As intimidating as it is to arrive in a new country alone amidst new people, it is always important to keep a note of the primary things to get done before the Fall semester starts.
Here is a guide on every detail a new arriving student at RIT must follow before the start of classes:
If you are lucky enough to be traveling with companions split the cab expenses when you first arrive at the airport. The university runs shuttles a week prior to the start of classes from airport, train and the bus stations so that people arriving from all over the world do not have to go through the hassle of Uber and all that luggage and can safely arrive at the university.
A majority of the graduate student reside in several off-campus apartments near the university. Thanks to technology and the geniuses working at Uber, is it now easier to get a ride from any corner of the city. Also make sure to stalk up on the groceries the first week you are here and do not forget to explore the wonders that American supermarkets like Walmart, Wegmans, PriceRite etc. have to offer!
A great resource for new students to buy stuff for their homes is the Goodbye-Goodbuy Sale held in the Orientation week. The thrift sale contains every possible piece of item a student might ever need for extremely cheap prices.
New Student Orientation
The new student orientation provides important information of special interest to international students including:
- Immigration Information on Maintaining Legal Status While in the U.S.
- Employment in the U.S. (On and Off campus)
- Health Care and Health Insurance
- Cultural Adjustment
- S. Tax Obligations
- Safety Concerns
- S. Social Security Numbers
The orientation is where a student receives information about the absolute life at RIT and in the city of Rochester. For international students, this is primary information session that briefs the students about the conduct and policies of the university and also provides the checklist of the tasks that need to be done after first arriving on campus.
- The first and foremost thing that any new student should do is get their i20s signed from the office of International Student Services located in the Student Union. This marks that the student has successfully entered the university.
- The second step would be to visit the Office of Registrar in the George Eastman building to get the official University ID Card. This card is useful while entering residence hall, labs, libraries, buying meals, for campus events, and more and is the primary identification when in the university.
- The next step would be to head down to the Graduate Admissions Office to submit copies of your degree certificate and transcripts in the Bausch and Lomb Center.
The Orientation week is a great chance to finally get in touch with your PAL in person and learn more about the university and the events that are happening all over the campus. It is also a good time to start looking for on campus jobs (either in person or through handshake applications) before the start of classes.
The week before the classes also marks the RochesterGlobalConnection Welcome Picnic event held at one of the heritage spots in Rochester where new international students from UofR, RIT, MCC and Nazareth College come together for lunch engage in great activities and get to interact with the locals of the city.
Department Orientations are held separately by all colleges and provide specific information about the student’s program of interest, tours of the college, personal interaction with the faculty and advisors and provide more information about the classes and the college in general.
Every year ISS plans an entire day wherein the students are taken downtown to apply for their Social Security Numbers. The office also provides loads of instructions on how to apply for it, what all documents are needed to apply for it and any other documentation help that a student might need.
Tiger Walk & Ice Skating
One of the finest orientation events is the Tiger Walk held at the Quarter Mile in the university wherein new students all take a round of the entire university with the band playing and faculty and parents cheering the students all along the walk. It remarkably highlights the true spirit of the Tigers at RIT and also a fun way to explore the campus and meet new people!
Enjoy some Ice Skating at the Frank Ritter Ice Arena during orientation week. Public skate hours are available for members of the RIT community and the general public.
The Resource Fair allows new students and their families to get their questions answered, meet with staff members, take care of business, and get information regarding the resources and services available at RIT and in the community. Students can also get mobile phone Sim cards, get their bank accounts set up and get loads of free goodies!!
Explore the campus
The Office of Graduate Education offers hour long, student-guided walking tours of the academic, athletic, and campus life facilities. They originate the Bausch and Lomb Center, #77 and can be arranged with advanced notice.
The Orientation Week is the most fun time on campus with the sun glistening and cheers all around the campus. Make sure to be on the lookout for emails from various departments and organizations for awesome orientation events on the campus all week long!