Before You Come
It is important that you have all of your travel arrangements finalized before leaving. Make sure you know your flight itinerary, and have transportation arranged to and from the airport. Be sure to carry all important phone numbers and contact information for your contacts in Nashville (and in other U.S. cities). Keep this information separate from your travel documents (I-20 or DS-2019, etc.) and passport. Your passport and travel documents need to be readily accessible for immigration officials.
It is often helpful to arrive in the U.S. earlier than your official start date. Then you will have time to find and set up housing and become acquainted with the Nashville area. Any maps or directions you might need are easily accessible on the web at http://maps.google.com/.
Please educate yourself on the frequently updated flight regulations set by the Travel Security Administration (TSA) in the United States or any equivalent in your home country. Liquids, for example, cannot be carried on in quantities larger than 3.4 ounces. To learn about other such stipulations, visit http://www.tsa.gov/traveler-information, or the website of the administration in your own country.
A few items to bring with you
- your original travel documents (passport, I-20/DS-2019, etc.) and multiple copies (clear, easily read copies) to be kept separately in case of emergency
- your driver’s license or international driver’s license
- a copy of your driving record if you plan on purchasing an automobile in the U.S.
- a supply of all prescription medications with a description of each written by your doctor. (Special restrictions may exist for traveling with medication. See http://www.tsa.gov/traveler-information/travelers-disabilities-and-medical-conditions)
- immunization/vaccination records for student health center
- if you have dependents who will be attending school in the U.S., be sure to bring birth certificates or proof of age and all medical, dental, and academic records for them
- an extra pair of glasses or contact lenses
- on-campus – jeans, shorts, T-shirts/shirts are pretty standard
- formal wear – suits & dresses are important to have for formal events/receptions and for interviews
- winter wear – sweaters and light jackets; you can purchase a winter coat after arriving
- footwear – sneakers, sandals and at least one pair of formal shoes (which can be purchased after arriving)
- photographs and maps of your home country (and other sentimental objects from home)
- an updated address book (including information for friends & family from home & in the U.S.)
- an mp3 device (iPod) or CD’s of your favorite music from your home-country
- a small first aid or emergency kit including items like thread, band aids, antibacterial ointments, non-prescription medicines
- spending money since you may not be paid for positions until weeks after your arrival
PLEASE NOTE – Most household items can be purchased in the U.S. for reasonable prices; therefore it is best to leave these items in your home country (i.e. kitchen items, bed linens, towels, etc.)