Orientation Adventure

Orientation Adventure allows students to meet new people, build skills, and transition to Pomona while exploring the diverse wilderness, cultural, and entertainment options in and around Los Angeles, California. All incoming students participate in OA. Please use the form on Through the Gates to list your eight preferred sites. The OA form is due on Wednesday, July 13, 2022.

All OA trips are described under the following categories:

On-Campus

On-campus based OA trips will utilize campus as a basecamp. Participants will enjoy sleeping in their residence halls, having meals on campus and the opportunity to dine out, including access to all campus amenities such as showers, toilets, wi-fi, electricity, etc. On-campus OA groups will also have fun nightly activities, where all on-campus OA trips can meet.

Off-Campus

Off-campus based OA trips will be entirely off campus. Departing from campus on Monday and returning on Wednesday. These trips include a variety of outdoor activities and locations, such as state beaches and national forests, all within two hours from campus. Off campus trips will either be sleeping indoors or in tents. Access to amenities such as electricity, wi-fi, showers, etc. will be very limited.

Each description will include a note to help you further choose the best OA for you.

  • Whether activities are indoors, outdoors or a mixture.
  • Activity Level: 1-5
    • 1 = Mostly resting, short distances of travel required
    • 3 = Active, 50-60% of day with intermittent periods of rest
    • 5 = Active and very strenuous
  • Water Activities (such as boating, swimming paddleboarding, etc.): if water activities are indicated, it is best practice that participants have basic level swimming skills. In most scenarios a Lifeguard will be present, if not precautions will be taken. Please note water activities are always optional.

On-Campus Orientation Adventure Trip Descriptions

Adventure through Community Service

An introduction to Pomona College’s Draper Center for Community Partnerships and how it builds community, both on and off campus. Some of our neighboring communities face difficult challenges, such as underfunded schools, homelessness, food insecurity, and environmental justice. The Draper Center partners with local non-profit organizations to assist in meeting these and other needs.  Join us as we learn from local residents, participate in hands-on projects and activities, and tour sites to see the inner workings of our community partners.

  • Mostly Indoors
  • Activity Level: 1
  • No Water Activities

Baldy to Beach

Get ready to explore the beauty that sits right in Pomona College’s backyard. From the trails of Mount Baldy, to the beautiful California Botanical Garden, and the sunshine of the local beach, explore all the beauty and adventure that surrounds your new home. Each day will include a trip to a nearby outdoor destination.

  • Mostly Outdoors
  • Activity Level: 3
  • Water Activities

The Farm

Learn all about the Pomona College Farm as well as local food systems in Southern California. Pomona College's on campus farm is a 2-acre space with chickens, a diverse fruit orchard and student-built biodome. Get the chance to get your hands dirty and pick up a few gardening skills along the way. This OA will venture off campus to tour other farms in the area and learn more about community gardening and regenerative agricultural practices. With local farms comes delicious produce, so be prepared to eat well!

  • Mostly Outdoors
  • Activity Level: 3
  • No Water Activities

KSPC

Explore the wide world of Southern California media. If you’re interested in podcasting, broadcasting or media production this is the OA for you.  Meet professionals working in the industry and get hands-on with recording, interviewing and audio editing. Visit the staff and studios of LAist, a podcast and media studio at KPCC 89.3FM in Pasadena, California.  Participate in audio workshops out of the college’s very own radio station, KSPC 88.7FM. Catch KSPC’s online streams at kspc.org.

  • Mostly Indoors
  • Activity Level: 1
  • No Water Activities

L.A. Food and Pomona Dining

Explore Los Angeles and the food that makes L.A. great in this food-based immersion. We will dive into food trends that are evolving in the world, such as Filipino food, the ingredients that make it happen, and the hot and wild world of Yakitori. Explore some of the newest trends like functional foods. What does it mean and how you can take advantage of natural food wonder? This trip may even tour a vertical farm; vertical farming is the way that the world will be able to feed the people in the future. Most of all it will be 3 days of eating foods you will surely love!

  • Indoors & Outdoors
  • Activity Level: 2
  • No Water Activities

Local Theater Scene

More than movies are made in California! On this OA, you will experience behind the scenes, have an opportunity to go on stage and enjoy your seat in the audience. Participant in a workshop with a local improv troupe, attend a live musical performance in LA, and so much more as we introduce you to the local theater scene.

