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New Student Orientation (NSO)

 NSO Team 2018


Welcome to Lewis & Clark College! New Student Orientation (NSO) is a multi-day program designed to introduce you to the way we do things here at L&C.

Our mission is to familiarize and integrate you into the academic and co-curricular life of the college, to expose you to the resources and opportunities available to you now that you’re a Lewis & Clark Pioneer and to begin to develop your understanding of and affinity for the college community. 

Orientation begins on Wednesday, August 28 and continues through Monday, September 2, 2019. The program is packed with important learning opportunities presented by faculty, staff and students. It includes a meeting with your faculty advisor, your first college class, a service opportunity in Portland and of course, a variety of social events for you to meet your peers. We’re already anticipating your arrival on campus with excitement and encourage you to check this site often as it will be the best place for up to date information.  

Around May 20th, you will begin to receive important information and instructions about tasks we require of you.  It will be to your benefit if you pay close attention to your L&C email and in a few cases, your mailbox. 

  • May 20 — We will mail the Guide to Pioneer Success (GPS) to your permanent home address.  This publication is dedicated to advising and other details regarding your course registration for the Fall semester.  You will be able to access a digital version beginning in May on this site that will be updated as needed during the summer. You will also want to access your Pioneer Portal throughout the summer.  The required tasks referenced in the GPS are also listed on the Portal. You can monitor your progress toward the completion of all summer tasks.
  • June 1- 24 — Exploration & Discovery (E&D) section preference form open
  • June 10 — You will receive information from the Advising Center by email
  • June 17 — Priority date for completion of World Language Placement 
  • July 8 — Priority date for completion of ALEKS Mathematical Placement
  • July 10 — You’ll receive your Exploration & Discovery Section assignment by email
  • July 19 — You’ll receive housing and roommate/s information
  • July 31 — First Round Registration (one class in addition to E&D)
  • August 2 — Second Round Registration (all remaining classes)
About NSO


“Don’t judge each day by the harvest you reap but by the seeds that you plant.” 

Robert Louis Stevenson

Each year, New Student Orientation is coordinated by an upper division Lewis & Clark student who, with the help of some key administrators, spends the summer working on a program that will help you transition to your first semester at the college. Franchesca Spann ’20 will serve as your Student Director of New Student Orientation.

Be sure to check this site often as it takes shape for the Fall 2019 NSO Program. 

Your NSO experience officially begins with your arrival on campus! You will want to arrive early in the day on Wednesday and get settled into your residence hall keeping in mind that Orientation programming begins around 4pm that afternoon. We will have a full schedule of events planned that will acquaint you with the campus, the resources available to you as you begin the year, and most importantly connect you to faculty, staff and other students who can assist you in making this important transition. Be sure to make your arrival plans with this in mind. 

Orientation is vital to your success at Lewis & Clark and gives you time to meet your peers and professors as well as learn about our community values and issues that impact the college experience.  There is a $180 orientation fee that will appear on your fall bill. For students receiving a Pell Grant, this fee will automatically be waived. Students who are not receiving a Federal Pell Grant but still demonstrate significant financial need should contact the Financial Aid Office at ( to discuss a waiver. 

Information for International Students

Please note that orientation for international students begins on Monday, August 26. Refer to the International Students page for more details.

Information for Transfer Students

If you are transferring to Lewis & Clark, there are a number of events highlighted in the orientation schedule specifically for you. While we recognize that you have probably had a formal orientation at your previous institution, Lewis & Clark may do things a bit differently and we really want you to take advantage of New Student Orientation programs.

Information for Parents

Since many of you will be accompanied by your parents when you arrive on campus in August, we have a program specially designed for them as well. Parents Preview begins on Wednesday evening, August 28 and concludes after dinner on Thursday, August 29.  Email invitations will be sent directly to your parents in mid-June 2019. An overview of the program will be available on the Parents Preview Web site. Please pass this information along to your parents so they won’t feel left out of your excitement for L&C.

Your NSO Student Leaders

We expect a group of extraordinary students will operate as our Student Leaders for NSO 2019. There are two leadership teams: group leaders and management team leaders. New students will attend orientation events in their orientation groups of about 20 students, and each group will have a group leader. The management team members are the behind the scenes heroes, taking care of all of the logistical set up to keep our events running smoothly. Both management and group leader teams will be trained and able to help you and your families with your transition to Lewis & Clark. These student leaders are also a great resource for you over the summer. 

NSO Summer Mailings

You will be receiving NSO mailings throughout the summer. The GPS (Guide to Pioneer Success) will be mailed on May 17, 2019 and you should receive it by May 20th. This mailing steps you through the summer registration process and gives you a general overview of the Orientation program. Then around the middle of July, you’ll receive the second installment of Orientation information. Each time a mailing goes out, the information can also be found on the Summer Mailing Information page, which is updated regularly. Please hold on to all of the items that come to you in the mail as they will serve as resources in the preparation for your arrival throughout the summer. 

Questions about NSO?

Planning for New Student Orientation for 2019 and Parents Preview will begin soon.  You can reach Sandi Bottemiller, Director of Housing and Orientation, at 503-768-7183 or should you have questions about the program. 

New Student Orientation (NSO)

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