Summer 2012 International Student Orientation
University Park, PA
June 26, 2012
The Summer 2012 International Student Orientation for all newly-admitted international students at the University Park campus will be held on June 26, 2012 from 8:00 am to 12:30 pm. The Orientation is offered by the University Office of Global Programs (UOGP) to prepare new students for life at Penn State and in the U.S.A. The Orientation will include a one-on-one appointment with an international student adviser as well as educational sessions about:
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs):
Am I required to attend?
Yes, attendance at the International Student Orientation is mandatory unless extraordinary circumstances prevent a student from attending. Attendance is important in order to comply with government regulations for studying in the U.S. Most students find the experience very valuable because it allows them to make friends and get settled in to their new lives before the academic year begins.
Am I required to do anything before I arrive?
Before they arrive on campus, all international students are required to begin the online portion of Document Check-In and schedule an in-person appointment with an international student adviser. Both the online and in-person portion of this process are very important in order to comply with U.S. government regulations for studying in the United States. Look for an e-mail from the Directorate of International Student & Scholar Advising (DISSA) with further instructions.
First-year Undergraduate Students
First-year undergraduate students are responsible for taking on-line placement tests in mathematics and chemistry prior to arrival at Penn State. After arrival, students will proceed to the consulting and advising portion of the First-Year Testing, Consulting, and Advising Program (FTCAP).
Graduate and Transfer Students
Graduate and transfer students who are planning to live off-campus are encouraged seek housing as soon as possible (prior to arrival in the United States). More information is available about on and off-campus housing options at the University Park campus.
How do I get to the University Park campus?
Penn State’s University Park campus is located in the town of State College, PA. State College has a small airport (the University Park Airport) with the code SCE. Students are encouraged to be ticketed through to this airport.
Students who are unable to book a connecting flight to the University Park Airport, will need to find their own bus or automobile transportation to State College, PA. This chart shows the approximate distance by car of various cities:
|Harrisburg, PA||About 1 hour and 45 minutes away|
|Philadelphia, PA||About 3 hours away |
|Pittsburgh, PA||About 3 hours away|
|Baltimore, MD||About 3 hours away|
|Washington D.C.||About 4 hours away |
|New York City, NY||About 4 hours and 45 minutes away|
More detailed transportation information can be found in the Transportation to University Park flyer.
Is pick-up service available from the local airport or bus stations?
Pick-up service is not available for students arriving during the summer. Students are encouraged to call one of the many safe and reliable taxi services in State College. A number of taxi services are listed in the Transportation to University Park flyer
When can I move into my housing accommodation?
Students with confirmed on-campus housing may arrive on Sunday, May 6 (for the "Maymester"), Sunday, May 13 (for the first six-week session), or Sunday, June 24 (for the second six-week session). Students who need to arrive earlier should contact Sandi Richter to discuss the possibility of early arrival housing.
Students with off-campus housing can move in any time, dependent on apartment lease agreements.
Should I still attend the full Orientation program if I’m taking part in the "Maymester" or the first six-week session?
International students enrolled for the "Maymester" (May 7 - June 4) or the first summer session (May14 - June 22) must visit the University Office of Global Programs (410 Boucke Building) upon arrival in the U.S. to complete the Document Check-In process. Additional attendance during the educational portion of the International Student Orientation on June 26 is strongly advised in order to receive further useful information.
How can I continue to find support after Orientation is over?
The Student Affairs Office maintains a large list of international/multicultural groups at University Park.
New students can also sign up to be a part of the Peer Partnership Program (3P). 3P is a student-run mentorship program created by the University Office of Global Programs. Instead of the traditional one-on-one partnering model, students are assigned to mentoring groups. Each group is led by one or more advanced-standing international or domestic students who plan fun social activities, are available for questions, and can help new students adjust to their life at Penn State. To join 3P, fill out the 3P online sign-up form.
In addition, the Directorate of International Student & Scholar Advising (DISSA) within UOGP provides expert advising on immigration and visa concerns, employment, academic issues, financial issues, health and health insurance, and other concerns. After fall semester classes have started, students can meet with an international student adviser during walk-in hours or they may make an appointment.
|Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday:||1:30 - 4:30 pm|
|Thursday and Friday:||8:30 - 11:30 am|
|410 Boucke Building|
University Park, PA
Telephone: 814-865-6348 (answered between 8:30 am and 4:30 pm)
What if I’m enrolled at a different Penn State campus?
Students enrolled at a different campus should not attend the Orientation program for University Park students. Students should contact the international student representative at their Penn State campus to learn what programs and services are available for newly-arriving international students.
There is another FAQ with more questions and answers that you should check out if your question is not answered here.
Questions about International Student Orientation?
E-mail Sandi Richter with your question or concern.
Questions about I-20 or DS-2019 visa documents?
E-mail a pre-arrival adviser at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 814-865-6348.