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Jumpstarting Success with Overnight Orientation

Incoming freshmen and transfer students arrive at Cal State Fullerton every summer as part of orientation. This year, a new program gave more than 100 underserved students the opportunity to spend the night at the University’s housing facilities and experience college life for two days. The Division of Student Affairs offered the Overnight Orientation program to enhance the onboarding process of new students. The pilot program set two goals: to heighten the Titan connection by offering interventions that integrate student life, academic advising and expanded career support, exploration and real-life application to all students; and to do so regardless of a student’s finances. The program not only assisted students in their academic and career exploration, but also gave students a sense of pride and of belonging to the Titan community.

Overnight Orientation is one of many practices offered by Cal State Fullerton to increase students’ chances of having a successful college experience that culminates in a degree. Cal State Fullerton has seen a 24 percent improvement in its graduation rate in just four years, while its achievement gap — the disparity in educational success between underrepresented students and their non-underrepresented peers — has been halved. The University also has eliminated the transfer student achievement gap.

A donation from Theresa and Richard K. Davis ’83 (B.A. economics), chairman, president and CEO of U.S. Bancorp, made Overnight Orientation possible for the first time.

“Our University orientation experiences provide a space for priceless and powerful onboarding of our new Titans,” said Berenecea Johnson Eanes, vice president for student affairs. “During these times, we want to make sure they are plugged in and ready for academic and co-curricular success. Our overnight experience, in particular, is a high-impact practice that we are excited to see grow in coming years.”

To contribute to the Overnight Orientation program, contact Cris Powell, director of development, student affairs and university programs, at 657-278-2917 or