Frequently Asked Questions

Participation in the New Student Orientation program (NSO) is highly recommended for freshmen and transfer students new to the University of Hawai'i at Mānoa (UHM). The NSO program has been designed to help prepare incoming students for their first year at UHM by providing direction and access to resources.

  • What is WoW?
  • WoW is actually short for "Week of Welcome" and it is our week-long orientation program that takes place the week before classes begin. It is conference style in its format so our participants can pick and choose the sessions that are of interest to them. WoW is envisioned with our students who are new to the islands in mind. The curriculum is designed to help them adjust to both the campus and the surrounding community. However, WoW is open to all incoming students as well as their family members.

  • Do parents attend sessions with students at WoW? Can family members attend WoW with students?
  • During our WoW sessions, there are only one or two sessions that are specific for parent audiences, as well as student audiences. Otherwise, since WoW is conference style, both parents ad students can pick and choose which sessions they want to attend.

  • Is there a schedule for WoW, so we can plan our time? Will we have time to go sightseeing?
  • The WoW schedule will become available closer to the start of WoW. WoW is designed in a way that allows for families to have time for additional extracurricular activities outside of our program. There is ample time for you to go sightseeing, explore the island, see your academic advisor, visit the financial aid office, etc.

  • If I'm coming from out-of-state should I go to the WoW?
  • Absolutely! WoW is geared towards a primarily out-of-state audience. While the sessions offered mirror the content covered during our 1-day sessions, we add sessions that are intended to help students who are not familiar with Oahu be aware of not just the campus but the surrounding community. Some topics covered in WoW include but are not limited to: local island culture and customs, the college survival guide, the Honolulu Scene,etc.

  • Is WoW only for Freshmen?
  • No! WoW is for all new students and their family members. We encourage all freshman or transfer students to attend.

  • How does advising work with WoW? When is the best time to do advising during WoW?
  • On our website, please make sure to take a look at the timetable of availability for certain Academic Advisors. The timetable will denote if the advising offered is during a walk-in period or if you need to make an appointment. If you have to do the latter, please use the contact information also provided on the page to schedule an appointment. If your Academic Advisor is not listed on the page, it means they were unavailable during this week, and you must contact them directly to schedule an appointment if you wish to meet with them.

  • How does pin registration work? When will I get my pin if I sign up for NSO?
  • In order to receive a PIN for early registration you must register and pay for NSO first. Once you have registered and we have sent an email confirmation that your payment has been received, an early registration PIN number will be assigned to you. The PIN numbers are sent out a few weeks prior to the registration date via email. The email includes instructions on how to use the pin.

  • Is it mandatory for me to attend?
  • Our orientation sessions are not mandatory, but are highly recommended. Our program includes workshops, networking opportunities and informative sessions about the different resources available to both new students and their family members. We design the NSO to ensure a smooth transition for students and families into the UHM community.

  • Why is there a fee for NSO?
  • The fees charged for attendance cover our operating costs to present the program. Please know that the fee represents a "break-even" point for the program.

  • When are the dates? When is NSO?
  • Summer dates are typically listed on our website in early May. Typically, summer sessions start at the end of July and go until the week before school starts.

  • When should I sign up for orientation?
  • Orientation dates have limited availability, so we recommend that you sign-up as soon as registration opens in early May.

  • If I live on Oahu, should I attend WoW or a 1-day session?
  • 1-day sessions as well as WoW have been designed to help ensure that incoming UHM students have a smooth transition from their previous institution to Manoa. Thus, attending either opportunity is beneficial to you. Students who are from Oahu tend to favor the 1-day sessions a bit more because the information shared takes place in just 1-day as opposed to a week during WoW. In any case, choose the session that works for you. We typically recommend WoW to incoming students from neighbor islands or out-of-state, since it is held the week before the start of the fall semester and there are more sessions at WoW that cover topics that might be more informational to those who aren't familiar with Oahu as well as the surrounding areas around campus.

  • Can I sit in my students' session without signing up?
  • Unfortunately, those attending an NSO program must be paid registrants. Additionally, the curriculum for our 1-day freshman sessions is designed for students only. We do have an amazing program designed specifically for parents and family members who are interested in attending NSO on the same days as the student 1-day sessions. We highly recommend that you sign up for these sessions if you are interested in learning more about what your student will be experiencing at UHM.

    For families that don't want to split up and want to attend the same sessions together, WoW is a great option because most of the sessions are open to all participants, be they students or parents.

  • Why attend NSO? I dont "get" the purpose.
  • Our program has a number of learning outcomes that are tied to our curriculum. First, we strive to help acquaint new students to UHM, assist them in establishing a connection to the campus and showing them how they can carve out their own unique space in the campus community. Second, the program's aim is to provide new students with essential information they will need in regards to UHM academic policies, procedures, requirements, and resources that will enable them to plan their class schedules, seek out appropriate supports (e.g. academic advisors) and register for courses in an intentional, informed, and meaninful manner. Third, we hope to equip new students with a heightened awareness of the resources and services available to them that are intended to support and help them make reasoned and well-informed decisions within this university environment that is unmatched and without parallel. Fourth, we actively encourage new students to immerse themselves in opportunities and interests that will enhance their UHM experience by introducing them to campus involvement and civic engagement opportunities that will allow for their holistic development through experiential learning that will not only connect them to the campus but prepare them for life after graduation. Finally, we aim to create the opportunity for deliberate and purposeful interactive between more experienced UHM students and new students with the intent of facilitating focused dialogue, knowledge sharing and peer mentoring.

  • I registered and paid for NSO but no longer want attend. What is your cancellation policy?
  • We are sorry you won't be joining us but we also understand that things do come up. Please understand, though, that we cannot guarantee that a full refund will be granted. If you are going to cancel your registration, please contact us immediately. The degree to which you will be refunded, based on when your cancellation request is received, is as follows:

  • 15 or more business days* prior to Program date - 75% refund
  • 10-14 business days* prior to Program date - 50% refund
  • 9 or fewer business days* prior to Program date - NO refund
  • *business days are Monday through Friday excluding holidays

    As soon as it is known that you wish to cancel your reservation, please contact us via:

    Fax: (808) 956-4810



  • Do you offer discounts for hotels? Are there accommodations for parents during WOW?
  • Please check the resources tab and the accommodations link on our website for exclusive deals for our NSO participants.

  • Although I am transferring, should I attend the 1-day Freshman session?
  • We have Transfer NSO 1-day sessions specially designed to meet the needs of transfers. If you have completed 24 or more credits at a previous institution, you should register to attend a transfer session. However, if you have completed less than 24 credits, you may want to consider attending a freshman session.