University of California, Merced
UCM Fall Tour 2018
UCM Fall Tour 2018
Student Newsletter  |  May 2018


Greetings, and congratulations on your decision to make UC Merced your new home!

As a new student, there are a number of steps you need to complete before you get to campus. Over the next four months, we will take you through the process step-by-step and provide you with the details you need to know to prepare for the 2018-19 academic year at UC Merced.


We can’t wait to see you on campus in the fall!

The UC Merced Admissions team


You've actually already used the student portal - it's where you submitted your Statement of Intent to Register (SIR). The portal is an important resource that you'll use throughout your time at UC Merced, and now is no exception. At, you can find updated, secure, 24-hour access to comprehensive information about Financial Aid, Admissions, registration, records and more.
Student services found in your portal:
Your checklist
On your personalized checklist, you can find all of the requirements that you need complete and the dates they need to be completed.

Each student has different Financial Aid, Admissions, registration and residency requirements that need to be fulfilled, so your checklist might not look the same as your friend's or classmate's. Learn more about taking advantage of your checklist.
Sample Student Checklist
Access to your UC Merced email account
You were provided with a UC Merced email address when you submitted your SIR. It's important that you check your UC Merced email, because that is where we send important information. Once you've logged in to the portal, you can access your email by clicking on the WebMail tab at the top of the page.

You can opt to forward University email communications to a different account. If you do so, it is your responsibility to ensure that all information sent to your official University-assigned email account, including attachments, is properly forwarded to that other email account.
The fine print:

Student Email Account Responsibilities:
Pursuant to campus policy, all UC Merced students are responsible for taking the following actions:
  • Activating their university-assigned email account, preferably upon expressing their intent to register or as soon thereafter as possible
  • Accessing all information sent to their university-assigned email account
  • Managing their university-assigned computing and email accounts

Acceptable Use Policy:
The first time you logged in to the student portal, you were asked to read and agree to the terms of the Information Technology Resources Acceptable Use Policy. In case you didn't read the terms before checking the box, we'd like to remind you that you are required to abide by all associated state and federal laws and adhere to University policies when connected to the UC Merced network, or when using any of the University's network-based tools and resources. Although we recommend you review the terms at the link above, here is a highlight of the items you should be most aware of: No illegal sharing of copyrighted or licensed materials, no unauthorized use of University systems, no stalking, no spamming, and no use of University network resources for commercial gain. 
Financial Aid, Admissions and your student account
  • MyFinancialAid will link you to your individual student awards as well as student requirements.
  • MyAdmissions will link you to any outstanding Conditions of Admission you need to fulfill.
  • MyBill will link you to your student account, where you can manage payments and much more.
Whether living on campus or in our off-campus student housing, you will be surrounded by a diverse group of students like you who share similar interests and goals. We are a close-knit community where you always be surrounded by friendly faces.
Important Fall Housing Dates:

March 1: Housing application opened

May 7: First year priority housing application deadline

May 21: Roommate assignments began

June 5: Transfer priority housing application deadline

July 1: Online check-in available; complete move-in forms online and change move-in times

July 15: Preliminary room assignments sent; first bills available

Aug. 10: Official room assignments and move-in details available

Aug. 18-19: Move-in days for academic year; times will be assigned
Attendance at New Student Orientation is required for all new students and will provide you with the opportunity to build relationships, explore resources, reflect on your goals and learn more about what it means to be a Bobcat!

At Orientation, you can:
  • Learn tips that will help you achieve academic success at UC Merced
  • Get information about helpful campus resources
  • Hear from current students about campus life
  • Make new friends
  • Go on a campus tour
  • Visit the Campus Store to purchase UC Merced gear
  • Get your individual questions answered
  • Have your photo taken for your CatCard
You must register for Orientation by June 1. Reservations are processed on a first-come, first-served basis. We encourage you to register your parents, guardians and supporters, as we have a special program designed especially for them. The cost to attend New Student Orientation is $110 per student and $100 per parent or guest.

