Penn Graduate Student Center

Graduate & Professional New Student Orientation

If you're an undergraduate new student, please visit the Undergraduate New Student Orientation website.

About Graduate & Professional New Student Orientation

The Graduate Student Center is here to make sure you experience a seamless transition to Penn. The Grad Center will also be your home base at Penn long after orientation is over. So become part of the community right away!

Penn offers several orientation programs for incoming graduate and professional students. Take advantage of

We know you'll be busy, so we've organized the Grad Center activities à la carte. Pick and choose what's most convenient for you!  And please invite your spouse/partner to Grad Center orientation activities!

Online Sessions 2014

Incoming students are encouraged to participate in these online sessions in order to get critical information before you arrive on campus. Log on from wherever you are in the world.

These are live, interactive, web-based presentations with experts from Penn. You will be able to ask questions and get real-time answers during the presentations. You will need a high-speed connection; students with dial-up connections will find it difficult to participate.

All of these presentation times are scheduled in Eastern Daylight Time. Please adjust for your time zone accordingly. If you are unable to participate at the scheduled time, you can log on after the session is completed to view the slides and read the transcript. But you will not be able to ask questions.

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Incoming International Student Information Session


Find out what to bring with you, where to shop, about transportation, banking information, and more! University staff and international students will provide this information and answer your questions.

This session will be offered two times; register for the one that is most convenient for you. Please note that all sessions are scheduled in Eastern Daylight Time.  Please adjust for your time zone accordingly.

Log-in information will be emailed to students who pre-register. When you register, you will be asked for your PennCard number.  Please enter 00000000.

 

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Housing Online Session


Learn about your options for living on campus or off campus, housing for students with families, and the resources we provide to help you make the right selection for you! 

This same session will be offered multiple times; register for the one most convenient for you. Please note that all times are Eastern Daylight Time. Please adjust accordingly for your time zone.

Log-in information will be emailed to students who pre-register. When you register, you will be asked for your PennCard number.  Please enter 00000000.

 

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Health Insurance Online Information Session


Join us for this online information session to gain a better understanding of your health insurance options and immunization requirements at Penn. This session will discuss the University's Health Insurance and Immunization requirements, the process for fulfilling those requirements, how to select your health insurance and an overview of how to use your health insurance at Penn's Student Health Service. This session will be led by representatives from Penn Student Health Service and is strongly recommended for all incoming students! There will be plenty of time for Q&A, so come prepared to learn and ask lots of question!

This same session will be offered multiple times; register for the one most convenient for you. Please note that all times are Eastern Daylight Time. Please adjust accordingly for your time zone.

Log-in information will be emailed to students who pre-register. When you register, you will be asked for your PennCard number.  Please enter 00000000

Academic Success Online Session.

Wednesday, August 06, 2014, 10:00 AM - 11:30 AM
Register in advance for log-in instructions
Registration start: Monday, June 02, 2014

Learn about the academic standards at Penn and the resources we have to support you, so you can be successful in graduate school.  Note that this session is scheduled in Eastern Daylight Time.  Please adjust for your time zone accordingly. 

Log-in information will be emailed to students who pre-register.  When you register, you will be asked for your PennCard number.  Please enter 00000000.

Orientation Activities for All New Grad Students 2014

Gnome Hunt & Happy Hour

Sunday, August 24, 2014, 03:00 PM - 06:00 PM
Terrace Room in Cohen Hall, 249 South 36th Street
Registration start: Tuesday, July 01, 2014
We need volunteers - volunteer now!

Get to "gnome" Penn during this hilarious scavenger hunt!  The Grad Center's garden gnomes have taken off...again!  Help us find our gnomes around campus. Afterwards, we'll celebrate with an awards ceremony and happy hour! The gnomes want you to know that you have to participate in the scavenger hunt to attend the happy hour, and that you need to show your Penn grad ID to participate.

