HOWL is NSU's Freshman Registration Day!


(Helping Our Wolves Learn Northern State University)

What is HOWL NSU?
HOWL NSU  is our orientation and registration program for all first-time freshmen. It's your first step in NSU's student success program! HOWL NSU is required of all new freshmen.
In the case of distance creating an economic hardship (for example: international student), Virtual HOWL is available.
Why should I attend HOWL NSU?
HOWL NSU is an opportunity for you and your parents to learn what's expected and start to feel comfortable at NSU.
During HOWL, you can:
  • Meet your academic advisor
  • Meet professors and representatives from your major department
  • Get to know classmates
  • Set up your first-semester schedule
  • Set up your student ID card
  • Connect with current NSU students
  • Discuss your financial aid
  • Begin the transition to college!

You'll also get your NSU portal login as well as access to your NSU email and Banner Self-Service accounts.


Whether you're joining us on campus or virtually, HOWL is the perfect opportunity to get acquainted with Northern and be ready to join the pack in the fall!


HOWL dates are listed at New Student Orientation.

Email Megan Frewaldt or look for a registration postcard in the mail. If you have questions or need help, call 1-800-NSU-5330.

There is no charge for this event.

  1. Read Do I Need to Test, decide if you need to test and if so, make arrangements to do so
  2. Locate your immunization records and mail a copy to NSU Admissions or bring with you.
  3. Mail or bring a copy of your most recent transcript.
  4. Read about privacy of records (FERPA). Complete and turn in or mail in forms to withhold or release information as desired

South Dakota state law requires all students to present proof of immunity to measles, mumps, and rubella (MMR) to enroll in classes.

All of this information will come from Marty Sabolo, our director of Residence Life. Watch your email - you will receive a copy of the Residence Life policy that will outline what you can and cannot bring to campus to have in your room. This information will also be in the Residence Life portion of HOWL.



On-Campus HOWL

Parents/guardians are invited to attend. Special sessions designed just for parents will familiarize them with this new environment and show them ways they can support your success! Due to COVID-19 and abiding by CDC guidelines, this year we ask that you do not bring more than two guests with you.

Plan to be here for a full day. If you need testing or want in-depth tours or appointments, please allow more time. Check-in begins at 8:30 a.m. and the program will last until 4:30 p.m. Lunch will be served during the program. You'll receive a confirmation packet with complete schedule details about a week before your chosen HOWL date. A full schedule also will be available at check-in on the day of the event. Due to COVID-19, this schedule is subject to change.

Aberdeen is at the intersection of highways U.S. 281 and U.S. 12. The NSU campus is between 12th and 15th avenues and Washington and State streets. Once on U.S. 12 - which is Aberdeen's main east-west thoroughfare, Sixth Avenue - turn south on Main Street, then east on 12th Avenue. The parking lot at Washington and 12th has designated visitor parking and will not be checked for parking permits on registration days. You'll find a campus map in your confirmation packet. Or, find a link to a printable map at Campus Map.

Directions to NSU Campus


For lodging information in Aberdeen, please contact the Aberdeen Convention and Visitors Bureau at 800-645-3851, or visit

Parking permits will not be required for students and parents attending a HOWL event. However, students bringing vehicles to campus for the academic year must purchase a parking permit to park in the campus lots. Permits can be purchased online or in person at the Physical Plant parking office.

NSU's class schedules for current and future semesters are on the Class Schedules Page. Banner Self-Service (formerly WebAdvisor) also will show up-to-date offerings.

Dress casually and comfortably, but remember - your ID picture will be taken today!


  1. Questions for faculty and staff
  2. Any paperwork not already turned in
  3. Records of college credit you have earned or anticipate earning
  4. Money if you plan to eat on campus, test, or purchase items from the bookstore



Academic Topics

We enroll freshmen in learning communities, which include a freshman success or seminar class and several courses recommended for freshmen. Some are tied to specific program areas, while others are general.


Learning communities ensure we have some seats reserved for you, allow you to make stronger connections with a small group of classmates and make your first registration a bit easier. Our advisors will help you select the learning community best for you, and additional courses.

Fifteen credits is the recommended load for undergraduates. Find more information in the NSU Course Catalog.

A Program Approval Form must be filled out to declare or change your major, usually in your third semester of study.


If you're still exploring majors and career fields, get in touch with Career Services - they will be happy to assist!

Northern offers academic help free of charge to students through the Math and Writing centers, Supplemental Instruction (SI) and a program called TRIO Student Support Services. For more information, see Academic Support.

Freshmen who are undecided are assigned an advisor in the Advising Center and later transferred to a departmental advisor. Those who have decided on a major are assigned to a professional advisor in the appropriate department. For more information, see Academic Advising.

Students can view their grades using Banner on myNSU. Students may request that official transcripts be sent to third parties for a fee.


Request a Transcript


Information pertaining to personal academic records will be released only to the student unless written permission has been given to make this information available to parents or other third parties specified by the student. For more information on the Family Education Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) or to download the Release or Withhold forms, visit Student Privacy Rights.


The NSU Registrar's Office is located in Dacotah Hall 103. Please call 605-626-2012 or 1-800-NSU-5330 or email Stephanie Hawkinson if you have additional questions.



Find more HOWL information at:



Freshman Registration (HOWL Days)


Find general registrar's office information at:


Records and Registration