New Student Orientation for First-Year Students

Welcome to UIS – We are so excited that you have chosen to come to our University!

First Year students at Playfair, August 2014

First Year students at Playfair, August 2014

You are probably very excited about being admitted and trying to work through your next steps on your journey to entering UIS.  One of those next steps is registering and then attending a New Student Orientation Program.  New Student Orientation is designed to assist you and your parents/family/guests in making the transition to university life.

All new first-year students are required to participate in an orientation session prior to your first semester. 

Orientation is most beneficial when students and parents/family members/guardians attend together. We have designed a student program and a parent/family program to provide new students and their families with information to prepare for this new step in the student’s academic career.

Create Your NetID.

Before you can make your reservation you will need to create your NetID – this will allow you to enter our reservation program.   Your NetID will also activate your UIS email account.  It is very important to check this email account a couple times a week because the University will be sending all official communications to your UIS email account, including confirmation of your orientation reservation and any reminders and program updates that we will send.

Only admitted students who have signed and returned their acceptance letters and deposit will be able to register for an orientation session.  So make sure you sign and return that acceptance letter and send in any deposits before you make your orientation reservation.

For Students Admitted to the Spring 2015 Semester

Registration for First-Year Student Orientation is now open. To Register complete our online form.

Thursday, January 15

9 a.m. – 12 noon

Move in to On-Campus Housing for first-year students

11:30 am. – 12:30 p.m.

Orientation Check-in, Public Affairs Center (PAC), Student Theatre Lobby

12:30 p.m.

Welcome, UIS Academic Overview; Financial Assistance Overview; USFSCO Billing Overview; I-Card, Meal Plans, and Campus Cash. (Students & Families)

2:30 – 4:30 p.m.

Student Academic Overview – Advising part I

2:30 – 4:30 p.m.

Family and Guest Information Sessions (learn more about Campus Safety, Technology Services, Residence Life, Student Insurance, and more)

4:30-5:30 p.m.

Get It Done – Together. Offices including Student Insurance, Immunizations, Parking Operations, and more will be available to meet with students and families and persent information on services and programs. (Students & Families)

5:30 – 6:30 p.m.

Dinner with the Orientation Team (Students & Families)

6:30 p.m.

Students living on campus can return to rooms to finish unpacking and shopping

Friday, January 16

8 a.m.

Breakfast with the Orientation Team (Students & Families)

8:30 -10:30 a.m.

Students Get It Done (Students will be meet with Advisors, Register for Classes, get their I-Card, and meet with their Orientation Group)

8:45 – 10:25 a.m.

Family Information Sessions. Learn more about Health & Counseling Services, Disability Services, or Meet with a Financial Aid Counselor, and more. (Students & Families)

10:30 – 11:30 a.m.

Student and Family Information Sessions (learn more about Student Life, Leadership Programming, Volunteer & Service Learning, Career Services, and more)

11:40 a.m.

Closing & Evaluations (Students & Families)

* Please take any required Placement Tests before you arrive for your Orientation session. There will be no opportunity to take Placement Testing at this Orientation.

Do you have to take Placement Testing?

Entering students may have to take Math, Reading, or Foreign Language Placement Exams.  Math Placement often depends on ACT scores and your intended major.  Reading Placement is dependent on your English/Reading ACT scores.  Foreign Language Placement depends on your major or program of study or TOEFL, ACT/SAT, or Millicent scores if you are an International Student and English is not your first language. For more information about Placement Test requirements visit

Placement testing will not be offered at UIS as part of the Orientation program.  Students registering for the January 15/16 orientation program must complete placement testing in advance at a remote site or make arrangements to take the exam(s) on campus before that date.  Go to to request placement testing at the remote location most convenient to you. When your request is received and your registration is complete, you will receive an email with your registration number and instructions to schedule your exam time at the remote location. Please send in your request at least 4 weeks before your planned orientation date to allow sufficient time to register and schedule your exam. If you do not receive the confirmation email 7-10 days from the date you submit the request, or you have other questions, please call the Advising Center at 217-206-7471.

* International Students will be attending the International Student Orientation coordinated by the Office of International Student Services. Please visit their page for more information.  

For Students Admitted for the Fall 2015 Semester

First-Year Orientation dates are available on our Future Orientation Dates page and our online reservations will be available on February 1, 2015.  These two-day Orientation sessions will be held in June and July, involving an overnight stay for students – even for students who live locally and are planning on commuting during the school year. The goal of the overnight session is to provide opportunities for students to meet other members of their class and to give students an understanding of the residential, on-campus living experience.

There will be a Parent/Family program as part of our New Student Orientation.  The Orientation Fee includes expenses for the first year students and up to two family members.  There will be a fee for any additional guests to cover the costs related to orientation.  Parents/Family members and guests will need to make overnight accommodations at one of our area hotels.  Only students participating in the orientation program will be allowed to stay in the residence halls.

When making vacation plans please note that students are also required to attend the mandatory 3-day August Orientation program starting the Wednesday before classes start.

* International Students will be attending the International Student Orientation coordinated by the Office of International Student Services. Please visit their page for more information.  

For more information about New Student Orientation
please contact us at (217) 206.8181 or email