GEL Weekend FAQ

Gonzaga Experience Live, affectionately referred to as "GEL Weekend," is an annual overnight visit for high school seniors who have earned acceptance to the University. The weekend gives prospective students and their families the opportunity to experience the best that Gonzaga and Spokane have to offer, including our academic programs, community, and University mission. Student participants spend Saturday night in the residence halls with GU student hosts, and the weekend is filled with activities that showcase what it truly means to #BeAZag!  

 

It is with a heavy heart that we share GEL Weekend 2020 has been canceled. Through GEL, a beloved tradition at Gonzaga for nearly 30 years, we love welcoming admitted students and their families into the Gonzaga community. We enjoy providing a glimpse of the academic and social life as a Zag. Although we still hope to have students and families on campus in the future, it is important we take this action to promote health and safety as we all try to slow the spread of COVID-19. 

Thank you for your patience. We know it's important for students to experience a school before making a decision, and we are sorry for the unusual circumstances in our world right now. Contact us whenever you have questions at 509-313-6572 or admissions@gonzaga.edu.

 

High school seniors who have been accepted for fall enrollment at Gonzaga University for the 2020-2021 academic year. We also invite parents and guardians of admitted students to join us for the Parent Program. Over half of our student participants attend GEL with a parent or guardian.

 

GEL is designed to give prospective students an authentic glimpse of life at Gonzaga. You may check in for the weekend as early as 10:00am on Saturday. The 10:00am to 1:00pm time period is not structured, but we will offer a variety of activities: tours of campus, club and activity fair, open houses, and information sessions.  Structured activities begin at 1:30 pm, providing participants plenty of time to arrive on campus. After the Opening Ceremony at 1:30 pm, students participate in sample classes, academic info sessions, and a variety of activities with their host students.

 

From 10:00am to 1:30pm on Saturday, family members have access to the same activities as the students (campus tours, open houses, and info sessions). The official start of the GEL Parent/Guardian Program begins at 1:30pm on Saturday, April 18. Events include a presentation by the University President, Dr. Thayne McCulloh, a faculty meet-and-greet, a student panel, and Q&A sessions with administrators and deans. About half of our student participants bring at least one parent/guardian or family member! GU does not provide lodging for parents/guardians, but there are many hotels near campus.

 

When GEL participants choose the overnight option upon registration, we match them with a first or second-year GU student host, and do our best to find a current student who is either interested in a similar field of study or shares common interests. In addition to sharing their residence hall rooms for the night, hosts join participants in the Saturday evening activities and offer great insight into student life. Participants may choose the “Day-Only” option when registering for GEL, which means they do not stay overnight with a host student.  When we reach capacity for the overnight stay, we may still be able to offer the “Day-Only” option. 

 

GEL Weekend 2021 Registration will open by March 1, 2021. You will need to log in using your application portal information. Registration will take roughly 10-15 minutes A confirmation email will be sent after registration is completed. Please check your junk mail box if it does not appear in your inbox. Students who register will be required to sign the GEL Weekend Student Release form and upload it with your registration. You will not be able to complete the GEL registration without uploading a signed Student Release Form. You will need your Gonzaga student ID number (found in your acceptance packet) in order to complete GEL registration.

Once you submit your registration, you will need to submit your $50 GEL fee. Please see How to Pay your GEL Weekend Fee for directions. If you have questions about your registration or payment, please contact us.

Email: gel@gonzaga.edu
Fax: (509) 313-6572

*Overnight space is limited and filled on a first-come, first-served basis.

 

Whether by choice, or because we reached capacity for the overnight stay, students may still attend GEL without staying overnight in the residence halls and ALL of the GEL programming will be accessible. Day-Only students are invited to participate in all evening activities, and shuttle services will be available to take students to area lodging at the end of the night. Overnight accommodations are not made available on Gonzaga’s campus for Day-Only students.

