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Family Orientation

Knowing where to turn when help is needed is important! Attend our Family Orientation program for the answers. The Family Orientation program is an optional, two-day program for parents that has been highly rated in the past and gives parents helpful information to support their student, especially during the critical first year.

The Family Orientation is held at the same time as New Student Orientation. The program gives family members an introduction to campus resources, opportunities to ask questions and meet others and a chance to see our beautiful campus.

The success of your student is our top priority. By sharing this information with parents, you can help ensure the success of your student. We encourage you to e-mail or call the Office of New Student Programs if you have any questions! Contact us at a 843.953.2017.

Orientation Sessions

How to Register for Orientation

  1. Go to, use your Cougars account information to log in, and select the “academic services” tab. **Use your permanent log in. It'll be letters, not numbers.**

  2. Scroll down and locate the “orientation” box.

  3. Click on the “orientation registration” link in the “orientation” box.

  4. You will automatically be routed to the online registration form.

  5. Verify that your name and email address are displayed and continue on to the registration form.

Summer 2015 Orientation Session Dates

The following session is for students who are starting classes at the College of Charleston in fall 2015.  Orientation is a two-day experience and students are expected to attend all progamming both days.

New students who pay the enrollment confirmation fee to the Office of Admissions at the beginning of March will receive information regarding orientation registration in the mail.  Students can complete their orientation registration online through MyCharleston starting March 18, 2015.  Students will include the number of family members attending family orientation on the student registration form. 

HONORS COLLEGE prefers that their students attend session 1, 2, 4 or 6. At these Honors College Preferred sessions, Honors College faculty and staff will be available to meet with students for advising.

TRANSFER STUDENTS are welcome to attend any session 1-8, but we encourage them to attend those that are denoted as transfer preferred, sessions 3, 6, or 9. These sessions are designed especially for you.

Session 1 Monday and Tuesday June 22 and23 Honors College Preferred CLOSED
Session 2 Thursday and Friday June 25 and 26 Honors College Preferred
Session 3 Monday and Tuesday June 29 and 30 Transfer Preferred
Session 4 Thursday and Friday July 9 and 10 Honors College Preferred
Session 5 Monday and Tuesday July 13 and 14
Session 6 Thursday and Friday July 16 and 17 Honors College Preferred, Transfer Preferred
Session 7 Monday and Tuesday July 20 and 21
Session 8 Thursday and Friday July 23 and 24
Session 9* Monday and Tuesday August 17 and 18 *Transfer Students Only- See special notes below
Session 10** Thursday and Friday August 20 and 21 **Freshmen Students Only- See special notes below

* Transfer students only. Transfer students are welcome to attend any of the sessions 1 through 8 (including Transfer Preferred sessions), but you are eligible to attend orientation session 9 (August 17-18), which is designed especially for transfer students. There are a limited number of seats available that we will reserve on a first-come, first-served basis.

** Freshmen living 700 miles away or further. Session 10 (August 20 and 21) is limited to freshman students who live 700 miles or more away from Charleston, SC.

Sorority recruitment will be August 18-23. If you are participating in sorority recruitment you may attend any orientation session OTHER than sessions 9 or 10.

Summer Preview will be August 20-22.  If you are participating in summer preview you can attend any orientation session other than the August sessions.

Student Holds

All students have an orientation hold on their file until they attend orientation. It does not affect the ability to register for orientation.

Family Orientation Activities

The family orientation program is a full, two-day program. Students and families should plan for activities to start at check-in between 7:30 a.m. and 8:15 a.m. and last until 5:00 pm on the first day. On the second day of summer orientation, activities will begin between 7:30 a.m. and 8:30 a.m. and end between 3:30 p.m. and 4:30 p.m. Students will have separate activities from their families for the majority of the program.

The general overview of summer orientation will give you an idea of the sessions that are conducted during the summer program.  The schedule will be posted in June on the orientation schedules section of this website. 

How to Register for Family Orientation

There is a space on the student's online reservation form to indicate how many family members will be attending. The cost, $35 per family member, is non-refundable.

Reservations can ONLY be made by completing the orientation reservation form online through My Charleston. Please do not make travel plans and/or reservations until your student's assigned orientation date has been confirmed.Students can view their assigned date on My Charleston one week after they have submitted their online reservation form.  Confirmations are not mailed or emailed. 

When New Student Programs receives the orientation reservation, we will mail confirmation information to the student with additional details about the orientation session.

If a student needs to add an additional family member after they have registered, contact us with the student's name and the correct number of family members. The additional fee will be added to the student account and due with the tuition bill. Also, family members can sign up at the late registration table at check-in.

Special Needs Students and Family Members

If you have special needs because of a disability, please call the Office of New Student Programs at 843.953.2017 so we can make appropriate arrangements to assist you during orientation.

For more information about services available to students at the College, contact the at Center for Disability Services at 843.953.1431.

More Tips for Parents (from family orientation newsletter)

Parent A to Z Guide

Tips for Families

Summer Reading List

Like Clockwork: The Rhythms of College Life

Parent Services

The College of Charleston welcomes parents and the families of our students. The parents website is your resource and connection to the College as your student moves through his or her time here. The links and pages listed here are your resource for information and updates.

The College of Charleston is pleased to provide this electronic information service especially for parents. The parent listserv is an interactive service parents can use to post questions for College faculty and staff who are also subscribers to the listserv.

To read the latest campus updates from the listserv, check out the parent blog.

Of course, if you have any questions, please feel free to contact us in the Office of New Student Programs.