New Student Orientation
Frequently Asked Questions
Please read every section
Is the two-day New Student Orientation (NSO) mandatory for all new students?
Yes, all incoming students with less than six transfer credits are required to attend the two-day New Student Orientation. College Now credits do not count towards the six transfer credits. All segments of the two-day NSO are mandatory and attendance is taken at each segment of the orientation program. Any incoming student with more than six transfer credits and students participating in the Verrazano School, Macaulay Honors College, Teacher’s Academy, enrolled through a Network program, and students participating in the ARC (Adults Returning to the Classroom) are exempted from the two-day orientation requirement, but may have to fulfill orientation requirements within their individual programs. Students participating in these programs should consult with their program advisors regarding their program requirements. Transfer students with more than six credits are not required to attend the two-day NSO. However, some programs at CSI may have a mandatory transfer orientation.
Do I have to pay an orientation fee?
No. Currently, there is no fee to attend NSO.
Why are the NSO programs mandatory?
The College of Staten Island strongly believes NSO and acclimation to our university are important to new student success. The Council for the Advancement of Standards in Higher Education (CAS) has developed standards and guidelines for Student Orientation Programs (SOP) that are essential to student development. CSI is also required by the federal government and the City University of New York (CUNY) to provide new students with information regarding health, wellness, academic policies, and safety at CSI.
What happens at two-day NSO?
The two-day NSO program is a comprehensive program that consists of multiple departments and offices on campus. Students will be formally welcomed to the University by the CSI Administration. The program also provides opportunities for students to become engaged and meet other students, staff, and Orientation Leaders through a Team Building Activity. Students also learn about co-curricular options and campus involvement from a student-panel from the Office of Student Life in “Get Connected.” Students are also provided with an opportunity to learn about “Academic Expectations,” which engage students about academic strategies for success, and provide students with an opportunity to understand the general education curriculum at the College. An additional “Academic Overview” presentation from the Center for Advising and Academic Success (CAAS) provides students with insights for understanding the advisement and registration process, which will take place on day-two of the program. Moreover, on day one, students also attend two faculty-led academic workshops of their choice, giving them the opportunity to meet and talk with faculty and to explore the various requirements of a particular major, and the different career paths that the major can lead towards. The NSO also provides students with the opportunity to ask questions regarding student and academic services on campus in an interactive “talk show” format. Students will also receive important information about your rights and responsibilities as a CSI student, including academic policies and the University Code of Conduct. Furthermore, students learn about campus civility and also attend a Diversity Workshop, participate in Library Tours, engage in an Orientation Leader led JAM “Just Ask Me” session to learn about strategies for succeeding as a first-year student and learn more about the CLUE Program. Additionally, students participate in an Office of Information Technology workshop, where students are able to set up their CUNY Portal accounts, CSI email accounts, and other important content regarding technology on campus, such as CUNY First and culminate the program with registering for their first semester of classes and receiving their CSI DolphinCards.
How do I register for NSO?
