Fall 2024 International Student Orientation (ISO)

International Student Orientation (ISO) attendance is required of all new undergraduate and exchange students.  

Graduate students should attend all ISO events that are not in conflict with the Graduate Student Orientation.

International Student Orientation dates: August 27-30.

  • Bear Paw Icon

    Copy of the Fall 2024 Orientation Schedule coming soon!

Your Success begins with ISO

Orientation is designed to help you:

  • Adjust to academic and social life at the University of Maine;
  • Comply with government regulations that pertain to your stay in the US;
  • Learn about on- and off-campus resources and support services;
  • Become comfortable with the local community and US culture; and
  • Meet new people and make friends from around the world.

Studies show the benefits of participation in orientation programs.  Faculty members and academic advisers see a marked difference in the preparedness and success of students who have participated in orientation.

Welcome Week Events & Activities

The University of Maine offers activities for ALL new students at the beginning of each semester.  The fall semester is usually a week-long program and the spring semester is 1-2 days.  International students are strongly encouraged to join these welcome events. The program offers many social and recreational opportunities to meet other students and get to know UMaine.  A schedule of activities will be posted on this website  and OIP will also provide information during the international student orientation week.

Arrival and Move-in Information

Visit our Arrival Information page for the most detailed information on when to arrive, transportation to campus and campus housing.

If you are planning to live on-campus you can move in as early as the published arrival day (usually the start date of your I-20 or DS-2019).   Early move-in must be arranged through our office.  Be sure to submit your arrival details ahead of time.

If it is not practical for you to bring your sheets, blanket and pillow, the University will have “loaner” sets of sheets and blankets on hand which you can keep for a few days until you get your own.

We recommend that you arrive on campus for your scheduled move-in date or arrange to move in directly to your off campus housing.  If you have questions about acquiring temporary lodging please feel free to contact OIP.

Frequently Asked Questions about the International Student Orientation (ISO)

Do I have to attend the International Student Orientation (ISO)?—  Yes, ISO is MANDATORY and you should make all possible arrangements to arrive in time to attend. The International Student Orientation (ISO) will have events both virtually and in person, and most of the content will be recorded.  

I am a graduate student and the ISO conflicts with the Graduate School Orientation.  Which one should I attend?–All graduate students should make an effort to attend the ISO. Graduate Teaching Assistants (TA’s) may have a time conflict between TA orientation and ISO.  TA’s should be sure to attend the make-up immigration session that will be scheduled the first week of classes.  All other graduate students should be able to attend ISO and then attend the Graduate School Orientation.

Why should I attend ISO?— Studies show the benefits of participation in orientation programs.  Faculty members and advisers see a marked difference in the preparedness and success of student who have participated in orientation.

What happens if I cannot get a flight that arrives in time or my flight is cancelled or delayed?–You should notify staff at the Office of International Programs by email (umaineimmigration@maine.edu) or phone (207) 581-3423) and let them know you will not be able to make it.  You will be required to attend a make-up session during the first week of classes and access other pre-recorded orientation content virtually.

Do I have to pay to attend ISO?–No, Orientation is free.

Where will I stay during ISO?–If you live on campus you can move into your room as early as the published arrival date as long as you arrange this through OIP. Be sure to submit your arrival details ahead of time so we can coordinate your moving in to your on-campus housing (no earlier than the published arrival date). Read more about Arrival here

If you arrive prior to the published arrival date you will need to stay in a hotel until your room is available.

If you are living off campus it may be difficult to find temporary lodging.  Please arrange for your lease to be active by the day you arrive in the US.

Where do I go to attend ISO?–Check the Orientation schedules linked at the top of this page.  We will be providing both virtual and in-person activities so that everyone can participate.