Information for Parents

*Vaccination against Covid-19 is required for participation*

New Student Trip Registration Information

  • We encourage students to sign up only if they are genuinely interested in the New Student Trip experience, and feel they are 100% committed to being an active, engaged participant in their group. 
  • We recommend parents let the student complete the trip registration process themselves, rather than have a parent complete it on their behalf. For students who would prefer not to attend a New Student Trip, there will be other great opportunities to make friends, learn about L&C, and transition to college life during New Student Orientation and throughout the term. That said, all of the trips are can be done by beginners, and many students who have never done any outdoor activities before have a great experience, making life-long friends in the process.
  • Your student can learn about the trip option in the Trips Page, and choose their top choices. In the registration form they will have the opportunity to rank their top choices. Trip registrations received between 9am on May 3rd and 11:59pm on May 9th, 2022 will have equal trip preference priority. After May 9th trip assignments are given on a first-come, first-served basis.
  • If your student has not yet registered for a trip, make sure they follow the registration links on the main page.  They need to complete both the REGISTRATION and the HEALTH & DIET QUESTIONNAIRE (within 24 hours of registering) for them to be placed on a trip.
  • Within two weeks or less of submitting a registration and health & diet questionnaire, students will receive a trip placement notification including a financial aid award (if applicable)
    • We work with the college’s financial aid office in conjunction with your FAFSA information to determine eligibility for aid.  Aid is awarded on a sliding scale based on financial need.
    • Additional trip scholarships are available for members of underrepresented groups, students can apply here.
    • Specific questions about aid eligibility should be directed to the College Outdoors office at (503)-768-7116 or 
  • To accept your trip placement, please follow the link to pay digitally on the confirmation email, or postal mail us a paper check postmarked by the payment deadline.
  • Fill out remaining paperwork, which is available on each trip’s webpage:
    • Acknowledgment & Assumption of Risk Form (must be signed by parent/guardian if your student is under 18)
    • Equipment Request Form
    • Travel Form
  • Review the trip information pages with detailed trip descriptions, recommended packing lists, and logistics information.  

Getting your student to Lewis & Clark

  • Your student should plan to arrive between 9:00 AM and 11:00 AM the day their trip starts. If you are purchasing a plane ticket, make sure the flight is scheduled to land in Portland by 11:00 AM, and we will provide a shuttle to Lewis & Clark. More info can be found on the Pre & Post Trip Logistics page.
  • You are welcome to drop your student off on the day their trip starts, and we will store all their luggage and supplies for college while they are on the trip. For 2022, the South Chapel, at Gate 7 on the Graduate Campus, is where you’ll drop them, and where we’ll store their luggage for their dorm room until they return from their trip.  However, the optional parent portion (called Parent Preview) of New Student Orientation is after students return from trips and move in to their dorms, so some parents choose to join their students (often with a carload of stuff) when the students return from the trip on the evening of Aug. 23rd, 2022. Parent Preview begins at 3:30pm on Wednesday, Aug. 24th, 2022.

While your student is on their trip

  • We very much encourage “wilderness” experiences while students are out on their New Student Trip (NST), and subsequently, we request all cell phones and most electronic devices be turned off and stored for the duration of the trip. In many cases the trip leaders will collect phones keeping them in a secure place. Getting away from technology helps facilitate group bonding and integration. We assure you we are taking good care of your student. Students usually get access to their phones en route back to campus as their trip returns. This is the best time to start coordinating where to meet (should you want to see them that evening) as their trip returns. If students like to take pictures, we encourage them to bring a separate camera, though we usually have a trip camera on every trip as you can see from our Flickr page. Trip pictures are uploaded to Flickr within a week or two after the trips return.
  • Our programs all follow risk management protocols. Our trip leaders are all members of the Lewis & Clark community. Most of them are current students or recent alumni, and are certified in Wilderness First Responder—the outdoor industry standard for wilderness medical response. We have an on-call system should there be any medical or safety concerns on our trips. This whole system can be greatly supported by both you and your student thoroughly completing the health & diet questionnaire. We thank you in advance for supporting this process.

 Once your student gets back

  • Students are involved with trip cleanup. Therefore, they may not be immediately available when their trip gets back to campus. Please allow an hour or more of trip cleanup before trying to reconnect with your student.
  • Trip clean-up does not impact participation in on campus New Student Orientation (NSO).  All outdoor trips return by Tuesday evening, and as soon as clean up from the trip is done, students can move into their residence hall room on Tuesday.  New Student Orientation officially kicks off at 3pm on Wednesday giving parents and students plenty of time to get settled into campus before the activities of NSO begin. Check the New Student Orientation website for further details.
  • The best place to meet your student once they return is outside of their residence hall.  They should be headed to their residence hall with their group after cleaning up.  A cargo van will deliver their luggage and dorm room supplies from where it is stored to their residence hall. It’s a tradition that everyone on the trip helps each student move in;  that way they all know where they live on campus.
  • NSTs (New Student Trips) are great ways to make friends prior to New Student Orientation. These new friendships are great for the students, but sometimes it’s a surprise for the parents.  Suddenly, your student may not be as excited to see you as they are to spend time with their new friends exploring campus or Portland!  This is a really good sign that your student will transition to college smoothly, but it also means that they may not be as eager to hang out with you after their trip.  Just prepare yourself for this as your child travels on their path to become an independent adult.  No college students usually turn down a meal at a restaurant, though, so that may be the best way to get their attention again, and perhaps meet some of their friends in the process.