Become an Orientation Leader

How to apply to be an OL?

Orientation Leader applications are currently closed. Please check back at the start of the Fall 2023 semester when we will begin hiring our Orientation team for the 2024 orientation season.

Why be an OL?

The Orientation Leader (OL) position exists within New Student Programs to welcome and acclimate new students to the campus during New Student Orientations, Transfer & Adult Student Orientations, Panther Transition Experiences, and other programs. OLs will play a vital role in helping facilitate the transition of new students by providing students and their families information about University programs and services. Through a variety of experiences and opportunities, OLs have the power to make a positive and lasting difference in the UWM community and develop great leadership and résumé-building skills in the process. Please review the Orientation Leader Position Description! 

Skills Gained from the Orientation Leader Experience

  • Knowledge of campus and commitment to the goals of Orientation 
  • Strong interpersonal and communication skills 
  • Teamwork and leadership skills  
  • Ability to work effectively and collaboratively with diverse groups of people  
  • Public speaking, one on one, and group facilitation  
  • Flexibility and adaptability 
  • Problem-solving and critical thinking; keeping composure in fast-paced, challenging situations  
  • Positive customer service and willingness to assist others  
  • Competency in technology communication

Who should be an OL?

The University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee Orientation Leaders are a prestigious group of student employees who make significant contributions to student life and culture at UWM. They represent UWM at all Orientation programs which are designed to enhance the experience of all incoming students. They help achieve UWM’s goals, further promote academic success, and embody Panther Pride. 

You should apply if:

  • You want to gain or strengthen your leadership skills and abilities
  • You are an enthusiastic, school spirited and motivated student individual
  • You want to be a part of a positive community here at UWM
  • You want to promote inclusivity, diversity, and individuality

We want a diverse staff that represent the UW-Milwaukee student body. We welcome all students from all majors, backgrounds, and experiences.

Job Description

Orientation Leader Responsibilities 

  • Welcome and support new students and their families during Orientation and Transition programs (see date range below) 
  • Lead small groups of new students during Orientation by implementing appropriate content, sharing personal experiences or stories, and promoting interaction by facilitating icebreakers and group discussions on college transition-related concerns and opportunities 
  • Support Academic Advising staff through School/College meetings to assist students through the course enrollment process, utilizing the PAWS registration system 
  • Engage with diverse and energetic team of student leaders respectfully, modeling strong community standards and values. 
  • Provide Information to students and families on the Dean of Students Office, University Police and Safety, and the Student Health and Wellness Center 
  • Use problem solving skills in a fast paced and exciting environment 
  • Facilitate evening activities to help students develop social connections 
  • Assist in the preparation of Orientation activities and materials
  • Participate in 1:1 meetings with Student Coordinator supervisor, bi-weekly team meetings, and weekly staff meetings during summer months 
  • Engage in reflection processes through the summer, including pre-training reflection, mid-summer self-reflection, end-of-summer experience survey, and other reflection and feedback opportunities. 
  • Participate in training activities including Educational Psychology 230 (2-Credit Leadership Course) spring semester, two-week summer training, mid-summer training, and Fall Welcome training (dates to be set in early Spring) 
  • Address inappropriate behavior among students and/or guests in attendance at programs 
  • Other duties as assigned and agreed upon 


  • Be enrolled in Educational Psychology 230 (Leadership Course) spring semester and be available for all scheduled trainings and program dates *Dates are subject to change and date conflicts must be addressed before employment 
  • Highly motivated to work independently and be willing to work varied hours during summer programs 
  • Must have a minimum cumulative and semester grade point average (GPA) of 2.5 at time of application and maintain it throughout the entire term of employment 
  • Enrolled as a full-time undergraduate student for the next fall term before the start of the summer 
  • Behavior/Conduct records in University Housing and the Dean of Students Office will be checked when making hiring decisions. Must be free of any conduct violations at time of appointment and remain free while employed.  

Important and Mandatory Dates:

Should you have any questions about these dates or if you know you have conflicts, please contact Catie Kocian at or Hannah Menzel at  Few exceptions will be made for absences given the importance of this role to the Panther community. 

First Orientation Leader Meeting: December 15, 2022: Orientation Student Staff Contract Signing

Spring Class: 

New OLs participate in a mandatory semester-long training course discussing various leadership topics including communication skills, group facilitation skills, team building, conflict management and resolution, critical thinking, social justice, and campus knowledge. Course meetings are held every Tuesday from 5:20 – 7:30 pm of Spring semester, in person. OLs will register for the 2-credit (elective) Educational Psychology class through PAWS by December 18, 2022.   

Summer Dates: 

  • May 22-June 3: Summer Training (9:00am-5:00pm) 
  • Full month of June and July, and select dates in August and early September (these dates will be communicated ASAP) 

*Dates subject to change. Actual program dates will be provided upon hire. 


  • Full time in summer with a stipend of $4,000 (late May-end of August, stipend paid out in regular installments)
  • On Campus housing (single room) and meal plan valued at $180 during summer months
  • Uniforms provided (polo, shirt, jacket, nametag, backpack, other items)

Hiring Timeline and Process:

Applications Open: Tuesday, September 20, 2022
Applications Due: Ongoing
Individual Orientation Leader Interviews: October 26, 2022 and onward
Final Decisions (sent via email): On or before Wednesday, November 23, 2022
Orientation Leader Accept Deadline: Monday, November 28, 2022 (the first day back from Thanksgiving break)
Orientation Leader Start Day: Thursday, December 15, 2022 —First OL Meeting

*Dates subject to change 

Please contact New Student Programs ( with any questions regarding the Orientation Leader position.