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JumpStart! Orientation

All MSW students at our School begin their academic career here with our comprehensive JumpStart! orientation program. During JumpStart!, you will meet your classmates and faculty, learn more about academic processes and your curriculum, become familiar with our School, and prepare to start your program with a commitment to success.

Students in either Advanced Standing Program (12-Month or 20-Month) participate in a customized “Advanced Standing JumpStart!” orientation when they begin classes.

Students in the traditional 2-Year MSW Program attend JumpStart! orientation on the Friday (8 a.m.-4 p.m.) before their classes begin. Additional JumpStart! activities are offered during the first week of classes.

Students in the 3-Year MSW Program participate in a customized “Preparation for Practice” orientation at their home site (Chapel Hill or Winston-Salem) on the Friday (8:30 a.m.-3:15 p.m.) before their classes begin. Additional JumpStart! are offered during the first day of classes.

What Happens at JumpStart! Orientation?

These are some of the activities that are part of the JumpStart! schedule:

  • Check-in and continental breakfast
  • Welcome Assembly
  • Special presentations, including “The Work of Confronting Oppression” and “Straight Talk about Professional Ethics”
  • Group meetings with faculty advisors
  • Workshops offering resources and recommendations for academic success
  • Lunch
  • Introduction to NASW
  • Information fair
  • Panel discussion with service recipients
  • Field education seminar
  • Social mixer (optional)
  • Bus tour of selected community sites (optional)

Most of these activities are scheduled on Friday, but a few are scheduled during the first week of classes.

You’ll also have an opportunity to relax with new friends at our School’s annual potluck picnic, held each year at a community park. This optional event is open to family and friends. Bring your favorite food to share and wear comfortable clothes if you’d like to join in some games.

Optional Programs (Pre-Registration Required)

S.A.G.E. (Students Achieving Graduate Education)

Entering and continuing students of color and international students are invited to participate in S.A.G.E., a pre-orientation program that offers a network of peer and faculty support to assist with each student’s transition to UNC-Chapel Hill. S.A.G.E. is scheduled on the Saturday before JumpStart! orientation begins.

LGBTQ+ Welcome Event

Members and allies of the LGBTQ+ community are invited to participate in the LGBTQ+ welcome event, which provides an opportunity to network with peers, faculty, and staff and to become familiar with academic, social, and cultural supports at UNC-Chapel Hill. The LGBTQ+ welcome event is scheduled during the week before JumpStart! orientation begins.

Graduate School Orientation

UNC-Chapel Hill’s Graduate School provides orientation activities for all new graduate students. These include an overview of resources and opportunities, both on campus and throughout the Chapel Hill-Carrboro area. Graduate School Orientation is scheduled during the week before JumpStart! orientation begins. Visit the UNC Graduate School website to pre-register.