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Updated March 28, 2023 to reflect Fall 2023 experience and timeline.

You might be wondering: what will Golden Bear Orientation (GBO) look like? Below are two sample schedules for GBO Fall 2023: first year students and transfer/EAP students. These are subject to change pending scheduling, space reservations, etc. Please note that we have over 300 GBO small groups- each have their own schedule to ensure access to all programs, mealtimes, and breaks!

We understand that a model built for so many students will not accommodate every individual; if after reading through the sample schedules below you believe that you will need accommodations during GBO, please scroll to the bottom of this page* to find instructions on how to request these accommodations.

Fall 2023 GBO Sample Schedule (First Year Students)

Wednesday, August 16, 2023 9:00am-7:00am – GBO Check In Thursday, August 17, 2023 8:00-9:00am – New Student Breakfast 9:00-10:00am – Chancellor’s New Student Convocation 10:00-11:30am – Meet Your Group & Opening Talk 11:30-12:00pm – Lunch 1:00-1:45pm – Small Group Time 1:45-2:30pm – Break 2:30-5:30pm – Bear Foundations 5:30-6:15pm – Break 6:15-6:45pm – Dinner 6:45-9:00pm – Break 9:00pm-12:00am – Late Night Programming Friday, August 18, 2023 7:00-8:30am – New Student Breakfast 9:00-10:30am – Bear Pact Performance 10:30-11:30am – Bear Pact Discussion 11:30am-12:15pm – Lunch 12:15-1:30pm – Break 1:30-4:30pm – OL Choice 4:30-5:15pm – Dinner 5:15-8:00pm – OL Choice 8:00pm-12:00am – Late Night Programming Saturday, August 19, 2023 8:00-9:00am – New Student Breakfast 9:30am-2:30pm – Day in the Bay Excursion 2:30-4:00pm – Break 4:00-6:15pm – OL Choice 6:15-7:00pm – Dinner 7:00-7:30pm – OL Choice 7:30pm-12:00am – Late Night Programming Sunday, August 20, 2023 8:00-9:30am – New Student Breakfast 10:00-11:00am – My Golden Years 11:00am-3:00pm – Intro to Berkeley 3:00pm-4:00pm – Banner Signing 4:00-5:00pm – Break 5:00-6:15pm – OL Choice 6:15-7:00pm – Dinner 7:00-7:30pm – OL Choice 7:30pm-12:00am – Late Night Programming Monday, August 21, 2023 7:00-8:30am – New Student Breakfast 9:00am-4:00pm – College Programming 4:00-5:00pm – Racial Justice & Advocacy Workshop 5:00-5:45pm – Affinity Spaces 5:45-6:15pm – Meet up with your Group 6:15-7:00pm – Dinner 7:00-8:00pm – Group Closing 8:00-10:30pm – Residence Hall Socials August 22-September 10 Getting Your Bearings

Fall 2023 GBO Sample Schedule (Transfer/EAP Students)

Wednesday, August 16, 2023 9:00am-7:00am – GBO Check In Thursday, August 17, 2023 8:00-9:00am – New Student Breakfast 9:00-10:00am – Chancellor’s New Student Convocation 10:00-11:30am – Meet Your Group & Opening Talk 11:30-12:00pm – Lunch 1:00-1:45pm – Small Group Time 1:45-2:30PM – Break 2:30-5:30PM – Bear Foundations 5:30-6:15PM – Break 6:15-6:45PM – Dinner 6:45-8:45PM – Break 8:45-10:30PM – Late Night Programming Friday, August 18, 2023 7:00-8:00AM – New Student Breakfast 9:00-10:00AM – Cal to Career Connections 10:00-11:00AM – Resource Fair 11:00-11:45AM – Lunch 12:00-4:00PM – Company Visits 5:00-8:00PM – Intro to Berkeley 8:00-10:30PM – Late Night Programming Saturday, August 19, 2023 8:00-9:00AM – New Student Breakfast 10:00-11:30AM – Bear Pact 11:30AM-12:30PM – Bear Pact Discussions 12:30-1:00PM – Lunch 1:00-2:30PM – Transfer Student Welcome 2:30-4:00PM – Break 4:00-5:15PM – My Golden Years 5:15-6:00PM – Dinner 6:00-6:30PM – OL Choice 6:30-7:30PM – Alumni Mixer 7:30-10:30PM – Late Night Programming Sunday, August 20, 2023 All Day – Break: Get settled in Berkeley, get ready for the last day of GBO Before classes Monday, August 21, 2023 7:00-8:00AM – New Student Breakfast 8:45AM-4:00PM – College Programming 4:00-5:00PM – Racial Justice & advocacy workshop 5:00-5:30PM – Affinity Spaces 5:30-6:30PM – Meet up with your Group 6:30-7:15PM – Dinner 7:15-8:00PM – Group Closing 8:00-10:30PM – Residence Hall Socials August 22-September 10 Getting Your Bearings

Check In

Check In will occur on Wednesday, August 16. See our Check In page for full details about location, time, and what to bring.

