Maybe you should call the admissions office and ask them what their policy is. They will probably still require at least the first deposit, though.
So, are we assuming emails won't be provided until orientation?
Why do you want to avoid using Outlook?My tablet (Fujitsu T4010) has OneNote and I'm still deciding between that or Agilix GoBinder. So far I prefer GoBinder since it has an integrated calendar and task list, and I want to avoid using Outlook.