Wildcat Wilderness Orientation Faqs


Wildcat Wilderness Orientation is a program designed to supply incoming students with a healthy, meaningful transition into the college lifestyle while in the outdoor environment. Numerous studies have shown that students who attend an outdoor orientation such as WWO, have higher retention rates at their respective institution and graduate with a higher quality college experience than those who did not participate. This program strives for students to foster relationships with other incoming students, generate more self-confidence and self-reliance, and ultimately learn how to make the most of their college experience.

Please see the 2023 Trips page.

Online! Registration will open May 1st, 2023, at 12:00pm

Parents of students under 18: students under 18 MUST have a parent or guardian signature before participating.

For online registration, a parent must create an account in Fusion and then add their student to their family in Fusion. Students under 18 will not be able to register on their own.

Anyone who does not have a Chico State ID number (including parents) must create a Fusion account. After creating an account, an email will be sent to them, and they must click on the link to activate the account. Date of birth must be added to the account profile.

There are three factors to consider when deciding on which trip to register for:

  1. Which activity/activities would you like to participate in? These will be described when reviewing each trip’s registration page.

  2. What difficulty level is appropriate for you? This will also be described when reviewing the trips.

  3. When is your Summer Orientation session? If ywou do not currently live close to Chico, it makes sense to choose the trip that has dates close to your on-campus orientation. However, this is not required, and you can sign up for any trip you’d like assuming there is space available.

No. WWO simply supplements the very important information you will learn at your Summer O session.

No. We only require pre-trip meetings for Adventure Outings trips, those are the trips that take place during the school year. All WWO information will be communicated via email.

However, if you are on campus and want to meet in person, feel free to contact us and we’ll try our best to set up a meeting time.

Yes! Visit the WWO Scholarship Application for more information and to apply.

You will receive details 3-4 weeks prior to your trip if you are registered at that point. We will also attempt to call each participant to check in the week of their trip. Additionally, you can visit the trips page, select the trip you are registered for, and view the Registration and Info Packet linked in the More Information section.

Parents cannot go on WWO trips. This program aims to encourage students to bond with their peers; building new relationships and making friends are objectives for WWO trips.

You may incur the following additional costs:

  • Travel and lodging expenses before and after your trip will need to be covered by the participant. This will vary greatly depending on where you are traveling from.

  • Outdoor clothing and footwear, as well as some small personal gear (headlamps, water bottles, bowl, spoon, etc.), may need to be purchased. Many people will already own items they can use for their trip and we do have some “loaner clothes” that participants can use on their trips.

For 2023 trips, housing is available on campus through Chico State Summer Orientation the night before WWO trips start. Another option is to check out lodging at Chico motels and hotels.

We will email you a detailed trip information letter and gear list 3-4 weeks prior to your trip. Also, gear lists for each trip will be available online.

Yes, we do cancel trips that have too few sign-ups. The trip will go when we meet our minimum number of participant sign-ups, but it all depends on how many students sign up and when the cutoff date is. We usually give two weeks prior to the departure of the trip before we will cancel the trip.

Yes, the limit is 1 WWO trip per student.

During the trip, students are not permitted to carry cell phones, even just to use as cameras, or their own satellite phones or trackers. We limit the use of personal technology because we believe in the value of time spent away from the constant connectivity of daily life. All instructors carry communication technology they can use in the event of an emergency.

Cameras are welcome on course as long as they are not part of a cellular phone. Consider purchasing a waterproof bag or box for your camera, film, batteries, and memory cards. A zip lock bag works well, too. We also suggest disposable waterproof cameras.

Physical fitness is a key component on trips. Please click the following link for suggestions on how to prepare for extended backcountry trips: https://blog.nols.edu/2016/01/29/fitness-guidelines-to-get-expedition-ready

Email Adventure Outings at advoutoffice@csuchico.edu or WWO Manager Marissa Sammartano at mlsammartano@csuchico.edu.

Yes, lots. Here is one example. The first Outdoor Orientation program was started at Dartmouth in 1935 and over the years lots of data has been collected. All the research produced data that linked positive outcomes with the outdoor orientation programs. Benefits for students include higher retention rates after the first year of study, increased self-confidence, a better understanding of personal strengths and weaknesses, increased self-awareness, and an overall easier transition into college.