Student and Family Support

Countdown to Columbia: Family Orientation!

In This Newsletter

  • Family Orientation Registration
  • When is Family Orientation?
  • Arrival: Sunday, August 25
  • Arrival: Monday, August 26
  • Convocation Ceremony
  • Convocation Reception
  • Disability Access at Orientation
  • Family Orientation on Broadway
  • Financial Aid & Educational Financing Update
  • Outside Scholarship Notification
  • Deadline Reminder: Certify Meningitis Vaccination
  • Deadline Reminder: Submit Proof of MMR Immunity
  • Deadline Reminder: Sign Up Parent/Authorized Payer
  • Important Dates

In about one month we will swing open the storied Columbia University gates and welcome our first year students and families to campus for move-in, orientation, and convocation. Parent & Family Programs is committed to ensuring that you have all of the information and assistance you need for an easy move to campus and memorable start to your Columbia experience.


Matthew Patashnick
Director of Parent & Family Programs
212-854-2446 |

Family Orientation Registration

All families are invited to join us for Family Orientation activities and workshops, which are designed to welcome you to the Columbia Family and give you great information about the offices, resources, and staff with whom your student will work. We will offer meals, trips to Bed, Bath & Beyond, and lots of helpful tips. Family Orientation registration is now available online.

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News & Announcements

When is Family Orientation?

Family Orientation begins when you arrive to campus on August 25 or 26. Be sure to confirm your family's arrival date on the New Student website.

Arrival: Sunday, August 25

Families of students with a confirmed arrival date to campus of Sunday, August 25, should plan to check in with Parent & Family Programs between 8:00 a.m. and 1:00 p.m. to receive your schedule, nametags, and answers to any of your questions! We'll be on the lawns near Hartley/Wallach.

Arrival: Monday, August 26

All families are welcome to check-in with Parent and Family Programs on Monday, August 26, on the lawns near Hartley/Wallach between 7:00 a.m. and 2:00 p.m. to receive your schedule of events, nametags, and answers to your questions!

Convocation Ceremony

All students and families should plan to attend the Convocation Ceremony on the South Lawns at 2:30 p.m. on Monday, August 26. This special event, full of tradition, pomp, and circumstance, signifies the official start of the Columbia academic experience.

Convocation Reception

At the close of Convocation, parents and students will say their farewells. Students will then start the New Student Orientation Program (NSOP), while families are welcome to join us for a reception in Low Library from 4:00 to 6:00 p.m. to celebrate the beginning of the academic year.

Disability Access at Orientation

We are committed to making Columbia University orientation events accessible to all guests. Contact Parent & Family Programs by email should you or a member of your family require accommodation.

Family Orientation on Broadway

Parent & Family Programs is pleased to make available a limited number of tickets to Let It Be, The Fantasticks, and Avenue Q on Sunday, August 25, at a great discount. Ticketing information will be in your Family Orientation registration confirmation email.

Financial Aid & Educational Financing Update

If your family is planning to borrow a federal student or parent loan to cover educational expenses, you will need to complete the Loan Request Form.

Outside Scholarship Notification

Remind your student that s/he is required to notify the Office of Financial Aid & Educational Financing of outside scholarship awards and other external funding via the Outside Scholarship Notification Form.

Deadline Reminder: Certify Meningitis Vaccination

Students must make an informed decision about being vaccinated for meningococcal meningitis and certify their decision online by August 2.

Deadline Reminder: Submit Proof of MMR Immunity

Students must submit documentation of immunity to MMR to the Columbia Health Immunization Compliance Office prior to registering for classes.

Deadline Reminder: Sign Up Parent/Authorized Payer

Remind your student to add you as an Authorized Payer on her/his E-Bill. Your student must log in to SSOL and follow the instructions that follow to add authorized payers.


Important Dates

Deadline to Certify Meningitis Vaccination Decision
Deadline to Submit Proof of MMR Immunity
Last Day to Sign Up Parents/Authorized Payer
Deadline to Upload Photo for University ID Card
First Fall Tuition Bill Available
Move-in for Those Traveling a Great Distance
Move-in, Family Orientation, and Convocation
First Day of Fall 2013 Classes
First Fall Tuition Bill Due
Deadline to Enroll In or Waive Health Insurance

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