Immigration laws allow you to arrive in the U.S. no more than 30 days before the report date listed on your Form I-20 or Form DS-2019.
The start date on the I-20/DS-2019 is the arrival day for all new international students: August 21, 2017 (fall), or January 16, 2018 (spring). Housing and transportation provided by IUP are organized around these days.
When entering the U.S., you will need to show your passport, visa, and IUP I-20 (F-1) or DS-2019 (J-1). Your passport must be valid for at least 6 months after your arrival. Be ready to show proof of finances and your SEVIS fee receipt. You will be fingerprinted, photographed, and an entry stamp will be placed in your passport. You may be asked to go to another line where they will look at your documents and ask additional questions.
Your arrival will be registered electronically. After arriving, you can go to U.S. Customs and Border Protection to view and print a copy of your I-94, a document that verifies your legal entry. The printed I-94 is required for obtaining a Social Security Number, Driver's License, and employment in the U.S. Our office will collect copies of your passport, visa, I-20 or DS-2019, and I-94 during orientation to activate your F-1 or J-1 status.
We advise all students to make flight destinations to the Pittsburgh International Airport (PIT) before 6:00 p.m. EST on August 21, 2017 (fall), or January 16, 2018 (spring). If you fly to New York City, you can also travel by bus (11-13 hours) to our on-campus bus stop in Indiana. Indiana, Pennsylvania, is approximately 80 miles northeast of the Pittsburgh International Airport. Our office has organized a shuttle pick-up from the airport for these days only. If you arrive a day early, we recommend that you stay at a hotel overnight and get hotel transportation back to the airport for the IUP pick up the next day. If you arrive prior to or after these days, you can make your own airport transportation arrangements.
Students arriving a few days prior to the official arrival day who have an on-campus housing contract can check in at Wallwork Hall.
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Please make final flight destinations to Pittsburgh International Airport (PIT). If you fly to New York City, you can also travel by bus (11-13 hours) to an on-campus bus stop in Indiana, Pennsylvania, approximately 80 miles northeast of the Pittsburgh International Airport. Indiana does not have a commercial airport; the closest airport is in Pittsburgh.
After receiving your visa and making flight plans, please submit the “International Orientation Arrival Form” in URSA to let us know you are planning to attend IUP.
If you have reserved on-campus housing, you must report to the Wallwork Hall on the IUP campus between 3:00 p.m. and 10:00 p.m. on the arrival day. If you are planning to live off campus, please make arrangements with your landlord or friends to pick you up before the first day of Orientation. All new students are invited to attend the Welcome Dinner at 9:00 p.m. on the arrival day to meet new and returning international students. Those who are unable to attend or who arrive late must attend the 9:00 a.m. Orientation session the next day. New students with questions can also stop by our office during business hours, 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday. See the campus map to find us. We’re located in Delaney Hall on Grant Street.
It is best to fly to Pittsburgh, Pa., and arrange ground transportation in advance from the airport to IUP. Indiana, Pa., is approximately 80 miles northeast of the Pittsburgh International Airport. Indiana does not have a commercial airport; the closest airport is in Pittsburgh.
Never take a taxi from Pittsburgh to Indiana unless you have no other option or unless there are two or three passengers. It is very expensive—$200+!
Please be aware that the university does not have the resources to meet nor transport students on an individual basis.
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