  • Mostly Outdoors
  • Activity Level: 2
  • No Water Activities

Museums

Explore the institutions that help define Los Angeles’ cultural identity. This arts-based immersion will take participants into museums, galleries, and experimental sites throughout the city. Connect with other art lovers and cultural critics while you stroll through the art halls and galleries that give the greater Los Angeles area its vibe.

  • Mostly Indoors
  • Activity Level: 1
  • No Water Activities

Quintessential L.A.

Get ready to explore your new neighborhood:- Los Angeles.  Check out all things L.A. including visiting legendary destinations like the Hollywood Walk of Fame, attending a Dodgers game and soaking up the sun at the beach. A true Californian experience.

  • Indoors & Outdoors
  • Activity Level: 2
  • Water Activities

Off-Campus Orientation Adventure Trip Descriptions  

YMCA Camp Arbolado

Found in the beautiful mountains of the San Bernardino National Forest, YMCA Camp Arbolado will be a cabin getaway. Camp has endless activity opportunities from hiking to the lake, a challenge course, archery, swimming, canoeing, arts & crafts, night hikes and campfires. Staying at Camp Arbolado means cozy bunk style beds, meals in the dining hall and indoor plumbing. A great outdoor getaway without having to sleep on the ground. (Pitzer and Pomona Colleges will share this site during OA.)

  • Mostly Outdoors
  • Activity Level: 2-3
  • Water Activities

The following options groups will utilize a local campground as their basecamp. Sleeping in tents, cooking over a stove or campfire and enjoying several activities during the day. Access to electricity, cell coverage, Wi-Fi and showers are not guaranteed. It will be a great time to unwind and unplug.

Children’s Forest

Children’s Forest was named after a devastating wildfire that destroyed the nearby forest in 1970 and local children helped to rebuild it. This area is beautifully located in the San Bernardino Nation Forest and has miles of hiking, nature trails and rock climbing. Pomona College partners with Pitzer College to provide guided rock climbing for participants on this OA.

  • Outdoors
  • Activity Level: 3-4
  • No Water Activities

Crystal Cove State Park

Crystal Cove State Park near Laguna Beach, California is a picturesque location. With 3.2 miles of beach, the opportunities are endless! This OA trip will explore trails in the area’s 2,400 acres of wilderness, explore tide pools and coves and, of course, the sun and sandy beach.

  • Outdoors
  • Activity Level: 2-3
  • Water Activities

Dogwood Campground

Located in the San Bernardino National Forest, just 50 miles from campus, the Dogwood Campground is the perfect place to get an introduction to our nearby mountains. Staying minutes from Lake Gregory and surrounded by lush greenery of Dogwood trees, participants will get to explore the namesake Dogwood Trail, see wildlife and beat the heat by cool off in the lake or at the waterslide park.

  • Outdoors
  • Activity Level: 2-3
  • Water Activities

Malibu Creek State Park

This OA trip will truly be an adventure! Malibu Creek State Park, located just off Pacific Coast Highway, is 8,000 acres of exquisite scenery. You can find canyon vistas, rolling hills, stream side trails through woodlands, a volcanic swimming hole and 45 species of birds. This state park was previously owned by 20th Century Fox, so you might just hike through a few iconic movie and television sets.

  • Outdoors
  • Activity Level: 2-3
  • Water Activities

San Onofre State Beach

San Onofre is California's most popular beach and one of the top five most visited state parks in California and it is under 100 miles from campus. This OA trip is for those who already love the ocean or those ready to explore just one of the places that makes southern California so special. You will be able to spend time on the beach, explore the nearby sandstone bluffs and possibly witness world-class surfing. Wildlife has even been known to hang out near the shoreline!

  • Outdoors
  • Activity Level: 2-3
  • Water Activities

Serrano Campground

Serrano Campground is a beautiful place to enjoy the north side of beautiful Big Bear Lake in the San Bernardino National Forest. The lake is surrounded by pine forest, with lots of hiking options it is a perfect choice to avoid the summer sun. The lake has swimming and paddle boats and kayaks to cruise along the shoreline in style.

  • Outdoors
  • Activity Level: 2-3
  • Water Activities

Questions? Email orientation@pomona.edu