Student Life

First Year Experience

  • Welcome future class of 2025!

    Stampede is our way of welcoming you into the Harding community.

    Check out Stampede
  • Get plugged in

    The FYE program hosts many events to help you meet other new students.

Making key connections early in your academic career is critical to a successful transition to college. The First Year Experience (FYE) at Harding University is designed to help engage and connect students with the people, programs and resources necessary to lay a strong foundation on which to build and grow.

FYE provides student mentoring, Learning Enhancement Seminars, and several other programs and events throughout the year.

Interested in applying to be a Co-Director for Summer 2022? Download the application (pdf) and return it to Student Center 236 by February 26. 

 Our Mission: 

  • Inspire students to explore helpful resources and activities that support academic, personal and spiritual growth
  • Expose students to various ideas, experiences, and people encountered in God's creation and the body of Christ
  • Encourage students to acquire knowledge and skills necessary for self-directed learning
  • Foster a shared experience and sense of belonging to the Harding community

Programs & Events

Freshman Retreat & Freshman Tailgate - Fall 2022

Freshman Retreat - Fall 2022

As a part of the HU First Year Experience program, the University College hosts a Freshman Retreat every fall.

The retreat consists of food, fun, games, special activities like rock climbing walls, and more.

Open to all freshmen, this event is an effort to help students’ transition to life at Harding while forming relationships with one another. 

Freshman Tailgate - Fall 2022

As a part of the HU First-Year Experience program, the University College hosts a Freshman Tailgate during the football season. The tailgate takes place in front of the Ganus Activities Complex.

Come ready for fellowship, great food, and giveaways! 

Freshman (P)reunion - April 2022

April 2022 -- 5-7:00 pm

The (P)Reunion is hosted by the First Year Experience program to celebrate the freshman class as they complete their first year of college. It is a time of reflection and re-connection with old friends as students come together one last time after joining clubs and organizations throughout the year.

Harding University Organization Fair - Fall 2022

The University College and the Office of Student Life hosts the Harding University Organization Fair on the Front Lawn early each fall semester.  The purpose of this event is to help students get involved in the clubs and organizations of their particular interests. This will be a fun evening to explore the many wonderful ways to get involved at Harding. 

Check out all of Harding's organizations and clubs

Stampede - August 2022

August 2022

Welcome Week Stampede is a required orientation program for all new freshman and transfer students to welcome the incoming class into the Harding community.  Stampede is planned and conducted by upper classmen students at Harding and is designed to help new students make lasting friendships through various events and activities.

This program will help you get off to a great start and help launch you into student life at Harding. Approximately 200 upperclassmen will be at Stampede to answer all of your questions, help you get oriented at Harding University, and ensure that you have a great time.

More info on Stampede

Spring Orientation - January 2022

January 9, 2022, 1-7 PM

It's important to get started on the right foot, so we're here to help you take care of the essentials so you can begin the semester with confidence.

Spring Orientation is a required orientation program for those entering Harding as new students in the spring semester. The Spring Orientation is our way of formally welcoming you to the Harding community. 

For more information and details, be sure to check out Spring Orientation

Transfer Retreat - Fall 2022

Fall 2022 - Date is TBD

Harding's First-Year Experience program hosts an annual Transfer Retreat held at the Tyler Bend area on the Buffalo National River in late August or early September.

Open to all first-year transfers, this event provides a unique opportunity to connect with others who are experiencing a similar transition to Harding. 

Did you know?

Peer Guides (pdf) are student mentors who are here to help you get through tough classes and make your transition to college life a little simpler.

HU Hacks for the Academics are learning enhancement seminars designed to provide the practical study tips and tricks you need to succeed.

Contact Us

Mailing address:
Harding University
University College
HU 12255
Searcy, AR 72149-5615