In order to register for the mandatory two-day NSO, students must have been accepted to the College of Staten Island and submitted their Admission Response Form to the Office of Recruitment and Admissions and have satisfied the College’s Commitment Policy outlined on the Admission Response Form. All new students entering CSI must demonstrate proficiency in reading, writing, and mathematics through a series of CUNY Skills Assessment Tests prior to registration for orientation. Some students may satisfy this requirement by achieving the necessary scores on Regents, ACT, or SAT exams, or with college-level English and math courses (transfer students only). Students can find out if they satisfy this requirement by clicking here or they can call the College Testing Office at 718.982.2380. Students, who do not satisfy this requirement by achieving the necessary scores on Regents, ACT, or SAT exams, will need to complete the CUNY Skills Assessment Tests. Incoming students will automatically receive a testing appointment in the mail, and are encouraged to make their first scheduled appointment, as it will impact a student’s ability to enroll. In addition, the outcomes of these tests may impact a student’s admission status and enrollment at the college and orientation. The College of Staten Island requires all incoming students who have failed parts I & II of the CUNY Assessment Test in Mathematics to complete CSI’s free math immersion program prior to their first semester of matriculation at the College and must be enrolled in the program in order to register for the mandatory two-day NSO. Once a student has completed their admissions requirements, and have taken all of their CUNY Assessment tests and have retrieved their results, they are eligible to register for the mandatory two-day NSO. Students who may have failed any of the CUNY Assessment Tests have the opportunity to participate in the Immersion Program, in which students will register for the mandatory two-day NSO when they register for the Immersion Program in building 1L, room 117 to ensure they attend an orientation program that does not conflict with Immersion classes. In addition, students who have failed parts I & II of the CUNY Assessment Test will need to be enrolled in Immersion, and at that time, will be registered to attend orientation. Students will receive an email invitation to their VIP accounts set-up through the Office of Recruitment and Admissions, followed by a postcard in the mail from the Office of New Student Orientation/CLUE. Incoming students should follow the instructions on the email and postcard in order to register for the mandatory two-day NSO program.
I registered for the mandatory two-day NSO, but I need to change my date. How do I do that?
If you have registered for the mandatory two-day NSO and need to change your orientation date, you should contact the Office of New Student Orientation/CLUE as soon as possible at 718.982.2529. Dates can only be changed if space is available, so be sure to make sure you register for an NSO date that you can attend. Students participating in the Immersion Program should register for an NSO date that does not conflict with class instruction. Students participating in the Immersion Program must not miss instruction to attend NSO, and should attend an NSO date designated for students participating in the Immersion Program.
What if I attend one day of the orientation? Can I attend a second day at another time?
No. Students must complete the full two-days of the NSO program consecutively in order to register for classes and enroll at the College of Staten Island. Students who complete day one of the program, and not day two, will need to re-attend both days of another NSO session, if space permits, otherwise, a student will not be able to enroll. If you have difficulties attending the mandatory two-day NSO session, please contact the Office of New Student Orientation/CLUE at 718.982.2529. Please note, when you register for the two-day NSO that you should plan to be there for the full two-days. Students are not permitted to leave early.
What is the Immersion Program?
The Immersion Programs are intensive workshops which provide an opportunity for students who need to demonstrate proficiency on the CUNY Assessment Tests to receive tuition-free instruction in reading, writing and mathematics during the summer and/or January intersession. Students will retake the CUNY Assessment Test(s) in the discipline(s) in which they receive instruction during the program. Students who have failed parts I & II of the CUNY Assessment Test in Mathematics must be enrolled in the Immersion Program in order to attend orientation. If students are enrolled in the Immersion Program, they must not miss class instruction to attend an orientation. Students should register for an orientation program that does not conflict with their class instruction. Students participating in an Immersion workshop are to register for a two-day NSO session when they sign up for the Immersion Program with the Office of Academic Support, building 1L, room 117. If you are currently enrolled in the Immersion program, and have questions regarding your classes, or would like to enroll in the Immersion program, please contact the Office of Academic Support in building 1L, room 117, or call 718.982.3964.
Do I have to take a Foreign Language Placement Exam?
Foreign Language Fast Track: Students may register for any of the following foreign languages at the beginning level: American Sign Language, Arabic, Chinese, French, Italian, or Spanish. For students with prior knowledge of a language, we suggest the FAST TRACK to Language proficiency. With the Fast Track, students may finish the language requirement more quickly, be exempt from foreign language, and/or enter more quickly into language minors and majors. Graduates of high school in a non-English-speaking country are exempt from the language requirement. The Fast Track placement exam is administered by the Modern Languages Media Center (Building 2S, Room 109). For more information regarding the exam, please call 718.982.3711.
What are my required immunizations?
