A few graduates pose for a photo opp.

First Year Experience & Advising


Congratulations and Welcome to Oakwood University! We are glad that you have chosen ‘OU’ as ‘YOUR’ university. Here you will enter to learn and depart to serve.

What is FYEA

At Oakwood University it is important to us that you are able to engage and transition smoothly into the college experience. FYEA provides programs and services that support students’ academic success and personal adjustment to university life.

Contact Us

Havovi Patel
Director, First Year Experience & Advising
Phone: 256 726 8279
Email: hpatel@oakwood.edu
Fax: 256 726 7522

Programs and Services

OU Stay Connected Learning Communities
During the first year experience, students will participate in the OU Stay Connected learning communities. In these small learning communities, students will engage in various activities with their assigned community. These planned activities are designed to promote spiritual, academic, professional, and social growth throughout the first year experience and beyond. By becoming connected, students may be more likely to stay connected.

Orientation Week (Mandatory)
Orientation week gives all new students an opportunity to arrive early and learn about their new surroundings before the influx of returning students. It is a time of transitioning–taking off the old and putting on the new. During this week, new students (both Freshmen and Transfer students) learn what it means to become an “Oakwood Man” and an “Oakwood Woman.” All new students are required to attend this once-in-a-lifetime event in order to help secure their academic success.

OU 101: First Year Experience
This course is a general education requirement for all freshmen and any new student entering with less than 30 semester hours of transfer credits. The seminar is designed to provide pertinent information to help new students to make the most of university life. As part of the Quality Enhancement Plan (QEP) this course will introduce and emphasize the critical thinking process through writing. It will also focus on challenges that integrate the academic, social, and spiritual facets of life, therefore, placing an emphasis on opening the doors to “Education, Excellence, and Eternity.”

OU 097: Strategies for Academic Success
The course is designed to effectively guide new students toward academic success through the utilization of cutting-edge study and learning strategies. All new students admitted to Oakwood University on academic probation and/or having a composite score of less than 17 on the ACT or less than 920 on the new SAT (840 on the old SAT) are required to take OU 097 during the first semester.

Freshman Advising

An important goal of freshman advising is to introduce all first-time Oakwood University students to the advising process. During the first year, advisors help students to select core curriculum courses, balance study and extracurricular activities, and think about possible majors. The main components of this program include assigned advisors for each academic department, specialized advisors for at-risk students, and management of the departmental degree planners to promote career direction.

Orientation Registration Form

Important Information

Register for Classes

Portal for Registration Opens Monday May 8, 2017 at 9:00am (CST).

Follow these simple steps:

  1. Pay your Intent to Enroll Fee (if not already done).
  2. Have your official ACT/SAT scores in hand
  3. Determine your Major (Complete Career Exploration for Incoming Students by clicking on the FYEA Tab above).
  4. Determine if you need to select any of these courses FIRST.
  5. Complete your schedule now by selecting your remaining credit hours for the semester (a full schedule will be 12-16 credit hours). Click here to access the Departmental Degree Planner of your major.
  6. Have your MyOakwood username and password available (username and password were provided to you by the Admissions Office).
  7. Go online to MyOakwood to log in.
  8. Select the STUDENT tab, then click on Registration (on the left), then on the Registration – Add and Drop Courses link.
  9. Be sure to choose the correct Term (example: 2017-18 Fall Term) and enter the Course Code for each class (example: EN 111). When finished, click the Add Courses button. This will submit your schedule to an advisor for approval.
  10. Get a confirmation email from an Academic Advisor that your classes have been approved
  11. Pay 70% of your tuition and fees and enroll in a payment plan/agreement to be financially clear.
  12. Move-in on August 9, 2017 (First day of New Student Orientation) 

What is it like to live in Huntsville, AL?

Be prepared for hot and humid summers. The winters are generally cold and dry. We recommend that you bring a winter coat or heavy jacket.

  • Get a confirmation email from an Academic Advisor that your classes have been approved
  • Pay 70% of your tuition and fees and enroll in a payment plan agreement to be financially clear
  • Move-in on August 9, 2017 during New Student Orientation

What should I bring to orientation?

The activities during New Student Orientation are varied and will include lectures, games, testing, meals, and spiritual programs. You should, therefore, plan your wardrobe accordingly. Please include a black and white (church attire) outfit for the Consecration Service on the Friday evening of New Student Orientation. Bear in mind that modesty is a core value of Oakwood University.

Is there a cost for New Student Orientation?

