Checklist for Orientation and Your First Year

Before you get started, make sure you also browse our checklist for admitted students so you know you're up-to-date on your transition to NIU!

  • 1

    Pay your Enrollment Fee and Register for Online Orientation.

    You will need to confirm your intent to enroll and pay your enrollment fee before you sign up for orientation. Once you’ve paid your fee you’ll be able to sign up for an orientation date.

    To register, click on the Undergraduate Orientation tile in the MyNIU Student Center to reserve your date.

    Note: The Undergraduate Orientation tile will not appear in your Student Center until your Enrollment Fee is paid.

  • 2

    Complete the Pre-Complete the Pre-Orientation Program (POP).

    You should start this required program at least two weeks before orientation—you’ll need to have this completed before you attend your orientation advising appointment. POP will help you learn about the Huskie community, introduce you to important resources and make sure you’re prepared for your upcoming orientation.

    To access the POP, log in to MyNIU and click on the Undergraduate Orientation Tile. You’ll see the Pre-Orientation Program (POP) link in the upper left corner of the page.

    Turn your volume on for the embedded videos (we recommend you use a computer). You can leave the program at any time. It will remember where you left off.

  • 3

    If You’ve Changed Your Major, Make Sure We Have it on File!

    It's important that we have your correct major at orientation. If you have changed your major since you applied to NIU, fill out a change your major form. After you submit the form, we'll send you confirmation of the change within 48 hours.

    Please note: If you change your major, you may have to change your orientation date. If this happens, we will contact you to reschedule.

  • 4

    Monitor Your Email to See if You Need to Take Placement Tests.

    Please see our FAQ for information about placement testing, or check the NIU Testing Services website.

    If you have any questions, please contact Testing Services at 815-753-1203 or

  • 5

    Get Ready for Your Advising Appointment and Course Registration.

    During your online orientation, you'll meet virtually with your academic advisor and register for classes. Here's how to prepare:

    • Make sure you’ve reset your initial NIU password.
    • Begin checking your NIU student email account.
    • Review the general education requirements.
    • View course descriptions and requirements for your major in the Undergraduate Catalog.
    • Explore the advising website for your program's college.
    • Make a list of courses you're interested in taking.
    • Review your college’s four-year degree path.
  • 6

    Participate in Your Advising Session and Orientation Programming.

    Upon registering for orientation, you’ll have access to your Pre-Orientation Program (POP), receive an invitation to select when you’ll attend your Session 0, and start getting more information about your orientation leading up to your orientation date.

    Your virtual orientation experience will include your POP, virtual meetings with an Orientation Leader and your peers during Session 0, and your initial advising and registration appointment with your academic advisor. After registering for an orientation date, you’ll receive an invitation to select when you’d like to complete your Session 0, a required part of the summer virtual orientation experience. Session 0 will give you the opportunity to engage with other new students and get you connected within the Huskie Community. In addition to getting to know your fellow Huskies, you’ll be introduced to important resources like the cultural resource centers, Housing and Residential Services, Campus Dining Services!

    An academic advisor from your college will contact you within the seven days leading up to your registered orientation advising date to provide you with your advising appointment time. You’ll participate in your initial advising appointment and enroll in your first semester courses on your orientation day.

  • 7

    Enroll in a University Experience Course and Complete Class Registration.

    After meeting with your academic advisor, it’s important to complete your course registration in MyNIU.

    Adding a University Experience (UNIV) course to your schedule will set you up for success your first year and beyond.

  • 8

    Protect the Pack

    Huskies take care of Huskies. We're resilient, respectful and moving forward, together. By following guidelines to promote the health and well-being of the NIU community, we can help protect each other from the spread of COVID-19. Familiarize yourself with expectation guidelines and protocols for Protecting the Pack.
  • 9

    Explore Engagement and Involvement Opportunities.

    Get ready to start your first semester at NIU. The last few weeks before the start of the semester is the perfect time to check out how you can get involved in activities, student organizations, leadership roles, community service and more.

  • 10

    Planning to live on campus? Make sure you’re ready for move-in!

    You should receive your move-in packet from Housing and Residential Life in the mail. Make sure to pay close attention to your instructions for a smooth move-in experience.

    All new students starting in the summer or fall who are planning to live on campus are expected to participate in move-in activities and will enjoy Week of Welcome (WOW) events just for new Huskies. 

  • 11

    Get ready for Week of Welcome (WOW) and your first semester!

    Expect a warm introduction to NIU with our Week of Welcome (WOW), offering activities and events just for our newest Huskies each fall semester.

    Fall classes will begin on Aug. 23, 2021. It’s important that you pick up all of your required textbooks before the start of classes.

    Take advantage of more welcome events for new students happening all year to get connected to campus and make a strong start at NIU.

Contact Us

Orientation and First Year Programs
Altgeld Hall 100
DeKalb, IL 60115

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