Student painting on the farm

Family Orientation

For information about Opening Day and move-in, click here.


Friday, September 2

Family Orientation is an optional, in-depth series of workshops, panels, and informational events designed to give families a deeper understanding of Hampshire College and its resources.

Register Here   FAQs

Schedule (subject to change):

8:30-11:30 a.m.

  • Check-in
    Franklin Patterson Hall, Lobby
    Pick up name tags and lunch tickets.

8:30 a.m.-5:00 p.m.

  • Family Lounge
    Franklin Patterson Hall, Faculty Lounge
    At any time families can take a break, enjoy light refreshments, relax, check email, read Hampshire publications, or talk with staff and students.

9:00-9:45 a.m.

  • Academic Panel Discussions
    How is an individualized academic program created by a student and supported by an adviser? What does the journey to academic success look like? Discover how students create their own programs of study from the people who provide support and guidance throughout the first year.

9:15 a.m.-12:30 p.m.

  • New Student Orientation: Group Activities and Common Reading Discussion with Faculty
    New students participate in activities to introduce them to the College, and then participate in a discussion of the year’s common reading.

10:00-11:30 a.m. 

  • Farm Center Tour
    How does the Farm Center operate? How do students use the farm in their academic programs? How can students join its CSA? Meet the farm staff and see the vegetable fields, barns, greenhouses, and pastured livestock that make up this vital part of the Hampshire community. Farm-friendly footwear is encouraged.

10:00-10:45 a.m.

  • Separation and Transition Workshop
    What can you expect during the student transition to Hampshire? What transitions are common to all families and what else might occur? No matter what stage you’re in, come reflect and laugh with the professionals from our counseling services as they help you prepare for this next phase of your student’s life—and yours.

10:45-11:45 a.m. 

  • The New Student Experience
    What happens outside the classroom? How are students supported in their adjustment to the residence halls? What opportunities do students have to build community and engage with their interests? How will students know about all of this? Get a sense of what to expect in your student’s first year

Noon-1 p.m.

  • Family Orientation Lunch

1-2 p.m. 

  • Student and Family Resource Fair

1 p.m.

  • New Student Orientation
    New students participate in a conversation, facilitated by a member of the faculty, about academics at Hampshire, including an overview of Division I. Transfer students will attend sessions specifically geared to their experience.

2:15-3:00 p.m.

  • Student Accounts, Financial Aid, and Work-Study Panel
    How do ID cards work? What jobs are available on campus? Does your student have to apply for financial aid again next year? Hear from the staff of student financial services about what you should know to make paying bills and securing financial aid easier.
  • Community Engaged Learning
    All students complete at least two community engaged learning activities during their time at the College. In our community, this engagement takes many forms and provides opportunities for students to bring new and diverse perspectives into their education. Discussion will revolve around the central role community engagement and experiential learning play in Hampshire’s academic model, with a focus on resources available to first-year students.

3:15-4:00 p.m. 

  • Learning, Researching, and Creating
    What do students do when they’ve got a research paper, project, film, or other academic project due? How do students interact with source materials and create original content? Meet the professionals who help them with research and media production, using a wide variety of technologies and resources.
  • Alumni Reel
    Come watch this collection of one-to-two minute clips of recent work showcasing the vision and creativity of our alums who work in film, television, and video.

5-7 p.m. 

  • Dinner
    Families can eat in the dining hall (pick up meal passes in the Family Lounge) or take their students off campus.
Stay In Touch
With Alumni and Family Relations
Snail Mail
Alumni and Family Relations
Hampshire College
893 West Street
Amherst, MA 01002
Phone + Email
Fax: 413.559.7039