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Chico State

Summer O: The First Step to the College Experience

Student and Summer O Staff using an iPad


Summer O FlagBy Alison Healey, Senior, Marketing & Recreation

You can feel the excitement and nerves of all the soon-to-be freshmen as they arrive for Summer Orientation, the first step of their college experience. “Summer O” is the time to meet new friends, talk to faculty and peers, sign up for classes, and to learn about opportunities available on campus.

The Summer O staff is a friendly, enthusiastic group who are there to guide students and guests through the day. They are filled with information and individual Chico experiences that they can’t wait to share.

Campus Tour
Campus tour

Summer O staff shares “insider” information during campus tours, like the streets running into the south border of campus spell out CHICO or Holt hall is a maze, so arrive early to class to be sure to get there on time. Students also to see where different departments and student services  are located, and most of all get a feel for where they will be spending the next four years of their lives.

At class talks, the students experience a classroom setting and learn about general education requirements, academic policies and regulations, and graduation requirements. The final classroom visit is to the computer lab, where students will enroll in their fall semester classes!

Students Registering for Classes
Students registering for fall semester classes.

Guests have a slightly different agenda for the day. In their first class they will also learn about university requirements. The rest of the day guests choose from a variety of talks.

By the end of the day students are expected to have a list of classes they would like to enroll in. Choosing a schedule can be overwhelming, but Summer O student advisors are there to help. With iPads, they help students pick out their first semester’s classes. Talking to a peer can ease the anxiety and stress of the process.

Student and Summer O Staff using an iPad
Summer O student adviser helping a student pick classes for fall semester.

While waiting to speak to a student advisor, students and guests can go to various informational booths, where they learn about specific opportunities and resources Chico State provides. Some of the booths include Financial Aid, Study Abroad, Career Center, Chico Community, First Year Experience.

Words of Advice:

As a senior here at Chico State I still remember my freshman orientation and how overwhelmed I felt and I have learned the feeling was unnecessary. Throughout the orientation information on graduation seems to be the key topic. What are the graduation requirements? How do I get out in four years? These talks will be given multiple times throughout the four years of college. So take notes and listen, but look at the information in detail later. Just breathe and enjoy the day. There is no need to plan all four years of college at orientation. Your plans will likely change many times! Orientation is the time to get an overview of the next four years, not plan every detail. Meet new friends and, most of all, enjoy the day!