Section: ISSS

Pre-Arrival Checklist

Student Reading

Checklist for Newly Admitted International Students

After being admitted as an F-1 or J-1 international student to UW-Platteville, please complete the following tasks:

  1. Log In to your Online ISSS Account
  2. Obtain a Passport, Visa, and I-20
  3. Reserve On Campus Housing
  4. Prepare for Placement Tests (F-1 Degree-Seeking Students Only)
  5. Book Your Flight/Plan Arrival to Platteville
  6. Sign Up to Ride the UW-Platteville Bus from Chicago
  7. Purchase Linen Package
  8. Complete Forms/Learning Content/Action Items in Your Online ISSS Account
  9. Apply for the CASA Program
  10. Apply for the Global Amigos Program
  11. Pack Your Suitcase
  12. Prepare for Your Flight
  13. Attend International Student Orientation
  14. Understand Your Health Insurance


Log In to your Online ISSS Account

  • Both F-1 and J-1 students must complete the required forms, action items, and learning content on their ISSS accounts regarding International Student Orientation, arrival to Platteville/bus sign-up, housing, placement tests, health insurance , and much more.

F-1 Students Only:

F-1 students must request issuance and mailing of their I-20 by filling out the appropriate forms on their online ISSS account. Please do the following as soon as possible on your ISSS account:

  • Log in to your ISSS online account
  • Submit I-20 Request Form
  • Submit a mailing request to have your I-20 mailed to you
  • Print and sign the Signature Verification Form and upload it under “Required Forms” OR scan/email it to
  • View information about Arrival to UW-Platteville and International Student Orientation

After you have submitted your I-20 request forms and after your I-20 has been processed by ISSS, you will receive an email from ISSS notifying you that you have new forms and action items to view in your online ISSS account. Within 3 days of completing your I-20 Request Form(s), you will be able to do the following on your ISSS account:

  • Sign up to ride the UW-Platteville bus from Chicago to Platteville (optional)
  • View instructions for finding housing at UW-Platteville
  • Request to purchase a linen package
  • Upload your flight itinerary
  • View information about health insurance
  • Complete all action items and read all learning content
  • If you choose not to attend UW-Platteville or if you must defer your enrollment, please email and return your Form I-20 to the university.

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  • PASSPORT. Before leaving your country, confirm that your passport and nonimmigrant visa are still valid for entry into the United States.  The passport should be valid for at least six months beyond the date of your expected stay.   Example: If you return home on January 1, 2013, your passport needs to be valid to at least July 1, 2013.
  • VISA. A valid visa is required to enter the United States as a student (issued by the United States consulate or embassy in your country). Check to see that your visa accurately reflects your correct visa classification. If the visa states the name of the institution you will attend or identifies the exchange program in which you are participating, verify that this information is accurate as well.  If your review indicates any discrepancies or potential problems, visit the U.S. Embassy or Consulate to obtain a new visa. It is important that you keep your SEVIS fee payment receipt with your other immigration documents, in case you are ever asked to show proof of SEVIS fee payment. Please click here for instructions on applying for a student visa.
  • I-20 or DS-2019. An I-20 or DS-2019 issued by UW-Platteville is required to enter the U.S. Verify that all the information (including your major, spelling of your name, financial information, degree level, program start date, etc.) on the document is correct. The name on your I-20 or DS-2019 should match the name exactly as they appear on your passport. If there is an error on your I-20 or DS-2019, please contact the ISSS Office at UW-Platteville.

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Reserve On-Campus housing

  • Please reserve your residence hall room online if you will be living in on-campus housing. If you wish to live off campus, you must meet the eligibility requirements to be exempt from the on-campus living requirement.
  • J-1 Students: A $150 housing deposit will be charged to your student account if you will be living on campus.
  • F-1 Students: You will be required to pay the $150 deposit directly on the online Residence Hall Room Reservation e-application form.

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  • All new freshmen students entering UW-Platteville must take the UW-System Mathematics and English Placement Test before registering for classes. You should prepare for the placement tests before taking them during orientation week. Transfer international student may be exempt from Placement Tests ONLY if they have already completed transferable college-level courses in mathematics and English, and if their official transcript has already been received by the UW-Platteville Admission Office. Transfer students wishing to confirm whether or not they need to take the placement test should email the Office of Admission at
  • Practice Math Placement Test:
  • Practice English Test:

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Book Your FLIGHT/Plan Your Arrival to Platteville

  • Before booking your flight, make sure that you arrive in Platteville, Wisconsin, at least one day before International Student Orientation starts. Click here for the dates of International Student Orientation.
  • Students and exchange visitors entering the United States for the first time under their respective nonimmigrant visa classification may only be admitted to the U.S. up to 30-days prior to the program start date on their I-20 or DS-2019.
  • Book a flight to Chicago O'Hare Airport (ORD) in Illinois if you would like to be picked up by the UW-Platteville bus on the day before International Student Orientation. Note: This is a one-time-only bus offered specifically for UW-Platteville international students; there is not a daily bus that goes directly from Chicago to Platteville. Please click here for information on the date/time you should arrive to meet the UW-Platteville staff to take the UW-PLatteville International Programs bus from Chicago to Platteville on the day before International Student Orientation. It takes 3 hours to get from Chicago O'Hare airport to Platteville.
  • Please upload your flight itinerary to your online ISSS account.
  • Please let the ISSS Office know as soon as possible if you are delayed on the day of your flight. If you miss the International Programs bus to Platteville on the day before orientation, you will be responsible for arranging alternative transportation to UW-Platteville. See "Travel Tips" below for information about how to get to Platteville from Chicago using public transportation (by bus).
  • If you will not be taking the UW-Platteville chartered bus from Chicago O'Hare to Platteville, you may choose to fly into Madison, Wisconsin (approximately 90 minutes from Platteville) or into Dubuque, Iowa (30 minutes from Platteville). However, it is not easy to get from Madison or Dubuque to Platteville unless you have your own car or a friend who can pick you up and drive you to PLatteville. If you fly in to Dubuque or Madison, you would need to take a combination of a taxi and a bus to get to Platteville from the Madison airport to Platteville, and you would need to take a taxi from the Dubuque airport to Platteville. There is only one bus that goes from Dubuque to Platteville each day, and the Dubuque bus station is not close to the Dubuque airport. Due to the lack of good public transportation to Platteville, it is recommended that you take the UW-Platteville chartered bus from Chicago O'Hare airport on the day before orientation.

