New international students in F-1 or J-1 status (and those who plan to be) are required to attend a week-long orientation program provided by International Student & Scholar Services (ISSS).
International Student Orientation Program
A complete list of activities will be available via the Pre-Arrival Checklist in the iHawks system one month before the first day of each semester, but the week-long ISSS orientation program generally covers:
Immigration regulations affecting your stay in the United States
Adjusting to life in a new culture and to life at a U.S. academic institution
Information about the class registration process and the academic system at Iowa
An introduction to campus and community resources, including library and technology resources
An on-campus English Proficiency Evaluation
International students in F-1 or J-1 status enrolling for fall should complete any required placement tests by the end of May, or as soon as possible thereafter in order to be eligible for early enrollment.
Plan early arrival
Because the required ISSS program is a week long, you should plan to arrive in Iowa and on campus at least one day before the ISSS orientation program begins (this is the date given on your I-20 or DS-2019).
Students are responsible for paying their own living expenses throughout the period of the ISSS orientation program. Refer to the ISSS Website to find out when the program will occur. This web site will also provide details on early move-in for students who will be living in an on-campus residence hall.
Check for details on the iHawk self-servce portal for New Students one month before the orientation start date.
Early arrival—If you arrive a few days before the ISSS program, you may go through a preliminary check-in and pick up an Orientation packet.
Late arrival—Students who arrive after the ISSS program begins will likely experience delays and inconveniences related to many matters, including housing and registering for classes. Students who are unavoidably unable to arrive on time must contact ISSS to ensure that they will be able to register on time. Students who cannot arrive on time may be required to defer admission to another semester.
Undergraduate students who are required to go to the ISSS orientation program (those in F-1 or J-1 status, with the exception of students on exchange programs) are charged a $120 orientation fee on their first University bill. New graduate students on a student visa are charged a $250 orientation fee.