International Students Orientation & Registration
Section 2 – Orientation details and registering for classes
The University of Akron has created an online orientation for ALL our incoming international students.
- Shortly after you have completed your “intent to enroll” form you will receive an email with instructions of how to access our online orientation.
- You need to activate your UA email address before you can access this online orientation.
- The orientation has five levels, and focuses on the logistical information you need to move to the USA. There are checklists throughout.
- The first two levels are MANDATORY, and we will check that you have completed them before you arrive.
- We highly recommend you check out the other levels too.
- You can access the levels in any order and as many times as you wish – including after you arrive.
How the Online Orientation Works
- Level 1 – You will meet the International Center team and get to know our campus.
- Level 2 – We provide more information on the visa application process, including tips on how to prepare for your interview. We also cover what you can expect when you enter the USA, how to register for classes, how to find somewhere to live, what to bring with you – and what you should purchase once you arrive.
- Level 3 – You will learn about the academic support that is available, about safety and security on our campus, also about the services available to help you take care of yourself and stay healthy.
- Level 4 – We explain some of the activities you can explore after classes have begun. This section includes information about finding a job, some important laws that may be different from those at home, and some tips for enjoying your time in Akron. There is plenty to do here!
- Level 5 – This is a BONUS level where we provide tips for classroom success and also how to adapt to a new culture. Plus you’ll meet Zippy, the UA mascot!
How to access online orientation
- Go to https://brightspace.uakron.edu
- The website will redirect you to the UA login page.
- Log in using your My Akron account, using your UANet ID and password. (You must have activated your UA email account AND be enrolled in the course: Zips International Orientation Course).
- This will then log you into the Brightspace homepage.
- Click on name of the course Zips International Orientation Course to log in.
If you have any problems or trouble accessing the online orientation, contact the International Center as soon as possible.
Mandatory On-Campus Orientation
See the full on-campus orientation details and schedule below, you may also print the details and schedule here.
For other information about coming to campus for the Fall semester, see the Return to Campus webpage for more information.
This orientation is mandatory for:
- All new and transfer F-1 international students and global nomads.
- Students at all degree levels who will be taking UA classes (in person,hybrid, or online) in the USA this semester.
Orientation is optional for:
- Students with other visa types.
- Students taking classes from outside the USA, we will contact at a later date.
This orientation is designed to complement the online orientation that is available to students through Brightspace.
We strongly suggest you review the online orientation especially to learn about academic integrity and classroom expectations, as well as laws that may be different in the USA compared to what you are used to at home.
How this orientation will work
- This orientation is designed as a synchronous live series.
- Spread over four days with one meeting per day (for 60-90 mins).
- Students can complete while they are in quarantine or during your first few days in Akron.
Note: Quarantine is only required for new students coming from international locations, or students who are currently in the USA who are joining us from COVID-19 hotspot locations).
- Students will be assigned to join the orientation in two groups: Group A and Group B.
- Each group will be expected to attend onfour specific days, based on their arrival in Akron.
- You will receive an invitation to join the orientation through Microsoft Teams.
Note: Microsoft Teams is part of Office 365. As a member of the UA community you can access Office 365 for free, follow links below to download.
- To access Microsoft Teams
- You can download the Teams app from Microsoft
- Quick start guide for students: how to use Teams
- You will not register you for classes during this orientation.
- Undergraduates contact your academic advisor prior to arrival to schedule your classes.
- Graduate Students contact your department for more information.
*Details and speakers are subject to change
*All times are EST- Akron local
Group A: August 11 at 11 a.m.
Group B: August 18 at 11 a.m.
- Welcome and getting to know each other.
- We will also attempt to take a group photo on TeamsJ
- Guests: We hope to be joined by all or some of our wonderful community partners
- Stephen Morris from Akron Internationals(TBD)
- Michelle Wilson from Global Ties, Akron (TBD)
Group A: August 12 at 11 a.m.
Group B: August 19 at 11 a.m.
- Meet the International Center team
- Immigration rules and regulations – everything you need to know.
- This is required for all students on F-1 visas, including transfer students. As the immigration rules have been changing frequently this year it is vital that all students on F-1 visas attend this session.
- Global nomads and students on other visas are required to join us to meet the International Center team. You do not need to stay to hear the immigration rules, unless you want to.
- Guests: International Center team
Group A: August 13 at 11 a.m.
Group B: August 20 at 11 a.m.
- Taking care of yourself
- Health insurance: what it is, why you have it, and how to use it.
