Check-in and orientation

Check-in process for J-1 scholars

Upon arrival in Columbia, you must check in with International Student and Scholar Services in N52 Memorial Union. You will be asked to complete a check-in form and present your passport, DS-2019 and proof of insurance. This must be done within 20 days of the start date on your DS-2019 or you will be considered illegally present in the United States.

J-1 scholar orientation

As part of your J-1 status requirements, you must attend an orientation session with International Student and Scholar Services. These sessions are held at 1:30 p.m. every Thursday in N52 Memorial Union. You will sign up for a session when you check in.

Orientation will provide you and any accompanying family members (spouse or children) information to assist you in settling into the local community. Orientation will cover topics like:

  • Important documents
  • Maintaining your immigration status
  • Health care and emergency assistance
  • Insurance plans that meet the requirements for J-1 visitors, including medical evacuation and repatriation
  • Culture and life in the United States
  • Local community resources (public transportation, medical centers, schools, libraries, recreation centers, banks, etc.)