International Student Orientation
International Student Orientation
ISL organizes an international student orientation each semester for new and transfer international students matriculating to the University of Georgia. The information included in the ISL orientation is not covered by any other orientation program on campus. Highlights from ISL’s orientation schedules include information concerning immigration issues, taxes for non-residents, cross-cultural adjustment, housing assistance, course registration procedures, Social Security Cards, UGA payroll, and campus tours. Current UGA students serve as orientation leaders (called World Leaders) to assist with international orientation sessions.
The fall 2021 international student orientation program meets the University orientation requirement for undergraduate students and is highly recommended for all graduate and exchange students, regardless of previous study in the United States.
Registration opens on March 1 for the fall 2021 orientation program. Your registration fee* covers everything listed below for all students:
- Lunches and dinners from Sunday, August 8 through Thursday, August 12
- Orientation materials and supplies
- Orientation t-shirt
- Transportation during orientation
- Social events and activities during orientation to help you meet other incoming international students and the World Leaders
Early Registration: March 1 – May 31
Regular Registration: June 1 – July 3
Late Registration: after July 3
- Early Registration: $199 (+ $236.00 for Housing)
- Regular Registration: $225 (+ $236.00 for Housing)
- Late Registration: $265 (+ $236.00 for Housing)
Housing is required for undergraduate and exchange student registration. Graduate students may add Housing. More information is included below. Housing is an additional $236.00.
*Your registration fee will be billed directly to your Student Account at the beginning of the Fall 2021 semester. You will pay your orientation fee through your online Student Account portal.
For students living on campus in University Housing for fall 2021, EXCLUDING University Village, you will move into your permanent space for the fall semester at the beginning of the orientation program.
Students in University Village or needing temporary accommodation will be assigned a space in the Georgia Center Hotel & Conference Center.
*All undergraduate students and exchange students are required to stay in Orientation Housing during the program. By staying on campus, you will also have access to conveniences on campus. Advantages of staying in Orientation Housing also include:
- The safety and security of UGA’s campus and residence halls
- The ability to build new friendships with fellow orientation participants and current UGA students serving as your orientation leaders (World Leaders)
- Breakfast in Bolton Dining Commons from Monday, August 9 to Thursday, August 12. Breakfast meals in the Dining Hall are only available to those students staying in Orientation Housing
- A linen package delivered to your room, including a pillow, sheets, blankets, towels, and wash cloth
- Transportation of you and your luggage to your on-campus permanent housing assignment
Please review the following for commonly asked questions related to COVID-19. To view this document as a PDF, click here.
Will I need to arrive early to UGA, or plan to quarantine, prior to my arrival for international student orientation?
At this time, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) does not require a quarantine period upon arrival, but recommends that you take extra steps to monitor your health for 14 days. All air passengers arriving to the United States (including U.S. Citizens) are required to have a negative COVID-19 test result or documentation of recovery from COVID-19 before boarding a flight to the United States. Be sure to check with your airline for specific documentation information. You can find more information on the pre-flight testing requirement here.
Will I contract COVID-19 during international student orientation?
There is always an inherent risk that you may contract COVID-19 anywhere, not just at the University or in the United States. As of early May 2021, nearly 50% of adults in the United States have received one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine. As such, with increased vaccinations, the risk for all members of the UGA community decreases.
What is DawgCheck? Do I need to complete DawgCheck prior to international student orientation each day?
DawgCheck is an online tool to help assess and respond to COVID-19 cases at UGA in an effort to keep the campus community safe. DawgCheck consists of a reporting function, which must be used by anyone who has received a positive COVID-19 test result, as well as a symptom-checking tool.
Learn more about DawgCheck at dawgcheck.uga.edu/support.
Can I get a COVID-19 test at UGA if I am symptomatic?
Students who are showing symptoms should seek care from the University Health Center. Please do not walk in. Make an appointment via telehealth or in person by calling 706-542-1162 or your primary care team’s number. Should you become symptomatic during international student orientation, please contact ISL staff immediately via phone at 706-542-5867 or email at email@example.com. Additionally, ISL staff and orientation World Leaders can assist you in contacting the University Health Center if needed.
What happens if I contract COVID-19 at UGA or during international student orientation?
If you contract COVID-19 while at the University of Georgia, it is likely you will need to self-isolate until symptoms pass.
- For on-campus students living in University Housing (including University Village): University Housing will reach out with more information once a positive test is reported. UGA Housing has several hundred rooms identified for students who need to isolate, and who do not have the ability to return to their permanent home. These spaces have exterior exits, a microwave, refrigerator, and in-room bathrooms. University Housing will provide disinfection kits, hygiene kits and linens to students in these spaces. UGA’s Student Care and Outreach will engage with all students who require isolation and will assist them based on their individual circumstances.
- For off-campus students: Student Care and Outreach will contact you upon the report of a positive test with further information and instructions.
What happens if I contract COVID-19 while staying in orientation housing during international student orientation?
Regardless of if you are staying in a University Housing space or in the Georgia Center hotel, please contact ISL Staff immediately via phone at 706-542-5867 or email at firstname.lastname@example.org. ISL will work with University Housing or the Georgia Center, as applicable, to determine the best course of action in your specific situation. Please self-isolate until provided further instructions.
Does UGA’s student health insurance cover costs and care associated with COVID-19?
