Welcome to New Student and Family Orientation

orientation header


We are excited that you’ll be joining CougarNation. Each year, the Office of New Student Programs introduces incoming students and their families to the College of Charleston experience through orientation.

You’ll be able to choose from a number of orientation sessions that will help you make a smooth transition to the College.   Also, we'd love for you to spend a night in a residence hall. Just know, you should register for orientation housing starting April 15.

Registration for the summer 2022 in-person two-day orientation sessions is open.  The summer 2022 dates are listed below in the orientation dates section.  You will complete your registration through MyCharleston/My Portal.

During orientation, students will have the chance to:

  • meet other incoming students.
  • meet an academic advisor.
  • register for classes.
  • become more familiar with campus.
  • meet faculty from various programs on campus.
  • learn about the campus and the services that are offered.

Summer Orientation 2022

The following in-person orientation sessions are for students who are starting classes at the College of Charleston in fall 2022.  New students who pay the enrollment confirmation fee to the Office of Admissions will begin to receive orientation information in the mail starting in March.    Orientation registration is open and students may complete their orientation registration online through MyCharleston/My Portal. 

Session Day of the Week Date Notes Per Session 
Session 1 Monday and Tuesday June 20 and 21 CLOSED - this session is a honors preferred session; also open to all students
Session 2 Thursday and Friday June 23 and 24 CLOSED - this session is a honors preferred session and transfer student preferred  also open to all students
Session 3 Monday and Tuesday June 27 and 28 CLOSED - this session is a honors preferred  and transfer student preferred session; also open to all students
Session 4 Thursday and Friday July 7 and 8 CLOSED - this session is a honors preferred session; also open to all students
Session 5 Monday and Tuesday July 11 and 12 this session is a honors preferred session; also open to all students
Session 6 Thursday and Friday July 14 and 15 this session is a honors preferred session; also open to all students
Session 7 Monday and Tuesday July 18 and 19 this session is a transfer student preferred session; also open to all students
Session 8 Thursday and Friday July 21 and 22
Session 9 Monday and Tuesday July 25 and 26
Session 10 Monday and Tuesday August 15 and 16 transfer students only
Session 11 Thursday and Friday August 18 and 19 freshmen only who live FARTHER than 700 miles away from Charleston, SC unless you have extenuating circumstances

Session 10 is for transfer students only.  Transfer students are welcome to attend any of the first nine sessions.  Please note: There are a limited number of seats available that we will reserve on a first-come, first-served basis.

Session 11 is for freshmen only who live FARTHER than 700 miles away from Charleston unless you have extenuating circumstances.  Please email orientat@cofc.edu if you have questions and additional information. You are welcome to attend any of the first nine sessions in June or July.
Please note: There are a limited number of seats available that we will reserve on a first-come, first-served basis.

The first day of classes for the fall semester is Tuesday, August 23, 2022. For additional semester dates, please refer to the academic calendar for each semester.  

We charge everyone a nonrefundable, $133, new-student program fee (updated 4/5/2022). It is used to cover the costs of processing your application, orientation materials, orientation programming and student staff wages.  This fee, plus any others related to orientation, will be due when your tuition bill for the upcoming semester.  

Getting Started

Technology note: The registration process is not designed to be completed on your smart phone or touch-screen tablet.


  1. When you are ready, type my.cofc.edu into your browser. Use your permanent username to log into your permanent MyCharleston account and complete the online registration form. Your permanent username is made up of letters, not numbers. So if you are using your student ID number as your username, you will not be able to access the form. Refer to “Create Your MY.COFC.EDU Student Account” information for help.
  2. Go to the Academic Services tab.
  3. Scroll down and locate the “orientation” box.
  4. Click on the “orientation registration” link in the “orientation” box. Verify that your name and email address are displayed.
  5. You will automatically be routed to the online registration form.
  6. Follow the instructions and complete the entire reservation form. Answer all the questions so we can plan the best orientation for you.


Submit a first choice and second choice. We will process registration requests on a first-come, first-served basis. You will be able to see the session to which you’ve been assigned on MyCharleston one week after you’ve submitted your request. Keep in mind that we do not mail or email confirmations.

You can view the virtual orientation session dates at www.orientation.cofc.edu. 


If any of your family members want to participate in family orientation, indicate the number of family members (excluding the student) who will attend ($35 per family member).  The fee will be charged to the student account and due with the student bill before the semester begins.  


