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Parent & Family Orientation 2022

Welcome to the Wildcat Family! Even if you went to college, Northwestern is a unique place, and we feel strongly that parents and families need orientation too! Parent and Family Orientation (PFO) is designed to introduce you to the people and resources available to help support you and your student during their time at Northwestern. PFO is for the parents and families of both 2022 Transfer Students and the Class of 2026. Orientation leaders, called Family Ambassadors, will guide you through the program, answer your questions and give you some insight into student life on campus.

PFO will take place on September 12 and 13, 2022. Registration for this free program is now open and will close on Friday, September 2 at 11:59 pm CDT.

Click Here to Register for Parent & Family Orientation 2022


New Student move-in will take place on Monday, September 12 and PFO programming will begin at 4:00 pm that day. March through the Arch will take place on Tuesday, September 13 from 10 am – 11 am and PFO will end by 5 pm on Tuesday. Please see the tentative schedule below for more details. We hope you’ll plan to join us!

Parent & Family Orientation 2022
Schedule & Important Information

(Please Note: Event locations will be posted later this summer)
  • 8:00 am – 4:00 pm        Move-In Day (assigned residence halls)
  • 8:00 am – 5:00 pm        Wildcat Welcome/Parent and Family check-in (assigned Wildcat Welcome Center)
  • 8:30 am – 10:00 pm        Move-In Day Parking Shuttles to Ryan Field
  • 4:00 pm – 5:00 pm        Parent & Family Welcome from President Schapiro
    • Northwestern University President Morton Schapiro addresses the parents and family members of new students and sets the tone for the upcoming school year and the undergraduate experience. This event will be recorded.
  • 5:30 pm – 6:30 pm        Academic  Welcome for Families
    • Faculty and staff from your student’s school will talk about the academic experience at Northwestern. 
  • 6:30 pm – 8:00 pm        President’s Reception for Parents and Families
    • Enjoy hors d’oeuvres while socializing with Northwestern’s president. The event is casual since it’s move-in day!
  • 8:00 pm – 9:30 pm        “A Year in the Life” Skits and Panel Presentation with Family Ambassadors
    • Current students perform vignettes depicting typical first-year and transfer student experiences, followed by a Q & A session.
  • 10:00 am – 11:05 am     March through the Arch & Kiss n’ Bye (Weber Arch, Deering Meadow)
    • Witness your student take their symbolic “first steps” onto campus as they enter through the Arch and into our campus community. The Northwestern University Marching Band will usher them to Deering Meadow for a pep rally and speeches by various Northwestern and community officials. This event culminates in Kiss ‘n’ Bye, the final opportunity to bid farewell to your student before they begin orientation programming, and you proceed to your next event. This event with be livestreamed and recorded.
  • 12:30 pm – 3:30 pm      Campus Tours (Leaves from Norris Center West Entrance)
    • Family Ambassadors will give an hour-long walking tour of campus. Tours leave every half hour with the last one leaving at 3:30 pm.           
  • 1:00 pm – 4:00 pm        Parent and Family Resource Fair
    • Learn about the offices and services that are available to assist your student and meet the staff who will work with them.
  • 1:00 pm – 2:00 pm        Dean of Students Welcome and Panel Presentation
    • Meet Dean of Students Mona Dugo and others who will support your student during their time at Northwestern. This event will be recorded.
  • 2:00 pm – 3:00 pm        CAPS & MSA Session for Families of LGBTQ+ Students
    • Experienced staff from Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS) and Multicultural Student Affairs (MSA) will discuss the experiences LGBTQ+ students may face in their transition to Northwestern and present the resources available to support these students in their first year. This session is available for families with students who identify as Lesbian, Gay, Bi-Sexual, Pansexual, Trans*, Asexual, Intersex, Queer and Questioning. This session is also available for students of LGBTQ+ parents or guardians.
  • 3:00 pm – 4:00 pm        Dean of Students Welcome and Panel Presentation (Repeat of 1 pm session)
    • Meet Dean of Students Mona Dugo and others who will support your student during their time at Northwestern.
  • 3:30 pm – 4:30 pm        CAPS & MSA Session for Families with Students of Color
    • Experienced staff from Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS) and Multicultural Student Affairs (MSA) will discuss the experiences students of color may face in their transition to Northwestern and present the resources available to support these students in their first year here. This session is available for families with students who identify as African American, Black, Asian, Asian American, Desi, Pacific Islander, Hispanic, Latino, Native American, American Indian, Indigenous, Middle Eastern, and Multiracial, Multiethnic, Bi-racial and Mixed students.
  • 3:30 pm – 5:00 pm        “A Year in the Life” Skits and Panel Presentation with Family Ambassadors
    • (Repeat of Monday evening event)
    • Current students perform vignettes depicting typical first-year and transfer student experiences, followed by a Q & A session

A Note about Health and Safety

The safety of our students is our top priority. The dates and details above are subject to change as Northwestern follows local, state, and federal health directives and guidelines. Students will be notified of changes via Purple Prep emails throughout the summer.

 

Parent & Family Orientation FAQ's

Most families wonder when they should plan to leave campus, if they will see their student once student orientation begins, and other travel concerns. You can find the answers to these questions on our FAQ page.

Meet the Family Ambassadors

The Family Ambassadors are a group of approximately 30 phenomenal students at Northwestern who have had a range of experiences and cannot wait to share them all with the family members of our newest Wildcats. Family Ambassadors assist with the execution of Parent and Family Orientation during Wildcat Welcome and will interact with family members throughout the program to ensure all questions are answered and needs are met. Learn more about the Family Ambassadors Program here!

Travel and Hotels

Whether it be by plane, train, or car, there are numerous ways to get to both Chicago and Evanston. We have a few resources that may be valuable as you look into traveling and staying in the Evanston/Chicago area. Visit the visitor's section of the Undergraduate Admissions page to view travel directions, which includes area maps, specific breakdowns of travel routes, and turn-by-turn directions.  View our Travel and Hotels page to view answers to more specific questions you may have.