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Incoming Students: Frequently Asked Questions [FAQs] (Class of 2018)

Remember to check back often - we will continually update this page as new information becomes available, or as new questions arise. And we want to hear from you if there are questions/answers we could add that would be helpful to new students and their families!

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Arrival, New Student Orientation & Dartmouth Outing Club (DOC) "First-Year Trips"

First Things First

Area & College Services

Credits and Exemptions

Academic Information, Resources and Support

Arrival, New Student Orientation & Dartmouth Outing Club (DOC) "First-Year Trips"

When do I need to arrive for New Student Orientation?

Please see the New Student Orientation web site for information about arrival.

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Are there Orientation activities for parents, guardians or families?

  • Dartmouth College partners with parents, guardians and families to help students succeed.
  • Please see the New Student Orientation web site for information about welcome events for parents, guardians and families.

FYI: There is no official parent/family weekend in the Fall term. First-Year Family Weekend takes place during the Spring term. Please visit www.dartmouth.edu/~sao/events/family/fyfw.html for more information.

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What happens during New Student Orientation?

Please see the New Student Orientation web site for more information.

The first day of classes is Monday, September 15, 2014.

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When can I expect to hear more about DOC (Dartmouth Outing Club) "First-Year Trips"?

You will receive the "DOC First-Year Trips" mailing at the end of May.

You may email DOC Trips at DOC.trips@dartmouth.edu with questions, or call 603-646-3996.

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What is the best way to get to Hanover by plane, bus, or train?

There are several different airport options:

Bus information:

  • The bus from Manchester, NH is Greyhound/Vermont Transit; it takes 1.5 to 2 hours.
  • Dartmouth Coach offers bus service from Logan Airport and South Station in Boston; it takes about 3 hours to get to campus.
  • Both buses deliver students to a bus stop on campus.
  • For students coming from New England or New York, there is a Greyhound bus station in White River Junction, VT (10 minute drive from campus; taxi companies are listed below).
  • The Dartmouth Coach also offers luxury bus service to campus from New York City.
  • UVRide is a shuttle service that offers transportation both to and from Manchester and Logan Airport.

Train information:

  • Amtrak services White River Junction, VT. The train station is a 10 minute drive from campus; taxi companies are listed below.

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Transportation: Contact Information and link to directions

Directions to Dartmouth College

Note: this is simply a list of available services taken from the yellow pages; none of these services are endorsed by Dartmouth College.

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First Things First

Do I need to send a deposit to Dartmouth? When will the tuition bill arrive?

Dartmouth does not require a deposit. Tuition bills can be viewed online in early August.

The Pre-Matriculation Checklist will have a link for enrollment in the online billing system. You will receive notice of how to access this checklist in late May.

For questions about bills, please contact:

For questions about Financial Aid awards, please contact:

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Will I need to have a physical exam or receive immunizations before coming to Dartmouth?

Please see Health Services' website for incoming undergraduates: www.dartmouth.edu/~health/resources/incoming/undergraduate-requirement.html

This website has all the information you will need about health and immunization requirements, including instructions for completing your online and paper Health Forms.

Please note: Dartmouth requires all students to be up-to-date on certain immunizations. Please print the Undergraduate Check List from the Health Services' website for specifics and make sure you are scheduling necessary medical appointments in time to be able to complete and submit your online Health Forms by June 30, 2014.

A physical exam is only required if you are going to be participating in NCAA Athletics or Rugby. You will find more information at the Health Services website: www.dartmouth.edu/~health/resources/incoming/undergraduate-requirement.html.

  • For additional questions with regard to NCAA Athletics or Rugby medical requirements, you can also call 603-646-9419.

For additional questions with regard to immunizations or a sports physical, you can also call Health Services at 603-646-9404.

Make sure you visit Health Services' Frequently Asked Questionswww.dartmouth.edu/~health/docs/frequently_asked_questions.pdf.

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Do I need health insurance?

Please see Health Services' website for incoming undergraduates: www.dartmouth.edu/~health/depts/insurance/index.html.

