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You've been admitted to A-State! What's next for you to do?
Step One: Receive Your Visa!
After receiving your I-20 or DS-2019, verify that your information on your form is correct. If you find mistakes, notify our office immediately. If everything appears correct, please read page 3 of your document and sign your name and date on the first page acknowledging you read page 3.
Prior to applying for your visa, you must pay your $200 SEVIS fee to the U.S. Department of Homeland Security at fmjfee.com
Once paid, schedule your visa interview with your nearest embassy or consulate. Check your wait time at the closest Consulate or Embassy here: https://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/us-visas/visa-information-resources/wait-times.html
Please find below a presentation on tips on how to have a successful visa interview.
Check your wait time at the closest Consulate or Embassy here: https://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/us-visas/visa-information-resources/wait-times.html .
Step Two: Book Your Housing!
To view your options for on-campus housing, please visit Residence Life’s website. If there are additional questions, check out our frequently asked questions below or you can email Residence Life at firstname.lastname@example.org . In most cases, the Sunday before orientation day you can start checking into housing during select times. Those times are sent to you via email. If you do not arrive during those times on Sunday, you will have to wait to check into housing on the next day, which is the Monday of orientation week.
If you are not in freshmen year status, you may choose to live off-campus. Arkansas State University nor the Office of International Programs endorses any specific apartment complex or landlord. You are responsible for finding and securing your off-campus housing.
Step Three: Book Your Ticket and Reserve Your Seat on Our Complimentary Shuttle
When you first enter the U.S., you will travel through a U.S. port of entry. To read about what you should expect at a port of entry, please visit Study in the States page here.
The closest airport is the Memphis International Airport. The airport code is MEM. This is where our complimentary transportation is. Read more about that below
International Student Services provide free airport transportation at the beginning and ending of every semester for international students to and from Memphis International Airport (MEM - Airport Code) on select dates that are sent out ahead of time. If you choose to travel not within these dates, you will need to take a taxi to Jonesboro.
For dates the shuttle will run and to reserve your spot, please go here and click 'A-State Shuttle'.
Step Four: Prepare for Departure
Please review the following presentation carefully before your arrival in Jonesboro.
Students at Arkansas State University usually dress casually and comfortably. Many of the students wear jeans, t-shirts, sweaters and tennis shoes, but other students will wear more formal outfits. There are no rules regarding dress at A-State. There may be some occasions where you will need to be in more formal attire, men in a suit and tie and women in business formal or general formal, especially for class presentations or special events. These special events include the Valentine’s Prom hosted by International Student Services, as well as other campus-wide events. There are also times where traditional, cultural dress from your home country can be worn as well, such as Global Cultural Night. So if there is some room in your suitcase, you can bring some traditional clothing.
Knowing what to pack is always a problem, as the weather in Jonesboro will range from freezing (less than 32 degrees Fahrenheit, 0 degrees Celsius) to hot (around 100 degrees Fahrenheit, 38 degrees Celsius). We suggest waiting until you arrive to buy many toiletry items as they are readily available in Jonesboro. When you are packing ask yourself two questions: Will I need this item? and Can I get this item in Jonesboro? If you aren’t sure about a specific item, you can contact us to find out if you will have access to that item here. You can bring your camera, and you may even want to bring pictures or souvenirs from your home country to share with friends here.
A-State has a bookstore on campus that will provide you with all of your textbooks for classes, so you do not need to worry about brining too many books with you. The library on campus also has over 600,000 holdings, so they have plenty of resources for you as well. However, if there are any degree specific tools, such as a calculator or art supplies, that you are accustomed to using, you may want to bring those items with you as well.
Clearly label your bags with your name and address, both on the inside and the outside of the bag. You will also want to check with the airline about weight and bag limits to ensure that you can avoid paying additional fees for excess baggage.
As it does get quite cold here, you will want some warm clothes. However, as those items can be bulky, you may want to wait to buy some pieces until you arrive in Jonesboro.
Good walking shoes will be a must while you are at A-State, as campus is somewhat spread out. Good shoes can range from $50-100 to purchase here.
While we recommend these items, you can purchase them once you arrive in Jonesboro.
Bringing some formal wear, like a suit, might not be a bad idea, although a lot of potential uses will vary based upon your major and your level of study. At minimum, we would recommend bringing at least one dress shirt and tie for class presentations or interviews.
We recommend bringing a few days worth of these items, but there will be a shopping shuttle to take you to stores to buy larger quantities of these items during Orientation Week, and every week of the semester.
The voltage used in the United States is 110V, so make sure to check your devices for compatibility.
Bringing a few items, such as pictures or small items, to show to friends will be great conversation pieces to allow you to share about your culture and your home country.
There are some international events where wearing clothing special to your country is accepted, and even encouraged. Our School of Business also does an International Exhibition every year, and they love our international students getting involved in the event and showing the American students more about their home country, including the traditional dress.
Please be aware there are no bedding and linens in the rooms when you arrive on campus. You will have an opportunity to purchase necessities on Monday afternoon by taking the A-State International Student Shopping Shuttle. If you would like to purchase your bedding and linens in advance, you can order them online from the A-State Bookstore here. You can pick up your order from the bookstore on campus when you arrive on the first day of check-in and orientation.
Step Five: Arrival to Jonesboro
If you arrive before your dormitory or apartment is ready for move-in, you should be prepared to stay in a hotel in Jonesboro. Hotel reservations and costs will be the responsibility of the student.
Rest up! If you are arriving the weekend directly before orientation, rest up! Orientation week is meant to help you acclimate to campus and to Jonesboro, but can also be very tiring to get everything done.
You do not have to report to the Office of International Student Services that you arrived until the orientation day.
Step Six: Orientation
International Student Services at A-State organizes orientation sessions for all new incoming international students. Orientation is mandatory for all international students. During orientation, international students learn more about life at A-State and in the United States. Representatives from many of the University’s service areas attend these orientation sessions and provide information about how they can help students.
You will need to bring following documents with you to orientation.