A photo of the Dean of Students at Binghamton University. Message from the
Dean of Students

Dear Parents/Families,

Summer is flying by and we're in the midst of Orientation for incoming freshmen. It's exciting to see so many of our incoming students on campus, learning how to get around and starting to become familiar with their "home" for the next four years!

During August, new students and families can meet some "old-timers" at Summer Send-offs, where they can get advice from current students and their families, then it won't be long before they're settling in on campus, making new friends and getting involved. When that happens, they'll find themselves in one of the most diverse settings they've ever experienced. As our returning students can attest to, Binghamton University enrolls about 17,000 students, including nearly 3,000 international students – and that makes for a very diverse campus population.

The Binghamton campus and community includes diversity across religion, gender and gender identity, race, ethnicity, place of origin, sexual orientation, opinions, political beliefs, lifestyles, age and much more. This is a place where students will encounter many new and exciting ideas and people. That's why Binghamton encourages dialogue across all disciplines and areas of campus. Students should take full advantage of the many differences across the community to learn something new, meet someone different from themselves, and get to know their new roommates and neighbors.

Encourage your students to put down their phones and really talk to the people around them. Fostering in-person dialogue can help us all better navigate in diverse environments. Once they arrive, we have many resources available to support our diverse community and to help us ensure a welcoming and inclusive experience for all of our students including the Multicultural Resource Center (MRC); Office of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (ODEI); the Dean of Students office (DOS) and many more.

We look forward to seeing your students next month and will be sending some final tips about Move-in Day in the August Parent Connect!

Until then, if you have any suggestions or comments, you can contact me any time at dos@binghamton.edu.

April Thompson
Associate Vice President and Dean of Students

Summer Send-offs are here!

Are you a new family at Binghamton University? Summer Send-offs were created just for you! Throughout the month of August, families of current students host regional events in their homes just for you. Meet current Binghamton University parents and ask for advice, while your new student can ask a current student questions. Current parents host these throughout New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania and Massachusetts, so you can also meet families from your hometown. A staff member attends as well to answer questions on topics ranging from schedule building to Move-in Day. Register your family here today!

Residential Life

In early August, students will receive their roommate(s) assignments. Encourage them to make contact early so they can get to know the people they'll be living with: likes/dislikes, study habits, waking schedules and what they plan to bring. This small but important step can help forge a positive relationship and relieve some of the anxiety that accompanies the first week's settling in. You can find tips on roommate relationships, making friends and what to bring on our website.

Fall Job and Internship Fair planned for Sept. 17

The Fleishman Center for Career and Professional Development will host the University's fall Job and Internship Fair from 11 a.m.-3:30 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 17, in the Events Center. Representatives from for-profit, government and non-profit organizations will be eager to speak with students from all majors regarding full-time and/or internship opportunities. About 100 employers and organizations are expected to attend. Students from all class years and majors are encouraged to attend; seniors to job search, juniors and sophomores to explore internship opportunities, and freshmen to better understand what's in store for them in the years to come.

In advance of the fair, encourage your student to review the Fleishman Center website for the list of registered employers, and conduct research on employers of interest. In the weeks leading up to the fair, the Fleishman Center presents a number of preparation programs and tips on taking time to Prepare for the Fair are available on the Fleishman Center website. According to the National Association of Colleges and Employers, the typical job search for a new graduate takes six to nine months. It's never too early to start a job search, especially for seniors who will be graduating in May 2016!

Financial Aid & Student Records

  • Check out the Financial Aid ALERTS page for important information regarding new federal and state programs and awards, interest rate changes and more.
  • Proof of advance registration for fall 2015 is available online through BU Brain via the National Student Clearinghouse. Students can access this by logging into the portal at my.binghamton.edu. Click BU Brain, Student tab, Student Services Tools.
  • In anticipation of the fall 2015 semester bill, make sure to review that your student's financial aid package is properly credited to the bill and that any unsatisfied requirements have been taken care of. Find all you need to know and more online
  • Degree candidates for summer 2015 can expect to have their degree awarded at the end of August. Diplomas are expected to go out in the mail starting in early September.
  • Holds can prevent your student from registering for classes or obtaining a transcript and delay graduation and other processes. Remind students to clear all holds that may be on their record. Holds can be viewed online through BU Brain
  • Proxy Access is now available for financial aid information. Proxy access allows students to grant access to you or others to view their financial aid information via BU Brain. Currently, proxy access is only available for financial aid information. Go online for more information on proxy access and how to setup an account. 

