Resources for New Students

The Graduate Student Center is here to help you throughout your graduate experience at Penn. The resources on this page are intended to help make your transition to life at Penn as seamless as possible. Please refer to our full resource guide for even more resources, services, and opportunities for graduate and professional students. 

New Student Orientation

The Graduate Student Center is excited to welcome you to Philadelphia and help you transition to graduate life at Penn. The Graduate Student Center organizes New Student Orientation each summer for incoming graduate and professional students. 

Checklist for Incoming Students 
Be sure to review out checklist of everything you need to do before you arrive on campus, including info on how to find housing.

New Student Orientation Programming
Our Graduate and Professional Student Orientation activities are intended to supplement required school-specific programs and introduce you to the broader community at Penn and in Philadelphia. All of our orientation activities are optional and open to all incoming graduate & professional students - pick and choose what's most convenient for you! 

Set Up Your Penn Accounts

Before you get to campus, be sure to sign up for your PennCard and register your PennKey, which gives you access to Penn email and other essential online services. Once you have a PennKey, you can access and update your student information and records on Penn InTouch and visit Campus Express to order textbooks, buy a new computer, register your property, and purchase discounted transit passes.

Moving to Philadelphia

Penn is situated in the University City section of West Philadelphia, just across the river from Center City Philadelphia. The city’s neighborhoods and suburbs offer a wide range of housing choices, nightlife, culture, and recreation. We encourage you to visit Philadelphia and explore its diverse neighborhoods.

Visit our Living in Philadelphia page or click on the links below to learn more about visiting and living in Philadelphia.  

Transitioning to Graduate School

The Grad Center offers a variety of programs during New Student Orientation and beyond intended to help you integrate into the Penn community, manage your expectation and commitments, and enjoy a successful start to your academic career.