Here, you are welcome.

Here, you are valued.

Here, you are.

We are thrilled and deeply honored that you have decided to pursue your higher education, either as an undergraduate or graduate student, as a new student or returning student, at Governors State University! As you learn more about the people, programs, and resources that define this community, look for places where you can contribute your talent and energy.


A message from President Maimon

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#GovState, #MyGSUStory

Smart Start Welcome Events

Smart Start is a highly individualized program with personal attention of faculty and peer mentors in an intensive and nurturing environment that begins two weeks ahead of the fall semester. Smart Start students have an excellent opportunity to strengthen their academic skills, develop a peer support network and to familiarize themselves with GSU and its resources.


Grill-N-Chill and Sculpture Park Tour
12:00pm-2:00pm - Hall of Governors Patio
Chill between classes with FREE burgers and dogs. And take a guided stroll through the world-renowned Nathan Manilow Sculpture Park at 12:30pm. Presented by New Student Programs and Nathan Manilow Sculpture Park.

Study Groups
5:00pm-7:00pm - Lakeside Lounge
Tutors will be available to help you study for your math and writing Smart Start classes. Snacks will be provided. Presented by the Academic Resource Center and the Writing Center.


Student Success Commons Open House
11:00am-4:00pm - Student Success Commons located in B-1215
 Visit the Student Success Commons (entrance off of Hall of Governors) to learn about the FREE tutoring services, the Writing Center, and Career Services. Snacks will be provided. Presented by the Student Success Commons.

Splash Bash!
6:00pm-8:30pm - Pool 
Fun and swimming on a hot day...what else do you need?! Refreshments will be provided. Presented by Student Life.


Advisor Chat and Popcorn Social
11:00am-1:00pm - Hall of Governors
Chat with your Cohort Advisor and have some FREE popcorn (butter, caramel,and cheese!). Games will be available. Presented by New Student Programs and the Center for Undergraduate Academic Advising.


Movie Night!
8:00pm-10:00pm - Prairie Place
Watch a movie with your new friends and/or come meet some new friends. Snacks will be provided. Presented by New Student Programs and University Housing.


GSU Library Open House
11:00am-4:00pm - Library
Visit the GSU Library to learn about all of the great FREE services provided including state-wide textbook shares, private study rooms, and online research databases. Tours will be given. Snacks will be provided. Presented by the Library.

Smart Start Study Groups
5:00pm-7:00pm - Lakeside Lounge
Tutors will be available to help you study for your math and writing Smart Start classes. Snacks will be provided. Presented by the Academic Resource Center and the Writing Center.
VOLLEYBALL BATTLE: RAs vs. Resident Students
 6:30pm-7:30pm - Prairie Place
 Show your volleyball skills against the RA staff! Presented by University Housing.


Recreation & Fitness Open House
11:00am-4:00pm - Game Room (A bldg, 1 st floor)
Visit the Recreation & Fitness Center to learn about the equipment and classes that are FREE for students. Snacks will be provided. Presented by Recreation and Fitness.

Community Service: Food Pantry Preparation
5:00pm-6:30pm -GSU Food Pantry (A bldg, 2nd floor)
Help sort food for the GSU Food Pantry. The Food Pantry is a FREE resource for any GSU student in need. Snacks will be provided. Presented by the GSU Center for Civic Engagement.


Freshmen Real Talk
7:00pm-9:00pm - E-Lounge
This is a chance for you to have REAL conversation with students who have been at GSU. You can ask anything you have on your mind. There will be no faculty or staff members around. Dinner will be provided. Presented by New Student Programs


Get to Know your Community!
1:00pm-2:00pm - Lakeside Lounge
Learn about the community surrounding GSU: fun things to do, restaurants, grocery stores, and more! Snacks will be provided. Presented by the Dual Degree Program.

Male Success Initiative Kick-off Retreat
The Male Success Initiative (MSI) is an intergenerational enrichment program designed to help you to create a game plan for your success at GSU and beyond. It focuses on employing strategies to assist in the retention and graduation of male students, particularly men of color. At this overnight off-campus excursion, dozens of new and returning male students come together to talk about transitioning to the GSU campus, team-building, sharing successes and overcoming setbacks, personal and collective visioning, and fellowship. The retreat is free and includes transportation there and back, meals, and snacks. For more information contact Sean Smith at or x7619 or in A2133. Register at

21/20 Day Party!
12:00pm-2:00pm - E-Lounge
Calling all Class of 2021 (freshmen) and Class of 2020 (sophomores): come mix and mingle, have some FREE lunch, and listen to good music. Freshmen will also receive their FREE Class of 2021 shirts and take their class picture. Presented by New Student Programs. Following this event, we will go get ready for Convocation...

