Next Steps for International Students
Congratulations on your acceptance to the University of Montana. Please take these next steps before enrolling as an international student at UM.
1. Pay the I-901 Fee and Apply for Your F1 Visa
Once we have determined your eligibility for the I-20 and issued you the I-20 form, you will need to prepare to come to the U.S. This will include paying the SEVIS I-901 fee and applying for your visa.
Learn about the I-901 payment process
The I-901 fee is collected by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement to cover operating costs for SEVIS. All international students must first pay the I-901 fee before going to their visa interview. View the I-901 SEVIS Fee payment tutorial to learn about each step of the payment process.
Pay the I-901 Fee
To pay the I-901 SEVIS Fee, visit FMJfee.com to access the SEVIS Form I-901.
Apply for your U.S. Visa
- Find the U.S. embassy or consulate that is most convenient for you to visit,
- Go to their website and follow the instructions for applying.
**NOTE** CANADIAN citizens do not need to apply for a visa, but they do need to pay the I-901 SEVIS Fee before entering the U.S. for study.
For more information about the visa process, visit:
- UM's ISS website
- U.S. Department of State's Study & Exchange website
- Ten Points to Remember When Applying for a Student Visa
- EducationUSA: Navigating the Student Visa Process
2. Activate Your UMConnect Email Account
Log in to UMConnect, your student email account, and check it regularly. UMConnect serves as the official means of communication between students and the University of Montana. This includes everything from information about registration, tuition and fee notification, and urgent announcements. This is an important step, as we will send you multiple important emails throughout the pre-orientation process.
To log into your UMConnect account, you will need your NetID.
Your initial password will be the last six digits of your student ID number (which begins with 790) and it is included on your acceptance letter.
3. Apply for Scholarships
Congratulations! You already applied for incoming merit based scholarships when you applied for admission. You can expect to hear back about your scholarship award in the next few weeks, if you haven’t heard already. To see what you qualified for prior to receiving your award letter please visit our scholarships page.
If you want to be considered for a departmental scholarship, please complete the General Application in the UM Scholarship Portal. Application deadlines vary by department and/or opportunity.
4. Apply for UM Housing
*Distance-only students excluded
UM Housing provides positive, safe, and inclusive living environments which are an important part of your experience at the University of Montana.
- Housing information was mailed to you in your acceptance packet.
- Housing is assigned first come-first serve. $200 of your prepayment is refundable until June 1st if you do not enroll at UM fall semester.
- To check your room assignment once assignments have been made please log back into the Residence Life Online portal.
- We provide housing options for students with spouses and/or dependents. For more information, visit the University Villages web page, or call (406) 243-6063.
- For more information, visit UM Housing or call (406) 243-2611.
Note: Living on campus is required for all incoming Freshman as we believe it is integral to your success at UM. If you would like to request to live off campus you may submit a residency release form.
5. Submit Official Academic Records
If you did not submit official academic records as part of the admissions process, you will need to submit the originals or attested copies prior to enrollment. A registration hold will be put on your account until these are received and can be reviewed.
- Usually issued with the letterhead of the institution, has an original seal, stamp, watermark and/or signature.
- Photocopies, notarized copies, faxes, or scans are not considered original documents.
Official (attested) copies:
- Official copies of original documents that are signed or stamped by the school/university/examination body, sealed in an envelope, and signed or stamped across the envelope's back flap by the appropriate instititional official, AND
- Submitted directly by the school/university/examination body to University of Montana Undergraduate Admissions Office in the sealed envelope. You may send or hand deliver the certified copies yourself as long as they remain in the sealed envelope, OR
- Submitted electronically ONLY through approved digital credential services (Digitary, My eQuals (Australia/New Zealand), MyCreds/MesCertif (Canada), CHESSIC (China), Parchment (U.S.), National Student Clearinghouse (U.S.), TrueCopy (India)).
- Freshmen: If you have not yet finished secondary school requirements, you will need to have an official school transcript/exam results sheet sent in after completion.
- Transfer students: If you are currently taking college level credits through an institution of higher education, you will need to have an official college transcript sent to UM after you have completed your coursework. Evaluation of transcripts for credit transfer and UM course equivalencies cannot take place until official transcripts have been received. Transcripts alone may be insufficient to award credit and students should be prepared to submit additional course information (e.g. course descriptions, syllabi) to supplement the transcript information.
Transcripts and other academic records should be mailed to:
Undergraduate Admissions Office
University of Montana
101 Lommasson Center
Missoula, MT 59812
If you have questions about what documents you need to submit, please contact email@example.com.
