Ohio University

Join Our Team

Join Our Team

Bobcat Student Orientation (BSO) welcomes approximately 4,500 new students and their families and guests to the Athens campus of Ohio University each year. Our orientation programs are designed to ensure all students and their families/guests are welcomed, comfortable in their transitions, connected to campus resources, and confident in their academic schedules before beginning their first semester on the Athens campus of Ohio University. Student staff guide program participants through orientation, facilitate small group sessions, assist faculty and staff who partner with our programs, and create an inclusive environment where learning and growth can occur.

Faculty and Staff Nominations

Nominations for Orientation Leaders are accepted in September and October each year.  You can also submit student names for Learning Community Leader positions from September through February by visiting the Learning Community Leader website here: https://www.ohio.edu/uc/learning-communities/apply.  

Job Responsibilities and Expectations

Orientation Leader

Orientation Leaders (OLs) are students hired specifically to work with student participants attending our orientation programs.  Students in this role are assigned to work with at least two specific colleges (one as a primary assignment and one as a secondary assignment).  OLs will be expected to learn about the student experience in these particular colleges (such as curriculum requirements, internship expectations, and student organization opportunities).  Student staff in this position will support participants in these programs in a variety of ways including, but not limited to, presenting sessions on academic expectations, facilitating small group icebreakers and activities, and assisting students as they learn course registration processes and register for first semester courses.

Family and Guest Orientation Leader

Family and Guest Orientation Leaders are students hired specifically to work with the separate programs we facilitate for family members and guests of new students. Student staff in this position may work with multiple colleges and will support participants in these programs in a variety of ways including, but not limited to, presenting about the student experience at OU, serving on student panels, and answering general questions about academic expectations in specific majors. The staff in this role may occasionally be asked to fill in for an OL working with students, but they will primarily work with family members and guests. Staff in this position will still interact with new students during elements of the program that may be combined, such as check-in, check-out, and meals.

Expected participation

Student staff are expected to participate in the following:

  • One-Day Orientation Programs – January, May, and August
  • UC 3690 Orientation Leader Course* – Spring Semester
  • Relocate Day – March
  • OL Training* – May
  • Fall Orientation Programs* – Entire Month of June
  • College Credit Plus Orientation Programs – July/August
  • Welcome Week (Events and Responsibilities Vary) – August/September
  • Relocate Day – October

*Students must commit to working all orientation programs in the month of June and attending and participating in the UC 3690 course, OL Retreat, and OL Training. Participation in the other events and experiences listed above are dependent on course conflicts and other student leader training and responsibilities. Generally speaking, the roles and work times for all programs not starred in the list above can be discussed.

New orientation leaders are typically not permitted to enroll in courses, on campus or online, or hold other employment during training the last week of May and throughout the month of June. Between these dates, staff members are expected to focus on their roles with orientation.

Benefits and Reasons to Apply

  • Support incoming students and give back to your OHIO community 
  • Network with faculty and staff
  • Represent your college
  • Develop your leadership and presentation skills
  • Build your resume
  • Make lifelong friends
  • Compensation and other perks
    • Paid stipend for May training and June BSO programs
    • Hourly pay for time spent working any other programs throughout the year
    • Shared residence hall room for the month of June (when conducting in-person BSO programs)
    • Meals typically provided during orientation programs and training (for in-person BSO programs)


Students must meet the following requirements to apply:

  • Minimum cumulative GPA of 2.2
  • Good academic standing (must be maintained to continue employment)
  • Enrolled on the Athens campus at the time of application
  • Planning to enroll on the Athens campus in the spring and fall semesters following application.
  • Positive energy and enthusiasm for being an OHIO Bobcat (strongly encouraged)

Graduate students will not be considered for these positions, but can contact our office for other opportunities.

Hiring Process and Timeline

Step 1 - Online Application 

Students must submit an online application. Applications will open for the 2022 Orientation Team in September 2021.

When submitting the application, candidates should be prepared to answer the following questions:

  • Why are you interested in becoming an orientation leader?
  • As an orientation leader, how do you envision helping students to transition successfully to Ohio University? 
  • Do you want to be considered for Family and Guest OL, Student OL, or both? (See descriptions above)
  • What motivates you to want to work with family members and guests of new students? (Family and Guest OL candidates only)
  • What knowledge, skills, or abilities will you bring to the role(s) you are applying for?
  • What motivates you to want to work with new students as a student leader in the FYrST Office?
  • What does diversity and inclusion mean to you?
  • Why is understanding and appreciating diversity important in working with new students?
  • Is there anything else about you or your experience that you believe we should consider when making our hiring decisions?

Applications are due in late October.

Step 2 - Individual Interview

All applicants participate in an individual interview scheduled between September and November.

Step 3 - Group Interview

All applicants participate in a group interview process in addition to their individual interview. Group interviews take place in early November.

Step 4 - Notification and Acceptance

Initial offers of OL positions happen in mid-November and candidates are given a specific time frame in which to formally accept the position before it is offered to other candidates in the applicant pool. Unfortunately, we may have great candidates who we are unable to offer a position to. However, some of those candidates may be offered a slot in our alternate pool and could be asked to join the team at a later date if a position opens up. 

Want More Information?

Contact us with your questions or concerns.