What major interests you the most? Check the complete list of majors to see what is available to you.

If you are thinking about a career in medicine or law, you should know that pre-law and pre-med are not majors at the College. However, a number of our graduates do become lawyers, doctors, physician assistants, dentists, pharmacists, etc. They typically take advantage of our health professions and pre-law advising programs that prepare them well for their next steps.

If you really have no preference, select “undeclared” on the reservation form.


Note: This information will help your academic advisor prepare for your meeting.

We require a minimum score of 3 (AP exam) or 4 (IB exam) in order to earn College of Charleston credit. Only list exams where you have met (or expect to meet) the minimum score. For more information: transfer.coc.edu/transfercredit/credit-by-exam.php.

If you want to receive transfer credit for any AP or IB tests for which you’ve received the requisite minimum score, submit your final test scores to the Office of Admissions for evaluation. Check what the College accepts: registrar.cofc.edu/transfer/index.php.


Note: This information will help your academic advisor prepare for your meeting.

Freshmen: If you took Spanish, German, French or Latin in high school, but have not taken a foreign language at the college level, then your placement is determined by how many years of a language you completed at the high school level.

Transfer students: If you have taken a foreign language at the college level, you will be placed in the next course in sequence, in order to complete your 12-hour, general education requirement.

What foreign language did you study in high school?

If you took Latin, what was the last grade in which you took a Latin class?

Have you studied a foreign language at the college level? If yes, indicate which language you studied.

Which language do you plan to study at the College of Charleston?

For additional information about foreign languages placement testing: orientation.cofc.edu/placement-testing.


freshmen and transfers: Did you take college courses for credit while you were still in high school? If so, then you were dual enrolled. If you want to receive college credit for those courses you completed successfully, you must request separate transcripts for each course. Simply listing dual-enrollment courses on a high school transcript is not sufficient.

To assist advisors with your academic plan, please do the following:

List any college courses you have taken while in high school.

To receive credit for the coursework, please send an official transcript from the college

where the courses were taken to:

College of Charleston

Office of Admissions

66 George Street

Charleston, S.C. 29424-0001


You will be able to see your confirmation on MyCharleston one week after you submitted your reservation form. Log onto my.cofc.edu, select the academic services tab, go to the orientation box and click on orientation registration confirmation.

Note: We do not mail or email confirmations.

You should have received an email through the personal email account that you used on your application to the College. In this email there will be a link, a new username and password, and instructions for setting up your permanent student account. Click on the link and log in to activate your permanent student account with a new username and password.

From this point on, you will use this permanent account for all business you conduct with the College, such as registering for orientation, signing up for a meal plan, changing an address, checking space availability in a class and registering for a class, or reviewing account charges and balance information, and viewing your student email.

If you have not received an email with instructions on how to set up your permanent MyCharleston account, contact ITservicesdesk@cofc.edu or 843.953.3375. 

All students have a course registration hold, listed as an orientation hold, in their file until they attend orientation. It does not affect your ability to register for orientation.

You will register for your courses during orientation. Courses that may appear closed on MyCharleston may have seats open when new students register during orientation. This allows new students to have a chance to select the courses they may want.

The "perfect" schedule may not be available, but all students will be able to register for a full load of classes that will help them fulfill their core curriculum and degree requirements. New students should be prepared to be flexible and should not rule out registering for classes that begin as early as 8 a.m. or late in the afternoon.

After students attend New Student Orientation, they may make changes to their semester schedule through MyCharleston during designated open registration periods. It is recommended that students consult with their academic advisor about schedule changes.

If you have questions, please email or call 843.953.2017.

If you have a disability and need special arrangements for orientation, contact the Office of New Student Programs at 843.953.2017 as soon as possible.

If you have an emergency and must make a change to your orientation registration form after you have submitted it, email your requested change to orientat@cofc.edu. Please include your name and CWID (Campus Wide Identification Number). If we can accommodate your request, we’ll confirm by email. 


I have not taken any college classes. If I was dual enrolled in high school, I am still considered a freshman.

Transfer Student

I have taken college classes at a community or technical college, trade school, two-year or four-year college, and/or have military service credit with a Joint Services Transcript (JST).

Adult/Nontraditional Student

I am 23+ years old and/or am taking courses in the Bachelor of Professional Studies program.

Family Members

I am a family member interested in learning more about the services the College of Charleston offers.