International Center Pre-Departure Preparations
Help from your Program Sponsor
Once you are admitted, the program will send you pre-departure materials designed to assist you with various aspects of getting ready for your specific program. Included will be “how to” information about a wide range of important subjects, as well as forms which you must complete in a timely fashion so that you don’t miss out on flights, housing (preferences for family or roommates), meal plans, etc. Many of these materials may also be included on their web site. We will assist you with many general pre-departure concerns. But, you must work with the program sponsor directly for the details of your program. We are always available to help explain, interpret, guide, etc., but mostly you must follow their instructions and meet their deadlines. All of this is done for very good reasons. Do not take it lightly!
Many programs have arrangements for “group flights.” The advantage of this arrangement is usually lower cost along with the convenience of arriving with others in your group and the assistance of the program immediately upon arrival. You may however, want to consider finding your own flight and comparing costs with the group flight cost. At any rate, you should begin securing your flight arrangements ASAP. Our web site has a lot of helpful information here http://www.wabash.edu/international/travel including links to several flight searches.
Experiment, try different dates for arrival and return. Usually, you may change the return date for a reasonable cost later.
Obtaining a visa for study in another country can be time-consuming. Please watch for instructions from your program sponsor including a letter or letters from the sponsor which you must have in order to apply for a student visa. This is a time when it is critical for you to be in close contact with the organization's coordinator for your specific program. They will help.
You must check with your family health insurance provider. Ask if you are covered while in your destination country and when traveling elsewhere. Make sure that you have a card or document that you can present when seeking care. Many programs have or even require their own insurance arrangements for students on their program. You may never need it, but if you do, this will become extremely important to you! You should also obtain from your program or the Wabash bookstore an ISIC (International Student Identity Card). It provides repatriation insurance and discounts, especially in Europe.