We know you have a lot to plan and do before arriving to campus this summer or fall. This checklist should help you keep track of the major steps in the process.
After all that waiting, an offer of admission has finally appeared in MyPennState - congratulations! Make sure you review that offer of admission closely. The letter outlines your intended area of study, your starting term, as well as your starting campus. This letter is important to review because students may be accepted to Penn State but for a term or campus other than their first choice, like the summer semester at University Park instead of the fall semester or their alternate choice campus instead of their first choice campus.
You can access the FAFSA online at fafsa.gov after January 1. The priority filing deadline for Penn State is March 1, but students can still send in their FAFSA after this date. Students begin to receive their aid award notifications in late March. You can find more information at the Office of Student Aid website. Please note: International students do not need to provide a FAFSA and are not eligible for federal student aid.
Whether you are still thinking about Penn State or you have already accepted your offer of admission, we encourage you to either visit your campus of offer or to attend one of our off-campus receptions. See the Accepted Student Programs section to register today.
If you choose to attend Penn State – and we hope you will – login to MyPennState and select the “Click here to accept your offer of admission” button to take the next step. Please Note: We request students accept their offer by May 1 for summer/fall admission at any campus. If you do not want to attend Penn State, please decline your offer of admission in MyPennState (this is not required, but will indicate to us that you no longer have interest in Penn State).
When you accept your offer of admission, you will be asked to submit an enrollment deposit, as well as a housing deposit (if applicable). When accepting your offer of admission, you can pay this deposit online.
Once you accept your offer for a campus with on-campus housing, a housing contract will be generated for you. Just login on the eLiving website, accept your contract, and indicate your housing preferences, like location, roommates, and meal plan. Please Note: If you have a summer offer at University Park, you will have two housing contracts – one for the summer session and one for the fall and spring.
After you accept your offer of admission, you will receive information about the online assessment and the Educational Planning Survey (EPS). This information starts going out March 1, and will be sent on a continual basis to students that accept their offer of admission. International students will receive this information via email over the summer. You will take an online assessment test in mathematics, and then complete the EPS, as well. The sooner you finish these tasks, the sooner you can schedule the remaining component of New Student Orientation (NSO) – the campus visit!
Once the test and the EPS are completed, you will receive information about your campus visit. The details and duration of this campus visit vary by campus – University Park students will have a two-day orientation visit, while other campuses offer a day-long visit. You will also receive “homework” for your orientation visit, so make some time to complete those items prior to arriving on campus. International students arrive for orientation one to two weeks prior to the start of the semester.
While the details of the orientation visit will vary by campus, you will have the opportunity to meet with campus personnel, learn about student life, discuss academic choices and your educational plan, and ultimately, work with an academic adviser to schedule your classes.
Once you accept your offer of admission and pay your enrollment fees, the Office of Global Programs will begin processing your I-20. Watch your email for communication from their office and visit their website for more information on the steps to prepare for arrival. Please note: In addition to the immunizations required below, international students are required to demonstrate that they have health insurance coverage.
We require all degree-seeking students to have the Measles, Mumps, and Rubella (MMR) and Tuberculosis (TB) immunizations. If you plan to live in a residence hall, you will also need the Meningococcal Meningitis vaccination. You can visit the University Health Services website for more information about the required immunizations, and then login to myUHS to submit this information and the recommended online Health History form. Please note: Physical exams are required only for students participating in intercollegiate athletics.
Did you take AP exams, IB Exams, A-Level exams, or participate in a dual-enrollment course? Well, make sure you get any college credit coming your way! If you took any of these exams, check our handy listing of all the tests and the corresponding credit that you can receive. You can check your eLion account to make sure the credits appear.
If you took any college courses, through dual-enrollment or otherwise, be sure to send us the official college transcript with your final grade(s). We will evaluate the transcript(s) and, if we are able, we will award credits for the coursework. You can always check the Transferring Credits Tool to see if Penn State will award you credit for a class.
Semester bills typically arrive about 6 weeks prior to the start of classes (by late July for the fall semester) and can be paid online through your eLion account. International students receive their semester bill after registering for classes, typically in September for the fall semester. You will receive an email when your bill is ready; and if you have questions on your bill or payment plan options, you can contact the Office of the Bursar for more information.
The day has finally arrived! We are excited that you have chosen to become a Penn Stater; and we know that whenever or wherever you start, you can accomplish great things at Penn State. Welcome to the Penn State family!