- Health Services at The University of Akron, including Counseling Services
- University police
- ZipAssist/Help-A-Zip andthe Dean of Students Office
- Guests: We hope to be joined by all or some of the following:
- Alma Olson from Health Services
- Natacha Keramidas from Counseling
- Detective Jason Hill from UAPD
- Alison Doehring from ZipAssist and/or Mike Strong, the Dean of Students
Group A: August 14 at 11 a.m.
Group B: August 21 at 11 a.m.
- Managing your money
- Paying bills
- On campus employment/using Career Services
- Opening a bank account and/or financial literacy
- Guests: We hope to be joined by all or some of the following:
- Michael Kulick from Career Services/Student Employment
- A representative from PNC Bank (TBD)
Title IX training, this information will be sent separately
- This workshop is mandatory for all students, regardless of visa type.
- It can be completed at your leisure, but the expectation is that you will complete it while you are in quarantine and/or before classes start.
- What is Title IX? Title IX prohibits sex discrimination in education.
Registering For Your Classes
For Fall 2020 details: See our UA "Return to Campus" webpage
You can find details about registering for classes in the Online Orientation – Level 2.
English Language Institute Students:
- You will take English Language placement tests when you arrive in Akron.
- Contact Sherri Niesz with the English Language Institute for more information.
- You may need to take placement tests before you are able to register for classes.
- Contact your Academic Advisor soon (before you come to Akron) so you can take these tests and register for classes, and to avoid unnecessary late fees.
- Be sure your Advisor knows you are an international student.
- You will be able to discuss your academic plans with your Advisor by long distance before you arrive in Akron.
- If you do not contact your advisor before you arrive, we may sign you up for classes for your first semester without your input.
- Akron Experience classes are designed to help students transition from high school to college, and to become aware of various support resources. There are several Akron Experience classes offered each fall, including one designed just for international students and taught by the International Center team. Several colleges have Akron Experience classes as well.
- We highly recommend that all new international students take one of these classes.
- You can choose one that is right for you.
- Note: Currently Akron Experience classes are only offered in the fall semester, although if there is demand we may add a section in the spring.
- You will find much more information in the online orientation, including how to determine your Academic Advisor.
- Contact your academic department for instructions on how to register for classes.
- Some departments require you to be on campus to register.
- You will need to register and pay for your classes before the first day of the semester. Plan ahead to avoid unnecessary late fees.
As you may be aware the United States and other countries are experiencing a resurgence in vaccine-preventable measles infections. View the immunization update for information you need to know.
Tuberculosis Screening & Testing
All newly enrolled international students and global nomads* are required to be screened for Tuberculosis (TB). Tuberculosis (TB) is a serious illness that most commonly affects the lungs, but can involve any major organ system. The cause is a bacterium, Mycobacterium tuberculosis.
* ALL students who are studying at The University of Akron and are on a non-immigrant visa are required by University policy to be screened. This includes, but is not limited to: F-1, F-2, J-1, H-1B, H-4. Global nomads (who have US citizenship and have spent significant time living overseas) are also required to complete the screening.
What you need to do?
- Read the section in the online orientation about tuberculosis (TB) screening. It’s in Level 2 (the mandatory portion of the online orientation).
- This section will explain the screening process, and gives you more information about WHY we do this.
- All newly enrolled international students need to complete this questionnaire. We will contact you as necessary when we have received the form.
What will it cost?
- The cost of any treatment will vary.
- The skin testing (if required) will be free
- However, if you do not return to have the results of your skin test read in a timely manner and you need to retake the test, there will be a $20 charge to cover the cost of the test.
- If you are required to have a blood test there will be no cost at the time of testing. The cost of the laboratory work will be submitted to your health insurance for consideration. (See the online orientation and our website for more information about health insurance).
- If your blood testing is positive, you will be required to have a chest X-Ray completed to determine if the TB is latent or active.
- The cost of a chest X-Ray will also be submitted to your health insurance at the time of service.
- You will be responsible for any costs not covered by your insurance. The cost of any additional required treatment will vary.
- TB screening is NOT an implication that you have the disease, but is a tool used by healthcare professionals to promote and protect public health.
- Individuals who have received the BCG vaccine may show a false positive.
- While personal medical information will remain confidential, individuals who do not complete testing as required will be identified by Student Health Services and will be reported to the International Center.
- Issues of non-compliance will result in a hold being placed on your ability to schedule classes the following semester.