Health Services

Decker Student Health Services Center welcomes all new and returning students back to campus during the weekend of Aug. 27-30. As your student prepares for Welcome Back Weekend and the start of a new semester, visit our website for important health information

Questions can be directed to health.services@binghamton.edu or 607-777-2221


We know your student is excited about coming to Binghamton University. To help create a safe environment for all students, we ask all new students to complete an online course called "Think About It" at CampusClarity.

We believe your student will enjoy the assignment. It is an innovative, engaging and informative online course, created with students for students. In the course, students will examine the interconnected issues of hooking up, substance abuse, sexual violence and healthy relationships through a variety of interactive, realistic scenarios and guided self-reflection. The course promotes a healthier and safer campus environment for everyone.

"Think About It" takes about two to two-and-a-half hours to complete. Students can work at their own pace from any computer (requires Flash player). They can leave and return to the course at any time, and when they return, it will open to the page where they left off.

Your student has received an e-mail from the Dean of Students Office with instructions and contact information. Students are expected to complete the online course on or before Aug. 31, 2015. For more information, contact Garrett Fitzgerald at 607-777-3088 or gfitzger@binghamton.edu.


Binghamton Bookstore

As soon as students are registered for classes, they are able to pre-order their required textbooks. Ordering at the Binghamton University Bookstore guarantees your student the correct books at a great price. Just input course information into the Bookstore website, then choose used, rental, digital, etc. 

Books will be pre-packaged and ready to pick up at the beginning of the semester, or they can be shipped. Information about cost-saving options such as used books, rentals and digital textbooks is also available on our website.

Like us on Facebook for store information and special discounts on merchandise!

Campus Dining Services: The original social network

Dining on campus is more than great food – it's a community experience centered around culinary expertise, fresh ingredients, healthy options and quality student life. Binghamton University Dining Services by Sodexo offers a community environment where students can eat, socialize, network, study and relax.

To help our students make the best wellness decisions, we offer:

  • Online menus and nutritional information
  • An on-site campus dietitian
  • Fresh, local, healthy and tasty options at all dining locations
  • and much more...

To learn more about all things dining, visit us on our website or any of our social media platforms @BUCampusFood.

Office of International Programs

Binghamton University offers a world of opportunities for your student through many available study abroad programs! The Office of International Programs (OIP) can help students find the right study abroad program to fit their interests, coursework and budget. OIP's website has plenty of details and information, not only for students, but for parents as well. Study Abroad Resources for Parents can be found online. If you or your student have questions or want more information, reach out to us anytime at oip@binghamton.edu or 607-777-3336. We look forward to helping your student find an international adventure!


College — a time to expand horizons! Why not try out theater? It provides training and skills that are useful in all walks of life, far beyond the theater itself. It teaches teamwork development and collaboration, provides hands-on experience and practice meeting deadlines. Nothing builds communication skills for both collaboration and public speaking like working onstage. Not to mention it's a great way to meet new people!

The Department of Theatre produces Mainstage and Studio Shows throughout the academic year, and any student taking classes here at Binghamton is eligible and encouraged to audition or join a crew for one of them. You don't need to be a major to be involved and you don't need to audition to take classes. All are welcome to audition.

Check out these recommended classes for freshman and important information and FAQs. E-mail us at theatre@binghamton.edu if you would like more information sent to you.

Welcome from Services for Students with Disabilities

As you prepare to usher your students into their new adventures at Binghamton University, we in the Services for Students with Disabilities office extend our heartiest welcome to them. We would also like to take a few moments to introduce all students and their parents to the equal access accommodations and supports the University provides to students with disabilities, along with the procedures and links to important information for students wishing to seek assistance from our office.

