photo of MSU students at AOP resource fair

Our Academic Orientation Program (AOP) this summer provided incoming students with the opportunity to learn about academics, life on campus, and to find new friends with whom to share their college adventure.

Our Academic Orientation Program (AOP) this summer provided incoming students with the opportunity to learn about academics, life on campus, and to find new friends with whom to share their college adventure. AOP forms a “bridge” for students to make the transition from high school to college, and to prepare them to learn and succeed at MSU.

All but about 30 of our roughly 8,000 freshman, and 1,500 transfer students, attended 27 different multi-day orientation events throughout the summer. These events were staffed by 125 student employees and over 160 advisors from undergraduate colleges from across campus, with vital support from faculty, Office of Admissions staff, IT services, Student Affairs, the Office of Inclusion and Intercultural Initiatives, Residential and Hospitality Services, the Registrar’s Office, and many, many, more.

AOP also gave our new students an introduction to our Neighborhoods, which will continue to provide comprehensive academic, residential, health and wellness, intercultural, and career support to these students while they are at MSU.

In parallel to AOP, almost 6,500 parents of new students attended the Parent Orientation Program, so they could understand their new role in supporting the success of their MSU Spartan college student.

Inclusion is a core value at Michigan State University.  This year, a new eLearning course was developed to give a general overview of diversity and inclusion at MSU, an introduction to basic terms and concepts, and a sense of how students can engage with each other more deeply. All undergraduate, first-year incoming students and transfer students completed this activity, details of which can be found here.

We welcomed our 8,000 new freshmen at our fall convocation on Aug. 29 – in addition to being inducted into MSU by President Simon, students heard from Sonia Nozario, the author of Enrique’s Journey.

Across campus, as of the first day of class, our students were registered for almost 630,000 credit hours in more than 3,300 courses. Almost 15,700 students were in our residence halls.

Congratulations to AOP Director Mary Beth Heeder and her staff, all of our campus advisors, our faculty, and our residence hall staff who did an extraordinary job getting our students registered, housed, and in the classroom ready to succeed as Spartans!


Feedback and suggestions, especially from the MSU community, welcome: email sekhar@msu.edu.

R. Sekhar Chivukula is the Associate Provost for Undergraduate Education and Dean of Undergraduate Studies at Michigan State University.