    Service and Leadership Seminar

    The Service & Leadership Seminar
    is a week-long experiential learning opportunity for incoming undergraduate students at Governors State University sponsored by the Center for Civic Engagement and the Office of Student Life. The seminar is held prior to the start of the fall semester. Students are provided an opportunity to learn about community service, leadership, and self-awareness. The seminar encompasses community service projects, workshops, speakers, and interaction with current campus leaders. Students will be immersed in an array of activities that will enable participants to discover how they can help create positive, sustainable change on the GSU campus.
    Eligible Participants: Freshmen and new transfer students who will begin coursework in Fall 2017
    Registration: Click here to register


    Convocation 2017


    Make sure to attend Convocation on Friday, August 25 at 3 p.m.  This is our official opening of the 2017–18 academic year. Commemorative 2017 Convocation pins are given to every student who participates. The day will end on a cool note with an ice cream social in the Hall of Governors. 


    Where are my classes? Welcome Tables

    As you become acclimated to Governors State, you might have questions and need some directions. Please make use of the “Where are my classes?” Welcome Tables hosted by the New Student Programs staff from Monday, August 28 – Wednesday, August 30 from 8:30 a.m. –1 p.m. and from 3 –7 p.m. in the Hall of Governors by the Registrar’s Office.

    As your transition to GSU continues, begin engaging with the campus community through our Welcome Week activities:

    Monday, August 28

    • Student Life Open HousePut the ‘U’ in GSU! Meet Student Life staff and discover opportunities for students to become involved on campus. Music & refreshments served. 
      Noon – 4 p.m., The Jaguar Den A2140 (formerly Student Commons) 

    • National Bowtie Day @ GSU  The GSU community is invited to support the Male Success Initiative by wearing bowties today.

    • LGBTQA 101 Interactive and informative, LGBTQA 101 is an open discussion around LGBTQA (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, questioning, and ally)-related issues. All are welcome to attend.
      Lakeside Lounge, 7:30 p.m.

    Tuesday, August 29

    • Together We Can – Food Pantry Donation Drive  Student organizations and GSU departments are invited to compete by collecting canned goods for the Jaguar Den. Teams must create a sculpture made of the donated cans. Winner gets a prize.
      The Jaguar Den, A2140
    • GSU Rocks the Vote! Become a registered voter today! 
      Noon – 5 p.m.
      , Hall of Governors
    • Step in the Name of Diversity:  Grab your Steppin’ partner and enjoy this Chicago style dance.
      3 – 4:15 p.m., Hall of Governors

    Wednesday, August 30

    • Multi-faith Conversations  Open dialogue with a multi-faith panel focused on the ideas of hope and faith.
      Noon – 1 p.m., A-1150 (Interfaith and Meditation Room)
    • Student Employment and Part-Time Job Fair Looking for on-campus student employment or part-time work off-campus? Bring plenty of resumes and dress for success!
      2 p.m. – 5 p.m., Hall of Governors
    • Welcome Week Splash Bash Sit by the pool or take a dip! Must show GSU student ID. Swim suits required, bring your own towel. Sponsored by Student Activities Council.  Games and refreshments in the Game Lounge.
      7 p.m. - 9 p.m., GSU Swimming Pool

    Thursday, August 31

    • Student Organization Resource Fair & Carnival  Learn about student clubs and organizations recognized by GSU Student Life.
      Noon – 6 p.m., GSU Lake
    • Secretary of State Mobile Services 
      11:30 a.m. – 6 p.m., Hall of Governors

    Friday, September 1

    • Mr. & Ms. GSU Informational Sessions  Learn the requirements of becoming Mr. or Ms. GSU.
      Noon & 3 p.m., The Jaguar Den, A2140
    • Recycle Mania  Think green; protect the earth by recycling. Help GSU to promote waste reduction on campus.
      10 a.m. – 3 p.m., Hall of Governor
    • Public Health Brigade Mixer – Meet and mingle with former Brigade participants to hear about their experiences and learn how you can sign up.
      3 – 4:30 p.m., Hall of Honors
    • Cheer on the GSU Jaguars Volleyball team against Silver Lake at the first home game of the season!
      7 p.m, Gym
    • Welcome Back Party  Wrap up the first week of class with a celebration!  Hosted by Black Student Union.
      10 p.m. – 2 a.m., E-lounge

    Saturday, September 2:

    • Welcome Week Comedy Show  Laugh out loud fun! Hosted by Generating Hope.
      7 p.m., Center for Performing Arts 

      Comedian Melanie Comarcho has opened for some of the hottest tours in the country including Chris Tucker, Maxwell, Martin Lawrence, and Katt Williams. She was the first stand-up that Chris Rock featured on his late night talk show. She gives back by doing Fundraisers for Magic Johnson, Alonzo Morning, Ray Lewis and more.

      Kenny "Naturally Ignorant" Howell is a Chicago comedian who has been featured on Def Comedy Jam as well as BET's comic view. You can also catch his latest stand up special presented by Mike Epps on YouTube.

      Chicago comedian Just Nesh won first place in Chicago's Next Big Comic Comedy Contest and has opened for comedians such as Rodney Perry, Cedric The Entertainer, and the legendary Dick Gregory.

      B. Cole has been featured on Def Comedy Jam as well as BET'S comic view for 8 seasons.

     Swimming Pool 

     Beyond participating in Welcome Week, consider utilizing our Recreation and Fitness Center, and taking advantage of our many academic success workshops.

    Please take a moment to explore these important links and resources:

    Friends and Family Save the Date

    Family and Friends Weekend

    October 6 – 7, 2017