Orientation for Freshman Students

A student works on his computer

We are very excited for you to start your academic career at Montana State University! Orientation is your introduction to academic and non-academic life at Montana State University. All new students are required to attend an Orientation session.

Students accepted for admission to MSU will receive Orientation materials at the following times:

  • Students admitted for Fall Semester-after March 1st
  • Students admitted for Spring Semester-after November 1st
  • Students admitted for Summer Session-after March 1st

Learn more:

Orientation Dates 2016

Spring  January 11-12
Summer Session May 16
June 27
Summer June 13-15*
June 27-29*
July 11-13*
August 24-26

*Students attending these sessions are REQUIRED to stay on campus for the duration of Orientation.


Orientation Registration Information

All new students are required to attend an Orientation, except for students registering for summer courses. Please see below for more information.

Starting school in the fall?

Freshmen who will be starting school fall semester will need to register for one of the three summer Orientations (June or July) or the fall Orientation(August).

  • Students attending the June or July Orientation are required to stay on campus and pay a $130 non-refundable meals and lodging fee.
  • Students attending the August Orientation will move directly into their housing accommodations for the fall semester upon arrival to campus, so there is no meal and lodging fee associated with this Orientation.

You will be able to register for Orientation online through your Admissions Checklist in early March. In order to register, go to www.montana.edu/myinfo, then 'Enter Secure Area' with your Student ID number and password, then click on 'Admissions Checklist'. For detailed instructions on logging into My Info go to www.montana.edu/admissions/myinfo.shtml.

Starting school in the spring?

Freshmen who will be starting school spring semester, will need to register for Orientation to be advised for spring semester classes. Information regarding spring Orientation will be sent to you in early November.

Starting school in the summer?

Freshmen that start school during a summer session will not need to attend an Orientation for summer school. Students will be mailed information on course registration. *Please note that freshmen taking summer courses will still need to register for an Orientation during June, July or August to register for fall courses.

All new freshmen pay a one-time New Student Fee of $65. This fee is included on the fee statement of the first semester in which a student attends MSU.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact the Orientation Office at (406) 994-2827, toll-free at (888) MSU-CATS or via email at orientation@montana.edu.

Specialized Orientations

Veteran Orientation

Contact the Veteran Support Center at (406) 994-3661 or vets@montana.edu for information or to register.

Non-Traditional Student Orientation

The Non-Traditional Orientation is designed to meet the needs of incoming non-traditional aged students who are attending college for the first time. This program is by invitation only. Eligible students will be notified.


Tentative Orientation Schedules

June & July Orientation


9:00-11:00am Orientation Check-in
8:30-11:30am Math Placement Testing
8:30-11:30am Beginning College Survey of Student Engagement
8:30am-12:30pm Campus Tours (leaving every 30 minutes)
8:30am-12:30pm Library Self-Guided Tours
8:30am-12:30pm Fitness Center Tours
9:00am & 11:00am Museum of the Rockies Tour
10:45-11:30am Honors College
12:00-1:30pm Meet your Orientation Leader & Lunch
1:45-2:30pm Orientation Welcome
2:45-3:30pm Meet Your Dean of Students
3:45-5:00pm Residence Life/Living on Campus
5:10-6:00pm Financial Aid/Fee Payment
5:10-6:00pm Pre-Health Professions Advising
5:45-6:30pm Dinner
6:45-8:00pm Root Beer Floats at the MSU Library
7:15-8:00pm ROTC
7:15-8:00pm Pre-Law Advising
7:15-8:00pm Pre-Vet Advising
7:15-8:00pm Ask a Resident Director!
8:15-9:30pm Financial Education Workshop
10:00pm Introduction to the MSU Fitness Center- Open Gym
10:30pm Orientation Information Tables- A place to stop by and ask questions.
10:30pm Late Night Movie
11:30pm Fraternity & Sorority Life


7:00-8:00am Breakfast
8:00-9:00am Academics 1: Introduction to your MSU Degree
9:15-10:45am Academics 2: Welcome to the Academy, Presented by the Registrar's Office
11:00am-12:30pm College Expectations: Your Building Blocks to Success
12:30-1:15pm Lunch
1:30-1:50pm Academic Department Head Meetings
2:00-4:30pm Academics 3: Meet an Academic Advisor
4:30-5:30pm Extravaganza Information Fair
4:30-5:00pm Disability Services
4:30-5:00pm Veterans Services
4:30-5:00pm Diversity & Inclusion
4:30-5:00pm Office of Activities & Engagement/ Associated Students of MSU/Outdoor Recreation
5:00-5:45pm Student Athlete Session-Required for incoming Division I student athletes.
5:00-5:45pm Honors Pre-Registration Session- Required for incoming Honors College students.
5:45-6:45pm Dinner
7:00-8:45pm Choices Play- Performed by Student Orientation Leaders
8:45-10:00pm Academics 4: Review & Schedule Preview
10:00pm  MSU Live in the SUB-Bowling, Billiards, Photo Booth, Bingo & a Movie in the Procrastinator Theater
10:00pm Orientation Information Tables- A place to stop by and ask questions.


7:00-8:00am Breakfast
8:15-9:00am Exit Meeting with Orientation Leader
9:00am-1:00pm Course Registration
9:00am-1:00pm Career Coaching & Academic Advising

August Orientation


10:00-2:30pm Placement Testing
12:00-1:45pm Check-in for students last names A-K in the Strand Union Building
1:45-3:30pm  Check-in for students last names L-Z in the Strand Union Building
3:45-4:30pm Orientation Welcome
4:30-5:15pm Dean of Students
5:30-7:00pm Welcome BBQ for Students & Families
8:00-10:00pm Evening Activities


8:00-9:00am Advising Session 1: Introduction to Academics
9:15-10:45am Advising Session 2: Tips & Tools
11:00-12:30pm College Expectations
12:30-1:15pm Lunch
1:30-1:50pm Department Head Meetings
2:00-4:30pm Advising Session 3: Pick Your Classes
4:30-5:00pm Finalize Your Checklist
4:30-5:30pm Information Fair
5:30-6:15pm Information Sessions: Honors College, Disability Services, Career Pathways, Diversity Awareness & Athletics
 6:15-7:15pm Financial Education  


9:30am-4:00pm Course Registration
9:30am-4:00pm Placement Testing

Spring Orientation


8:00–8:45am Check-in
8:10–8:20am Campus Tours Departing every 5 minutes
9:00am Welcome to MSU and Program Overview
9:30–11:30am Registration Meeting
12:00pm Writing Survey
12:00–2:00pm Math Placement Exam
2:00pm Assistant Dean Meetings
3:00pm Academic Department Meeting
4:00pm Group Scheduling


8:00–10:00am Course Registration