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Sign up to ride the UW-Platteville Bus from Chicago to Platteville

  • If you wish to be picked up by the UW-Platteville bus from Chicago to Platteville on the day before International Student Orientation, you must complete the appropriate form on your online ISSS account.
  • If you will NOT be riding the UW-Platteville bus from Chicago to Platteville on the day before orientation at the specified time, you must make personal arrangements to arrive in Platteville one day before orientation begins and (if you will be living on campus) email to arrange residence hall move-in.

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Purchase a Linen Package (Optional)

  • Your residence hall does not provide bedding (blankets, sheets, pillows) or towels. You may purchase a linen package (bedding and towels) through the ISSS office for a $40 fee which will be charged to your student account. The linen package includes sheets, blanket, a bath/hand towel, and a wash cloth. NOTE: The linen package does NOT include a pillow or pillow case.
  • To request a linen package, please complete the Housing/Linen Form on your online ISSS account.
  • If you purchase a linen package, you will be able to pick it up on the day before orientation when you check in to your residence hall.
  • The linen fee ($40) will be charged to your account automatically if you are a J-1 exchange student and if you are an F-1 student who indicates on the arrival/orientation form that you would like to purchase the linen package. A linen package includes sheets, bath towels, washcloths, and a blanket.

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Complete forms/Learning Content/Action Items in your Online ISSS Account

  • Complete all forms, learning content, and action items in your online ISSS account.

Apply for the CASA Program (Optional)

  • Click here for more information or to apply for the CASA Program!

Apply for the Global Amigos Program (Optional)

  • Click here for more information or to apply for the Global Amigos Program!

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Pack Your Suitcase


  • Passport
  • Visa
  • DS 2019 or I-20
  • SEVIS fee payment receipt
  • Other forms of identification (driver's license or ID card)
  • Cash or credit/debit card
  • Folder for all important documents
  • Cell phone/calling card
  • List of contact persons and phone numbers from both home country and United States
  • Your own insurance if you plan to come to the United States before orientation starts. UW-Platteville insurance coverage (required) will start on the program start date listed on your I-20 or DS-2019.
  • Medication, medical forms (if applicable)
  • Summer, fall, and winter clothing. Wisconsin winters can be very cold.
  • Voltage converter if you plan to use electronic devices from your own country
  • Translation Guide (electronic or paper dictionary)
  • Your bank account information (home country). Make sure you have access to your bank account online OR bring documentation. It is possible for international students to open a U.S. bank account in Platteville.
  • Bring cultural items/clothing from your country to use in cultural events or as gifts for new friends.

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Prepare For Your Flight

  • When you travel, you should carry your immigration documents (passport, visa, I-20, etc.) in your hand luggage.  Do not check them in your baggage!  If your baggage is lost or delayed, you will not be able to show the documents to the Customs and Border Protection Officer and, as a result, may not be able to enter the United States.
  • Keep all valuable items in your hand luggage.
  • Check with your airline about how many suitcases you can bring. Most airlines allow only 1 free suitcase per person.
  • Print out a list of hotels close to Chicago O'Hare in case your flight is delayed and you need to spend the night in Chicago.
  • Print out the bus schedules from Chicago to Madison and from Madison to Platteville.
  • Be prepared for the U.S. port of entry (POE) when you arrive at the airport in the U.S. by reading these arrival procedures.
  • Please note that U.S. Customs does not allow individuals to carry more than $10,000 cash (USD) into the United States.

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Attend International Student Orientation (Required)

  • UW-Platteville's International Student Orientation is mandatory and is designed specifically to address the needs of international students. You are required to attend this orientation session. Please click here for more information about International Student Orientation.
  • The $260 orientation fee will be charged to your student account.

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Understand Your health insurance

Be aware that the start date of your UW-Platteville-sponsored health insurance plan through Student Assurance Services (SAS) will be the August 5 for students beginning in the fall semester and January 5 for students beginning in the spring semester. If you will be arriving in the U.S. before the day that your health insurance is activated through SAS, we strongly advise you to enroll in a short-term health insurance plan or make sure that your home country insurance will cover you until the start date of your SAS health insurance plan. After you begin your program at UW-Platteville, you and your dependents will automatically be enrolled in the SAS health insurance plan each semester, and you and your dependents will be covered over the summer months, as long as you are a student at UW-Platteville who is not on a scholarship from the governments of Kuwait or Saudi Arabia.The insurance fee will be added to the student bill at the beginning of each semester. For more information about the health insurance plan for international students and scholars at UW-Platteville, click here.

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