Ignite is an immersive and interactive 5-day, optional experience for incoming students dedicated to building community prior to the start of Orientation. Through both large and small group activities, incoming students set goals for the upcoming academic year, explore Atlanta, engage with faculty and staff from different areas on campus, and grow a sense of belonging through social opportunities and peer-to-peer mentorship. 

Ignite Interest-Based Tracks

Ignite provides opportunities to engage in smaller, interest-based cohorts throughout the week during Pre-Orientation. As an Ignite participant, you will spend a few hours on Tuesday and Thursday in these cohorts learning more about opportunities to engage in interest areas on campus and in Atlanta communities, while other days of the week will provide opportunities to engage in activities with students across all Pre-Orientation programs. While we can’t guarantee you will receive your top choice, we will do our best to place you into an Ignite track you are interested in.

2024 Ignite Tracks

Ignite Community Engagement

Are you a changemaker that enjoys learning about social issues? Do you desire to be active in improving the wholistic health of communities? Join the Center for Civic & Community Engagement (CCE) Pre-Orientation Track to understand what it means to intentionally and meaningfully engage with a community. You will have the chance to connect with like-minded peers and professionals through facilitated dialogue and experiential learning at local non-profit organizations.

Ignite Creativity

Explore your creativity at Emory. Get hands-on experience both on campus and in Atlanta, including theater and writing activities; visual arts and crafts; moving and dancing; and visiting a local Atlanta creative hub. All these activities will be approachable for all levels of arts and creativity experience and interest. Come as you are!

Ignite Innovation

Play with puppies. Learn how to be more innovative. If either of these things sounds good to you, then join the Innovation Track with The Hatchery, Emory's Center for Innovation. Over the course of two days, you and a team of incoming students will work with The Hatchery and FurKids (a nonprofit pet adoption organization) to create innovative marketing campaigns to help pets find their forever homes. You will interview pet foster parents, FurKids employees, volunteers, and pet parents to gain a deep understanding of the practical and emotional process of pet adoption. Then, you will develop innovative approaches to make this process easier for everyone involved to ensure that more pets find homes. This will culminate in your team designing and presenting an innovative marketing plan to get a real pet adopted.

This experience will be fun, fast-paced, and highly interactive. At The Hatchery we teach innovation through hands-on experiences and this opportunity will be no different. We look forward to partnering with you to find new homes for these fur babies!

Ignite Intersections

Discovering spaces where we can freely express our authentic selves is often the first step to finding our home in a new environment! The Intersections Track connects you with communities at Emory and allows for developing a sense of belonging through exploring the intersections of our identities. During Intersections, you will converse with staff members and learn about support systems and ways to get involved with the identity spaces at Emory before taking an unforgettable journey through the civil rights movement of the United States and the worldwide human rights movements at the National Center for Civil and Human Rights.

Following the museum, we will embark on a guided walk through the tranquil Lullwater Reserve, where you will see an abundance of wildlife and nature. We will also learn from and with each other through various activities and discussions about identity and relationships through the lens of pop culture. Finally, we will celebrate our time together at a Happy Hour with mocktails, music, and mayhem! This track is hosted by the Belonging and Community Justice offices, a collective of identity spaces comprised of the Asian Student Center, Center for Women, Centro Latinx, Emory Black Student Union, Emory First, and Office of LGBT Life.

Ignite Leadership

What does it mean to be a leader? Dive into Atlanta's rich history and culture as we explore learn about prominent community and worldwide leaders whose legacies continue to develop our understanding of leadership. Together, we'll examine where leaders come from, where leaders go, and how leaders can make an impact on their communities. Hosted by the Office of Student Involvement, leadership, and Transitions (SILT), this track is a great option for students looking to reflect on the way they shape and are shaped by their communities to create a roadmap of their journey as a leader at Emory.

Ignite Sustainability

As a strategic priority for Emory, sustainability is a central part of every student's experience. The Sustainability Track will teach students about Emory's history of sustainability, our practices on campus, and how each of us can engage with sustainability in our lives.

The following tracks are invite-only and based on eligibility criteria: 

Ignite Athletics

This pre-orientation track supports varsity student-athletes in their transition to Emory. Participants will learn what it means to be a student-athlete at Emory and how the Emory Eagle values can help student-athletes make an impact during their college experience. Student-athletes will explore campus and Atlanta to learn more about how to maximize their athletic experience. Students who qualify will receive an email invitation to participate. For any questions, please reach out to audrey.hester@emory.edu.


A pre-orientation program providing peer mentorship and connection to STEM opportunities and faculty among college students who identify as first-generation or are in identity groups underrepresented in STEM fields. Participating students are more likely to have higher GPAs, take part in research projects, and graduate with their intended STEM major. Our programming and support continue through the first year and extend into leadership opportunities across your four years at Emory. Students who qualify will receive an email invitation to participate. For any questions, please reach out to alice.rollins@emory.edu.

Total Number of Ignite Participants: 290

Type of Registration: First come, first served (excludes invitation-only tracks)

Cost: $275 (excludes FirstSTEM) Please note: financial aid, including full fee waiver, is available for all Ignite participants.

Program Contact: preorientation@emory.edu

(If you are an incoming first-year student on the Oxford campus, you can view more information on the Oxford Ignite Pre-Orientation Program website.)