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When You Arrive

Learn more about travel, parking and what to bring to New Student Orientation. 

There isn’t much you need to bring with you your session, but there are still a few items that will help: 

  • VIP ID and UofSC system password. You will use this throughout your session, so please plan to memorize it or write it down in advance of your session. 
  • Transcripts and records. Including AP/IB scores, high school transcripts, immunization records, your advising worksheet and any other relative correspondence. 
  • Completed Pre-Orientation Advising Worksheet. You will need this to register for classes. 
  • Appropriate technology and headphones. You may need a laptop to complete course registration. 
  • Your parking pass. This will be sent to you via email. 
  • Donations for the Gamecock Pantry. Learn more about the Gamecock Pantry and what to bring here. 
  • A state issued ID and/or driver’s license. You will need this to pick up your CarolinaCard. 
  • Comfortable shoes for walking around campus.
  • A light jacket and/or umbrella.  

Within Columbia, we have the Columbia Metropolitan Airport. A 20-minute drive from our campus, they offer several direct flights with various airlines. Visit to learn more and to book.

Also, the Charlotte Douglas International Airport is less than a two-hour drive from Columbia. For those arriving through Charlotte, Columbia Charlotte Shuttle is the leading provider of transportation between South Carolina and Charlotte Airport. Be sure to ask about their 10-Pack discount! 

All students are required to stay on-campus during New Student Orientation in one of our designated residence hals. This will not be the same residence hall you reside in during the academic year. 

Overnight accommodations will be in Patterson Hall. When you arrive on-campus to check-in for your session, you will also check-in and drop off your belongings at Patterson Hall. Be on the lookout for an email with informing regarding room amenities and what to bring closer to your session. 

While students are required to stay on-campus in our residence halls during their session, guests have the option of staying on-campus or booking another accommodation of their choice. While overnight accommodations for your guests may not be needed, we wanted to share a few options that we recommend:

  • Stay steps from campus at Graduate Columbia, a boutique hotel tailored to South Carolina. Sleep well in their comfy, cheerful guestrooms.   
  • Stay at Hotel Trundle, Columbia’s award-winning boutique hotel. Save 15% on your stay with promo code BYEBYEKIDDO. Visit to book! 
  • Stay at Kasa! Experience a stay in their historic downtown apartment locations in Columbia, minutes from campus!
  • Stay at Campus Courtyard Lofts! Steps from UofSC, these 5-star Airbnb lofts provide a cozy alternative to hotels. Our restored 1920s studios offer free parking, snacks and charming character!
  • Overnight accommodations for guests will be available on-campus in the Women’s Quad residence hall for an additional fee dependent on the number of guests. Your student can make these reservations for you at any time in the Orientation Portal. 

During your session, we will provide parking. This was included in your Orientation registration fee and you will not have to pay upon your arrival. We will send out details regarding parking closer to your session. Please check back frequently for updates! 

Check-in for your session will begin at 8 a.m. on day one outside of Patterson Hall. During this time, you will be greeted by your Orientation Leaders, grab schedules and have an opportunity to enjoy a continental breakfast to get you fueled for the day ahead! More information regarding check-in will be shared at a later date. Please check back frequently for updates! 



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