Orientations

OIS is pleased to provide Orientation programming to newly-arrived international students, scholars, and employees, so that you feel welcome and have access to the information and resources you need in order to be successful at Pitt. Below is a general description of the various international orientation programs that take place. More detailed information is sent to incoming visitors at an appropriate time before your arrival.

New Undergraduate Students

As an incoming undergraduate student, you will begin your Orientation process during the weeks and months before you start classes. The University of Pittsburgh has created an Online Orientation that allows students to schedule classes and learn about various resources and services that Pitt has to offer.

Once students have arrived to the United States, they will attend Welcome Week, which is a week designed for new students to get acclimated to campus and prepare for the start of classes. Required sessions for international students begin on August 20, 2022, so please plan your travel accordingly. As you make your travel plans, review OIS’ travel guidance about entering the U.S. Pay particular attention to the COVID-19 vaccination requirements.

As part of Welcome Week, all undergraduate and undergraduate exchange students with an “Initial” or “Transfer Pending” I-20 or DS-2019 MUST complete the TWO requirements with OIS after arriving in the United States to maintain their immigration status.

  • Welcome Session

  • Check-Ins (Undergraduate students only)

    • Monday, August 22 (check your Pre-Arrival Checklist in My OIS for your school’s assigned time)
    • Lower Lounge, William Pitt Union

LATE ARRIVAL: If you cannot arrive in the United States in time to attend the Welcome Session or the Check-Ins, you must:

  • Attend a Make-Up Welcome Session:

  • Complete the Check-In by submitting ALL e-forms in the “Orientation” section of the Pre-Arrival Checklist in My OIS.

NOTE: Students who have entered the U.S. with a Pitt I-20 in the past, took a leave of absence, and received a new Pitt I-20 to return to the U.S., will follow a different check-in process. These students must complete ALL of the e-forms in the “Upon Arrival to the United States” section of the “Return to Pitt from Leave” e-form group in My OIS.

New Graduate Students

As an incoming graduate student, you will receive information about your academic department’s orientation plans via your Pitt email address. Additionally, the Office of Graduate Studies organizes events and presentations that apply to all of Pitt’s 14 graduate schools.

OIS typically holds its required orientation events about 2 weeks before the start of class, so that students have additional time to complete their academic department’s orientations. For the Fall 2022 term, OIS’ required events begin on August 15, 2022, so please plan your travel accordingly. As you make your travel plans, review OIS’ travel guidance about entering the U.S. Pay particular attention to the COVID-19 vaccination requirements.

All graduate, professional and graduate exchange students with an “Initial” or “Transfer Pending” I-20 or DS-2019 MUST complete the TWO requirements with OIS after arriving in the United States to maintain their immigration status.

  • Welcome Session

  • Check-Ins (Graduate students only)

    • Tuesday, August 16 (check your Pre-Arrival Checklist in My OIS for your school’s assigned time)
    • Lower Lounge, William Pitt Union

LATE ARRIVAL: If you cannot arrive in the United States in time to attend the Welcome Session or the Check-Ins, you must:

  • Attend a Make-Up Welcome Session:

  • Complete the Check-In by submitting ALL e-forms in the “Orientation” section of the Pre-Arrival Checklist in My OIS.

NOTE: Students who have entered the U.S. with a Pitt I-20 in the past, took a leave of absence, and received a new Pitt I-20 to return to the U.S., will follow a different check-in process. These students must complete ALL of the e-forms in the “Upon Arrival to the United States” section of the “Return to Pitt from Leave” e-form group in My OIS.

New Scholars

Visiting scholars will be asked to attend a required OIS Scholar Orientation session within 30 days after the start date on your immigration document. Attendance at Scholar Orientation is required so that we may register your arrival in the SEVIS system. Registration for Scholar Orientation is required; visit https://www.ois.pitt.edu/events to register.

New Employees

Employees will be asked to review an online presentation to learn about requirements for your immigration status and how to access resources that may be helpful during their time at Pitt. Employees can also request an appointment with an Immigration Specialist to discuss any particular questions or concerns.