LaGAPSA Bienvenida

Friday, September 12, 2014, 06:00 PM - 07:30 PM
Common Room
Registration start: Friday, August 01, 2014

La Casa Latina, LaGAPSA, and the Graduate Student Center welcome new and returning Latino/a grad students. Please bring your PennCard to be admitted.

Orientation Activities for Early Arrivals (August 13 - August 19, 2014)

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2014 Campus Tour


Take a guided walking tour of campus to get to know the many resources that Penn has to offer.

We'll tell you a little bit about Penn history and fun facts, too!

2014 Eastern Center City Tour

Friday, August 15, 2014, 04:00 PM - 07:00 PM
Common Room Back, Meet at the Graduate Student Center
Registration start: Tuesday, July 01, 2014

Enjoy the sights and sounds of Philly on this walking tour of the eastern part of Center City.  This tour will take students past the Gallery Mall, Chinatown, the Historical District, and will conclude in Olde City.

2014 Seminars -Transportation

Monday, August 18, 2014, 04:00 PM - 05:00 PM
Common Room Back, Graduate Student Center

Learn how to get around!  We'll provide information about Penn campus transit as well as SEPTA, Philadelphia's public transportation system.

2014 Seminars - Living Safely at Penn

Monday, August 18, 2014, 05:15 PM - 06:15 PM
Common Room Back, Graduate Student Center
Registration start: Tuesday, July 01, 2014

If you've never lived in a large urban center before, come to this seminar!  Detective James Blackmore from Penn Police will provide safety tips and information about safety resources at Penn.

2014 Seminars - Philly Fun

Tuesday, August 19, 2014, 04:00 PM - 05:00 PM
Common Room Back, Graduate Student Center
Registration start: Tuesday, July 01, 2014

From Penn to the historic sites downtown, learn more about our remarkable city and where to go for the best shopping, great eats, fun bars, and more!

Orientation Activities for Later Arrivals (August 23 - September 6, 2014)

2014 Parkway District City Tour

Saturday, August 23, 2014, 10:00 AM - 12:00 PM
Common Room Front, Meet at the Graduate Student Center
Registration start: Tuesday, July 01, 2014

Philadelphia's grand tree-lined Benjamin Franklin Parkway is flanked by some of the city's most acclaimed destinations. This tour of the Museum District will show off Philadelphia's cultural mecca of world-class museums of science, history, and art, as well as educational institutions, and many fine examples of public art. The tour will conclude at the Philadelphia Museum of Art, with its world famous "Rocky" steps.

This tour will take approximately two hours.  At the end of the tour, students can choose to visit the Museum of Art, go to the nearby Fairmount neighborhood which has wonderful restaurants for lunch, or return to campus along the scenic River Path.

2014 One Day Orientation Extravaganza!

Sunday, August 24, 2014, 11:00 AM - 03:00 PM
Cohen Hall, 249 South 36th Street, Auditorium 17
Registration start: Tuesday, July 01, 2014

If you arrive late on campus and haven't been able to attend an other orientation sessions, don't despair!  Join us for a one-day extravaganza -- orientation crammed into a single day! We'll start with lunch, then cover Fun in Philly, Transportation, Safety, and more! Stick around for our "Get to 'Gnome' Penn" scavenger hunt and happy hour afterward!

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2014 Eastern Center City Tour


Enjoy the sights and sounds of Philly on this walking tour of the eastern part of Center City.  This tour will take students past the Gallery Mall, Chinatown, the Historical District, and will conclude in Olde City. On the September 5 tour, you will also be able to enjoy the First Friday Celebration in Olde City after the tour!

Common Room Hours

Monday - Thursday: 9AM - 8PM Friday: 9AM - 6PM Weekends: 12 NOON - 6PM

Graduate Student Center

3615 Locust Walk
University of Pennsylvania
Philadelphia PA 19104-6221
215-746-6868
center@gsc.upenn.edu