Orientation is mandatory for all new F-1 and J-1 international students. It is carefully designed to give you the best start possible for your GVSU journey. There is a charge of $150.00 for the mandatory orientation. Even if circumstances outside of your control require you to miss the orientation, you will be charged as the many preparations needed for your arrival have already been made. The fee will be charged to your GVSU student account by mid-January. Students who miss one or more session of Orientation will need to attend Make-up Orientation. Details will be sent during the first week of classes. 

On this page:

Countdown to Orientation!


Schedules will be printed and available at check-in. International Student Orientation is a priority for first semester iStudents. Other important orientations (graduate, transitions) are included in the schedule so nothing will be missed! Orientations offered by OMA for Affinity Group Orientations can also be great ways to meet more people but should be added around the iStudent Orientation Schedules as a supplement. 

REQUIRED: All new International Students are sent an invitation via email to attend International Student Orientation. Please check your personal email account and respond "Yes" that you will attend. You will need your GVSU student email account to RSVP. We REQUIRE all students log into LakerLink before arrival and download the app as this is used for all of our sessions. 

Immigration Registration

Immigration registration will be conducted during orientation. This will include registering your passport, visa, I-94, I-20 or DS-2019 as well as verifying your SEVIS record.

All new International Students must complete the five required online forms. Please make sure to do this before the first week of classes. This information is needed to maintain your immigration status and to adhere to GVSU's policies.

For each International Student Orientation, we give special attention to hiring the most exceptional GVSU students to work on the Orientation Team. Our outstanding leaders will guide, support, and welcome you to Grand Valley. They can't wait to meet you in-person!

PEEPS is a volunteer program that allows returning students (domestic and international) to take part in the social activities of international student orientation. As a new student, you will appreciate their warm welcome, insight, advice, and company! You'll meet many of the PEEPS at the scheduled social events throughout orientation.

New international students should not sign-up to be a PEEPS volunteer until they've completed one semester at GVSU. 

Social Security Number (SSN)

Many new students are keen to get their SSN numbers as soon as they arrive for various reasons (receive paychecks, apply for off-campus housing, set-up bank accounts, etc). To apply via the SSN application process you MUST ATTEND INTERNATIONAL STUDENT ORIENTATION, submit the five forms online, complete the SSN application, have a job offer letter, and a packet from our office.

In order to get the SSN packet from our office, you must:

  1. Attend International Student Orientation
  2. Submit the 5 required forms


Page last modified January 11, 2023