International Students - Colgate Class of 2018 Skip Navigation

Welcome, International Class of 2018!

Students seated at a table enjoying lunch at International Student Orientation.
Congratulations on your admission to Colgate University! The Office of International Student Services is eager to welcome you to Hamilton, New York and assist in your transition to university life in the United States.

Refer to the information below to get started with the visa application process and to make your plans to arrive to campus.  
Application for initial I-20
Please complete the Application for Initial I-20 form and submit it to the Office of International Student Services (OISS) no later than May 31 along with a copy of your passport and any required financial documentation.

Upon receipt, OISS will issue your I-20 (Certificate of Eligibility), which you will use to apply for your F-1 student visa, and will send it to you via Fed-Ex/DHL along with step-by-step instructions on how to apply for your visa*. (*Note to Canadian citizens: Canadian citizens do not need to apply for an F-1 visa at a U.S. Embassy since you can simply acquire F-1 status at a U.S. port of entry when you present your I-20.)

If you already have a SEVIS record from attending high school in the United States, please let us know as it may be possible to have your SEVIS record transferred to Colgate.

OISS arrival survey
Once you have made your travel plans, please take the OISS Arrival Survey no later than August 1.

On the survey, you will need to indicate your travel plans, request transportation to campus (if applicable), and indicate your meal preferences for International Student Orientation, among other things.
Information for New International Students Booklet
Download the Information for New International Students Booklet to read more information about arrival, International Student Orientation, what to pack, cell phones, cultural adjustment, bank accounts, and other topics of importance to you as you plan your arrival to campus.  This booklet was also sent to you with your I-20.

International student arrival and move-in day: Tuesday, August 19
Mark your calendars for the International Student Arrival and Move-In Day on Tuesday, August 19.

Please schedule your flight to arrive at Syracuse Hancock International Airport (SYR) between the hours of 7:00 a.m. – 10:00 p.m. on Tuesday, August 19, 2013.

Arrangements will be made for you to be picked up at the Syracuse Airport if you arrive during the designated arrival time. For those driving to campus, please plan to arrive before 4:00 p.m. on Tuesday, August 19.
International student orientation
International Student Orientation (ISO): August 19-23

International Student Orientation (ISO) is strongly recommended for all international students, including student-athletes and students from Canada. It starts with the airport pickup and move-in on August 19, and will continue until you join the rest of the Class of 2018 for Orientation on Saturday, August 23. 

ISO is an exciting experience designed to prepare you for life at Colgate as an international student. Here's a list of a few of the many activities planned for you:
  • Shopping trip to purchase items for your room 
  • Open a bank account
  • Purchase a cell phone
  • Learn about maintaining your student visa status
  • Meet faculty and staff from across campus
  • Build friendships with other international students (including current Colgate students!)
  • Fun social activities designed to give you the opportunity to connect with your peers. 
  • And many more! 
Parents, relatives, and guests are welcome and invited to attend ISO, but will need to arrange for housing at area hotels. Colgate has collected a list of nearby hotels and inns for your convenience.

How do I apply for an F-1 (student) visa?*
OISS has prepared step-by-step instructions for you on on how to apply for an F-1 visa at a U.S. Embassy. 

*Canadian citizens should refer to this guide on how to acquire F-1 visa status at a U.S. Port of Entry.

If you have any specific questions, feel free to contact us at

What can I expect when entering the United States?
Many students are nervous about passing through immigration when they enter the U.S.  Refer to this guide so you know what to expect.

International Class of 2018 Facebook group
Join the "International Students of Colgate Class of 2018" Facebook Group to connect with fellow international students.