Chancellor’s New Student Convocation

During Convocation, Chancellor Carol Christ and campus administration will formally welcome the incoming class to UC Berkeley. It is an opportunity to unite the incoming class of new students and welcome them to the greater campus community.

Grouping, GBO Small Group Time & OL Choice

Immediately following Convocation, you will meet your Orientation Leaders and the other incoming students in your GBO small group at the Grouping event. You will be with this group throughout GBO. Students will engage in dialogue and community building with a small group of their peers and Orientation Leaders (OLs). OL Choice are times when your OLs will select programming specifically for your group.


Meals will be provided throughout GBO. You will have an assigned location and time for each meal. All meals will be able to provide options for dietary needs. If you do not see your dietary need met, please directly ask one of the Cal Dining staff present and inform your Orientation Leader as soon as possible.

Bear Foundations

Bear Foundations is intended to start or continue the conversation of community and identity for new students. During the large group program and following small group discussion, students will learn about UC Berkeley’s Principles of Community, Othering, and Belonging, and reflect on their identity and relationship with campus. New students will recognize that they play an active role in creating a safe and healthy culture at Cal and will leave this program reflecting how to improve their communities at Cal. We want new students to continue their knowledge of exploring stories of identities, intersectionality, community-building through different platforms and media.

Late Night Programming

Late Night Programming offers opportunities to get to know campus and its surroundings and experience entertainment at and around Cal. More importantly, Late Night Programming allows new students to bond and have fun with their groups and other new Cal students! While programming is scheduled all night, these events are optional. Programming will go no later than midnight each day. You can participate in programming by attending with members of your GBO group, or select from the variety of options each night.

Resource Fair

The Campus Department Resource Fair will introduce incoming students to 40+ campus departments, including Berkeley Study Abroad and University Health Services. The fair will be hosted in person and will allow you to connect directly with staff from various campus departments.

Bear Pact

Bear Pact is a mandatory performance that will teach you about important issues faced by college students: sexual violence and harassment, related policies, reporting options, and resources, mental health, bystander intervention, alcohol and substance use. Learn about the many ways you can maintain a balanced lifestyle and the resources on campus that can help you in this pursuit. You will also gain strategies to take care of friends, classmates, and roommates.

Day in the Bay/Company Visits

Your Berkeley experience extends beyond the campus and we know many of you are eager to explore the Bay Area. Day in the Bay will take you to a venue in the Bay Area (past excursions have included SF MOMA, the Exploratorium, Oakland Museum, Oakland Ice Rink, 90s Museum, Bay Cruise). All transportation and tickets will be included. 

Transfer and EAP students will have the option to select both from Bay Area excursions or local companies. Companies will host small groups of students and introduce them to work culture based on areas of interest (business, education, non-profit, transportation, etc). 

First year students will visit Bay Area excursions based on their assigned group time/location.

Cal to Career Connections (Transfer & UCEAP Students Only)

Cal to Career Connections is a presentation put on by the Career Center. The presentation will feature several counselors with expert insights and tips on how you can use the resources of the broader Cal community for career advancement.

Transfer Student Welcome (Transfer & UCEAP Students Only)

Transfer Student Welcome is a program in partnership with the Transfer Center, with its main goal being to welcome all transfer students to the Berkeley community and to discuss services and resources available to them.

Res Hall Meetings (Students Living in University Residence Halls Only)

Res Hall meetings are dedicated time for you to connect with Resident Assistants (RAs) and full time staff within the University Residence Halls. These individuals will provide basic information about your new home and will continue to be a resource to you after GBO ends.

My Golden Years

Students will be able to hear from some of our Orientation Mentors about their golden years so far at Berkeley. The goal of My Golden Years is to introduce students to the varied and valuable experiences of Berkeley students.

Alumni Mixer (Transfer & UCEAP Students Only)

Transfer students will have the opportunity to learn career tips and information from alumni working in different industries. New students will have a specific time designated to them to go to the Alumni Mixer on Saturday evening.

College Programming

College Programming consists of programming designed by each college (e.g College of Letters and Science, College of Natural Resources) to prepare students for life in that specific academic environment. During these events, there will be an introduction to your college and more specific sessions centered around what to expect from your college and major.  Check the Cal Events App for specific events related to your major. Note: EAP students should not attend College Programming.

Affinity Spaces

Build community with fellow new students who share your identity! Affinity Spaces are informal, social spaces for students from diverse backgrounds. You’ll also have the opportunity to meet staff and/or continuing students. You can self-select which social(s) to attend, or choose not to attend any, and you do not need to attend with your small group. Descriptions of each Affinity Space are available in the Cal Events App.

Banner Signing

An iconic GBO tradition! Come add your name to the Class of 2025 or Class of 2027 banners. These will be hung up at graduation- book ends to your Berkeley career!

Group Closing

All good things must come to an end, and GBO is no exception. Closing with small groups and Orientation Leaders is an opportunity to wrap up the week and look to the coming semester. The group closing will include dinner.


We recognize that a model built for so many students will not accommodate everyone. Please read over our policies for more information about participation requirements, and to let us know how we can best serve your needs for orientation.