Students are required to hand in their immunization records in order to register for their classes. Students must provide proof of 2 doses of measles, 1 dose of mumps, 1 dose of rubella and 1 dose of meningococcal vaccines. Students may opt to sign the meningitis refusal form instead of receiving the meningitis vaccination. However, if the student is under the age of 18, a parent signature is required. Return the completed Measles, Mumps, and Rubella (MMR) Immunization Certification and Meningococcal Meningitis Vaccination Response Form to the Health & Wellness Center in building 1C, room 112 or fax it to 718.982.2966. Students will not be able to register for classes without meeting the immunization requirements. This should be completed at least 72 hours prior to their scheduled mandatory two-day NSO session. The form for MMR and Meningitis is available here. For additional questions regarding immunization requirements, visit the Health & Wellness Center in building 1C, room 112, or call 718.982.3045.
What if I am currently finishing the CUNY Start program?
Students, who are currently completing the CUNY Start program and are looking to enroll for the upcoming semester, must register for the mandatory two-day NSO program when they finish the program. Students currently enrolled in the CUNY Start program are encouraged to consult with their program advisor to find out their status in the program and more information about when to attend the two-day orientation.
What do I bring to orientation?
On both days of orientation, please bring a photo ID (high school ID, driver’s license, passport, etc.). Keep in mind the weather and dress accordingly. Students will be walking outside between buildings. Also, bring an umbrella if the weather requires one.
When do I register for my classes?
At orientation, you will take part in an Advisement & Registration session on the second day of the mandatory NSO. The purpose of this session is to make you aware of the requirements of the degrees offered at CSI and to ensure you enroll in the appropriate courses in order to progress towards your degree in a timely fashion.
During the Advisement & Registration Session, you will:
- Learn more about the results of your CUNY Assessment examination
- Receive a New Student Advisement Worksheet that details the General Education, prerequisite, pre-major and/or major requirements of your intended degree.
- Register for your classes electronically through the CUNY Portal and CUNY First
- At the conclusion of your registration, you will receive your program indicating the classes you are registered for. You will find out your tuition balance, and the final bill due date on CUNY First.
- Have the opportunity to speak with financial aid representatives regarding scholarships, loans, and federal aid.
What classes do New Students take?
The typical courses a first-term student attempts will differ depending upon that individual’s intended major and remedial status.
A typical schedule may include courses that will:
An academic advisor will review the various requirements of your degree and assist you with selecting eligible courses that will provide you with a solid foundation for success for your first semester at CSI.
How should I prepare for New Student Orientation?
You should dress comfortably and be ready to move between buildings on campus. Bring a photo ID (high school ID, driver’s license, passport, etc. , all are acceptable). Students will be provided with a brochure and a pen. You are encouraged to browse the CSI website and the New Student Orientation pages to familiarize yourself with the college and prepare any questions you may have to be answered at the orientation.
Where is Orientation?
The NSO occurs in several buildings around campus. Students driving to orientation should park in Parking Lot 4. Parking decals are not required to attend the two-day NSO and parking is free in Lot 4 during orientation days. Public Safety Officers are stationed at both main entrances to the campus in case you need directions. There are also signs along the main campus loop road,which will inform you where to go. Click here for more information on reaching CSI by means of public transportation.
For a map of the campus, click here.
For information and schedules for the free Ferry Shuttle and Loop Bus service, click here.
Can I bring a guest or a friend or family members to orientation?
Guests are not allowed to participate in the two-day NSO program with the students due to space restrictions. Only the student can attend the mandatory two-day orientation program. Family members who have questions or concerns are strongly encouraged to contact the Office of New Student Orientation/CLUE at 718.982.2529.
Who do I contact if I need special accommodations?
Students with documented disabilities or temporary injuries, who may need accommodations for orientation, must contact the Center for Student Accessibility at least one week in advance of their orientation date. Students can reach the Center for Student Accessibility at 718.982.2510.
What if I do not attend the mandatory two-day New Student Orientation?
