Listed below are some of our more frequently asked questions. If you still have questions after looking through the list below, please email us at welcome@psu.edu or call us at (814) 865-4178 and we'd be happy to assist you.


Welcome Programs is our portfolio of events to welcome new and returning students to University Park at the start of each semester. Welcome Programs is comprised of three separate programs: Spring Welcome, Summer Welcome, and Fall Welcome. You may hear students, faculty, and staff refer to these events in a number of ways (Welcome Week, Welcome Programs, Spring/Summer/Fall Welcome, etc.), but all of these terms refer to the events at the start of the semester.

The Welcome Programs Planning Committee is led by Student Orientation and Transition Programs (SOTP) and has representation from Residence Life, Office for Summer Session, Penn State Global, the Penn State Parents Program, Campus Recreation, Student Leadership and Involvement, and Student Affairs.

Any current Penn State student is able to attend. Whether you are a new or returning student, graduate or undergraduate student, first-year or transfer or change-of-campus student, domestic or international student -- we want to see you there!

No, only current students studying at Penn State University Park are able to attend our events. We encourage you to bring friends from around campus, but they must be a current student at this campus.

No! Welcome Programs is funded in part by your sudent-initiated fee via the University Park Student Fee Board, so part of your tuition bills helps to cover these costs. Because of that, we encourage you to participate in as many events and activities as you're able to.

Our Welcome Programs begin a few days prior to the first day of class. For the 2023 calendar year, the dates are as follows:

  • Spring Welcome: Saturday, January 7 (Classes begin Monday, January 9)
  • Summer Welcome: Sunday, June 25 (Classes begin Wednesday, June 28)
  • Fall Welcome: Tuesday, August 15 (Classes begin Monday, August 21)

Most of our programming is optional, but new students are expected to attend a small number of events that provide valuable academic and social information for life at University Park. For a list of these events, visit welcomeweek.psu.edu/need-to-know.

A full list of events will be made available closer to the start of Summer Welcome 2023. Please check back in May.

Yes and no. Some events may require prior registration while others may ask for an RSVP just so we can get an accurate count of how many students to expect. If there is an option to RSVP for an event, our suggestion is to err on the side of caution and RSVP. Not only will it let us know to expect you, but some RSVPs can be added to your calendar as well, so it's a good reminder for you!

As a new student, our only expectation is that you enjoy yourself for the time being. If you'd like to help out with Welcome Programs in the future, please visit our Current Students webpage. There are both paid and volunteer opportunities for returning students!