In order to attend higher educational venues in the United States, you will need to become acquainted with your selected campus and departments. Every new student needs to do this as part of their educational experience. This orientation can be accomplished in a variety of ways. It is highly recommended to use a combination of the methods available. This way you will have all your bases covered, receive a lot of information, and be able to cipher through it. You will notice some similarities.
1. New student orientation
This is usually held by the Office of Registrar of the college. It varies from venue to venue, but it is usually mandatory for new students. Students receive a layout map of the campus along with a directory to the buildings. Each building will have a breakdown of what departments are located in it. Hopefully, your new student orientation will include a representative from each department introducing themselves to you. They, in turn, will describe what their department does. You will find out why and when to contact their respective departments. This is invaluable information.
2. College directories
Upon enrollment into a college, you will receive a directory of the venue (such as this one). Included in this will be class listings and descriptions. Depending on your college, there could be a listing of professors, associate professors, and teachers along with some background information. This will help you in deciding upon which class to choose, sometimes. The college directory is a great source for your orientation.
3. Campus publications
Student run publications, which most colleges have, are an invaluable source of on-campus and department information. They usually offer a variety of opinions, but this can be helpful to you.
4. Campus radio
Same reasoning is found here as for the campus publications mentioned.
5. Department publications
Sometimes, individual departments will have their own newsletter. This tells readers about upcoming changes and events. Obtain this publication and your campus and department orientation will go easier.
6. Local newspapers
Usually local publications have listings of events on campus.The news is usually impartial, so the information can be a benefit to you. This is a great way to get more information about what is offered through various departments. Call the contact information for more information.
Walk around the campus. Put simply, this is the easiest way to become acquainted with a school. Obviously, this takes more time than randomly flipping through a catalog, or looking at a map. If you do not have a campus map available, simply take a paper and pen with you. Draw the map along the way. There will be a sign on each building, usually containing the building name and department. Just make note of it on your personalized map.
Your college experience is one that will enrich your mind and soul. Make the most of it. Learn all you can about your campus and department orientation to make your experience a memorable one.
Photo courtesy of Jittery Monks