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Next Steps for Enrolling First-Year Students


Posted by Carolyn Pippen on Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Take a deep breath, my friends, because you did it.  You attended college fairs, you visited campuses, you signed up for mailing lists and received brochures, you wrote essays, submitted applications, met deadlines, received letters, compared offers, and made the decision.  You are going to be a Commodore.

Good news: The hard part is over!  Everything that comes next is far less stressful and nerve-wracking and far more celebratory and exhilarating.  You have chosen your path, and next you get to find out where in this great world it will take you.

You in four months!

Sad news: Our role in your college selection process is transitioning.  While we in the admissions office have truly enjoyed and cherished the months (and in some cases, years) spent working with the future members of the Class of 2018, it is time for you to work closely with many other offices and resources on campus that will help guide you through this summer and the next four years of your life.

We certainly do not want to leave you hanging, however, so we have compiled in this post a few of the “next steps” that you should be thinking about as you make the transition from admitted students to incoming Vanderbilt undergraduates.

  1. Pay your matriculation deposit. I’m assuming if you’re reading this post that you have already completed this step, but if not, make sure you do it by May 1!  The $400 nonrefundable fee can be paid electronically via your MyAppVU portal and will be added to your student account.
  2. Read the Road to Vanderbilt from front to back, then back to front again. This magical book of incredibly important information will begin making its way to your house once the matriculation fee is processed, but you can also access it electronically right now.  It contains further details on everything discussed in this post and more.
  3. Watch for an email with instructions on how to set up your VUnetID. This email will be coming to you from the registrar’s office within a few weeks of submitting your matriculation deposit.  The username you are given and the password you create will be required for many of the processes you must complete throughout the summer, so make sure you keep it somewhere safe, like inside your brain.
  4. Set up your Vanderbilt email account. For me, this is when the whole “college” thing started to feel real – does my name really have @vanderbilt.edu right next to it?!  Once your email account is up and running, be sure to check it frequently — this is how you will receive the majority of university communications from this point forward.
  5. Submit your housing application. The deadline for housing applications is June 1, and you will receive your housing assignment in early August.  All first year students will be randomly assigned to one of the ten Houses on The Martha Rivers Ingram Commons.  You will have the option of either selecting a roommate who you know is also enrolling (the other student must select you as well), or entering your name in the roommate lottery.  If you want to get a jump start on getting to know your potential future roommates and hallmates, check out the Class of 2018 Facebook page.
  6. Submit a photo to be used on your Commodore Card. Your single most important possession over the next four years will not be your laptop, your microwave, or your mattress pad; it will be your Commodore Card.  You will use this photo ID card to gain access to your residence hall and several other buildings on campus, buy your meals, enter athletic events, get student discounts around Nashville, and much more.  You must submit a photo by June 21 to be used on your Commodore Card and you should select a “Commodore Cash” plan by July 15.
  7. Register for your fall courses. By early June, most of you will receive a packet of instructions for fall 2014 course registration via email or postal mail.  The packet comes directly from your undergraduate school and will contain specific instructions on how and when to register for classes, as well as how to get in contact with your adviser.  Read the information packet front to back, and take full advantage of the resources Vanderbilt provides in this area.  The Your Enrollment Services (YES) website contains online tutorials that will help you navigate the system and your registration process.

Okay, that’s a lot of things to do, but you have plenty of time to get it all done.  In the meantime, take a load off!  Kick back by the pool with a pair of shades and your copy of the 2014 Commons Reading.  Congratulations once again on your remarkable achievements, and make sure to stop by and see us when you arrive in the fall.


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