  • Dartmouth College requires all students who are classified as active in the College Student Information System (Banner), including students not taking classes or on a leave term, to have health insurance meeting specified standards of coverage.
  • Eligible students are automatically enrolled in the Dartmouth Student Group Health Plan (DSGHP) each academic year and the cost of the plan is billed to their tuition account.
  • Students who have insurance coverage that meets Dartmouth's insurance requirements may apply to waive the automatic enrollment into the DSGHP by submitting a completed insurance waiver petition.
  • Students are enrolled in the DSGHP (Dartmouth Student Group Health Plan) unless they obtain an approved waiver for another health plan.
  • Online waiver applications will be available at the above website by late May. Completed waivers must be received by July 1, 2014. Late fees will be assessed for waivers received after that date.

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What health care services are available?

The Dartmouth College Health Service, which is also known as Dick's House, is available to meet most of your health care needs.

Health Services offers students:

  • a medical staff of physicians, physician assistants, nurse practitioners, registered nurses,  and medical assistants;
  • a counseling staff of psychiatrists, psychologists and social workers;
  • a fully staffed on-site pharmacy;
  • an x-ray department;
  • PLUS a number of support staff ready to assist students.
  • In addition, the Student Health Promotion and Wellness department, which includes general health educators, a nutritionist, Sexual Assault Program coordinators, and Alcohol and Other Drug Program coordinators is part of the Health Service and is located on campus on the third floor of Robinson Hall.

Dartmouth is also fortunate to have the Dartmouth Hitchcock Medical Center (DHMC) a short 3 miles from campus. Dick's House staff will be happy to work with you should you require any of the more specialized medical or psychological services that are available at DHMC.

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When will I receive the housing application?

  • Housing applications and additional information will be available for new students in late May, 2014.
  • Your completed Housing application will be due back to Undergraduate Housing by June 16, 2014.
  • Housing assignments will be sent to students by late July.

Please call the Undergraduate Housing Office with questions at 603-646-3093. They can also be reached via email: Residential.Life@Dartmouth.EDU.

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When will I learn who my roommate is?

Housing assignments and roommate information will be mailed out in late July.

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I will be traveling all summer and won't have access to my mail. How can I make sure I don't miss anything?

If you aren't leaving until mid-June, you should get all of the most important information before you leave.

If you are leaving before then, you need to have your mail forwarded or call the Undergraduate Deans Office at (603-646-2243) with an alternate address for someone who can open your mail and take care of any applications that need to be completed by a certain date.

Some of the most important information we send will arrive via email. Make sure you have a plan for accessing email during the summer - and, again, be prepared to manage applications online or electronically.

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What is "Blitz"?

Blitz is our communication and collaboration system. With this system you can email, text or video chat, share documents, and more. This system can be accessed via a web browser, Outlook 2010/2011 or Apple Mail.

You will often hear students say "I'll blitz you" – meaning they'll send you an email!

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When will I get my Dartmouth account and email address?

At some point in late May, Dartmouth will send an email to the email address we have on file for you giving you information about how to claim your Dartmouth account and access blitz.

  • Please be on the look out for that message and claim your account promptly as we will be using your Dartmouth email account to send you information about housing applications, meal plans, DOC "First-Year Trips," health information, and more.  
    • There are deadlines associated with these and many other things so you need to be monitoring your Dartmouth email account regularly - starting as soon as it is created.

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Am I required to have a computer on campus?

Yes. Please check here for more information: www.dartmouth.edu/comp/soft-comp/computers/new-student/index.html.

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Am I required to purchase my computer from Dartmouth? 

Absolutely not, but there are some advantages to doing so. Visit this site to learn more: www.dartmouth.edu/comp/soft-comp/computers/new-student/index.html.

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Is there a minimum hardware/software requirement for my computer? 

Yes. Please check here for more information: www.dartmouth.edu/comp/soft-comp/computers/new-student/index.html.

