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Exchange Students Coming to W&M

As a new student joining our undergraduate student body, you will participate in both International Student Orientation as well as New Student Orientation. Important information will also be provided through your W&M email address and myW&M, which will serve as a primary means of communication between you and William & Mary.

As an exchange student, the requirements for you are slightly different than for degree-seeking students. Please read the following information carefully and email [[visitingexchange]] with any questions.

Important Steps
  • Activate W&M Username In your admissions offer, you should have received a link to activate your W&M Username account. It is very important that you activate this account as soon as you receive instructions, as you will not be able to login and register for classes without it.
  • Complete Online Course Form Follow the directions sent to you by email from the Global Education Office on how to choose your preferred courses. To ensure you are properly registered for classes, complete this form by the designated due date. 
  • Housing Application | Complete the online housing application as soon as possible. You will automatically be assigned on-campus housing typically in a shared room. 
  • AlcoholEdu To help you protect yourself, as well as your friends and fellow students, W&M requires all first time undergraduate students to complete an online program called AlcoholEdu. Follow the link to access AlcoholEdu.
  • Health Form | The Online Health Form provides the Student Health Center with a medical history and official immunization record for each student. For students entering William & Mary for the fall semester, the form must be submitted by June 1. For students entering the spring semester, the form must be submitted by January 10. The form must be completed in full and returned to the Student Health Center by the due date for your entering semester to avoid incurring a late fee.
  • Meal Plan | William & Mary requires all students who live on campus-owned and managed properties to purchase a meal plan. Options vary depending on a student’s social class and living location. To learn more about the meal plans offered at William & Mary, visit the dining website. You must select a meal plan by the first day of classes or one will be automatically chosen for you.
Immigration & Visas

Exchange students will apply for a J-1 visa.  In order to receive the necessary paperwork to apply for the J-1 visa, you will need to complete the iStart application. Accepted students will receive an email from iStart instructing you to complete the application.  Immigration paperwork should be completed as soon as possible to avoid visa issuance delays.  Please visit the W&M International Student & Scholar Programs' website to learn more about applying for a J-1 visa and the documents you will need to apply.

Course Registration

Exchange students will receive instructions regarding course registration via email.  In order to register for classes, you must activate your W&M Username. The Global Education Office will request registration permissions from professors so that exchange students can register for classes themselves. You will need your W&M Username to login and register for classes during your registration period. 

Money Matters
  • Tuition and Fees | As a visiting exchange student, you will not be billed for W&M’s standard tuition; rather, you will continue to pay your home university’s tuition. Please refer to your acceptance letter for a summary of other fees you may be responsible for during your semester(s) at William & Mary.
  • Student Accounts and Bills | Your orientation fee, health insurance, and housing and room deposit will appear on your student account. You can pay these either before you arrive or within the first week you are on campus. The meal plan will be charged once you have selected the option that best fits your needs. You must select a meal plan by the first day of classes or one will be automatically chosen for you.
  • Payment Options | There are several ways you can pay your fees, including W&M Flywire, which typically allows you to pay in your home currency. During Orientation you will be given information about opening a bank account with a local bank. If you choose to do so, you will have checks to pay your student account bills and a debit card for other purchases.

All students at William & Mary, including visiting exchange students, are required to have a personal laptop computer. If you do not plan to bring your own, you may purchase one through William & Mary. It will take up to 3 weeks to produce your computer if you choose to select this option.

Orientation & Arrival

The international student orientation is a great resource for students.  Exchange students are required to attend.  The orientation consists of academic and immigration information sessions, shopping trips, social activities, and opportunities to learn about the campus and Williamsburg. Detailed information regarding the international student orientation and transportation to Williamsburg can be found on the website. 

Planning your U.S. Stay

As you plan your time in the U.S., we have information on academic breaks, travel, internships, and other topics that will help you.