that you have answered the meningitis vaccine question, even if you have received the vaccine. Students who do not comply with this New York state law are not permitted to attend classes at the University. Call Student Health Services at 516-463-6745 with any questions.
- What type of computer should I purchase for the fall?
You may want to purchase a computer specific to your field of study. Here are some recommendations.