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Outdoor Action

Leadership Starts Here

Frosh Trip - Information for Parents

A first year student talks about her Frosh Trip Experience

I was extremely scared about beginning college and the OA trip really helped to allay most of my fears. I got to become really close with a group of 10 people, all of whom I’ve remained friendly with on campus. In the wilderness atmosphere you get the chance to learn so much about these people who all seemed so strange and different. I learned that all ten of us had the same fears and insecurities about starting college; making new friends, handling schoolwork, becoming small fish in an incredibly large pond. The OA trip really taught me that first impressions mean absolutely nothing, that I should place more faith in my physical abilities (I never thought I could survive a backpacking trip), and interpersonal abilities (I usually consider myself shy and reserved, but my group members didn’t see me that way at all), and that no matter how alone I may feel sometimes, everyone is really feeling just as scared and unsure of themselves as I am.

One of the most valuable aspects of the trip for me was the nightly debriefings. These really gave our group a chance to reflect on the challenges and triumphs of the day and observe how our relationships with each other and with ourselves were changing. Our final night debriefing on the trail, during which we all went around saying things we liked/admired about each other, was especially valuable. So much of your self-view depends on how you think others view you, and hearing positive feedback from the people you’ve opened up and exposed your vulnerabilities to was just so incredible.

The most incredible part of my trip though, had to have been my fearless leaders, Andrew and Erin. I have so much respect for them and for the way they handled themselves throughout the trip. I really feel like we all became good friends with them, we joked around on the trail and genuinely had a good time. But both knew when and how to appropriately assume the role of leaders. They carried far more than their share of weight on the trail, responded to our complaints, motivated us, made sure we ate and drank enough, mediated small disputes that arose....What really amazed me about these two was how they fit perfectly into the dual roles of friend and leader, and could transition effortlessly between the two without compromising either. Erin and Andrew were also invaluable resources for everything we wanted to know about Princeton. They tirelessly fielded all our questions answering honestly and helpfully.

In conclusion, I want to reiterate what an absolutely incredible experience OA was for me. I am so glad I decided to participate in the program. The trip exceeded my highest expectations in every way. Thank you for facilitating such a wonderful program here at Princeton.

19,400 Princetonians and growing!
These are the Proposed Dates for Frosh Trip 2015 for the Princeton Class of 2019
Application materials will be available online to all incoming students in around May 25. Students will need their University NetID and Password to access the online application.
  • Late May 2015 - Information and application materials for the Frosh Trip will go live on the Matriculation Web Site.

If you have special dietary needs or food allergies, please contact us at 609-258-6230 to let us know of your particular issues. We do our very best to accommodate students who keep kosher or halaal, vegetarians, vegans, and other participants with food allergies and special food needs and are happy to work with you to come up with a menu that meets your needs. Most of the menu items are already vegetarian/vegan and easy modifications in the cooking process can often be made for the items that are not. Please note the allergen information included in the table below.

OA can accommodate students with many different needs. Our goal is to do our best to make this experience as accessible as possible. Please contact us to let us know about your specific needs, and we will work with you to find a trip that will work for you.

The Outdoor Action Leave a Trace Program was developed in 1999 as part of our continued goal of providing the most effective orientation program for incoming Princeton students. Each year over 50% of the incoming class participates in the Outdoor Action Frosh Trip. These trips serve as both the transition between high school and college and their first exposure to life at Princeton.

Arriving on Campus - Saturday, September 5, 2015
University Check-in will be open at 8:00 AM
Outdoor Action Check-in is at 4:30 PM at Dillon Gym

Many parents need to plan transportation well in advance. We hope that this information will help you with your planning.

By Car: Most of you will be arriving by car. For Directions see Visiting Campus. Enter campus from Faculty Road (see map).

Since its inception in 1974, over 19,400 incoming Princeton students have participated in the OA Frosh Trip program.  To join their numbers, apply for Frosh Trip 2015. 

Applications for the Class of 2019 for Frosh Trip 2015 will be available in late May, 2015.  Before applying, please read the Information Letter and Frosh Trip Brochure.  You will need your Princeton University NetID in order to log into the application site. 


Dear Member of the Class of 2018:

Congratulations, you are now part of the Princeton community! Before classes start, do you want to meet other freshmen, learn about Princeton, get to know upperclassmen, have a truly unique orientation experience, and have incredibly fun adventures in the outdoors? Go on the Outdoor Action Frosh Trip!

Who participates?

What if I have never been camping before?

What about Financial Aid?

and more!

OA Frosh Trip is a different experience for everyone. Here, a collection of participants and leaders reflect on what made their Frosh Trip experience so valuable and memorable.

A variety of religious services are offered on Saturday and Sunday before trip departure to meet the needs of religiously observant students. Services include a non-denominational service, Catholic Mass, Episcopal service, Muslim prayers, and several Jewish Sabbath services. We will happily work with individuals to find a way to accommodate religious observances on the trail and meet religious dietary restrictions

There are so many great moments that happen on Frosh Trip! From learning to rock climb to connecting with new peers, there are countless stories from the past 4 decades of Frosh Trip. We've captured some of our favorite moments and memories in video, photos, and quotes from participants and leaders.

Making friends to start the next four years at Princeton is what the Outdoor Action (OA) Frosh Trips are all about. Princeton University invites you to join us in our 42nd annual Frosh Trip Program. Each year more than half of the incoming freshmen class starts their Princeton experience with the Frosh Trip. With that many students, we will have an incredible cross-section of the diversity of the Class of 2019-- students of all backgrounds from across the U.S., as well as international students from over 37 countries.

Information for Diabetics

Many students with diabetes have participated in the trip or led trips. These are a few things we have learned over the years to help you have a good week on the trip.

Outdoor Action considers running healthy trips an essential part of our mission. We will work with you to identify a trip that's right for you based on any previous experience, your current physical condition, any special dietary needs you might have, physical limitations and medical conditions. We ask a variety of questions on our Health History form to assess your needs. Please contact us if you have questions about what trips would be best and to give us more detailed information about your special needs.

This is the information that was sent out to the Class of 2018. We will update this for the Class of 2019 in early 2015

Dear Member of the Class of 2018:

Congratulations, you are now part of the Princeton community! Before classes start, do you want to meet other freshmen, learn about Princeton, get to know upperclassmen, have a truly unique orientation experience, and have incredibly fun adventures in the outdoors? Go on the Outdoor Action Frosh Trip!

This is the information sent out to the Class of 2018. This information will be updated in June 2015 for the Class of 2019.

This is the general acceptance letter that goes out to all students with general information about participating in Outdoor Action. More detailed information about your specific trip activities and an equipment list for your specific trip will be emailed to you in mid-July.

Dear Outdoor Action Participant,