Penn Graduate Student Center

Graduate & Professional New Student Orientation

Checklist for Incoming Students

Here's a list of everything you need to do before you arrive on campus.
Still have questions? See our FAQ.

Frequently Asked Questions

What do I do if I need a new PennKey Setup Code?

You can obtain a PennKey Setup Code (either because the one they sent expired or you never received one) in person or by postal mail. For security reasons, Setup Codes will not be sent by e-mail or given out over the phone.

How do I get a Penn email account?

First, you must have successfully established and registered your PennKey. Then, go to Campus Express. Log in with your PennKey and select "Create an email account."  You will then select your school and be directed to the appropriate information.

What should I do with all of my Health Insurance papers?

Consult the Student Health Service Insurance Office. The online insurance enrollment/waiver system gives information about due dates, filing processes, and contact information. If you want to waive Student Health Insurance, be aware that if you do not submit a waiver by the deadline, you will be automatically enrolled and billed.

How do I know that my financial aid is all set up?

Call or visit the Student Financial Services to make sure that you have completed all of the necessary paper work and that it has been recorded correctly. Don’t assume that everything is finished until all of your loan information shows up correctly through Penn InTouch. You can get to your own information by clicking the "Bill Summary" or "Financial Aid" links.

How do I register for courses?

Penn InTouch contains the course registration area for students. However, each school and department has a different registration process for its students. When in doubt about something you should contact your advisor or department administration.

What do I do if all of my information is being sent to the wrong address?

Go to Penn InTouch and click the "Addresses" link on the left side of the screen. From there you can change your permanent address, as well as enter temporary addresses.

What's the difference between my school's orientation events and the Graduate Student Center's orientation events?

Your school's orientation will help you learn more about your specific academic program, its requirements, etc. The Grad Center's orientation events are more general and are designed to help you learn about campus and the city. In order to get the most out of your graduate school experience, you really should attend both orientations.

I am an international student and I want to make sure that I have done everything necessary before starting school, is there a checklist of these things?

International Student & Scholar Services offers comprehensive resources for new international students. In addition, you can find information pertaining to international graduate and professional student orientation.

What student organizations exist on campus? I'd like to get involved.

There are many cultural, political, service, recreational, religious, and social organizations at Penn, as well as GAPSA, the main graduate student government organization, and student governments in each individual school.

Student Organizations:

What if my question is not answered here or on the New Student Orientation website?

Email the Graduate Student Center staff at

Common Room Hours

Monday-Thursday: 9AM - 8PM
Friday: 9AM - 6PM
Saturday-Sunday: 12pm - 6pm

Graduate Student Center

3615 Locust Walk
University of Pennsylvania
Philadelphia PA 19104-6221