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First Year Experience

    About First Year Experience

    The Office of First Year Experience is driven to ensure the successful transition of all first year students. We foster an atmosphere of learning and professional development for the betterment of students. Embodying the Core Values and the spirit of the University, our aim is to involve students fully in the campus community while assisting them to achieve their academic, personal, and professional goals. 

    First Year Experience Programs

    New Student Orientation (NSO)

    New Student Orientation is a multi-day event that is hosted just prior to the fall and spring semesters. New students are assimilated to the University, its departments and services, by way of Orientation Leaders who guide students through orientation processes. NSO is packed with a myriad of events that range from exploring leadership opportunities to interpersonal relationship building; learning the campus layout to understanding strategies for success. Learn more about NSO.

    SLU 101 First Year Experience

    1 Credit
    This seminar course is designed to assist first year students with a positive transition to university life. It will introduce students to the history and the culture of Saint Leo University, to the various departments, resources, and services available, and it will foster the development of decision making using critical thinking skills and core values.


    FIRSTS (First-generations Immersed in Rewarding Scholarship to Transition Successfully) is a three-week intensive program that is offered through the Student Success office, beginning three weeks prior to the fall term. FIRSTS continues through the fall semester to provide ongoing support for student success. It is designed to support first generation students in a successful transition from high school to Saint Leo University and to provide academic support and skills training for students who need additional help in preparing for college success. Learn more about FIRSTS.

    First Year Experience Contacts

    Dawn McElveen
    Director of First Year Experience
    (352) 588.8499

    Joseph Fernandez
    Graduate Assistant for First Year Experience
    (352) 588.7239