All international students on F or J visa status are required to participate, and are automatically enrolled, in the UGA Mandatory Student Health Insurance Plan. United Healthcare, the provider of this plan, has provided information for students related to coverage and COVID-19. For more information, please click here.
Are masks required during international student orientation?
The University System of Georgia has now updated its guidance on face coverings and social distancing in accordance with the advice provided by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on May 13, 2021. Effective immediately, fully vaccinated individuals can resume campus classes and other activities without physically distancing or wearing a mask. Unvaccinated individuals are strongly encouraged to continue socially distancing from others when possible and wearing a face covering while inside campus facilities.
Can I get a COVID-19 vaccine at UGA?
Yes. You can receive a COVID-19 vaccine at UGA upon arrival. Vaccines are administered at no cost. For more information, please visit https://www.uhs.uga.edu/healthtopics/covid-vaccine.
What COVID-19 vaccines are available?
UGA receives supply of COVID-19 vaccines regularly, including Pfizer, Moderna, and Johnson & Johnson (Janssen). The Pfizer and Moderna vaccines require two doses, and you will receive the same vaccine as your first dose. The Johnson & Johnson (Janssen) vaccine requires one-dose. As long as adequate supplies of vaccine are available, you may choose between the Pfizer/Moderna or Johnson and Johnson (Janssen) vaccines. Currently those 12-18 years old must receive the Pfizer vaccine
I received the first dose of Pfizer or Moderna before I arrived at UGA from another location in the United States or internationally. Can I get my second dose at UGA?
Yes. Be sure to bring your COVID-19 vaccination record to your appointment to confirm your vaccination type.
I received the first dose of another vaccine that is not approved in the United States (i.e., AstraZeneca) outside of the US. Can I get my second dose at UGA?
COVID-19 vaccines were previously recommended to be administered alone, with a minimum interval of 14 days before or after administration of any other vaccines. This was out of an abundance of caution and not due to any known safety or immunogenicity concerns. However, substantial data have now been collected regarding the safety of COVID-19 vaccines currently authorized by FDA for use under EUA. Although data are not available for COVID-19 vaccines administered simultaneously with other vaccines, extensive experience with non-COVID-19 vaccines has demonstrated that immunogenicity and adverse event profiles are generally similar when vaccines are administered simultaneously as when they are administered alone.
COVID-19 vaccines and other vaccines may now be administered without regard to timing. This includes simultaneous administration of COVID-19 vaccines and other vaccines on the same day, as well as coadministration within 14 days. It is unknown whether reactogenicity of COVID-19 vaccine is increased with coadministration, including with other vaccines known to be more reactogenic, such as adjuvanted vaccines or live vaccines. When deciding whether to coadminister another vaccine(s) with COVID-19 vaccines, providers should consider whether the patient is behind or at risk of becoming behind on recommended vaccines, their risk of vaccine-preventable disease (e.g., during an outbreak or occupational exposures), and the reactogenicity profile of the vaccines.
For more information, please click here.
This option is available for you! Please add $236 to the registration cost listed above to stay in orientation housing. You will have the option to register for orientation housing in the registration form below. Should you choose to stay in orientation housing, all of the above conveniences will be available during orientation. Please note that undergraduate students who are required to stay in orientation housing are given priority in room assignments, so if you plan to stay in orientation housing, please be sure to register!
Early arrival housing is available on Saturday, August 7 in the Georgia Center Hotel for an additional $55. This option is available through the registration system below.
If you are a graduate student living off campus during orientation and you plan to utilize the ISL-provided shuttle service, you will be assessed an additional $25 transportation charge. This charge is a one-time charge and is assessed when you sign up for an ISL shuttle service. This registration will be sent to students in mid-July.
- Important topics related to UGA academics, safety, wellness, resources, and much more are discussed in detail during this program! Even if you have attended college in the USA before, it is still recommended to attend this program!
- International Student Life and the World Leaders (orientation leaders) are specially trained to help assist international students, like you, transition successfully to the USA and to the University of Georgia!
- You will learn important information about UGA and Athens, including where to shop, eat, and have fun! Our World Leaders are current international and domestic students that have lived in Athens and are here to share their experiences and tips for living a great life in Athens, GA.
- Our World Leader squads you build a sense of community and establish a network of friends before classes even start!
- International Student Orientation 2021 is more than informational sessions! Throughout the program, there will be fun activities and events that allow you to meet your fellow students.
Registration + Housing
Early Registration Price by May 31, 2021. Registration price increases by $26 on June 1 and by $66 on July 4.
Fee covers Housing, lunch & dinner from August 8 - 12, breakfast from August 9-12, orientation supplies, t-shirt, transportation, and social activities
Undergraduate, first-year, degree-seeking students can subtract $50 from this cost. Undergraduate students pay a commitment deposit to the University which helps offset their orientation cost.
Graduate Student Registration Only
Early Registration Price by May 31, 2021. Early registration price increases by $26 on June 1 and by $66 on July 4.
Fee covers lunch & dinner from August 8 - 12, orientation supplies, t-shirt, and social activities
Graduate students can add optional Housing + off-campus transportation for an additional fee.
International Student Orientation Handbook
The orientation handbook contains important information about preparing for your journey to Athens, the orientation program, and much more.
Sponsored Student Information for Departments
For UGA departments covering a student’s registration fee, please use this form to provide additional information.