Arriving in the U.S.

Before you arrive in the United States, please be sure that you have planned ahead. There are many things that you will have to do and to buy before settling in with your classes. Here is a list of things that will be expected of each student upon arrival at Widener University.

The office of International Students is here to help you with many things. But it will be your responsibility to do the following prior to the beginning of classes:

Plan a budget. Bring emergency cash (local currency), travelers checks, or a credit card. (Minimum: $300.00) If you are renting an apartment, you will need money for your first month's rent, your last month's rent, and a one-month security deposit. (Minimum: $1,200.00)

Prepare to bring money for all of the things that you will need to buy for your apartment or dormitory. This will include: a bed (if you live off-campus), all bedding (including blankets and sheets), bath supplies (towels), and any other personal items that you will need to be comfortable in your new home. (desk, lamps, school supplies, kitchen supplies etc.). (Estimated costs: $500.00) These items will not be provided for you.

Your textbooks will cost approximately $600.00 per semester. You can purchase used books at a lesser cost. Sometimes the textbook is available in our library; you may also share the cost of a book with a classmate. However, you must have the textbooks for each class.

Your total estimated costs will be approximately $2,400.00. Please note that on line 7d of your I-20, this amount is stated as "Miscellaneous Fees". You are expected to take this amount into consideration when budgeting for your expenses here at Widener University.

As an international student, you are responsible for payment in full of your tuition and fees. This amount is payable by one half in each semester. If you or your family is doing a wire/draft transaction, please do this prior to your arrival. Your registration process will be held if your money is not here at the time when you register for your classes. This means that will not be able to begin your classes. There are no payment plans or Financial Aid for international students.

You will be automatically billed for medical insurance. The cost for the 2013-2014 school year is $1206, which will be listed on your I-20. Please budget that amount of money in with your other expenses.

Entering the U.S.

Do not arrange to fly to the U.S. prior to getting your visa from the U.S. Embassy/Consulate. If you do not have the correct immigration paperwork, you may not be allowed to board the plane. Carry your immigration documents with you onto the plane because you will be required to present your passport and these documents to the Immigration Officer at your port of entry. On the plane, you will be given a form to complete, which is the I-94 arrival/departure record.

Since you are coming to the US in the F visa category, you should complete a white card. When you arrive at your port of entry, you will be inspected for admission into the U.S. At this time, you will present your passport, I-20, I-94 card and financial information to the Immigration Officer. Your passport and I-94 will be stamped with an entry date, and the departure part of the I-94 card will be stapled into your passport. For the F-1 student visa, the inspector will stamp pages 1 of your I-20. Put these documents in a safe place because you will need to present them to the ISS upon your arrival at Widener University.

Check-In Procedures

Welcome to Widener! Before you begin classes, please be sure to accomplish the following tasks after you first arrive on-campus. These should be completed in the order listed.

1. Complete all Immigration paperwork and SEVIS check-in requirements with International Student Services. All paperwork must be completed before the first day of classes.

  • Graduate Students - Schedule classes with your academic advisor.
  • Undergraduate Students - You should receive information about Undergraduate Student Orientation before you arrive on campus. If you do not, please contact Dan Stabb at dkstabb@widener.edu.

2. Pay full semester's tuition and medical insurance at Enrollment Services in Lipka Hall. All fees must be paid in full before the first day of classes.

3. Take Financial Clearance Form to Enrollment Services in Lipka Hall to receive your Campus1Card. Undergraduates can also have it made in University Center on Check-In Day.

4. Secure housing.

  • Graduate Students - Locate permanent housing in the local community.
  • Undergraduate Students - If you are living on-campus, check in with the Residence Life Office on the Main Level of the University Center for your room assignment. If you meet commuter status requirements, you must secure permission to move off-campus from Residence Life. Please be sure to provide your local address to both ISS and the Registrar's Office in Lipka Hall.

5. Deposit Health History Forms at the Student Health Center.

6. Open an email account with Widener by going to the Office of Information Technology Services. Please register your email address with ISS as soon as it is active.

7. Undergraduate Students - Take required Placement Tests:

  • English Placement Test (You will take your English Placement Test during New & Transfer International Student Orientation).
  • Math Placement Test (Before your arrival, you must take your Math Placement Test online).

8. Attend required New and Transfer International Student Orientation (August 2014 dates to be determined)