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The Ohio State UniversityOffice of International Affairs

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  • Autumn semester 2020

    Information for international students regarding returning to campus.

  • Virtual Advising

    Immigration coordinators at the Office of International Affairs are available for virtual advising M-F from 1-4 p.m. via CarmenZoom.

  • Health Professionals

    Health professionals across the globe can sign up for Ohio State's Global One Health initiative's collection of online courses offered for free under the online Canvas Network.

Immigration Check-in and Orientation

What is the difference between immigration check-in and orientation?

These are separate events and you are required to attend both immigration check-in and orientation to complete your arrival requirements. During immigration check-in you will meet with OIA immigration coordinators who will review your immigration documents in order to report your arrival to the U.S. federal government. This process is mandatory and should be completed as soon as you enter the United States. Failure to complete immigration check-in can result in termination of your immigration status.

Orientation will introduce you to Ohio State and cover important topics such as campus resources, safety and health information. Undergraduate students will attend a meeting with academic advisors from their college and schedule courses. Graduate students are required to attend orientation but should refer to their departments for course scheduling. All students will complete a mandatory health screening and review of vaccination requirements during orientation. We will also be hosting activities to help you learn more about campus and Columbus including tours and trips to places of interest where you can meet other new and current students.

Who has to attend immigration check-in and orientation?

F-1 and J-1 students entering the United States on an initial SEVIS record and F1 and J-1 students who have been issued a transfer I-20 form from another university in the United States. OIA strongly recommends that you register for immigration check-in and orientation early and make sure you check the deadline to register for an appointment. A registration for immigration check-in is required and they fill up quickly due to the large number of students that arrive at Ohio State each semester.

Students returning to Ohio State after a leave of absence are required to attend the mandatory check-in. It is highly recommended that returning students attend the orientation program.

Students who are not F-1 or J-1 students but are coming to the university from outside the United States are welcome to attend international student orientation if they would like to. Please contact int.orientation@osu.edu for more details.

What is the orientation fee?

Students will be assessed a one-time $50 orientation fee, which is used to cover costs of both immigration check-in and orientation. The fee will appear on your statement of account along wither other tuition and fees, for your first semester of enrollment.

What is BuckeyePass and why do I need it?

BuckeyePass is a multifactor authentication service provided by Ohio State, which is required when accessing your different Ohio State accounts. It helps protect your account even if your password is stolen. You must have BuckeyePass set up on a device that you will have with you during immigration check-in. You won't be able to complete the process without BuckeyePass. The easiest way to set up BuckeyePass is to download the Duo Mobile app on your mobile device. View instructions on how to set up BuckeyePass and download Duo Mobile.

Can I do my immigration check-in any day I want?

No – please register for an immigration check-in time on OIA’s website by choosing the appropriate academic term and following further directions under “Check-in.” If you do not have an appointment or you are encountering issues with the registration we will help you to schedule for the next available time, which can take up to two days to plan and reschedule. Make sure to register in advance to avoid delays!

Can I complete orientation and immigration check-in in one day?

If you are starting in an autumn or spring semester, then no. For those semsters, immigration check-in and orientation are separate events and take place on different dates. Please make sure you register for immigration check-in on OIA’s website. There is no registration for orientation as you will be automatically assigned an orientation time when you register for immigration check-in. Those starting in a summer term, can attend both on the same day, and registration is not necessary.

Do I also need to register for orientation?

You are required to register for immigration check-in on OIA’s website. Once you do that you will be automatically assigned to an orientation. Each immigration check-in time has a corresponding orientation session. Before you register, please make sure you can attend the orientation associated with your preferred check-in time because appointments cannot be changed. You only have to attend one immigration check-in and one orientation. The dates for immigration check-in and orientation are listed on OIA’s website under the each academic term. Visit the section, “Check-in,” to see the schedule.

I'm transferring from a university in the United States, do I need to complete immigration check-in and orientation?

Yes - please make sure you requested to have your SEVIS record transferred to The Ohio State University or you will not be able to complete immigration check-in. Please register for immigration check-in on our website by choosing the appropriate academic term and following further directions under “Check-in.”

I am currently on OPT, and will be starting a new degree program. Should I complete immigration check-in and orientation?

  • Ohio State University students on OPT: If you will be continuing on the same SEVIS record, no, you are not required to attend immigration check-in.
  • Students on OPT from another university in the United States, transferring your SEVIS record to Ohio State: Yes, you are required to attend both immigration check-in and orientation.

I did not get confirmation about my immigration check-in appointment. Can you confirm if I registered successfully?

Please check the “junk” or “spam” folder in your email first. If the confirmation email is not there please email us with the following information: first name, family name, SEVIS number or BuckID, email you listed in the registration to iss@osu.edu

I have a spouse and/or children. Do my dependents need to do immigration check-in?

Not necessarily. However, you can bring their passports and I-20s/DS2019s when you come to complete your immigration check-in and we can keep copies of their documents with your record.

Can I reschedule my immigration check-in appointment?

Only under extraordinary circumstances including: your flight has been delayed, delays with visa or passport issuance or other emergencies. Please email our office so an immigration coordinator can assist with your request at iss@osu.edu

I have a Green Card/Permanent Resident Card - do I need to register for immigration check-in and orientation?

No - you are not required to check-in with the Office of International Affairs. Visit orientation.osu.edu to learn more about your orientation.

What should I do if I have to arrive after check-In and orientation are over?

Please contact the Office of International Affairs immediately so we can assist you at iss@osu.edu.