New Student Orientation

As a new student at Marymount California University, you are bound to have questions. We design orientation around you, helping answer the questions you have and providing you information about campus resources, programs and services. Our goal is to ease your transition into college life and help you feel more prepared as you begin this exciting journey.

Orientation 2019 team

We require all freshmen and transfers to attend new student orientation. Orientation is an opportunity for us to introduce you to the Mariner community, share our expectations of a Marymount student and help you navigate campus. You’ll create your first Marymount memories and begin to build a network of resources that will help you start your MCU journey on the right path.

If you haven’t already, please confirm your enrollment and complete your Admitted Student Checklist, including registering for orientation.


Register for Fall 2020 Orientation

Fall 2020

Move-in Day – August 20, 2020

New Student Orientation – August 21 – 23

Family Orientation – August 21

First day of fall semester – August 24

Detailed schedules will be posted soon!

What is New Student Orientation (NSO)?

New Student Orientation is designed to introduce you to University faculty and staff, students and resources. It’s a fun-filled and informative time on campus, designed with you in mind!

Is orientation required of all new students?

Attending orientation is a university requirement for all new undergraduate students: first year, transfer and international students. New students will receive important materials and pertinent information that will be essential to a successful transition to Marymount (i.e., how to manage and operate Marymount academic systems, receiving your Student ID, etc.).

How do I register for orientation?

All new students must register for orientation after they have finalized their acceptance to Marymount and have paid their commitment deposit. You can find the registration link here on this page.

Can I pay for orientation with a check or money order?

The orientation fee is included in tuition for that billing period. If your tuition is paid, that covers the orientation fee. Cash, money orders, credit and debit cards are all acceptable forms of payment. If you are paying for orientation separately or would like more information regarding tuition and fees, please contact Business Services.

Can the orientation fee be waived?

No. The orientation fee cannot be waived.

What does the orientation fee cover?

The orientation fee covers the following:

  • The cost of all activities
  • All new student meals
  • Transportation to-and-from the residential sites to campus and all orientation materials and supplies
  • Activities and programs during the first six weeks of the semester as students transition into college

If I am a commuter and attended a Summer Advising Day do I still have to attend orientation?

Yes, but you are only required to attend on New Student and Family Orientation Day. If you are available we encourage you to attend the evening events on Thursday and Saturday as it is the perfect opportunity to build relationships with your peers.

What is an orientation session? – fall orientation only

There are different orientation sessions that students attend.

  • New Student and Family Orientation Day – Students will gather in their assigned group to rotate through different sessions and activities. International Students, First Year Students, and Transfer students will have the opportunity to attend sessions specifically catered to their interests.
  • Testing and Advising Day– This is the final opportunity for students to register for courses before the first day of the semester.

Examples of orientation sessions include: Mariner Affair, International at MCU: Academics and Immigration, Mariner Career Connect, Life at MCU and more.

What else can I expect at orientation?

Of course it wouldn’t be orientation if there weren’t fun-filled social events to help students meet other new students and create their first college memories. Students will have the opportunity to meet staff and faculty to ask questions about their majors, the resources available on campus or how to get involved. Last, students will also have the opportunity to “take care of business,” handle any holds on their student accounts, receive their Student ID’s, join their SOSers for a “finding your classes on campus” tour, and more.

May families attend?

We encourage families to attend New Student and Family Orientation Day. Family Orientation sessions are designed to answer family questions and concerns. The majority of the family sessions will run concurrently with student orientation sessions. We ask families to attend their specific sessions while their student attends the student specific sessions. This is intentional so students may begin their transition to life as a college student.

What do I need to bring to orientation?

An open mind and a great attitude! We will supply students with everything else they may need – meals, materials, and lots of new information!

Please note: (Fall Orientation only) If this summer is anything like previous years during orientation expect HOT days! It will be important for you to dress appropriately for the heat. We will provide you with water, limited air conditioning and some shade, but unfortunately we cannot control the outside temperature during orientation. Believe us, if we could we would!

What is a SOSer?

Student Orientation Staff (also known as SOS or SOSers) are orientation leaders that assist new students (first years, transfers and international students) with their transition to Marymount California University (MCU). SOSers are selected through an application and interview process, and participate in a one-week training prior to working with new students.

When can I move into my residence hall?

Move In Day is Thursday, August 20th, all new students are welcomed to move in beginning at 9am. Please contact Residential Life at or 310-303-7316 with additional questions or concerns.

If I am a commuter and not living in Marymount residences, when do I arrive for Orientation?

Friday, for New Student and Family Orientation Day. Commuters are invited to join us for all social events in the evenings on Thursday-Saturday.

We highly encourage commuter students to get involved as much as possible during Orientation.

Where do I park when I arrive?

Parking is available anywhere on the Oceanview campus. We are located at 30800 Palos Verdes Dr E, Rancho Palos Verdes CA 90275.

Please note: DO NOT park on San Ramon Road. Marymount employees and students are not allowed to park on this road, and will receive parking citations from the city for violation.

When do classes begin?

Fall semester classes begin Monday, August 24, 2020.

What important acronyms should I know?

  • MCU – Marymount California University
  • CEC – Cecilia Hall
  • MSGA – Marymount Student Government Association
  • OS – Oceanside Building
  • OVC – Oceanview Campus
  • SOS – Student Orientation Staff
  • The Villas – Marymount California’s Residential Campus

An orientation leader (OL) is an ambassador who guides new students and their families through their transition to Marymount by serving as a resource and role model for the newest members of our Mariner community. This is a rewarding experience for positive, hard-working students who want to share their Mariner pride with incoming students and their families. Interested parties must be current undergraduate or graduate students at the time of application, maintain full-time status during employment and successfully complete the Dynamics of Leadership course. To indicate your interest, please fill out this form. For more information on how to apply, read our frequently asked questions.

Important dates for new students

August 20 – Move-in Day and International student information session
August 21-23 – New student orientation
August 24 – First day of classes

Helpful links

Campus Technology
Financial Aid
International Services
Parking Permits
Residential Life FAQs
Student Wellness