6. Consider Applying to UM’s Davidson Honors College
The Davidson Honors College provides outstanding undergraduate students with extraordinary educational and cultural opportunities. Honors College students enroll in challenging courses and participate in special experiences outside the classroom that enhance the regular offerings and activities of the University. The Honors College is open to students in any academic major, and offers the intensive learning environment of a small liberal arts and sciences college within a larger research university.
To learn more visit the Davidson Honors College.
7. Submit Immunization Records
*Distance-only students excluded
As you prepare to attend UM, we want to make you aware of the state of Montana immunization requirements:
- two (2) immunizations for Rubella and
- two (2) immunizations for Rubeola
You must submit verifiable documentation of your immunizations. You can submit immunization information online. Please submit these documents as soon as possible to ensure a smooth transition to UM. For more information please contact Curry Health Center or call (406) 243-2122.
The University of Montana requires all students to have and to maintain medical coverage while attending the University.
International students will be automatically charged for the Student Health Insurance Plan unless they can provide proof of sufficient coverage through a different health insurance plan. Please see the Curry Health Center web page for more information on health insurance requirements for international students.
For more information, contact the Student Insurance Advocate at 406-243-2844, firstname.lastname@example.org, or visit the insurance section of the Curry Health Center web page.
8. Register for Bear Tracks and New Student Orientation
All new international students are expected to complete a Bear Tracks Registration Event prior to attending New Student Orientation. The Bear Tracks Event is available online and can be accessed from anywhere you have a computer and internet access. After completing Bear Tracks you will be able to connect with your advisor and start registering for classes. You can find more information about Bear Tracks here.
First-year students and all international students NEW to the U.S.: All first-year students and students new to the U.S. are required to attend the New Student Orientation. During this orientation you will meet new friends, complete a Big Sky Experience, and learn more about your F1 visa. You will also get information on the social and academic transition to U.S. higher education, as well as the services available to you on campus. Learn more about New Student Orientation here.
Transfer students from U.S. institutions: Students who are transferring from other U.S. institutions are welcome to participate in Bear Tracks and the New Student Orientation, but can choose to complete the online Transfer New Student Orientation instead. If you complete the online Transfer Orientation, you may still need to participate in the international sessions during New Student Orientation. Please contact the International Student and Scholar Services office for more information (email@example.com).
9. Complete Course Registration
First-year students: Your academic advisor will pre-register you in fall semester courses required for your major. Once you have registered for and completed Bear Tracks, you will be directed to a web portal so you can begin the course registration process.
Transfer students: Once you've completed Bear Tracks or the online Transfer New Student Orientation you'll be directed to connect with your academic advisor to get your registration PIN and complete registration.
If you are unable to complete course registration before coming to campus, don't worry! You will have another special opportunity to finalize your course schedule during the first part of New Student Orientation.
10. Plan for Arrival and Airport Pick-up
The UM International Students and Scholars Office provides a free airport pick-up service for all new international students during Arrival Days for New Student Orientation. To take advantage of this service, please arrange to arrive during Arrival Days and submit your arrival information to ISS using the form on the ISS website. You can also contact ISS directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.
11. Prepare to Enter the U.S.
To ensure a smooth process at a U.S. port of entry, be sure to hand carry the following with you on the plane (do not put in your checked baggage!):
- Passport with U.S. visa*
- Original I-20 with signature
- Contact name and phone number for the International Student Services office and International Admissions office at University of Montana
It is also advised to make copies of these documents and carry them with you.
*Canadian students do not need to have a visa, but must be prepared to go through inspection at the border. Canadians should bring all the documents required for a visa interview to the U.S. port of entry. See the Canadian Students page on the U.S. Embassy in Canada website for more information.
12. Learn about Student Employment and Internship Opportunities
As a benefit of the F1 visa, international students have the ability to work part-time on campus. Since the F1 visa is primarily a student visa, however, there are U.S. regulations about how much and where international students can work while in the U.S. These will be covered during the international student sessions during New Student Orientation, but you can learn more by visiting UM's International Student and Scholar Services website.
The University of Montana offers many opportunities for student employment. The Student Employment website is designed to allow for you to search and apply online for part-time on and off campus work study, non-work study and volunteer positions.
Internship Services provides students with comprehensive services and coordination of the internship process.
You can meet with a Career Counselor to discuss your major and career options, resumes, job search, interviewing, etc. Together you can decide what next steps are best for you.
12. The Last Step!
Celebrate! Feel free to share how you celebrate that you are now part of Griz Nation by including us in your celebration through #Montanabound
You can also view the Admitted Students pages for more information on living in Missoula, figuring out what to pack and other great suggestions!