Family Orientation FAQs

Below you’ll find answers to common questions about Family Orientation. If you do not find the answer to your question below, please email us or call our office at 512-471-2353 (Monday-Friday, 8 a.m.-5 p.m. CT).

Questions by Category:

 

Schedule and Activities

What time does Family Orientation start and end?
Check-in for Family Orientation and the Longhorn Neighborhood take place from 7:15-9:15 a.m. with formal programming immediately following. The program concludes in the early evening after a BBQ dinner with your student.

What is the Longhorn Neighborhood?
The Longhorn Neighborhood is a resource fair with representatives from over 20 different on-campus departments that takes place during check-in for Family Orientation.

Will my student be with me during Family Orientation?
No, your student will be attending Freshman Student Orientation and will not be with you for any Freshman Family Orientation programming.

Will I see my student during Family Orientation?
You will reconnect with your student to enjoy a BBQ dinner. Afterwards, you’ll send your Longhorn on his or her way to complete the rest of Freshman Student Orientation.

Can parents/families attend the Freshman Student Orientation program?
No, parents and families cannot attend any Freshman Student Orientation programming.

What college/school program should I attend if my student has a double major?
If your student has a dual major in separate college/schools, you are encouraged to attend the presentation by your student’s primary major. Or, if you have multiple attendees in your party, you may split up and attend different sessions.

What college/school program should I attend if I have more than one student?
If you have more than one student in separate college/schools, please email us or call our office at 512-471-2353 (Monday-Friday, 8 a.m.-5 p.m. CT) to talk through strategies. Or, if you have multiple attendees in your party, you may split up and attend different sessions. 

My student was admitted to a certain college/school but wants to transfer to another. Can I attend the presentation of the college/school to which my student wants to transfer?
No, you must attend the college/school presentation of the college/school in which your student is currently enrolled.

Will the Family Orientation program include any physical activity?
While we try to limit the amount of physical activity, you will be walking outside in the Texas summer heat. We recommend wearing walking shoes and comfortable clothing and bringing a water bottle. We also recommend bringing a sweater as it gets chilly inside campus buildings.

Is there programming available for siblings or children who attend?
Siblings and children will attend the same programming as adults. We understand it may be necessary for younger children to accompany you; however, if you are able to attend without them, that is preferred as the programming will be structured to an adult audience.

What is served at the BBQ dinner?
Brisket, sausage, potato salad, coleslaw, beans, pickles, onions and bread will be served. The vegetarian option is comprised of baked potatoes with condiments, green salad, coleslaw, and vegetarian beans.

Will you be able to accommodate my dietary restrictions at the BBQ dinner?
There will be a vegetarian option at the BBQ dinner (see above). We are unable to accommodate other dietary restrictions. If you are unable to eat the food provided at the BBQ, you are welcome to bring in outside food. The Family Orientation program cannot provide storage or a refrigerator in which to store outside food.

How can I request accommodations if I have a disability?
Our Texas Parents staff can assist. Please email us or call our office at 512-471-2353 (Monday-Friday, 8 a.m.-5 p.m. CT) for more information. Requests must be received at least two weeks before the date of your orientation session.

Registration and Sessions

Am I required to attend the same orientation session date as my student?
While we recommend that you attend the Family Orientation session that corresponds with your student’s Freshman Student Orientation session, it is not required. If you attend a session date that differs from your student, you must make sure that your student’s college/school is presenting at the session you desire to attend. Click here to view the college/school presentation dates.

Can I switch to a different Family Orientation session?
You can switch to a different session date but you must make sure that your student’s college/school is presenting at the session you desire to attend. Click here to view the college/school presentation dates. To change your session, please reply to your registration confirmation email with the session date to which you’d like to switch. Please note, changing your Family Orientation session does not change your student's Freshman Student Orientation date. 

