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Arrival information

OISS is happy to provide support to all incoming J-1 scholars to MSU. On the following pages you will find information relating to what you should do prior to your arrival and within your first few days on campus.

Pre-Arrival Checklist

  • Learn about the program: Upon receiving your DS-2019 and accompanying documents from your MSU department, please carefully read all enclosed materials.
  • Check for errors: When you receive your DS-2019, please review it carefully for any errors. Contact the Office for International Students and Scholars (OISS) immediately if you find an error on your DS-2019.
  • SEVIS Fee: Prior to your visa interview, you must pay the $180 SEVIS Fee. For more information, click here or refer to the SEVIS Fee Fact Sheet that accompanied your DS-2019.
  • Visa Interview: Contact the nearest US Embassy or Consulate and schedule an interview appointment for a J-1 visa.
  • Health Insurance: Decide how you will arrange for health insurance during your stay in the US . If you will be an employee of MSU, then your health insurance may be covered by your department. (If you are not sure whether your department will provide insurance, please ask them.) If your health insurance is not provided by your department, decide whether you will bring a health insurance policy with you from your home country or purchase a health insurance policy in the US just after your arrival. For more information on health insurance, please click here.
  • Housing: Your department should assist you in finding suitable housing. Please tell your department about your housing preferences.
  • Travel Plans: It is possible for your flight plans to end in either Lansing or Detroit . Though the Detroit airport is not terribly far away from MSU, ground transportation between Detroit and East Lansing is limited. Therefore it is often more convenient and cost-effective to travel by air all the way to Lansing .
  • Delays: If unexpected events cause your arrival to be delayed more than 20 days after the start date on your DS-2019, you must notify the OISS immediately. We must create a new DS-2019 for you with a postponed start date.

Arrival Checklist

  • Check in at OISS, located in Room 105 at the International Center. It is very important that all newly-arrived scholars check in with the OISS as soon as possible after arrival.
  • Orientation: J-1 Scholar Orientation takes place every Thursday at 10am in Room 105, International Center. When you check in, the reception staff will schedule you for the next available orientation session.