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Am I allowed to have a car on campus?

First-year students are not allowed to have a car on campus or in Hanover. This long-standing regulation applies to motorcycles and motorbikes as well and is strictly enforced. The only exceptions are for emergency, medical, or special family situations. In those instances, the student or parent/guardian should call or e-mail the Undergraduate Deans Office with the request, reasons, and dates the vehicle is needed.

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What will my new address be? Once I have my address: When can I mail packages to myself to be picked up when I arrive on campus?

Your individual address here at Dartmouth will be sent to you in late July with your housing assignment.

Your Hinman mailbox will be located on the first floor of the Hopkins Center ("Hinman" is the name of our mail service).

Once you receive your new address: you should address packages to yourself in the following format:

Student name
Dartmouth College
XXXX Hinman (XXXX will be the actual number of the student Hinman Box)
Hanover NH 03755

Students wishing to send belongings in advance of their arrival may do so once they have received their Hinman Box assignment, and should address items to themselves, using the format above.

Shipment may be made by U.S. mail or by a shipping company such as Airborne, United Parcel Service, or Federal Express, so long as the shipment meets the companies' limits on the size and weight of packages that can be handled.

Freight shipments (by truck) will not be accepted.

Parcels and packages shipped to students are received at the Hinman Mail Center in the Hopkins Center for distribution.

  • The packages are placed in secure storage and a notice with the date and time of receipt is placed in the student's Hinman mailbox.
  • The student also receives an email notification from Witstracking informing them that a package has arrived.
  • After the email is received the package is available for pickup after one hour.
  • Limited storage space and the possibility of loss or damage to packages stored for extended periods forces the Hinman Mail Center staff to return all packages to the sender that are not picked up within 15 days after receipt of notice.
  • International packages and packages received before the beginning of the term will be returned 15 days after the student has acknowledged that the packages have been received and are in storage.

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Area and College Services

How does my Dartmouth Card work? How can I put more money on it?

Your Dartmouth Card is your official College ID, and allows you to access your Dining Meal Plan and your DA$H Discretionary account (Laundry, Vending, Tickets, Events), as well as provide door access to residence halls and facilities – and it's your library card, too!

You will pick-up your Dartmouth Card when you arrive on campus for New Student Orientation. Remember to bring a valid photo-ID, such as a driver's license or passport. Valid photo ID is required for all first-time Dartmouth ID cards.

Students can check their balances and add money online. For more information, please visit the Dartmouth Card Office, or call at 603-646-3724. The Dartmouth Card office is located in the basement of the Class of 1953 Commons.

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Where can I find information about working/finding a job at Dartmouth?

Please see the following web site for lots of great information on employment at Dartmouth: http://www.dartmouth.edu/~seo/student/find_job.html. Also, please know that, while you are welcome to begin applying anytime, the hiring timeline is at the discretion of the supervisors. Some supervisors are eager to fill their positions prior to the start of term and are flexible in their hours, while others prefer to select student employees after students have confirmed their class schedule for the term (which you'll do during New Student Orientation).

You won't be "too late" to find employment if you do it in the first few weeks of the term; in fact, the Student Employment Office hosts a campus Job Fair on the second day of classes, where students and employers can talk about their shared interests. Most fall term positions won't be posted in Jobnet (the web-based student employment listing for Dartmouth College) until later in the summer (probably one month before classes begin).

Feel free to contact the Student Employment Office directly with questions.

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Can I do my laundry in the residence hall? Is there a laundry service?

Yes. Students can either do their laundry in the residence halls or opt to use a laundry service.

  • Laundry rooms are available for student use on the ground or first floor of each residence hall cluster. Washers and dryers can be used 24 hours a day. Students can pay with cash or their Dartmouth Card.
  • E&R Laundry Service information is sent in a summer mailing and can be found at www.thecampuslaundry.com.

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What cell phones work in Hanover?

These companies were chosen because they have branches on a bus route and have overall good coverage in the Hanover area.  This is not an exhaustive list.  Inclusion in the list does not imply endorsement by Dartmouth College.

