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The Hofstra Discovery Program

Sunday August 26, 2018 through Wednesday, August 29, 2018. 
The Hofstra Discovery Program is a dynamic, interactive program designed for incoming first-year and new transfer students who wish to be actively engaged through advocacy, community service, outdoor recreation, and reflection.  Participants in the past have chosen the following paths of discovery – community empowerment, outdoor exploration, social awareness, or sustainable solutions – and are led in small groups by upper-class discovery student-leaders, faculty, staff and community partners who share the same passions for discovery.  This is an opportunity to build connections, hone leadership skills and begin the transition to college life and learning. As a participant in the Discovery Program, students take their first step towards discovering their path here at Hofstra University. The fee for the Discovery Program for 2018 is $500.


Students can select a path that best suits their interests; each path provides interactive programs and experiences. Below are examples of Path from prior years. Note that the events and activities in each path changes from year to year and selection of paths is on a first-come-first-serve basis.

Path I – Community Awareness

This path focuses on working with organizations that help develop and empower communities in need. Participants may:

  • Paint a local elementary school playground.
  • Serve the guests at a local soup kitchen.
  • Help maintain the facilities of a homeless shelter.
  • Visit the United Nations in New York City.
  • Distribute food – that otherwise would have been thrown out – to those in need with Food Not Bombs.
  • Work with Hofstra's Center for Civic Engagement.

Students in these majors would benefit from this path: Political Science, Religion, Sociology, American Studies, Psychology, Communication, Liberal Studies, Community Health, Health Science.

Path II – Outdoor Exploration

This outdoor path focuses on providing students an opportunity to explore the outdoors, challenges them to take risks, and allows them the time to reflect on living life intentionally. Participants may:

  • Camp overnight at a New York state park, reflecting on being in nature.
  • Participate in outdoor activities including kayaking, hiking, and biking.
  • Visit a local Indian Reservation and learn about Long Island heritage.

Students in these majors would benefit from this path: Global Studies, Geography, Biology, Psychology, Environment & Sustainability, Geology, Physical Education.

Path III – Leadership

This path focuses on helping students to find and enhance the leader within. Students in this path will learn their leadership style as well as experience firsthand what it means and what it takes to be a leader among fellow peers. Participants may:

  • Attend a leadership summit in Manhattan.
  • Participate in intensive team building activities such as a high and low ropes course.
  • Participate in and/or watch a Ted Talk.

Students in these majors would benefit from this path: Entrepreneurship, Management, Education, Political Science, Legal Studies.

Sign Up

Sign up for Discovery Program Begins June 2018


There will be no refunds for cancellations after August 1, 2018


Contact us at DiscoveryProgram[at]hofstra.edu

The Hofstra Discovery Program

What Participants Say

“The friends I made and the people we helped. It was such a worthwhile experience and a great way to start my college career.”
-Irene Wymes

“I have met a few of my future classmates, ventured from my comfort zone and learned about ways to get involved throughout my upcoming years at Hofstra. I feel charged and ready to continue acts of service in our local community.”
-Rebecca Gianarkis

“I grew emotionally by stepping out of my comfort zone into not only a whole new region, but also a whole new economic class. I feel better educated and cultured through this experience.”
-Kirsten White

Meet the Staff

Discovery Program Stats

  • After the program, 92% of the students felt a connection to Hofstra, 46% felt a connection to Hempstead, and 62% felt a connection to NYC.
  • Before the program, 18% thought the main reason for homelessness was “lack of motivation.” Afterwards, 0% thought this was the main reason.
  • 87% reported being thankful to have gone through the program
  • 83% reported that the Discovery Program impacted their views about conservation or compassion
  • 86% reported that their involvement in the Discovery Program positively impacted their adjustment to college

Frequently Asked Questions