UMD: A Globally Connected University

International Student Orientation

International Student Orientation

We are excited to welcome you to the University of Maryland.  During International Student Orientation you will be introduced to the ISSS team, learn about your immigration responsibilities, connect with other new Terps as well as current students, and get acquainted with campus resources.

All F-1/J-1 international students who are new to UMD should complete the mandatory online International Student Orientation. While you will complete the Fall 2021 International Student Orientation via asynchronous online modules, some optional synchronous sessions will be held during the months of July and August.

Immigration Portion. Through your iTerp checklist you will be instructed to review important information regarding steps you need to take maintaining your F/J status. 

If you were a new student in Spring 2021 and began your studies remotely:  You have already attended portions of the ISSS CANVAS orientation. You will only be required to complete the immigration portion via iTerp.

UMD Orientation

ISSS’s International Student Orientation is not the only orientation students will attend. There are also orientations given by a student’s school and/or department.

UMD orientation is different from the ISSS orientation and is offered by the Office of Orientation for undergraduate students or your academic department and Graduate School Orientation for graduate students.  Undergraduate freshman and undergraduate transfer students should visit the following website to schedule your required online undergraduate orientation. It is through this orientation that undergraduate students will meet with an academic advisor to register for classes. 


Undergraduate Students Orientations Graduate Students Orientations
  • International Student Orientation
  • New Student Orientation
  • Possible Departmental Orientation
  • International Student Orientation
  • New Graduate Student Orientation
  • Possible Departmental Orientation


International Student Orientation

All international students should complete the online International Student Orientation modules. ISSS offers a modular orientation to fit the varying needs of all students. You can  access this orientation starting on May 15. The general orientation is offered via CANVAS/ELMS and is self paced.

How to Access the  International Student Orientation:

Starting May 15 you can self-enroll using this link

International Student Orientation - Immigration Portion
F-1/J-1 students who are physically in the U.S. will complete the immigration module in addition to the General - online International Student Orientation. This enables us to activate your I-20 or DS-2019 and report your arrival to the U.S. government. This step is necessary before students can apply for a Social Security number or U.S. driver's license and to be cleared for UMD employment.

What happens during the Online International Student Orientation?

The online modular orientation session will cover critical information to facilitate your transition to UMD. You will learn about campus resources, tools to adjustment to a new educational environment, and you’ll get to know other new students. International Orientation Leaders (IOLs) are a group of current students who are excited to share their favorite parts about being Terps as well as answer your questions and make you all feel welcome at UMD! 

For students who need the immigration information related to maintaining their visas status, this piece will be integrated into your iTERP Pre-Arrival Checklist, and ISSS advisers will explain how this works and what steps you need to take as a new student to ensure your F-1/J-1 record is “activated” in SEVIS. We will also explain immigration regulations to maintain your legal F-1/J-1 status while at UMD. As your Immigration Sponsor, ISSS must report your arrival to UMD in the government’s SEVIS system. 


Tip of the Week 

Starting in June, we send a weekly Tip of the Week to all new students. Students who enrolled at UMD remotely for their first semester will also receive these messages. These emails are meant to help prepare you for coming to the U.S. and adjusting to life at the University of Maryland. Look for them in your inbox. 

Summer Webinar Series and Live Sessions

This series of virtual webinars will cover topics that are relevant to your transition to living in the U.S. and attending UMD. You will find registration links in your Tip of the Week emails. 

  • Leasing in the U.S.
  • Off-Campus Housing 
  • Graduate Student Life
  • Career Services
  • U.S. Healthcare
  • University Student Insurance & University Health Center


Meet and Greet with International Orientation Leaders (IOLs)

In July and August, newly admitted students and students who enrolled remotely for spring 2021 will have an opportunity to talk with IOLs in small group virtual sessions. You will be able to ask questions about what it is like to study at UMD, get tips and advice on how to make the most of your time, and get to know current and newly admitted students ahead of the spring semester! Space is limited, so be sure to register in advance for one or more of the sessions below. 

Meet and Greet IOL Sessions


Community Building Events

ISSS hopes you will have fun and meet new friends during orientation! Educational and social events (virtually and in person, if possible) are offered to aid your transition to life at UMD and in the College Park area. 



Disability Support for Orientation

If you require any disability support to attend International Student Orientation, please contact Disability Support Services at


For questions regarding ISSS orientation, please contact Gabriela Gillespie at .