International students should plan to arrive in Grand Rapids on August 14, 15 or 16. Students who arrive to Grand Rapids on the designated arrival dates will be collected by taxi service. Students who arrive before or after these dates will not be collected and should organize their own transportation. If you will arrive early, you may want to book a hotel near the airport from where we can collect you on August 14th.
All students should fly to the Gerald R. Ford Grand Rapids International Airport (GRR). We strongly suggest that you DO NOT attempt to take a train or bus from the Chicago or Detroit airports to Grand Rapids. Please book connecting flights that bring you all the way to the Grand Rapids International Airport.
Please submit your flight information a minimum of four days before your flight.
You will receive an emergency contact number that you can call if there are any issues throughout your travel time.
Orientation is mandatory and designed to give you the best start possible for your GVSU journey. For your convenience and accessibility, plan on attending the orientation sessions virtually. More details on online orientation sessions will be sent to you via email and posted in the GVSU International Students organization on Blackboard.
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-September.
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 three 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 meet GVSU's policies.
For each International Student Orientation, we five special attention to hiring the most exceptional GVSU students to work on the Orientation Team. This year we have 5 outstanding leaders who will guide, support, and welcome you to Grand Valley. We can't wait for you to meet them!
PEEPS is a volunteer program that allows domestic and returning international students to take part in 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 schedule social activities throughout orientation. The PEEPS are organized by our PEEPS leader, who will become a very familiar face to you all!
If your flight arrives a day or so early, or later than midnight on the day of pick-up, there are a number of hotels near the Grand Rapids International Airport that you may find useful.