‘Cane Kickoff welcomes commuter students with resources, peer mentors

The Association of Commuter students shows off their spirit for the Homecoming Parade. Hallee Meltzer // Photo Editor

As first-year students, the worst is already done – you’ve picked where you’ll spend the next few years, stressed over what classes to choose and tried to start memorizing your C-number. However, the overflow of orange and green is just beginning. Welcome to ‘Cane Kickoff!

While the residents are decorating their dorms and international students are having their orientation, commuters will be on a different path to get to know their home away from home.


While Orientation Check-In & ‘Cane Card Pick Up begins Tuesday, Aug. 15, commuters are encouraged to check in the following day, from 12-3 p.m. Wednesday, Aug. 16, when Orientation events will also be happening on campus. At check-in, students and families will receive campus information and a schedule of events for the week; although the schedule may say check-in is 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., it should only take about 10-20 minutes. Students will also be directed to take their pictures for their Cane Cards, which will be used for amenities around campus.

To start off orientation for commuters, head over to the Fieldhouse for Commuter Welcome 4:15-4:45 p.m. Wednesday afternoon. Here, commuters will get the chance to meet other students, Commuter Assistants (CA) and Orientation Fellows (OF) who will accompany them for the week. Commuters will be split into their groups from 4:45-5:15 p.m. to further learn about their classmates.

Afterward, all first-year students will be led into the Watsco Center for the President’s Welcome and ‘Canes Take Flight from 5:45-7:30 p.m. Get ready to learn about UM traditions, meet Sebastian the Ibis and take pride in your future alma mater. Your CAs and OFs will be cheering at top volume and make you get on your feet to show off the commuter spirit to the rest of the school.

One thing students learn quickly is the value of free food, so head over to Stanford Circle for free food from local food trucks and meet with all the commuters at the Commuter Lounge at 8 p.m. Your CAs and OFs will let you know where to find the rest of the group after you’re done trying to pick what to eat out from a variety of options. That same night, students will attend a late-night event that will be the talk of the town the following day. You don’t want to suffer from a case of FOMO, do you?


The following day will begin at 9 a.m., and students will take a campus-wide U photo, learn tips on navigating the next few years from administrators and meet the dean of students. For commuters only, there will be a lunch 12- 1:30 p.m. on the second floor of the Whitten University Center (UC). Remember to never turn down free food.

‘Cane Kickoff is the time to set the tone for you as a student when school begins. For Orientation Program Coordinator Antonella Valdivia, it’s more than that.

“Orientation is the start for commuters to make lifelong friendships,” she said. “It gives you a chance to see UM as their home and Miami as their city.”

For more information, visit miami.edu/orientation and click ‘Cane Kickoff: Fall Orientation.