POP: Registration & Fee Waiver

What's POP?

Wildcat Welcome is a highlight for students during their tenure at Northwestern, with the opportunity to build connections with students within your academic concentration and from around campus! For those that want an additional opportunity to build connections, there is POP. POP, Northwestern's Pre-Orientation Programs, consists of 4  experiences that incoming students have the option of participating in right before they launch into Wildcat Welcome, Northwestern's week-long orientation program. Though students have opportunities to build relationships with students during Wildcat Welcome, POP provides an additional way to do so while participating in topical programming. Approximately 13% of the incoming class chooses to participate in POP.

Dates to Know for 2017

  • May 2: POP Registration Opens
  • June 1: POP Registration Closes (at 11:59 p.m. CDT)
  • June 12: POP placement, and fee waiver status if applicable, announced 
  • June 26: POP payment due

POP Registration

During this period, you will complete the registration form by ranking the programs for which you are interested (you can rank from just 1 to all 4 programs). Though POP registration is NOT first-come, first-served, the time of your registration's final submission may play a small factor in the placement process; due to trip capacities, placement is not guaranteed. You will learn of your POP placement on June 12 by 11:59 p.m. CDT via email; the email notification will direct you to complete your POP payment by 11:59 p.m. CDT on June 26. Your spot will not be held if payment is not received by the June 26 deadline. 

*We suggest to maximize your rankings (i.e. list as many different trips as possible) so as to have a higher likelihood of placement into POP. There are approximately 300 students who participate in one of the four trips. Listing only one program, or listing it multiple times, does not increase your chance of being placed into that program.

Find more info on all POP experiences.

Fee Waivers

We are dedicated to making experiences accessible to all incoming students. The POP application form includes a section for applicants to designate if they wish to be considered for a POP fee waiver; requesting a Fee Waiver in no way impacts your POP placement (placement is need-blind). Fee waivers are determined by Undergraduate Financial Aid based on financial need. You will learn of your fee waiver status along with your POP placement notification on June 12. If you do not receive a fee waiver and are not able to financially support your placement, please contact New Student & Family Programs at orientation@northwestern.edu or at 847-467-3988 to discuss possible next steps.

Faith-based Experiences

For those not participating in POP and looking for a faith-based experience may be interested in two other programs. Though not hosted by Northwestern, Hillel's Freshman Fest and the Sheil Catholic Center's First Night programs provide options to connect with others in a one night program. Each of these programs begin in the afternoon of Sunday, September 10 and conclude the morning of new student move-in day on Monday, September 11. 

Northwestern University Marching Band (NUMB)

If you participated in your high school band, joining the Northwestern University Marching Band (NUMB) is a really great way to continue playing (you do not even need to be a music major to participate). Big Ten football, lifelong friends, and an opportunity to become an important part of Northwestern are just a few benefits of joining NUMB. Join NUMB by visiting their website or calling 847.491.3412.

By joining NUMB, you would report to campus August 26 (if you are in the drumline, you report August 20). Your first few weeks on campus will provide you with an incredible ability to not just participate in band practice, but begin making bonds that will last a lifetime!