 

We recommend arriving on the morning of Saturday, April 18 to maximize time and experiences on campus. Programs will be available beginning at 10 am. If this is your first time on campus, we recommend arriving around 10 am to have enough time for all morning activities, such as campus tours, open houses, and information sessions.

 

GEL students tend to stay up as late as 2:00am at the Saturday night activities.  On Sunday, you may prefer a late morning departure. All Sunday activities are optional.

 
Spokane International Airport (GEG) is located 15 minutes from Gonzaga’s campus. There will be Gonzaga shuttles available to/from the Spokane airport. 

Driving:
From I-90 Westbound or Eastbound
Take Exit 282, Hamilton Street/Trent Street.
Go straight through the light at the bottom of the exit ramp and continue north on Hamilton for .5 miles.
Turn left on Boone Ave. (before Bruchi's and Froyo Earth).
BARC Parking Garage is on your left. Visitor parking is available on the 1st and 3rd floors.

From Downtown Spokane
Head north on Division St., which turns into Ruby St.
Turn right onto Sharp Ave.
Turn right onto Cincinnati St.
Turn left on Boone Ave.
BARC Parking Garage is on your right. Visitor parking is available on the 1st and 3rd floors.

Greyhound or Bus:
There is a Greyhound bus station located in Spokane. If you would like to have a Gonzaga shuttle pick you up from the Greyhound station, please submit your Travel Information and a Gonzaga shuttle will pick you up! 

 

 

Registration is filled on a first-come, first-served basis and closes once capacity has been reached. Please be sure registration is completed and confirmed before reserving flights. If transportation is required to and from the airport, please complete the Update Travel Information form by Monday, April 13.

 

On Saturday, April 18, Gonzaga will provide free shuttles from the airport and train/bus station. Shuttles will pick up at the airport baggage claim (look for Gonzaga Student Ambassadors) and will drop guests off on campus. Shuttles will also be available on Sunday, April 19, to provide transportation from campus to the Spokane International Airport (GEG). Shuttles will arrive and depart campus approximately every 20 minutes on Saturday and every 30 minutes on Sunday. Please submit your Travel Information. No shuttles will be provided on Friday, April 17. 

 

GEL participants are welcome to park anywhere on campus during the weekend.  The most convenient locations may be in the College Hall parking lot located on Sharp Ave. and Addison Ave. or the BARC Parking Garage on the corner of Boone Ave. and Hamilton Ave. After parking, students are encouraged to bring their overnight items to Check-In to leave at Luggage Drop-Off. Please see our Campus Map for more information.

 

Please visit our Lodging page to view lodging options. There are many other hotels near campus and around Spokane, but reservations should be made as soon as possible as most tend to fill up.

There are special rates at the Courtyard Marriott, Holiday Inn Express, and Ruby River Hotel, all within walking distance to Gonzaga’s campus. Please call the hotel to book your reservation or book online using the links above to access the special rates.

 

Since you'll be spending the night in a residence hall with GU students (if you are registered as an Overnight Student), you likely won't have a bed available to you. Student participants should plan on bringing a sleeping bag and pillow for Saturday night. Also, be mindful of the fact that the weather in April can be very unpredictable! You should plan on bringing clothes appropriate for cooler weather and you'll want a jacket for the late-night activities. GEL students spend most of the weekend on their feet, so be sure to pack comfortable shoes. Here is a short list of some items we suggest you bring with you to GEL Weekend:

  • Walking shoes
  • Comfortable clothes for both active and non-active events: jeans, shirt, sweatshirt, shorts to accommodate for different weather throughout the day
  • Warm jacket - evening activities go until 2:00 AM and some activities are outside!
  • Necessities for an overnight - toiletries, towel, PJs, etc
  • Water bottle
  • Sleeping bag
 

If you would like more information about GEL Weekend 2020 or if you require special accommodations (a wheelchair, food or other allergies, etc.), contact us at gel@gonzaga.edu or 509-313-6572.