All-incoming students are required to attend the two-day NSO. Students who do not attend the two-day NSO will not be able to enroll at the College of Staten Island for the upcoming semester
All students will have an orientation INDICATOR on their registration account. This INDICATOR is normally removed at orientation once students meet with an academic advisor and register for classes. Students who do not attend orientation will continue to have a INDICATOR on their account. The orientation INDICATOR prevents a student from registering for classes.
What should I do after orientation to ensure a smooth transition into my first semester at CSI?
Once you have completed your two-day NSO and have registered for your classes, be sure to pay your bill by the due date found on your CUNY First account, or you will be deregistered. You should also explore the resources you learned about at orientation to help support your academic success and attend CLUE events on campus to compliment your personal growth and co-curricular experience and to fulfill your CLUE requirement. Lastly, be sure to visit the Office of New Student Orientation/CLUE to speak with student mentors if you have questions. Know your schedule and the first day of you classes. The Spring 2014 semester starts on Monday, January 27.
How do I pay my bill and are their services offered to help me pay my tuition?
You must pay your bill by the date indicated on your bill, which you can access through your CUNY First account. If you have not yet applied for financial aid, you should do so at www.fasa.ed.gov, and visit CSI’s webpage for financial aid for additional information. If you are eligible for financial aid, you should inquire with a counselor if you qualify for the federal work study program, which provides on-campus jobs to students. If you require a loan after you register for your classes, download a Federal Direct Loan Application from the Student Financial Aid Office to make application.
The college also offers an Academic Management Service (AMS) pre-payment plan that allows you to make semester payments over a five-month period (two months before the semester and three after the semester starts). We recommend you sign up for the plan by phone 800.635.0120 or on the AMS website.
There is a $16.75 fee to sign up with AMS. To avoid being deregistered from your classes, pay your bill by the due date. You can pay online or pay in-person at the Office of the Bursar.
Do I need a parking decal?
The college policy requires all students (visiting, full-time, part-time, weekend, Continuing Education, etc.) and employees who park on campus to register their vehicle with the Office of Parking & DolphinCard Services, and display a valid CSI Parking Decal. Students have the option of purchasing a decal for the fall semester, the spring semester (which includes the summer sessions), or for the full academic year (fall, spring, and summer sessions).
For up-to-date information regarding parking fees and policies, please visit the Parking & DolphinCard Services webpage.
What is the Orientation Degree Requirement?
Students who enter the College with fewer than six credits are required to complete the orientation requirement. To satisfy the requirement, students must attend a mandatory two-day New Student Orientation to fulfill part one of the requirement, and choose between two options to fulfill part two of the requirement listed below, which should be completed prior to the completion of 12 equated credits:
- (A) Successfully complete a one-credit freshman orientation course:
SPD101: Issues in College Life (2 hours; 1 credit)
SKO 100: Freshman Orientation (2 hours, 1 credit – open only to SEEK students)
- (B) Attendance at four CLUE-certified events: two Personal Growth (PG) Experiences and two Co-curricular (CC) experiences.
Who is exempted from the Orientation Degree Requirement?
Any incoming student with more than six transfer credits and students participating in the Verrazano School, Macaulay Honors College, Teacher’s Academy, Veterans and students participating in the ARC (Adults Returning to the Classroom) program or enrolled in a network program are exempted from the two-day orientation portion of the requirement, but may need to fulfill orientation requirements within their respective programs. Students should check with their program advisors.
Any incoming students with more than six transfer credits and students participating in the Macaulay Honors College, Teacher’s Academy, and ARC program are exempted from the CLUE portion of the requirement as well. In addition, students enrolled through a network program and Veterans are also exempted from the CLUE portion of the requirement. In addition, students who have transfer credits for an orientation course equivalent to SPD101 are exempted from the CLUE requirement.
If you have additional questions
please contact the Office of New Student Orientation/CLUE at
718.982.2529 / 718.982.2596
Building 2A, Room 208
We look forward to seeing you at CSI!