Binghamton University prides itself on its commitment to equal access and offers students exciting opportunities for intellectual and personal growth. Students with disabilities, like all admitted applicants, enter with scholastic credentials representative of Binghamton's high academic standards. Unlike the secondary school arena, students seeking to register with Services for Students with Disabilities (SSD) at the college level are personally responsible for contacting the office and providing current, comprehensive disability documentation.

SSD mission and philosophy

Our mission is three-fold and includes:

  • Facilitating the educational and personal development of Binghamton University students with disabilities.
  • Collaborating with faculty, staff and administrators throughout the University to insure and enhance physical and program accessibility.
  • Promoting a campus culture characterized by attitudes of mutual caring, respect and inclusion.

The office provides a wide range of assistance to enrolled students with physical, learning, psychological or other disabilities. Operational philosophy is based firmly on the belief that individuals registering with SSD are students first and that their disabilities are secondary. All students are respected as adults and are responsible for taking an active role in arranging and managing their accommodation and/or support services.

Getting started with SSD

Students who anticipate a possible need for disability-related services or accommodations at Binghamton University should contact SSD one to three months prior to enrollment. Individuals needing specialized accommodations such as wheelchair-accessible housing assignments, visual fire alarms, sign language interpreters, or Braille texts should be especially vigilant in providing significant advance notice.

To request disability-related services and/or accommodations through SSD, students are personally responsible for:

  • Providing us with current and comprehensive disability documentation from a professional licensed or certified to diagnose and treat their disability-related needs. Visit our webpage and click on "New Students" for disability-specific documentation guidelines and additional information on the wide variety of supports we provide eligible students.
  • Following up to ensure their documentation has been received and to schedule an intake appointment with the director or the assistant director/learning disabilities specialist.
  • Participating in their intake meeting during which we will consult with them in determining appropriate accommodations and support services, and review their rights and responsibilities in the implementation process.

Binghamton's faculty and staff are eager and ready to partner with students to facilitate their equitable access and support them in their academic endeavors and their identification and development of meaningful opportunities for campus and community involvement. Encourage your student to contact us if and when we can be of assistance – and feel free to contact us with any questions you may have. We wish you and your upcoming Binghamton University students well.

Make plans now for Move-in Day!

If you'll be moving your student back Aug. 27 or 28, especially if you plan to spend a night, be forewarned that the Greater Binghamton area will be bustling with a major community event – the Senior PGA Tour Dick's Sporting Goods Open – so hotel rooms will be at a premium and it will likely take longer than usual to drive from point A to point B. Make your plans now! 

Parents – Facebook just for you!

Like the Bearcats Family Association Facebook page today so you can receive daily news and information from Binghamton University, as well as win fun prizes just for parents!

Check out Binghamton University on Facebook, too

Want to know more about what's going on at Binghamton University beyond the parent Facebook page? Check the Binghamton University main page out on Facebook.

Visiting Binghamton?

If you're planning a trip to Binghamton, visit the Visiting Binghamton section on our website or the Greater Binghamton Convention and Visitors Bureau for information on what to see, where to stay and where to eat while you're here.

Update parent information

Keep your contact information updated in our parent database. If your address, phone or e-mail has changed, send a note to kellis@binghamton.edu to let us know. And if you're looking for more from us, check out some of our pages targeted directly to parents and guardians:

Calendar of events

  • University's Academic Calendar
  • July 23-24, 27-18 - Harpur College freshmen Orientation sessions.
  • July 30-31 - Professional school freshmen Orientation sessions.
  • Aug. 27 - Residence halls open at 8 a.m. for new students.
  • Aug. 28 - Residence halls open at 9 a.m. for returning students.
  • Aug. 31 - Classes begin.
  • Sept. 7 - No classes. Labor Day.

How to unsubscribe

If you no longer have a need to receive this newsletter, you can unsubscribe by sending a message to kellis@binghamton.edu.

Last Updated: 7/22/15