Orientation Leaders are full-time, undergraduate students at University Park who serve as group facilitators, resource persons, role models, and ambassadors for Penn State.
As an Orientation Leader, staff members are expected to:
- Facilitate small group discussion on subjects including: transition issues; diversity and inclusion; health, safety, and personal responsibilities; and responsible decision making;
- Present information to students on education planning, including academic requirements, academic goal setting, academic integrity, and exploring academic majors alongside academic advisers;
- Respond to questions from students and families about university life using personal experiences in a professional manner;
- Work cooperatively within a team of fellow student leaders to accomplish tasks;
- Encourage students to establish meaningful connections with other first-year students and share the importance of these connections during their transition to the University; and
- Engage in self-evaluation and reflection to develop a personal growth plan.
In addition, all applicants should demonstrate evidence of:
- strong leadership skills;
- active participation in academic and co-curricular activities;
- the ability to work comfortably with diverse populations;
- working knowledge of the University’s academic structure and various resources;
- high levels of maturity exhibited through sound judgment, emotional stability, flexibility, and willingness to accept responsibility;
- a warm, supportive, and non-judgmental attitude; and
- strong communication and interpersonal skills through proven ability to interact effectively with others one-on-one, in small groups, and in large presentations.
Orientation Leaders must be able to be flexible and patient, as NSO is a demanding and fast-paced working environment. Orientation Leaders are expected to actively engage with students and families while providing a welcoming environment for all new Penn Staters.
Orientation Leaders are paid hourly at a rate of $10.00/hour. Throughout New Student Orientation, OLs will average 36 hours/week. Orientation Leaders will gain improved work ethic, time management, collaboration, leadership, communication, and public speaking skills; have an opportunity to network with university staff; and gain an understanding of careers in higher education. New Student Orientation attire and gear are also provided.
Orientation Leaders are responsible for securing their own housing for the summer.