What to bring to Orientation:
  • Comfortable clothes and shoes
  • Identification or driver's license so you can get your CatCard
  • Copies of your transcripts and test scores
  • A refillable water bottle

Are you traveling from a distance?

You can get the full UC Merced experience by making arrangements to stay in a residence hall on campus for $25 per person, per night. For rates and information, or to reserve your room, visit or call 209-228-2313
Important Fall Orientation Dates:

Late May: You will receive a link to access the online Pre-Orientation Experience. This requirement must be completed two weeks before your Orientation date. 

June 1: Deadline to register for Orientation 

June 26-July 24: New First Year Student Orientation

July 13: Transfer Student Orientation
You will register for classes on the student portal at a randomly assigned time between June 20 and 22. You will register for classes BEFORE attending New Student Orientation. Your advisor will recommend courses based on your intended major, provide how-to resources for navigating the online system, and alert you to other requirements to ensure you are prepared for registration.

You can check your registration appointment time at MyRegistrationTime on the portal
Chemistry and Math Placement Exams

Placement exams for incoming students must be completed by 4 p.m. June 1. If you do not take the required exams by the deadline, you will be placed into preparatory-level Chemistry and Math courses. Visit the FAQ page for more information.
Changing Your Major (First Year Students)

To declare or change your major, you must fill out the Undergraduate Major Change form by June 1, 2018. Only first year students (freshmen) are permitted to change their major. Keep in mind that there may be restrictions on changing into certain majors.

Visit the Academic Advising Website for more information.
Important Fall Registration Dates:

Mid-May: Your academic advisor will send information about placement exams to your UC Merced email address after you submit your Statement of Intent to Register (SIR).

Late May to Early June: Your academic advisor will email additional registration resources.

June 20-22: Online class registration for incoming first year and transfer students
Fall Priority Deadline: June 1, 2018
Documents required by the Office of Financial Aid and Scholarships will be listed in your personal checklist in the student portal. Documents must be submitted by the priority deadline, or the deadline listed on your checklist, or your awards will be subject to cancellation. Please note that many of these documents (tax transcripts, income statements, etc.) will need to come from a parent.
After you receive your awards:
  • Visit the MyFinancialAid section in the portal.
  • Select "Accept/Decline Awards."
  • Select "2018-2019 Award Year."
  • All grants and scholarship awards will be accepted for you.
  • Choose which loans or work opportunities you'd like to accept, if applicable.
  • If you are required to complete the verification process, you will be able to accept/decline loans and work opportunities once that process is complete.

If you would like to apply for a loan, detailed instructions are available at If your parent would like to apply for a Parent PLUS Loan, he or she can visit for instructions.
If you did not submit a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) or California Dream Act Application (CADAA):
Aid may still be available even though the March 2 deadline has passed. All students will be considered for federal grants and loans or dream loans throughout the year. Contact our office for assistance.

Our school code is 041271.
If you did submit a FAFSA or a CADAA:
  • Confirm that you have included UC Merced's school code (041271) on the application.
  • If UC Merced's school code was listed, visit the portal to view requirements or awards. If you do not see any awards, contact the Students First Center for assistance.
Questions? Email the Office of Financial Aid and Scholarships or call the Students First Center at 209-228-7178.

Explore UC Merced


Couldn’t make it to Bobcat Day 2018? Watch a fun recap by our Media Cats marketing interns on our Instagram!
You can also see more of their videos about UC Merced student life on


We love to host you during a visit to UC Merced!

Can't make it to campus? You can take a virtual tour of UC Merced!

Contact Us

PHONE: 209-228-7178 (CATS-1ST)



IN PERSON: Kolligian Library, Room 122

CHAT: Monday-Thursday from 8:30 a.m. to noon and 1 to 4:30 p.m., and Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Voicemails and emails will receive a response in 24 to 48 hours, except on holidays and weekends.