US Cellular 285 Plainfield Rd, West Lebanon, NH (603) 298-7111
Verizon Wireless 267 Plainfield Rd, West Lebanon, NH (603) 298-9900
Sprint Radioshack, 2 Airport Rd, West Lebanon, NH (603) 298-6650

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What banks are available?

These banks were chosen because they are within walking distance of campus.  This is not an exhaustive list. Inclusion in the list does not imply endorsement by Dartmouth College.

Ledyard National Bank 38 S. Main Street, Hanover, NH Phone: (603) 643-2244
Citizens Bank 44 S. Main Street, Hanover, NH Phone: (603) 640-1150
Mascoma Savings Bank 80 S. Main Street, Hanover, NH Phone: (603) 643-1537
Lake Sunapee Bank 12 South Street, Hanover, NH Phone: (603) 643-3238
Bank of America 63 S. Main Street, Hanover, NH Phone: (800) 432-1000

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How can I get around Hanover and to the stores in West Lebanon without a car?

Advance Transit is a free bus system that runs Monday - Friday and goes to all of the surrounding towns. You can view a schedule online at www.advancetransit.com.

For students over 18, three Zip Cars are available on campus. Click here to learn more about our Zip Cars.

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Credits and Exemptions

Please see the Credits and Exemptions pages on the Registrar's web site for more information.

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Academic Information, Resources and Support

Are first-year students required to fulfill a Writing Requirement?

Yes! All first-year students are required to fulfill Dartmouth's first-year writing requirement. Through the first-year writing courses, the College offers entering students a valuable opportunity to develop the thinking, research, writing, and presentation abilities that characterize intellectual work in the academy and in educated public discourse.

Most first-year students take Writing 5 (or its two-term equivalent, Writing 2-3) and a First-Year Seminar to fulfill this writing requirement. As of Fall 2012, another way of fulfilling the first-year writing requirement is to take Humanities 1-2, a special interdisciplinary two-term course for first-year students offered only in fall and winter terms.

You will receive more information regarding the first-year writing requirement in June. More information about the first-year writing requirement can also be found on the website of the Institute for Writing and Rhetoric: http://dartmouth.edu/writing-speech/curriculum/placement-and-enrollment-policies.

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To whom should I speak about disabilities or accessibility resources?

Student Accessibility Services provides resources to students with disabilities. To learn more, visit their website at: www.dartmouth.edu/~accessibility/, email Student.Accessibility.Services@Dartmouth.edu, or call 603-646-9900.

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Will I have an academic advisor?

Yes. All students are assigned a Faculty Advisor to work with them throughout their first year. Your Faculty Advisor will be able to help you pick your courses and understand academic life at Dartmouth.  Once you have decided on a major in your fifth term, advisors in you area of study will be able to guide you through the rest of your Dartmouth career.

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When do I elect courses (select classes)?

First-year students elect fall term courses during New Student Orientation. 

  • You will be assigned a Faculty Advisor to help you make your course elections.
  • You will also attend a group advising workshop.
  • Your undergraduate dean is also available to support you in the process of course election, as well as department and program chairs, individual professors and upperclass student advisors.
  • Course elections are made online and you will have the chance to make changes during an add/drop period.
  • Fall classes begin on Monday, September 15, 2014.

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When do I declare a major?

Students do not need to declare their major until the end of their fifth term on campus (i.e. typically the middle of sophomore year).

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Where can I learn study skills that will help me do well academically at Dartmouth?

The Academic Skills Center (ASC) provides appointments, workshops, and mini courses every term. The ASC website has lots of study skills information, links, and videos: www.dartmouth.edu/~acskills/.

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Are there tutors available?

The Tutor Clearinghouse (a service of the Academic Skills Center) provides peer individual tutors and study groups for many introductory courses in the sciences and social sciences. To learn more, visit their website: www.dartmouth.edu/~acskills/tutors/.

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Last Updated: 3/28/14