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Fall 2018 Orientation Information

Congratulations on your admission to Vanderbilt University! International Student and Scholar Services has prepared some information that we hope will be useful for a successful time at Vanderbilt. We look forward to your arrival!

New International Student Orientation | Fall 2018

Welcome to Vanderbilt University! As you prepare for the Fall 2018 semester, please keep the following important dates in mind:


Thursday, July 19: Owen School Students in ISBP Orientation with ISSS

  • 1:30 pm-3:30 pm: Department Orientation @ Owen

Monday, August 13: Graduate/Professional Student Orientation (required)

  • 8 am-4 pm: Orientation registration, Immigration Check-in, other required sessions

Tuesday, August 14th: Graduate/Professional Student Orientation & Undergraduate Move-in (required)

  • 8 am-4:00 pm: Orientation registration, Immigration Check-In, and other required sessions
  • 8 am-midnight: Undergraduate Move-in @ The Commons
  • 6 pm-8 pm: Pizza and Game Night Social (UG only)

Wednesday, August 15th: Undergraduate Student Orientation (required)

  • 8 am-5:45 pm: Orientation registration, Immigration Check-in, other sessions
  • 6 pm-8 pm: New Student & Community Dinner

Thursday, August 16th: Joint Orientation sessions (required for UG/recommended for G/P)

  • 8:30 am-11 am: Resource and Vendor Fair @ The SLC Ballrooms
  • 11:30 am-5 pm: Health insurance, employment, student support sessions
  • 5:30 pm-8 pm: Welcome Reception for Undergraduates @ The Commons

Friday, August 17th: Additional sessions (required for UG)

  • 10 am-2 pm: UG sessions
  • 12 pm-1:45 pm: Law School Orientation @ The Law School in Hyatt
  • 2 pm-5 pm: Shopping shuttles to Walmart
  • 6 pm-8 pm: Graduate/Professional Student Mixer @ Alumni Lounge. Sign up recommended!

Please make sure your travel arrangements will allow you to participate in your respective Orientation program. 

Program Highlights

  • Scheduled time to complete the required ISSS Welcome Check-In
  • Small groups led by your iLEAD Mentor who is a current Vanderbilt student
  • Get your Commodore student ID Card
  • Campus Tours
  • Student panels
  • Interactive workshops and presentations
  • Information resource Fair
  • Free lunches, dinners and breakfast

Overview of the Orientation Program

Each fall, International Student and Scholar Services collaborates with various campus departments and offices to host New International Student Orientation in August. There are separate orientation days for graduate/professional and undergraduate students, followed by 3 days of additional programming meant to assist you with acclimation to Vanderbilt’s campus and culture and to provide opportunities to learn about the U.S. with other students.

All incoming students (with the exception of those from the Law School and Owen School of Management) will be assigned to iLEAD groups with 8-15 other new international students that are led by an iLEAD Mentor. iLEAD Mentors have been recruited and trained to assist you before arrival, during orientation week and throughout the first academic year!

Orientation Session Highlights

  • Understanding Your New Home
  • Welcome Check-In: Meet Your iLEAD Groups
  • Maintaining Your F-1/J-1 Status
  • Resource and Vendor Fair
  • Residence Life 101
  • Getting Started: Academics in the U.S. Classroom
  • and much more!

Orientation Social Events

  • Pizza and Game Night
  • New Student and Community Dinner
  • Rec Fest
  • Graduate/Professional Student Social

Campus Housing & Early Move-In

New International Student Orientation is free for all attendees. Undergraduate students will be able to move into their residence halls early at no charge on Tuesday, August 14th at The Commons from 8 am to midnight. Dining halls will be closed during Orientation; however, ISSS will provide most meals throughout the day. Meal money will also be available for usage during this time. Please bring funds to cover some meals to use at local restaurants around the area, if needed.

If you need to arrive in Nashville earlier, please refer to our Temporary Housing listing.

Parent & Family Programs

New International Student Orientation is primarily designed for your student. If you will be accompanying your student on campus in August, you are welcome to attend the parent program on Sunday, August 19th from 10:45 am-12:45 pm in Langford Auditorium. Please refer to the Vanderbilt Parent & Family Programs Office for more information.

For questions and additional information about orientation, please contact Grace Chee. More information and updates will be available in the next few weeks.