International Student Orientation

International Student Orientation Schedule 2015:

Wednesday, August 26:

All-day shuttles to and from Logan International Airport

Check-in and Move-in

Converse Hall, Dormitories

9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.

Welcome to Amherst College! Students will receive their Amherst College ID and room key, as well as orientation packets as they arrive on campus. Student volunteers will assist incoming international students with locating their rooms, and moving in.


Hampshire Mall Shuttle

Meet at Converse Hall

1:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.

Student volunteers will accompany groups of five first-year international students to Hampshire Mall to purchase any essentials needed.


Pizza "Meet and Greet"

James Dormitory

9:00 p.m. – midnight

Student volunteers introduce themselves and lead icebreaker activities. Incoming international students will have an opportunity to meet fellow classmates, as well as volunteers while enjoying one of America’s favorite foods – PIZZA… (Do you know about the phenomenon called “freshman 15”? It starts here!)

Thursday, August 27:

Breakfast and Welcome from Amherst College Student Affairs

Valentine Hall

8:00 a.m. – 10:00 a.m.

Join the Dean for International Students, Lauren Clarke, and staff members from Student Affairs as they officially welcome you and your family members to Amherst College. Learn about the function of the International Student Advisor and the Class Dean model at Amherst College.


Group Photograph and Campus Tours

Converse Hall Steps

11:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.

No orientation is real without a group photograph! Join us on the steps in front of Converse Hall for a Class of 2019 photograph!


Lunch Talk: Understanding American Academic Culture

Valentine Hall

12:30 p.m. – 1:30 p.m.

Dean of New Students, Professor Rick Lopez, will provide an overview of American academic culture, as well as discuss important policies and available resources to help you succeed.


Banking and Cell Phones

Multicultural Resource Center – Keefe Campus Center

2:00 p.m. – 3:00 p.m.

Representatives from local mobile phone providers and banks will be available to discuss phone and banking information for international students.

NOTE: Please be sure to bring passports to this session.


Hampshire Mall Shuttle and Bank Trips

Meet at Converse Hall

3:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m.

A shuttle bus service will be available to transport first-year international students to Hampshire Mall to purchase room essentials. This is also an opportunity to visit mobile phone providers and local banks.


Dinner Talk: Academic Advising at Amherst College

Valentine Hall

5:30 p.m. – 7:00 p.m.

Professors will facilitate discussions on academic advising at Amherst College, with the assistance of current Amherst College international students.


Campus Center Game Room Activities

Keefe Campus Center

8:00 p.m. – 11:00 p.m.

Hang out with student volunteers and other first-year students in the campus center game room.


Friday, August 28:


Valentine Hall

8:00 a.m. – 9:30 a.m.

Still feeling jetlagged? Fuel up for the weekend of International Student Orientation activities!


Financial Aid and Managing Money

Pruyne Lecture Hall

10:00 a.m. – 11:00 a.m.

Senior Associate Dean of Financial Aid, Kathleen Gentile, will provide an overview of financial aid matters particular to international students. Additionally, Student Employment Coordinator, Nancy Robinson will provide information on campus employment.

Individual meetings will be available during the following week, as well.


How Amherst Works

Pruyne Lecture Hall

11:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.

Returning international students talk about their experiences at Amherst College – both academically and also social life on campus. This is a great opportunity to ask upperclassmen questions and learn more about their experiences as international students at Amherst College.


Lunch with the Provost

Valentine Hall

12:15 p.m. – 1:30 p.m.

Meet Amherst’s Provost, Peter Uvin, and learn about his experience as an international student in the U.S., as well as his experience as a member of the international community at Amherst College. 


Hampshire Mall Shuttle

Meet at Converse Hall

2:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.

A shuttle bus service will be available to transport first-year international students to Hampshire Mall to purchase room essentials. This is also an opportunity to visit mobile phone providers and local banks.


Cultural Awareness Dinner

Lewis Sebring

6:00 p.m. - 8:00 p.m.

Join the directors of the Multicultural Resource Center, Women and Gender Center, Queer Resource Center, and Religious Life for a meal and small group discussions on sexual respect and misconduct, gender, sexuality, race, class, and religion.


Saturday, August 29:


Lewis Sebring

8:00 a.m. - 10:00 a.m.

Cultural Adjustment: Dealing with Culture Shock and Navigating Difference

Location TBD

10:30 - 12:00

Dean Lauren Clarke will explore the cultural adjustments that international students face on a U.S. campus, resources and activities to ease the transition, and strategies to approach differences in cultural norms, values, and behaviors.


First Year Quad

1:00 p.m. - 3:00 p.m.

Join us for an outdoor barbecue and fun sports activities (football/soccer, ultimate Frisbee, volleyball)!

Sunday, August 30:


8:00 a.m. - 10:00 a.m.

Optional Religious Services, most denominations (transportation provided)

9:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.


Optional Excursions in the Pioneer Valley

Meet at Converse Hall for transportation

11:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.

Explore the local area in small groups: swimming, kayaking, berry-picking, museums, hiking - or let us know your ideas!


Dinner wtih Resident Counselors

Lewis Sebring

6:00 p.m. - 7:30 p.m.

Meet and connect with Amherst College RCs and Residence Life staff - a great opportunity to learn more about residential life at Amherst!

Monday, August 31:


8:00 a.m. - 10:00 a.m. 


First Year Quad

12:00 p.m. - 1:00 p.m.

Meet for a boxed lunch and an overview of the FINAL activity of the ISO - a Scavenger Hunt!


The Great Scavenger Hunt!

1:00 p.m. - whenever! 

Meet and join assigned teams on the First Year Quad (immediately following lunch) to hear directions, hints, and resources to find all the items on your Scavenger Hunt list. Prizes will be awarded to the teams that successfully complete their Hunt!


Dinner will be provided - Free time to socialize!


Tuesday, September 1: A Day of Rest!