Welcoming Traditions for New Students and Parents

SMU helps incoming students and their families transition from high school to college with Academic Advising, Registration and Orientation (AARO). The two-day orientation sessions run from July 7 to August 4, and will be followed August 21-23 by Mustang Corral, a three-day off-campus retreat.

At AARO, first-year and transfer students and their families learn about campus resources and academic expectations, while connecting with faculty, staff and current and incoming students. During their AARO sessions, students:

  • Meet faculty members and other new students
  • Meet and have one-on-one meetings with their academic adviser
  • Register for fall classes
 in enrollment labs with their adviser
  • Receive their SMU ID
  • Meet their AARO leaders, who are current SMU students
  • Spend the night in Boaz, one of SMU’s Residential Commons
  • Learn about campus involvement opportunities
 and employment

Along with their students, parents will learn about SMU academics and resources, and are encouraged to attend special parent and family programming.


At Mustang Corral in August, during the second step of the orientation process, incoming students will participate in group discussions, an introduction to the Residential Commons, diversity activities and self-assessments. They will learn about University traditions and interact with faculty, staff and students.

Students participating in Mustang Corral move into their residence halls August 20. They will be assigned a move-in time in August. The deadline to register for Mustang Corral is August 15.

Get ready for AARO: 

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