Family Focus Orientation

New college students need a strong support system to help them make a successful transition to the University. You can support your UA student by participating in Family Focus Orientation! Family Focus is an orientation program designed specifically for parents of new UA students. The program is held in conjunction with your student's freshman orientation program. 

There is no Family Focus component to our transfer, adult, or college credit plus program, but you are more than welcome to attend with your student! 

Components of Family Focus Orientation

*Session occurs with the parent and student present at the same time.

    After you check in, take part in the Explore UA Involvement Fair. Learn about campus resources, check out groups to get involved in, and find out more about the many different resources UA has to offer. You may even see Zippy roaming around for a picture!

    Welcome to the start of your Akron Experience! There's a lot to learn on the road from here to graduation, and we're here to help you on your journey!

    Learn all about the importance of starting your college career off strong so that you can follow UA's Finish in Time model and set yourself on a bright career path.

    View the Presentation

    The power of storytelling is an amazing thing. Hear some of our Orientation Leaders share their stories. Their ups, their downs, and everything in between that has shaped their journey and pathway to this point. "College Life: I'm a Zip" is a peek into the struggles and successes of some of UA's best student leaders on campus.

    As a college student, it is never too early to utilize the resources of Career Services. Learn about how you can encourage your student to take advantage of everything Career Services has to offer.

    View the Presentation

    Fun! Exciting! Engaging! The Akron Experience is all of that and more. Learn all about it and its seven key areas from some of the students who are living it right now. Our Orientation Leaders have tips about textbooks, parking, getting involved, and much more to help you out on the right foot in the fall!

    View the Presentation

    Time for Lunch! Enjoy a complimentary lunch in one of our dining locations on campus. Have time to get to know other students, parents, and our orientation staff!

    Students and family members will receive information about important first year policies and procedures from the student's degree granting college or advising area. 

    Family members will return to the Family Focus track when students begin their advising appointments.

    Presented by the Office of Financial Aid, this session will cover an overall review of checklist items to complete award packaging, review financial aid packaging (scholarships, grants, loans, etc.), discuss ways to reduce costs, and review payment options and deadlines.

    Hear from UA's on-campus Police Department about the services it offers, as well the importance of student safety on campus.

    View the Presentation

    Living on Campus: Join us for a presentation to learn more about what we offer to our residents in their home away from your home. Let us tell you more about:

    • how to apply for housing,
    • why we think we are worth the investment,
    • how to help your student plan for their arrival to campus and
    • what great fun they will have once they get here.

    Commuting & Off-Campus Living: Join us as we discuss being a connected commuter, transportation and parking, finding off-campus housing, safety, and more! Discover all that Akron has to offer as we explore the arts, dining, sports/recreation, and entertainment in our community.

        You have several options to choose from during this second round of breakout sessions! Pick the session you'd like to learn more about.

        • Hop On In: As the day is wrapping up, we want to help you with any lingering questions you might have! Visit with the New Student Orientation professional staff and a few Orientation Leaders to help wrap up your experience and ask any final questions.
        • On-Campus Tour: Interested in seeing more of UA's campus? Take a brief tour with some of our Orientation Leaders to learn a little more about the campus and see some highlights of what makes UA great!
        • Campus Dining: Learn about how your student's meal plan options work and the various dining options available on campus.
        • I Wish I Would Have Known: The Dean of Students Office provides care for those students who are identified with the most serious need for support. When working with us, students often share, “I wish I would have known…before…happened.” On behalf of these students, we will pass along this information to parents, family, and friends.
        • Parent & Family Mingle: UA is truly a family, and we’re excited to add YOU to our network of UA parents and family members! Come relax and join us for an informal gathering near Starbucks in the Student Union. Learn more about staying connected to campus through the Parent & Family Association, events to look forward to this year, and meet other UA parents!
        • Campus Banking Options: PNC Bank is on campus! PNC Bank helps make it easier for University of Akron students to keep track of their money. PNC has convenient on-campus locations, with 8 ATMs and a branch located on the first floor of the Student Union.  Show your school pride with your Akron/PNC branded Visa® Debit card when you open a PNC Virtual Wallet Student®. An innovative product providing interactive tools to help students develop solid money management skills. Visa is a registered trademark of Visa International Service Association and used under license. ©2016 The PNC Financial Services Group, Inc. All rights reserved. PNC Bank, National Association. Member FDIC. 

        It's almost time to go! Before the end of the day when Zip Cards are distributed to students, we have a few final things we'd like to tell you about before you leave. You'll hear about some important summer tasks, learn about New Roo Weekend, and find out how you can begin to Unlock Akron in our Final Roo-Minders!

        Following our Advising & Registration Program, feel free to take advantage of any optional programs available. Activities include:

        • Visit Ritchie Residence Hall for assistance on housing or a residence hall tour
        • Visit Zip Assist and the Student Services Center for questions and assistance regarding student accounts, registration, financial aid, and information for commuter students
        • A Day in the Life of a Zip Tour: Walk your class schedule with some of our Orientation Leaders
        • Visit PNC Bank, the official on-campus banking partner of UA
        • Visit The University of Akron Bookstore to shop UA gear

        For assistance finding any of these locations, Orientation Leaders will be available outside the Student Union by the clock tower to help until 4:30 p.m.!

        Parent and Family FAQs

        Is there a cost associated with Family Focus Orientation?

        Nope! Family members are free to attend with their student.

        Is Family Focus Orientation mandatory?

        Nope! It is up to you and your student if you would like to attend. About 50% of students who attend orientation bring a family member. If you cannot attend, presentations are available to view online (see schedule above) and you can utilize the digital version of the Parent and Family guide on this page.

        Do I have to register to attend?

        Nope! You can just show up the day of with your student!

        Do I have to stay for the whole program?

        Nope! Family members can feel free to come and go as they please. Students are required to complete all components of their orientation day. You will be provided with a schedule with session locations in the morning so you can navigate to and from sessions if you don't want to stay.

        Why am I not in advising with my student?

        We know that you have a strong interest in your student’s experience at The University of Akron. We believe that parents & family play a very important role in a student’s college success, a role no other person can fill. We use the academic advising portion of your student’s orientation program to begin to get to know them, to work with them on discussing their goals and aspirations, and to assist them in making decisions.

        We encourage you to keep the lines of communication open with your student and talk with them directly on their day. Opportunities include during lunch and also at the close of the program. As time is built to utilize university services at the close of the program, a parent or family member may seek to communicate with their student’s academic advisor if they have questions.

        When do students receive the information that family members are getting?

        The student orientation experience focuses on timely information, so additional campus information is provided closer to the start of classes via Email and New Roo Weekend.

        What should I bring?

        • Your orientation parking permit.
        • Comfortable walking shoes, you will be walking!
        • Lightweight jacket or sweater, some air-conditioned rooms can get chilly!
        • Umbrella, if rain is in the forecast.
        • Money, if you would like to visit our bookstore to purchase UA gear!
        • We provide a light breakfast and lunch is complimentary, so no need to bring food!
        • Your questions, because we're here to help!