Welcome to Saint Louis University
The Office of International Services hosts the International Student Orientation Program for new international students at the beginning of the fall and spring semesters.
We provide airport pick-up service for limited days before the Orientation begins. Please click here to learn more about airport pickup.
Orientation is mandatory for all new international ESL, undergraduate and graduate students.
During Orientation, you will:
- Learn about important regulations and requirements for maintaining your visa
- Meet with your Academic Advisor and register for classes
- Take required tests (TOEFL, SLUWE, and COMPASS)
- Explore campus and the resources available to you
- Connect with other students and the SLU community
- Find support for your transition to life in a new country
Get started now!
Before you arrive, we encourage you to read through the International Student Handbook. It provides information about transitioning to campus, academic life, and the city of St. Louis.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the procedure for getting a visa?
How do I get to campus?
Do I need to check-in with International Services?
Why is orientation important?
Do students that are currently in the U.S. need to attend orientation?
What do I need to know about my immigration status in the U.S.?
When will I register for courses?
What is there to do in St. Louis and how do I get around St. Louis?
What is the SLU Writing Examination?
Do I need to take the TOEFL when I arrive on campus?
What is the COMPASS test?
When should I pay my bill?
How do I set up a bank account?
- What is the procedure for getting a visa? Please check the information provided at Applying for Your Visa.
- How do I get to campus? Please check the information provided at Arriving in the USA.
- Do I need to check-in with International Services? Yes. We will complete the required check-in at Orientation. Please bring your I-20/DS-2019, passport, and I-94 card (white card that you receive at the border) with you to the Orientation. You should also know your local address in St. Louis and emergency contact's address and phone number.
- Why is Orientation important? We encourage that all new international students join orientation to meet other new and current students, learn about the resources at SLU to help you, and to learn more about our procedures for making sure that you maintain your status.
- Do students that have been in the U.S. need to attend orientation? Yes. Although the immigration rules may not change from school to school, policies and procedures for following the rules may differ. We will guide you through our processes for maintaining your status. Also, we will give you more information about being a student at Saint Louis University. Finally, our staff enjoys meeting all the new international students!
- What do I need to know about my immigration status in the U.S.? We will cover information about your I-20/DS-2019, visa, and the basic rules about staying "in status" or legal while you study at SLU. If you want to learn more, please explore the link titled, Visa and Immigration.
- When will I register for courses? An academic or faculty advisor can help you plan your course schedule.
- Fully admitted freshmen (first year of undergraduate studies) and transfer students from abroad will have a scheduled time to meet with their advisor during Orientation and register for classes at that time.
- Transfer students from another U.S. institution that will be on campus earlier than Orientation can contact their advisor directly for more information about registration or wait until orientation week to register for classes.
- Exchange students may be advised before they arrive and during Orientation week depending on their sponsoring program. Contact the administrator of your exchange to find out more about advising.
- English as a Second Language students will receive testing to assess your placement. As a result, you will be registered after your arrival to campus.
- Graduate students should contact their academic department directly if you have questions about enrolling.
- What is there to do in St. Louis and how do I get around St. Louis? During orientation, you will have the opportunity to hear from other international students about their favorite things to do in St. Louis. Before you arrive, you can review our guide to St. Louis, Missouri. You can also learn more about the transportation options here.
- What is the SLU Writing Examination? All new international students, including some graduate students are required to complete a writing examination (exchange students, students transferring from SLU Madrid, and students that had college level English at a U.S. college do not need to take the test). Students should receive an e-mail with more information about the exam. Please refer to the information found at SLU Writing Exam.
- Do I need to take the TOEFL when I arrive on campus? Students that were conditionally admitted to SLU based on successful completion of the ESL program will need to take a paper based TOEFL before being advised. Saint Louis University reserves the right to require testing of any incoming student's English skills. More information about the test will be sent by e-mail to new international students.
- What is the COMPASS test? Students that will be enrolling in undergraduate degree classes will take the COMPASS mathematics placement test. The COMPASS is used to determine math course placement. You will take the adaptive multiple-choice test in a computer lab during the week of orientation. You will be tested on areas such as Pre-algebra, Algebra, College Algebra, and Trigonometry. Find out more about the COMPASS mathematics placement test by visiting the Department of Mathematics and Computer Science website.
- When should I pay my bill? If you have not registered for classes or signed up for on-campus housing, you may not have a bill until after you complete these steps. During Orientation, we will show you how to pay your bill and inform you of payment deadlines. We highly discourage students from carrying their tuition fee with them as they travel to the U.S. Refer to the information at the Student Financial Services website to learn more about gaining access to your account and methods to pay your bill. We suggest that you only pay the amount due on your bill because any additional payment over the amount due will be refunded to the address that you listed as your permanent address when you applied.
- How do I set up a bank account? You can set up your bank account when you arrive for Orientation. U.S. Bank is the bank that is located on campus. You will need a local address and your passport to open an account. There are many banks located off-campus. If you decide to select a bank off-campus, please remember that you may need transportation to establish an account and use some the services of the bank.
Airport Pick-Up Service
New international students can be picked up at the St. Louis airport for the Fall 2014 semester on:
August 15, 16, 17
Refer to the information provided at Arriving in the USA to request a pick up from the airport. International Student Orientation activities begin on Monday, August 18th, 2014. Below you will find a brief schedule of Spring 2014 Orientation activities.
|Monday, August 18||Tuesday, August 19||Wednesday, August 20|
|Welcome to SLU||Immigration Check-in||Academic Advising|
|Campus Tour||Sessions: Health Services, Meal Plans, Student Success Center, Technology, Student Financial Services||ESL/EAP Debrief|
|Resource/Student Group Fair||Testing||Fall Welcome Activities Begin|
|Shopping Shuttle||Evening Activity|