Post-Arrival Guide

There is much to do once you arrive in the US and before you are ready to begin classes. Understand all the procedures involved and your responsibilities – arrival on campus, completing the legally required check-in process with global services, attending the mandatory international student orientation program etc.

Create your iSTART@RU Account, login and complete your data (COMING SOON)
(COMING SOON- please check back in mid-August) Create your iSTART@RU account and complete your data information. After an account has been created and you have arrived to the U.S., you will need to complete an online check-in process on iSTART before the start of classes. This is a legal requirement of your F-1 or J-1 status. This process can be started before arrival and then completed once you arrive in the US.

Check-In with the Center for Global Services through iSTART@RU (COMING SOON)
Scan or take a photo of your passport biographical page, visa page, and your I-20/DS-20 and upload the files to iSTART.

Attend International Student Orientation
The International Student Orientation is a mandatory program for all new international students. The mandatory orientation is designed to help incoming students adjust to life in the United States and at Rutgers. At Orientation, students will get familiar with their new surroundings and understand the various opportunities and resources available. New students will also meet other new and returning students, learn from their experiences, and make new friends.

Check out our Orientation page here

Attend a Staying in Legal Status Workshop
If you plan to work on-campus, you must attend an in-person Staying in Legal Status workshop to learn about the rights and regulations on being in the U.S. and working on-campus. You will receive on-campus employment paperwork and will learn how to apply for a Social Security Number with your job offer.

Update Personal Information (Emergency contact, Address, Phone Number and Email)
on the MyRutgers portal

Your address, email, phone number, etc. must be correct on your MyRutgers portal. Be sure to log on to MyRutgers ( upon arrival and enter your contact information.

Be sure to update the information on MyRutgers whenever your contact information change.

Register for enough courses to study full-time
U.S., federal regulations require F-1 and J-1 students to pursue a "full course of study" at all times other than designated school vacation periods. For most students at Rutgers-New Brunswick/Piscataway, this means being registered for a full-time credit load, i.e., a minimum of 12 credits if an undergraduate student, or a minimum of 9 credits for a graduate student.

Get RUconnection ID Card
The RUconnection Card is the official photo identification card issued students on all Rutgers University campuses. This unified photo ID card serves as the primary form of identity verification throughout the university. ID card office locations can be found here

Student Health Insurance
Rutgers University requires all F and J nonimmigrants who hold a Rutgers I-20 or DS-2019 to have health insurance that meets or exceeds the University's minimum required level of coverage. Please note that the requirement includes not only F-1 and J-1 visa holders on Rutgers' visa sponsorship, but also F-2 and J-2 visa dependents on Rutgers' visa sponsorship, as well. Your health insurance fee will be automatically added to your term bill as “Rutgers Student Health Insurance Plan”.