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Welcome Weekend

Welcome Weekend is a dedicated time for you and your family to take a deep dive into the culture and experience of SAU. You will have the opportunity to meet Faculty & staff and get to know upperclassman student leaders that are ready to serve you. Take this opportunity to learn what resources are available to help you succeed over the next few years!

Welcome Weekend takes place August 27-31, 2021


  • Welcome Weekend is required for all new resident and commuter students. We believe this to be a highly valuable time that directly correlates to your future success here at SAU. If there is a conflict with participating in any part of welcome weekend, we ask that you communicate that conflict directly with your Admission’s rep before your arrival, or with Chelsae Burk, Director of new Student Transitions at: . We invite family to participate on move-in day and no event-registration is required to participate on Friday August 27th.
  • Please check in at the welcome tent located in between Gainey Hall and Dietzman hall upon arrival. This is where you will be greeted by your admissions rep, receive your welcome packet, and room key if residing on campus. If you are living on campus, you will then be greeted at your residence hall by student leaders who are ready to help you move-in. If you are commuting, your admission’s rep will give you directions on your next steps for the day.
  • Move-in day for returners is is Saturday, August 28th after 2:00pm.
  • Each new student and their family will receive a FREE meal ticket to join us for a family picnic on Friday. Dine in options will be available, however you are also welcome to bring chairs & a picnic blanket to enjoy your meal outside.
  • We will have our traditional ribbon cutting ceremony at 4PM on Friday. This ceremony is for new students and guests to celebrate the beginning of this new college experience and to reflect on the journey of getting to this moment. During this time, we will be dividing by core groups. We will then ask that family and students say their goodbyes and part ways. From this moment on we will only have activities planned for students throughout the weekend. We want parents & families to continue staying involved throughout the academic year. If you have questions about resources we provide on campus, or would like to find out about campus events or ways your student can be involved, etc. reach out to us by phone at: 517-750-6330 or by email at:

Early Move-In Dates & Times

Early Arrival Move-In Dates

If you believe that you are expected to arrival early, all early arrivals require pre-approval through the Housing office, coordinated by your coach or direct supervisor. If you are unsure about whether or not you are expected to arrive early, please contact your coach or supervisor. For early arrival dates, please contact your coach or supervisor.

New Student Move-In Times

When you arrive at the welcome tent (which is located next to Gainey Hall) you will receive your welcome packet & room key if residing on campus.


This group includes the following areas for all odd-numbered rooms:

  • Andrew’s Hall 
  • Gainey Hall 
  • Lowell Hall: Alpha, Delta, Gamma Wings


This group includes the following areas for all even-numbered rooms:

  • Andrew’s Hall 
  • Gainey Hall 
  • Lowell Hall: Alpha, Delta, Gamma Wings
  • Village Suites (new transfer students only **returners can arrive Sat the 28th after 2pm)

New Student Orientation Schedule

Note: All of this information is up to date as of 7/30/2021 and is subject to change.

Friday 8/27TimeEvent Details & location
Welcome tent10:00am-12:00pmCheck In at your assigned time at the Welcome Tent located next to Gainey Hall for Welcome Packet and room key
White Library10:00am-3:30pmSacred Grounds coffee shop open
Plaza Tent/
Dining Commons
11:30am-1:30pmLIVE music in the Plaza tent with outdoor lunch seating and games
Complimentary family luncheon & Kono Ice food truck! (assigned lunch times on check-in packet)
McDonald Athletic Center1:30pm-2:15pmAthlete and parent meet & greet
McDonald Athletic Center2:30pm-3:30pmParent Session (Panel with key SAU staff members)
Welcome Tent3:00pm-4:00pmCommuter Check in at the Welcome Tent located between Gainey Hall & Dietzman Hall
Plaza4:00pm-4:30pmParting at the Plaza ceremony with your core group & family
Various Locations4:45pm-7:00pmCore Group Meetings, various locations see Peer Advisor
Dining Commons4:45pm-7:00pmCelebration Dinner
Various Locations9:15pm-10:00pmResidence meetings
Saturday 8/28TimeEvent Details & location
Dining Commons8:10am-9:15amBreakfast
Arbor Church9:30am-10:15amDevotions
Presidents Lawn10:30am-11:45amOperation Community
Dining Commons11:45am-1:30pmLunch
Various Locations2:00pm-3:30pmMaking the Most of College I
Various Locations4:00pm-6:00pmAthletic Practices
Dining Commons5:00pm-6:30pmCore Group Dinner
President’s Lawn5:30pm-7:00pmIce Cream with the Prez
Cougar Soccer complex7:00pm-9:30pmWomen’s Soccer game vs. Northwestern
Sunday 8/29TimeEvent Details & location
Plaza9:30am-11:00amCampus Worship Service with floormates
Dining Commons11:00am-1:00pmBrunch with your floor (optional)
Library steps1:00pm-4:00pmService Projects
Various locations4:00pm-5:00pmPersonal devotions/self-reflections and free time
Dining Commons5:00pm-7:00pmCore Group Dinner
Oak Tree8:00pm-10:00pmArbor Nights
Monday 8/30TimeEvent Details & Location
Dining Commons7:40am-8:40amBreakfast (Optional) Option#1: roommate bonding breakfast Option#2: Your PA will be eating breakfast with anyone in your core group interested in eating together
Arbor Church8:45am-9:20amDevotions
Plaza & Gainey tents9:30am-12:00pmLowdown
Dining Commons11:45-1:30pmLunch
Various locations1:45pm-3:15pmMajor Meet Up
Various locations4:00pm-6:00pmAthletic Practices
Dining Commons5:00pm-7:00pmResidence life/Commuter Dinner
Various Locations9:00pmResidence Meetings
Tuesday 8/31TimeEvent Details & location
Various LocationsVarious TimesClasses Begin