I have completed the Family Orientation registration process but I have not received a confirmation email.
The confirmations are auto-generated from the registration system and should arrive as soon as your transaction is complete. Please email us or call our office at 512-471-2353 (Monday-Friday, 8 a.m.-5 p.m. CT).

I have completed the Family Orientation online registration process but need to add an additional registrant.
Please reply to your registration confirmation email with the number of people you’d like to add to your registration. Please note if you are adding a child 5 years of age or younger.  The Family Orientation coordinator will confirm your updated registration and inform you of any additional charges.

What if I miss or do not show up for my orientation session?
If you miss your registered Family Orientation session, your payment will not be refunded. You may request to attend a later Family Orientation session date by replying to your registration confirmation email with the session date to which you’d like to switch.

Payment

What does the Family Orientation charge include?
The registration charge covers all-day programming and staffing expenses as well as dinner. It does not include lunch or parking.

Can I receive a waiver for the registration charge?
No. The charge cannot be waived.

What payment methods are accepted for the registration charge? CHANGE OF INFORMATION
If you register online, charges can be paid by credit card only (Visa, MasterCard, Discover and American Express). If you register at Same Day Registration, charges can only be paid with a credit/debit card (Visa, MasterCard, Discover and American Express).

I will not be attending the BBQ dinner. Can I pay a reduced registration charge?
No, the registration charge remains the same regardless of the amount of programming that you attend.

I only want to attend the BBQ dinner. Can I pay a reduced registration charge?
No, the registration charge remains the same regardless of the amount of programming that you attend.

I am unable to attend and need to cancel my registration. May I get a refund?
Registration charges are non-refundable, although exceptions may be granted on a case-by-case basis (e.g. your student has de-committed from their enrollment and will be attending a different institution in the fall). If you are unable to attend, please let us know by replying to your confirmation email.

Parking & Travel

Can I stay in the on-campus residence halls during orientation?
On-campus housing is not provided to parents and family members during orientation. If you need overnight accommodations, visit the Accommodations page for a list of hotels offering orientation rates. 

Where can I park during orientation?
Parking for students and families attending on-campus orientation is serviced by UT Austin’s Parking and Transportation Services (PTS) department and is a separate fee from orientation registration. Click here to register for Freshman Orientation Parking.  

Other Important Information

Do I need to bring anything with me?
At check-in, you will receive a bag (one per family) that contains a pen and will help when collecting handouts throughout the day. If you are a notetaker, we recommend you bring additional paper to write on. We also recommend bringing a sweater as it gets chilly inside campus buildings and a refillable water bottle as you will be traveling between buildings in the Texas summer heat. 

Will I receive a reminder prior to Freshman Family Orientation?
Yes, you will receive a reminder email with more detailed program information from Texas Parents the Thursday prior to your session.

How do I pick up my ticket for the 2022 Family Orientation Scholarship drawing?
If you submitted a valid, mail-in entry or signed up as a Four-Year (2022-2026) supporting member online, you will be emailed instructions on how to pick up your ticket. If you sign up as a Four-Year (2022-2026) supporting member at Family Orientation, you will be given your drawing ticket at the time of signing up. Click here for more information.

Is childcare available for children or siblings who attend?
No, there is no childcare provided. 

 


Texas Parents 

Location:
2101 Speedway Stop D7500
Gregory Gym 1.107
Austin, Texas 78712

Email: FamilyOrientation@austin.utexas.edu
Phone: 512-471-2353


Family Orientation Resources

Freshman Student Orientation

Students must register for Freshman Student Orientation through New Student Services. Your student should register for his or her Freshman Student Orientation session before you register for Freshman Family Orientation.

Texas Parents Association

Everyone belongs, but you must sign up to begin receiving benefits to support and promote student success, including the Next Steps eNewsletters.

Important Resources for Class of 2026 Families

Find connections to campus departments and resources helpful to new Longhorn families.

Freshman Family Orientation Scholarship Drawing

Texas Parent holds a scholarship drawing for two $500 scholarships at each Freshman Orientation session. Go here for more information.