While the mandatory New Student Orientation is provided to you at no additional cost, the benefits of attending are priceless.

What happens if I miss New Student Orientation?

New Student Orientation is an important milestone in the life of a new college student. During orientation, time has been set aside to specifically address the academic, financial, and personal needs of our new students. Missing this opportunity would be detrimental. We are aware, however, that even the best intentions can go awry. Students who are unable to attend orientation must contact the Office of First Year Experience & Advising for an information packet once they arrive on campus.

What is the benefit of participating in New Student Orientation?

Students who participate in New Student Orientation will:

  • Meet fellow members of the 2021 Oakwood class
  • Begin to build lifelong friendships
  • Meet and interact with key University personnel
  • Become familiar with the campus and community
  • Interface with Student Leaders
  • “Meet and Greet” departmental faculty
  • Get the inside scoop on the Oakwood Experience
  • Become familiar with the policies and procedures of the University

Who is expected to attend New Student Orientation?

All new first year students (freshmen) and transfer students are expected to attend New Student Orientation.

When should I arrive on campus?

Move in Day is August 9, 2017, the first day of New Student Orientation. The residence halls will open to receive you at 8:30 a.m.

When will orientation begin for new students?

New Student Orientation will take place from August 9, 2017 through to August 15, 2017. Classes begin on August 16, 2017.

What is New Student Orientation?

New Student Orientation is a program designed to facilitate students’ transition to college, in general, and specifically to Oakwood University. It is a program focused on providing new students with the skills and information needed to successfully soar into college life.

Dates & Activities

Congratulations and welcome to Oakwood University! We hope you will have a rewarding and successful academic year. You can be confident that in choosing Oakwood University as your institution of higher learning, your educational experience will be uniquely different from any other university of higher education.

Given below are important dates and events to be held during New Student Orientation, August 9 – 15, 2017.

Residual ACT Test
Should you need information regarding the residual ACT, you may contact the Career and Testing Center at (256) 726-7134.

Overview of Orientation Dates and Activities
The dates for Orientation are Wednesday, August 9 – 15, 2017. The Residence Halls will be open Wednesday, August 9, 2017 for occupancy. Please note: Orientation is not optional. It is mandatory for all new students.

Other main events for Orientation Week include the following:

  • August 9, 2017 – Student Exemption Test for MA095 and MA 108, Registration Completion, Parent/Student Orientation for Healthy Campus 2020, Residence Hall Orientation for Parents
  • August 10, 2017 – Parent Orientation, Parent Workshops, Student Testing for EN095 and EN099, Music Department Auditions and Music Theory Placement Tests, Auditions for Consecration Responses, Parent and Student Workshops, Student Parting Ceremony, Freshman Rally, Team building activity.
  • August 11, 2017- Administrator’s Success Tips, Technology Workshop I, Visit to the Bridge Street Mall, Consecration, AYM Release
  • August 12, 2017 – Sabbath School, Divine Worship, Ministry Fair, Playfair
  • August 13, 2017 – Campus Walking Tour, Technology Workshop II, Funday Sunday, Ignite Worship Service, OU Phobia (games)
  • August 14, 2017 – Academic Sessions, International, Latino, Transfer Orientations, Academic Open House, Freshman Challenge
  • August 15, 2017 – Healthy Campus 2020 Wellness Day, Residence Hall Orientation for Students


Summer Reading Assignment
We are requiring that all First Year Students read the book “Who Moved My Cheese” by Spencer Johnson as this book will be discussed throughout your first year experience and will also be in the form of an assignment for OU 101 – Orientation Seminar. More information regarding the summer reading assignment can be found here.

Consecration Service
All new students will be required to participate in the Consecration Service on Friday, August 11, 2017. We are requiring that church attire be worn for the ceremony. The colors will be black and white. Women are required to wear a black or white dress or skirt with blouse (both must cover the shoulders and be knee length). Men are required to wear a black or white shirt with black pants and a belt (a black suit may also be worn). Please note that no jewelry should be worn.

Our wish for you is that you will experience positive growth spiritually, academically, and socially while you are at Oakwood University.

Career Exploration for Incoming Students

Assess Your Interests: https://www.mynextmove.org/explore/ip

Explore Careers:  https://www.bls.gov/k12/content/students/careers/career-exploration.htm

For additional career guidance, please contact Ms. Verneice Wright: Phone:  256-726-8495 or Email: VWright@oakwood.edu

Summer Reading for Incoming Freshmen

Summer Online Course Announcement